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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Following the success of the coasters I made as last-minute Christmas presents last year, I made some more this year. They're a different design - end-grain this time - and I made a couple of jigs to help.

Jig 1 is the Yule Log Slicer™... the yule log in question being my glued-up blank of oak and ash boards. The Yule Log Slicer™ is a simple cross-cut jig to help me slice off the coaster blanks with 2 passes from my circular saw. (I wish I had a bandsaw!)

Jig 2 is the Coasterizer™. The circular grooves were routed with a conventional circle-cutting jig, and are sized deep enough to accommodate the bearing of a flush-trimming bit.

Step 1 on the Coasterizer™ is to mount the blanks face-down with screws from the sides, and surface the backs.

Then I can flip them right-side-up and remount them with screws from underneath. The bottoms of the coasters will eventually be covered with a layer of cork so the screw holes will be hidden. Now I can surface the tops, and run a flush-trimming bit round to cut them to shape. The final routing operation in the jig is to run a small bearing-guided round-over bit around each coaster.

I also made a holder for each set. The bases of the holders are cut on the same jig, but with a few turns of tape around the bearing of the flush-trimming bit, so they come out slightly over-size relative to the coasters.
The next picture is a laminated cylinder of thin birch plywood that I cut the sides of the holder from. 2 layers of 1/16" ply, softened by ironing between wet towels, then bent round a paint can with polyurethane glue between. It worked pretty well, there was only a tiny bit of spring-back when I released the clamping straps.

Final picture: all done! The finish was Rustin's grain filler followed by satin poly.
 

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Theo
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Pretty slick. Of course, you realize that a beer drinker never needs a coaster, he keeps a secure hold on his beer and doeen't put it down. Hehehe I use nails instead of screws.
 
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A great way to do this, especially if you don't own a lathe.

I have one question though. How do get the router started in the cut when cutting the edges?

It would seem that there is no location to get your flush trim bit down past the blanks and into the circle groove to begin the cutting. An easy fix of course, would be to plunge cut a starting hole on edge of the circle and outside the circle that is far enough from the center to be outside of the edge of the blank. You could then easily place the router and bit in this starting hole and then feed into the circle groove to begin the cutting process.

Just a suggestion based on what I can see in the pictures. You may have a better way that I'm not seeing. I love the project idea and your method of making them. They look great.

Charley
 

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John
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Well done Andy, Nice concept well executed !
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A great way to do this, especially if you don't own a lathe.

I have one question though. How do get the router started in the cut when cutting the edges?
The trick there is that the grooves in the jig are 3/4" wide, but the flush trimmer is only 1/2". So as long as the blank starts less than 1/4" oversize at some point around the circumference, there's a place to drop in the cutter.
 

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Those are darn nice lookin' coasters Andy... well done!!!!
 

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Rick
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Way cool Andy, there definitely beautiful! Thanks for the pics of how it’s done ;)
 
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