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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We had a discussion here, a couple of weeks ago, re trapping material between a fence and the bit, and I believe climb cutting was also in the mix.
Well today I ran into the gentleman who(m) I had mentioned had designed a jig for machining thin strips of Cedar for strip boat building. He, another boatbuilder and I had a great chat about this issue.
First, let me clarify. He has run thousands of meters of Cedar and he says not without incident. He never stands in line with the direction the material might kickback...it has happened, but extremely rarely and only with short lengths. The majority of his raw planks are in the neighborhood of 18' - 20' long. The strips final dimensions are 1/4" x 3/4", and the climb cut leaves them as smooth as a baby's bottom.
He and the other boat-builder both gang saw their planks using 7 1/4" thin kerf blades and fender washers as spacers. I didn't ask but I think they were using three blades(?) on the saw arbor..
Following the ripping, they run the final 'planed' edge with the aforementioned 'trapped material' jigs.
What I took away was that as long as you recognize the potential risk and design accordingly, it's a very productive technique, but it's not for everyone and most definitely not for beginners!
https://oysterbayboats.weebly.com/launchings-and-blog/category/building pictures

I asked him if he had a pic of the jig but unfortunately not... :(
 

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This is the problem with internet and videos. An experienced worker shows how he overcomes an obstacle and a 1000 complete beginners go out and copy it without ever questioning if its appropriate for someone with zero skill levels.

I dont see an easy answer, other than letting Darwins law prevail.
 

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Knew a guy in Round-O SC who used a similar technique for strip canoes. The jig that impressed me the most was his setup for making tongue & groove strips. He used a double sided jig with handheld routers (laminate routers) . Running the strips on one side produced the tongue and on the other side for the grove. Had some pictures but they are lost in the jumble. His stuff was collectors items and never saw the water. $600 dollar paddles and canoes upwards of 30 grand. He was a small time operation UNTIL he met Sam Maloof in CA.(of chair making fame) who connected him to the "money" crowd. Once he had a canoe on exhibit at a big NY gallery he was on his way. He was a crew member on a Boomer (Navy missile sub) until he hit the big time and Sam talked him into early retirement, imagine that.

If I was as good as folks I have met along life's path I would -------? Oh well, I'm not so I'll keep buying those lottery tickets. The moral of this story is for you younger guys to think outside of the box and maybe one day you will arrive at that million dollar level.
 

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When milling metal on a milling machine climb cutting is commonly done but the work is firmly attached to the cross slide table which has a gear reduction feed mechanism that is capable of resisting the bits force to self feed.

Years ago I took a dead Freud router and gutted it and attached a 1hp motor via pulleys and belt to it and set it up as a horizontal router. The table I made for the setup allows above or below the bit use which proved really handy for making picture frames. But the first time I tried feeding wood below the bit I failed to consider which direction the bit was traveling in relation to the wood and it took my work and shot it across the shop. Right to left with the wood under the bit was climb cutting. Luckily I was standing in front of my Rube Goldberg setup and the wood didn't hit anything important plus the bit was only turning at around 10,000 rpm instead of twice that speed so not as fast as it could have been traveling.

Dan there might be a practical way for those guys to rout the strips without climb cutting. In a table the rotation is counter-clockwise looking down on the bit. So if they put the fence on the opposite side of the bit and held the work against it with featherboards right to the edge of the bit and another right after the bit so that the rotation couldn't pull the board into the bit they would still be able to feed into the rotation and not with the rotation. I don't know what that would do to finish but it would be much safer.
 

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I was cutting a stopped slot for a bolt and it wasn't quite wide enough. So I bumped the fence and went to do another pass. Unfortunately I bumped the fence the wrong way. Fortunately I wasn't hurt.

So I'm not too crazy about trapping the work between the fence and bit or climb cutting. If I was to do it, first I'd try to figure out another way or at least use feather boards and stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Charles, it's like talking to you guys who won't use a blade guard, eh? ;)
As I said these guys have run thousands of meters of material but I'm not recommending their technique (hi, Bob!); I'm just saying that it's being done out there. The major aspect, other than the climb cutting, was the trapped material.
These boatbuilders are doing it with the full knowledge that it's inherently dangerous and their jigs address that risk. And again, not for the inexperienced routerologist..
 

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Charles, it's like talking to you guys who won't use a blade guard, eh? ;)
As I said these guys have run thousands of meters of material but I'm not recommending their technique (hi, Bob!); I'm just saying that it's being done out there. The major aspect, other than the climb cutting, was the trapped material.
These boatbuilders are doing it with the full knowledge that it's inherently dangerous and their jigs address that risk. And again, not for the inexperienced routerologist..
This is the way we cut our fire wood when I was young. Only difference was the saw was on the back of the tractor. My Dad was the sawyer, I was the off bearer. 48" dia. saw blade, no guard, don't know what the rpm was but the saw was really singing. We cooked,and heated with wood,so we went thru at least 15 cords a year and had a reserve of at least 10 cords drying for the next year.


Herb
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
My daughter's friend's farmer-dad put a pitch fork through his foot a couple of years ago; almost lost it to gas gangrene. Sh*t happens. Recognizing the risk is half the battle.
 

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Charles, it's like talking to you guys who won't use a blade guard, eh? ;)
Ok, guilty but I have plans to install one. Not to protect me from the blade but to protect me from the sawdust it throws. My old Unisaw isn't that easy to install it on and I do far too many blind cuts to have it on there. I am fully aware of what the blade can do and take steps to prevent problems as you say these guys do.

As I said these guys have run thousands of meters of material but I'm not recommending their technique (hi, Bob!); I'm just saying that it's being done out there. The major aspect, other than the climb cutting, was the trapped material.
These boatbuilders are doing it with the full knowledge that it's inherently dangerous and their jigs address that risk. And again, not for the inexperienced routerologist..
You also said "not without mishap". And that's the problem. Back when I first moved here there were still quite a few small semi portable sawmills around and there had been lots more before that. Almost every sawyer I ever met was missing fingers. I survived 25 years logging, much of it falling trees with a chainsaw which WCB said was one of the most dangerous jobs on the planet. But I only just survived it and I have some aches and pains that will never go away because I did some things that I knew better than to do because it was expedient at the time. All those sawyers missing fingers would tell you the same thing. There is always the chance that one of those times that it doesn't go well that the consequences may be really severe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
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Yowzer! There is some cool projects there Dan. Thanks for posting.
Herb
Oversight on my part, Herb; I forgot to take my own camera. There was some incredible work there.
One guy in the guild was commissioned to build a lightweight fake grand piano for a movie set. It had a removable fake keyboard that could have as a substitute a real digital piano slipped into place.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
"You also said "not without mishap". And that's the problem. Back when I first moved here there were still quite a few small semi portable sawmills around and there had been lots more before that. Almost every sawyer I ever met was missing fingers. I survived 25 years logging, much of it falling trees with a chainsaw which WCB said was one of the most dangerous jobs on the planet. But I only just survived it and I have some aches and pains that will never go away because I did some things that I knew better than to do because it was expedient at the time. All those sawyers missing fingers would tell you the same thing. There is always the chance that one of those times that it doesn't go well that the consequences may be really severe."

Heh...one of the boatbuilders was telling us about a young woman sculptor friend who was doing very small strips using this process. She was well aware of the hazard and was herself protected, but the end wall of her studio, insulated but nor drywalled, had 'spears' sticking out of the insulation! These small strips were shattering and then being fired at the end wall. Yikes!!
 
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