Sunday, November 18, 2018

Thankful Candle Centerpiece Scroll Saw Pattern.

This Thanksgiving candle centerpiece is over 13.5 inches wide. I cut it from 1/2" thick wood but you can also use 3/4" thick wood. If you use 3/4" thick wood you may not want the double base. It looks a little clunky when it's that thick. 

Thanksgiving is just a few days away but you can easily build this project in one session. It took me about an hour and fifteen minutes to cut the parts and probably another two hours to assemble including waiting for the glue to dry and applying a spray acrylic finish.

The most critical cuts on this project are the curves. It is very obvious when the curves are not cut accurately on this project. If you struggle with the curves take the time to sand them back into shape. 

Here are all the parts. I am using off the shelf wooden candle cups. These are available at most decent craft stores. You can make your own if you don't have time to pick these up at the store. Bear Woods sells the wooden candle cup but you won't be able to get them in time for this Thanksgiving. Here is the link. Bear Woods Wooden Candle Cups.
The wooden cups have a hole in the bottom. Pre-drill before you drive the screws. It will split the wood if you don't. Glue alone is probably not strong enough. Use the screws just to make it safer. You don't want the candles falling over.
This is what it looks like assembled. 
If you need to make your own cups the use 3/4" thick wood to cut the circles included in the pattern. You can stack two of these if you want a taller cup. 
It looks best if you round over the bottom of the cup. If you leave the cut this short you may need to use a nail in the bottom to help hold the candle in the cup.

Cutting 1/4" thick Aluminum Update:

I received quite a bit of interest in the article in yesterday's post about cutting 1/4" thick aluminum. I received one email from a Frank Carey of Papa's Workshop. He cuts quite a bit of 1/8" thick aluminum for the latches on his scroll saw arm Lifter product he sells. 

He gave me a few tips that he thought might help with the 1/4" aluminum I am cutting. The first tip was to try the Flying Dutchman Polar blades instead of using the metal cutting blades. Boy was that a good tip. I had some #5 FD Polar blades so I gave it a try and the cutting was much faster. I was able to increase the speed of the saw to 75% full speed and my feed rate was easily doubled.

Frank said he always uses oil when cutting aluminum and finds that does improve the cut. I did not try that yet but I will tomorrow. 

My thinking right now is that the metal cutting blades have such a high TPI that they get clogged with the shavings and become less efficient. They work well for thin metals but not so well on thicker materials. The blade just can't clear the shavings fast enough on the thicker aluminum. 

More testing to come as I get the chance.

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