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no start pins to rest the work against......
you started cutting on a corner instead of on a long side...
 

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Thanks

I do have a starter pin which I thought about after the event, I'll give it a try.

If I don't start on the corner, how do I go back to it - left to right to finish ?
keep walking/feeding the piece around the bit till you get back to where you started....
 

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Theo
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Which is the pattern? Top, or bottom, piece? I have routed pieces about that size before, always with my master (what others call patterns or templates) on top. My masters are two 1/2" plywood pieces glued together. I see you are using nails. I use nails also, but my master nail pilot holes are usually about 1/2" apart, and I would use at least 4 nails in a piece that size, and add more nails if it seemed to be shifting. The 1" master give me a solid grip, and I use both hands - being very careful about keeping my fingers away from that whirly part, shifting my hands very frequently, and taking very shallow, and short, cuts. I'm not had any issues with my method. However, what you picture is about as small as I will willingly go without some how clamping the piece.

Disclaimer: Just because I do it this way, does not mean I recommend you do it the same way. Different background, different experience, and all that.
 

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Thats small to have your hands near the cutter.
I use a micro jig gripper for small pieces. Loads of plastic between me and the blade, plus a good handle on which to press down as firm as you like.

Start from the pin and just go all around the item running right to left. But depending on wood type, you might not get it past the end grain.
I find rosewood to be so hard that the cutter chatters and breaks away however fine the cut, so I just finish that end grain by hand.
 

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Mike
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Put the part on the other side of the pattern so you are not cutting into the endgrain going around the corner. That way you will be cutting across the grain and not into the grain.
 

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