Jig Saw

Jiggin’ for Salmon – part 2

Cutting corners with the jig saw.
Cutting corners with the jig saw.

Found some time this weekend to work on the jigsaw project. Continued cutting the twists and turns of pattern. The idea of starting in from the center and working outwards seems to be a good idea. I also starting scoring the lines with a sharp blade. This will help prevent the blade from splintering the edge while cutting. Same as if you were cutting a veneered hollow core door, score the line then cut with the saw, makes for a clean edge.

I also learned that a round bastard file can be very helpful in cleaning up the corners. As I get used to cutting these shapes I am learning a few tricks. Most of the tricks are providing the blade room to turn while it has to make a tight turn. Making a few passes close to the line and then going back to cut on the line makes a big difference. I uploaded this video on scoring veneer and jig sawing one of the smaller tight spaces.

As I cut out each space, I completely finish the area with trimming and sanding. I’m doing that for a couple of reasons. First, it allows a bit of a break from cutting with the saw being bent over the plywood. Second, I won’t have to face all the sanding at the end of the cutting. Third, it makes me be careful with the cutting because if I mess up, I’ll have to start all over again.

Considering I am not working with a high quality plywood material, it was expected I would find voids under the top layer of veneer. Using the utility knife helps because it helps detect soft spots in the top layer. I was expecting voids but not one this big and of course, in a really delicate spot too. But that’s one of the reasons why I enjoy woodworking, the unexpected challenges along the way. The following picture is an overview of the trouble area.

Voids in the plywood cause trouble.
Voids in the plywood cause trouble.

And a closer look. Nasty? Yes! Fixable? Yes! In the foreground was the cut I was doing when I discovered the void. The previous space I had cut revealed the void but I did not notice it since the plywood had sufficient support. Lesson learned here is that with each cut, an inspection of the cut edge needs to be looked at for evidence of voids.

Gaps weaken the plywood.
Gaps weaken the plywood.

My solution is to take a strip of veneer off of a scrap piece as shown in the picture below.

Making some veneer filler.
Making some veneer filler.

Next is to determine the depth of the void. I opened up a paper clip and used it as a probe. Then I laid out the veneer piece for fitting.

Determining size of the void.
Determining size of the void.

Time for glue up and let it sit overnight for a good drying. Fingers crossed the next day ! I might swap in a fresh blade on the jig saw for re-cutting this area again. Or maybe pull out the coping saw.

Clamp it and fingers crossed.
Clamp it and fingers crossed.

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A Newfoundland born Canadian with a life long interest in woodworking, baking and anything else that peaks my curiosity.

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