Saturday, May 6, 2017

"You" Word art Signs Scroll Saw Patterns.
There are three signs in this pattern book. They all start with "You".

Guest Video: Steve Ramsey makes a spoon.

Steve is one of my favorite YouTube woodworking content creators. This project he uses a scroll saw so I thought you might like to see what he does.


Information: Thin wood for scrolling.

Let's take a few words to talk about wood for scroll saw projects. Many scroll saw projects call for thin wood. 1/8", 1/4" and 1/2" thicknesses are all common. It is very expensive to put together a complete workshop to be able to mill your own boards. You need a band saw, table saw and planer at the very least to do it effectively. 

If you do not have these tools you need to buy boards already milled to the thickness you need. Unfortunately most people don't have local access to mills that sell in these thicknesses. If this sounds familiar then buying online is the best option.

There are a few online sources for scroll saw ready boards. A couple of sources you may not think of are and You can search for "thin boards" or "craft boards" on these sites. Just make sure you check the feedback of any seller on Watch out for shipping charges. They can add up very quickly. 

Heritage Wood Specialties is an online seller of scroll saw ready boards. They also pay for advertising on my blog. I like their products and can recommend their service.

All of these places have a problem that they can do little to change. When moisture is absorbed or evaporated from wood it can cause the boards to twist, warp or cup. If the boards are at a moisture point in the mill and they ship to your shop that is at a significantly different moisture level you will see these issues. This won't happen every time depending on the species and the current humidity but if you buy enough wood you will see the problem. If this is not acceptable then don't buy wood online. You will just end up disappointed. You will lose a certain percentage of the wood you buy. Some sellers will offer a replacement if the warpage is above a certain amount but many won't so check their police before you buy. 

When I get my shipment from Heritage I leave it in the wrapper they ship it in. I store the boards flat whenever possible. I have talked in the past about how to flatten a board that has warped. Sometimes that works and will save a board. Sometimes I just have to cut the warped board into smaller pieces.

If you go to a mill and buy 100bf of lumber you expect that 5 to 10 percent will be waste. That's just the nature of working with wood.

I bring this up because I occasionally get an email from an upset reader who has purchased boards form a seller I have mentioned or recommended. I have received a couple of those lately. I just want to set expectations so you know what you are getting in to when you buy thin boards.  

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