How to cut and make a molding on a board

Cutting and routing a molding in the edge of a wood board

To make a somewhat complicated molding in the edge of a board, like the one in the picture, we have basically the same problems as when making plywood gears like the ones we saw in a previous post: we need the most perfect possible drawing of the shape we want to cut; and we need some way to make the cuts in the wood with sufficient precision.

This project occurred to me by chance, when I was planning to make a wall mount for the thermometer and in the end decided to focus on making a more complicated molding to the wooden board. And I have to say that it was a surprise to see how successful the video was on my YouTube channel.

Draw the shape of the molding I want to cut

Despite using as a drawing template the metal plate from a wall thermometer that I planned to screw onto this board, making a symmetrical drawing and repeating it the same on the other side of the board was a bit tricky.

Shape I want to cut in the edge of the board

In the video I explain in detail how I made the drawing once I decided on the shape you see in the picture.

Making straight cuts to remove wood

To cut with sufficient precision a band saw would be perfect, but in my case I’ll settle for my homemade table jigsaw. I just have to plan the cuts a little bit, without trying to force the cut when making the curved cuts. I first make straight cuts to remove most of the wood. I continue with the upper curve, which shape I can make by cutting half to one side and half to the other side.

Perpendicular cuts to approximate molding curves

And then I cut the curved corners without much trouble (something that would be a bit more complicated with the hand held jigsaw tool). Now I just have to cut the small inner curves, which I was going to drill with a drill bit with a radius equal to the radius of the curve. But since I was not sure I could drill in the exact place in all four cases, and any deviation would be too noticeable as the molding would no longer be perfectly symmetrical, I decided to approximate the curves with cuts perpendicular to the line, being very careful not to cut the line.

Gross grit sandpaper to adjust the molding cuts

A little work with the coarse file making sure to keep the cuts vertical to the surface of the board, and going over the marks with the medium grit sandpaper.

How to clamp the board for routing the molding

I clamp the board on the worktable, and now I can route the molding, on the edge of the board, with the router machine.

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