February Meeting of Tennessee Valley Woodworkers


There were 73 people present at the meeting. The meeting was called to order by Bob Leonard at 7:00 PM.

VISITERS: There were four guests they were Marion Riley from Tullahoma, John Keiper, Winchester, Jack Rowe, Murfreesboro and Amy Bunch from Cirero, Indiana.

ANNOUCEMENTS: Bob Leonard said that Ben Whiteaker was still in rehab. in Nashville. He also said that a women had some Cherry lumber for sale in Manchester and the telephone number is 728-5984. It was Mary Ellen Lindsay’s birthday today.

A woodworking show is coming back to Nashville at the Expo Center. The mini lathe was on display tonight. The rules on the drawing for the mini lathe are: You must sign only your own name, If there is a family membership then both members of family are eligible to sign. You do not have to be present to win. It is for members only. Steve Shores stated that the sharpening jig for the grinder that was used at the last seminar could be built for a lot less than buying one and he brought in copies of plans for anyone that wanted them.


NEW BUSINESS: We need to buy 12 chairs and suggestions were made to have members auction off some of their work or pass around the hat. A motion was made by Loyd Ackerman to pass around the hat for donations to purchase chairs and seconded by Doyle Mc Connell. The motion passed. The hat was passed around and $146.00 was collected. It was mentioned that a tour of members’ shops could be undertaken if there was enough interest. We had a showing of hands and there was enough interest and arrangements will be looked into. Henry asked that members pay their dues after the meeting was over.

SHOW AND TELL: Jim Van Cleave brought in a Walnut table. John Sargent brought a Maple vase and a segmented bowl made of Beech, Cedar and Walnut. Don Powers brought in two bowls one Walnut and and one Mahogany. He used engraving tool for top embellishment. Manuel Brown brought a bowl and a round cookie jar with lid. He also brought in several different sizes of goblets he had turned. Bob Leonard brought in a Shaker basket. He had ordered a kit to make it from. He showed the jigs he made for bending it around. He also brought the piece he made for bending over the copper brads. He said it was fun to make it and he will be ordering patterns of the different sizes so he can make more.

MONTHLY DRAWING: The drawing was done for two gifts since one was not done last month. Loyd Murphy was a winner and chose the skill saw blade and Larry shockley also won and chose the level.

PROGRAM: Henry Davis and Tom Gillard Jr presented the program. Rotors in general are of two types fixed base and plunge rotor. Both can be used for edge profiles, groves, joints, reproduction, trim, and drilling. The plunge router can be adjusted so the bit is above the base and the fixed router you have to tilt to come into the work. They come in several horsepower ½ to 3-½ hp. A dremel tool on a base really works well on special jobs. There are two collet sizes ¼ inch and ½ inch and that is the size bit that each of them uses. You can also use an adapter to utilize the other size bit. The rotor speed is typically 22,000 to 24,000 RPM. You need to use a speed control to lower speed if you are using larger bits such as 3-½ inch diameter bit. Some of the larger routers have a speed control built in. You can also buy speed controls to use with rotors that do not have one built in. When buying a router consider getting a switch on the handle that springs to off. Also look to see that adjustments are easy to make. Decide if you want a dust collector port on the router. There are some routers that come with both a fixed base and a plunge base. A router table is a handy accessory. Cabinet style is a good choice since it has storage you can utilize. Portable tables are also available but they are not very stable. You also can build your own table but make sure you use thick medium density fiberboard for top. You can build or purchase the insert for table. Fences can also be build or purchased. Henry has modified his so T-nuts will slide in groove and made a guard and kick back board that fits in the groove. Woodhaven Catalog has a lot of inserts to chose from.

There are many rotor bits on the market and MLCS catalog has many to chose from. Most are now carbide faced but there are still some hi speed steel bits but they do not last as long as the carbide faced when using with a hard wood such as oak. The carbide- faced bits are more money than the steel but worth it. The straight cut bit is one of the most used. You can cut profiles with a round over bit and they are available from 1/16 to 1 inch round over. Profiles are also cut with Ogee or Cove bits. There are flush trim bits with bearing in line with cutter blade and can use base as pattern. There are thumbnail bits for putting the edge on a tabletop. The newer bits have more antikick back feature built in them. There are window trim bits that are used in a pair. If you use this type in rotor table remember that you have to do pieces upside down. It was suggested that to come back to same height all the time when changing from one bit to the other put an o-ring in bottom of router collet. You can now get raised panel bits that allow you to turn panels on edge to cut using a smaller diameter bit.

Safety first should always be the policy when using a router or any other tool. Wear safety goggles they protect your eyes and the side shields protect you from flying chips. Always wear hearing protection. Be tuned to the normal sound of your equipment and if the pitch is not right turn it off right away and investigate. Use reduced speed with larger bits. Make series of smaller cuts instead of one large cut with the router. Make sure your bits are always sharp. Always let your router coast to a complete stop before lying it down. Always unplug your router before changing bits. Do not rely on just turning off the switch. Secure stock to bench before routing. Safety can not be bought it must be learned and practiced.

In order to cut thin stock Tom made a jig to fit inside molding and also uses joiner pads. Dove tail jigs can be purchased but they require a lot of set up. Your setup stock must be the same thickness as your project stock. Many projects require a jig to be made before you can use your rotor with consistent results. Tom showed several jigs he had made. You can make or purchase a jig to make circles with. You can make templates to use when cutting pieces with router and they have much sharper edges and cuts down on sanding required when cutting edges with a band saw.

Tom made his own jig to cut 21 to 37 inch circles and used the spiral bit and ¾ inch thick material which he cut in two passes. His jig was made to facilitate an 8-½ degree taper that his project needed.