Almost every single woodworker encounters a project that necessitates the creation of a perfect circle. Having the appropriate equipment to cut circles may make a big difference, whether you are building a round table or making a custom speaker enclosure for your home or car.
You can use a jigsaw to roughly carve the circle, then tidy it up with a template and a flush-trim bit on the router. You may also cut a circle with a jig on the band saw. All of these methods work to some extent; however, they are not as simple to use or as precise as a hand-held router with a circle guide.
Cutting Circles with a Router
Using a router to cut large circles offers the most precise circle and the cleanest cut if done correctly. To cut a circle using a router, you need to utilize a trammel guide.
If you are cutting out a lot of different circles, you could buy a trammel, much like you would with a jigsaw.
You can, nevertheless, create one out of scrap wood fairly easily. Take a look at the following steps to help you with this process:
- Cut your plywood into a circle
- Drill the holes in the circle
- Screw a jig into your router base
- Drill the pivot holes in the arm of your jig
- Cut the circle
- Drill holes in your wood block
- Sand the dowels
- Apply the wood glue
- Lay the dowels on each side of your router
- Cut a circle or an arch
Cut Your Plywood into a Circle
Remove the router’s sub-base to establish the size of the circular end of your jig. Cut a circle the exact same size as the router’s sub-base out of the end of the piece of plywood.
Drill the Holes in the Circle
Drill holes to match the holes in the sub-base in the circular end of your jig. Drilling should be guided by the sub-base.
Screw a Jig into Your Router Base
Screw the jig’s round end into the base of the router, aligning the holes drilled in your jig with the holes on the sub-base.
Drill the Pivot Holes in the Arm of Your Jig
Drill one inch apart tiny pivot holes in the arm of your jig.
Cut the Circle
Draw a line on the piece of wood from the middle to the end of the specified radius of the circle to use the jig to cut the circle. Place the router in the middle of the radius’s endpoint. Drive a nail through the middle of the workpiece and into the proper hole in the jig. Set the router to the correct depth and make a gradual pass through the workpiece, pivoting on the nail. Deep cuts should be made in numerous passes, with the router bit being lowered somewhat after each pass.
Drill Holes in Your Wood Block
The second jig for routing curves and circles can be created from the leftovers lying around your workshop. It is attached to the sub-base of the router, just like the jig mentioned above.
Drill holes in one long side of the woodblock. These should be the same size as the dowels. Furthermore, the holes need to be spaced as far apart as the base diameter of your router.
Sand the Dowels
Make sure that you sand the tips of your dowels.
Apply the Wood Glue
Start applying small amounts of wood glue to the holes in the wooden block. Afterward, you can place the dowels in the holes. Lastly, you need to wait for the glue to dry.
Lay the Dowels on Each Side of Your Router
Position the dowels through the holes on each side of the base of the router.
Cut a Circle or an Arch
Nail the middle of the wooden block to the center of the intended circle to use the jig to cut a circle or an arch. To correlate with the endpoint of the required radius, slide your router to the suitable position on the dowels. Set the depth of the router bit to the desired level. Swing the router gradually through the workpiece, pivoting on the wooden block. As needed, repeat the process, gradually reducing the bit with every pass.
The Final Verdict
Hopefully, carving a circle in wood no longer appears to be such a frightening undertaking! You can complete this job safely and properly with whatever tools you have in your garage or workshop. Using a router is one of the best methods.