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Bandsaw Circle Cutting Jig - a la Steve Maskery

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Orcamesh

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We are having our house rewired at the moment which means there is chaos everywhere. We have had about 15 ceiling spotlights removed from the kitchen alone (previous owners went mad with them!). This leaves many large-ish holes in the ceiling which I need to now fill in with small circles of wood to then be plastered/stippled over.

I don't have a circle cutting jig and as I have many of these pieces to cut I thought this would be a good opportunity to make Steve Maskery's circle cutting jig for the bandsaw!! Fortunately I also have a Scheppach Basato bandsaw which has the same dimensions as the circle jig in his DVD series. This means I had nothing much to change dimensionally. It has taken a few hours but only because I am slow, and made a few school boy errors! I'm still getting to grips with using a table saw so every move is carefully calculated before pressing the big green button. I used my Woodrat to make the slots in the main board of the jig using a horizontal table (which is a Woodrat jig you need to make if you have a Woodrat). With some simple stops and a clamp guide setup on the horizontal table, I was able to easily cut the long slot for the adjustable circle pivot block.

I used the lathe to turn the needed pivots in some scrap ash. For the adjustable circle pivot block I used a threaded insert (M8) into which a similar sized bolt is screwed from underneath the jig. I didn't have any posh threaded plate handy! Anyway, below you will see a few photos, I haven't actually changed my bandsaw blade over to a smaller one yet (ran out of time tonight), so the blade has yet to cut into the actual jig. Once this is done then we can start making circles!

Thanks to Steve Maskery for his great DVD(s), they are truly inspirational and very helpful.

I need to make another jig now with a slightly smaller radius capability (~30mm radius) or I might be able to add a row of small holes which will take very narrow diameter pins/nails (between the closest point of the pivot to the blade). This jig has a minimum radius of about 65mm.

cheers
Steve
 

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Orcamesh

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Last night I managed to get the bandsaw blade changed, after resetting the lower bandsaw wheel for co-planarity. Unbelievable how "out" the lower wheel was with respect to the top wheel, so after probably an hour of faffing about with learning how to alter the lower wheel, I managed to restore co-planarity. Next time it will be quicker. :evil:

With the blade changed to my smallest available, I then cut into the jig when mounted on its jig pivot (this is clamped to the side of the bandsaw). So starting with the jig to the left hand side of the blade, then rotating it into the blade to cut the jig until it rotates to being 90 degrees to the table edge (I used a large engineers square to assess when I had rotated the jig in far enough). Then I setup a stop block behind the blade, set against the jig when rotated into the blade at 90 degrees to the table edge, so that the stop block prevents the jig from rotating beyond 90 degrees.

Once this was done the jig was ready for use so I just mounted an offcut of 1/4" ply (after drilling a 6mm hole in the centre-ish) onto the workpiece pivot. Then starting with the jig and workpiece outside (to the left) of the blade I then fed the jig and workpiece into the blade until the jig stopped against the stop block. Then I just continued to rotate the workpiece on its pivot. Et voila! C'est tout Rodney! :D

Some photos of the jig and resultant ply circle...

Thanks for looking, hope this helps those of you who have not yet gone and bought Steve Maskery's DVDs? If you haven't, I strongly recommend them to you! There is much much more besides this circle jig.

cheers
Steve
 

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Peter Sefton

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The jig looks great; when my old house was being renovated we had similar holes to fill.
The site chippy made a great job, he cut baton off to about 150 mm long and threaded it through the hole with pva on the bottom. Screwed either side of the hole to fix the baton and used hole saw to cut fresh plugs out of spare plasterboard. The plugs were a couple of mm smaller in dia than the holes, he then glued screwed and skimmed over them, never to be seen again.
 

Orcamesh

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Peter Sefton":2px1uvlf said:
The jig looks great; when my old house was being renovated we had similar holes to fill.
The site chippy made a great job, he cut baton off to about 150 mm long and threaded it through the hole with pva on the bottom. Screwed either side of the hole to fix the baton and used hole saw to cut fresh plugs out of spare plasterboard. The plugs were a couple of mm smaller in dia than the holes, he then glued screwed and skimmed over them, never to be seen again.
Thanks Peter. Yep, you're right about using plasterboard, after looking at the jig, then realising that it's min radius was 60mm (D'oh!), I figured I would have to do something else. I am not sure why I thought it was a good idea to use circles of wood/ply! :oops:

I found an old 63mm hole cutter which has now cut out 16 plasterboard circles (for the kitchen alone!), ready to be mounted on batons as you describe. But we have some bigger spotlights in the upstairs bedrooms which are about 100-120mm diameter so I will probably use the jig to make wooden circles for them. There's only 9 to make for upstairs too! Lots of hole filling. A right pain in the *!#$!!!

So, anyway the jig will be useful for future projects so no harm done and as said can be used for the bigger holes upstairs. The jig is so easy to use, so it's great to have it there when needed now.
 

Steve Maskery

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HI Steve
That looks like a right Rolls-Royce version. Excellent. I'm glad you've found a good proper use for the jig. I don't use it often, but when I need it, it's the best.
Thanks very much for the plug. One rec is worth a dozen adverts.

BTW, you should be able to get considerably smaller than 60mm radius. Just make a slider with the pin closer to the edge. I think you should be able to cut50mm DIAMETER with little trouble, assuming your blade is narrow enough.

Cheers
Steve
 

Orcamesh

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Steve Maskery":3r1b267b said:
HI Steve
That looks like a right Rolls-Royce version. Excellent. I'm glad you've found a good proper use for the jig. I don't use it often, but when I need it, it's the best.
Thanks very much for the plug. One rec is worth a dozen adverts.

BTW, you should be able to get considerably smaller than 60mm radius. Just make a slider with the pin closer to the edge. I think you should be able to cut50mm DIAMETER with little trouble, assuming your blade is narrow enough.

Cheers
Steve
Thanks Steve, much appreciated! I still have about 265 jigs to make from your videos!! :wink:

Yes, I realised very quickly that I could add further holes in the moving block and/or the fixed part which the blade has cut into. Then I can insert temporary pins into these holes. As you say the blade width will determine the minimum radius.

Anyway, I need to stop making jigs and get on with the display cabinet project again, I have had a few weekends of interruptions!

cheers
Steve
 
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