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David - Machinist in wood
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had originally planned to just post a photo of this as a finished unit but decided to post a few photos of building this instead. This is a display board for the Asst. Sheriff for all the badges he's had in his career and this will be set on his desk. The board is about 26" long by 9" high and will slant back at an angle yet to be determined but likely 15° to 20°. It is made of Sapele and the inlay is Maple. I'll finish this in Nitrocellulose lacquer.

I gave him a choice of Walnut, Sapele, and a handful of exotics and also gave him some options on inlay, binding, or nothing at all but was hoping all along he would choose this type of inlay because I wanted to do it this way (shocking, I know, but I don't always get to build what I want - I have to build what the client wants - LOL!).

This sort of inlay work is something I've always done by hand, or in this size with a Dremel and router base, occasionally with a palm router. But since I built the CNC I thought it only proper to use it to cut the entire piece, including the inlay channel.

For the inlay channel I used a 1/16" bit at 18k rpm cutting at a slow 25 ipm (didn't want to break the bit). The channel is 0.0625" deep and about 0.090" wide. I used an X-Acto knife and a carving chisel to sharpen the corners after routing.

To make the inlay I cut two strips of Maple on the table saw and then used the drum sander to get the pieces to the fit I wanted in the channel. Then I cut the inlay strips to height on the little bandsaw. The miters were cut with a chisel and the curved pieces were bent on my hot pipe I use for bending guitar binding and cutaways. Start to finish on the inlay was about 40 minutes.

Ordinarily I use Titebond on something like this but the inlay fit so well into the channel that I just left it in place and flooded it with CA glue. I took a bread to mow the yard and then came back in to run it through the drum sander again to level the Maple. After a couple of passes with 120 grit it is ready to fit the badges. I'll use a Forstner bit and cut recess where the clasps are on the badges so they can be set flush to the surface.

His name will be engraved above the badges but I removed it for this. When he retires he'll pass this on to his son who is a Deputy.

Anyway, this is enough rambling on something this simple and small so here are the photos -

Sketch -


Profile cut and inlay channel ready -


Testing inlay -


Bending pipe setup -


Dry fit of miter -


Sanded and with Naphtha -


Ready to fit for badges -


More when it's completed - Enjoy!
David
 

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Theo
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Nice work, but I'm surprised he would want something that large on his desk, rather than hanging on the wall. I would think that something that size, on a desk, is gonna get knocked off, sooner or later, probably sooner. But, if it does, and something breaks, maybe you will be called on to repair it. :surprise:
 
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David - Machinist in wood
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My understanding is that this will be set near the front edge of the desk for display when people walk in. He'll have the top of his day planner on the base of this display and that will angle it slightly so he can see it easier. At 26" across it will definitely be obvious.

I agree, though, hanging it on the wall and framed with a glass front might have been a better choice but then I wouldn't have gotten to make this cool piece with inlay. :grin:

David
 

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Mike
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His name will be engraved above the badges but I removed it for this. When he retires he'll pass this on to his son who is a Deputy.
Is his son a Jr.? Maybe you need to keep this file so you can change the name and make a new one for his son when the time comes.

Looking good so far. Nice job on the inlay.


After thinking about it if you are only using his last name it should work for both but I still think you should make another on from different woods for the plaque and inlay!
 
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David - Machinist in wood
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
That's really neat David . I can't get over that inlay, and couldn't imagine how difficult this piece would be without a cnc
Thanks, Rick! It isn't that difficult without the CNC but certainly is easier with it.

Is his son a Jr.? Maybe you need to keep this file so you can change the name and make a new one for his son when the time comes.

Looking good so far. Nice job on the inlay.


After thinking about it if you are only using his last name it should work for both but I still think you should make another one from different woods for the plaque and inlay!
Thanks, Mike! I don't know if the son is a Jr. but it's going to be laser engraved so I guess they could add something to it later. Since it will be his father's badges he'll probably want to keep his father's name on there anyway. Of course, his son may want one with his own badges and name so we'll see in a few years.

I love the shape of the curves. Highlighting them with the inlay really makes them pop. Great looking board.
Thanks, Doug! The laser shop sent me the initial outline and I suggested adding the inlay to highlight and give it a classier look. I'm glad he chose to do that - looks sharp! This is the first time I've worked with Sapele and it's a nice wood to work with, machines easily and cuts precisely.

David
 

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David - Machinist in wood
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Looks good. I vote for 14 deg. angle.
Change submitted to the committee for approval - :nerd:

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Got a little closer to finishing today; picked up the badges so I can fit them in place and cut recesses for them to sit flush. Also, cut the base but still have to cut the angle to allow the front to slant back 15°, scratch that, I meant 14°. I'll get that done tomorrow and might get to start shooting the finish on but I need to make a Walnut run and that's going to take a while to get over to the sawmill and back.

Base cut -


Testing badge locations for spacing -


Cutting recess for fasteners -


More later!
David
 

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David - Machinist in wood
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Finished and assembled; one coat of sanding sealer, one coat of gloss, and one coat of semi-gloss Nitrocellulose lacquer. I let it dry 3 days before assembling it to minimize the chance of the pieces sticking together. The laser shop will do their engraving today and I'll spray one final coat of semi-gloss on the front before the badges are mounted. I'm not sure I'll have an opportunity to photograph it fully completed so this may be all I'll post on this little project.

Bottom -


Miter detail -


Asst. Chief's view - when I cut the brace piece it seemed like a nice place for a pencil groove so I added that. My plan was to do it on the router table but the only suitable bit I have was too long so I cut it on the CNC. I think it adds a nice touch and will be usable for him. I also beveled the back edge so when he sets his planner book on it there won't be a sharp edge.


Front side -


Since it isn't truly 'complete' I didn't spend a lot of time on photography but these will do.

Thanks for following along!
David
 

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Mike
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Neat project David. This could be used for other uses with a few modifications.
 
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