How to taper a large hole - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 08:22 AM Thread Starter
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How to taper a large hole

Hi everybody, I am building a poker table and need to make holes for the drink holders. The drink holders themselves is tapered (I would guess about 8 degrees, imagine the shape of a normal beer glass). The outer dimension is about 70mm (almost 3"). I can drill a "straight" hole quite easily that will accept the drink holder and that will work just fine. However, the table is made from solid kiaat wood so I am trying to really make it look very professional. Also, if it is a tight fit then there is less likelihood of somebody spilling their drinks as the drink holder will not tip. As such, ideally, I would like to taper / bevel the inside of the hole so that it is matches perfectly with the cup holder.
I tried to search online but I have a feeling my key words are wrong. This is what I am currently considering:
- I can use hand tools (rasp) but as I need 10 of these, not sure if I will be able to replicate the results each time.
- I could try to use a dovetail router bit that closely matches the bevel and basically route it from the bottom.
- I can use a straight bit with a slightly smaller bearing and just do a step approach each time taking a mm or 2 as I progress upwards. The angle can be achieved by setting the depth of cut. Once I have the "steps" I could just sand the ridges.
- I can tilt a router 8 degrees (I do have a Makita router that allows angled cuts) but this sounds extremely dangerous and is something that is generally only recommended when you have a flat fence guide.
- I can turn a replica of the cup holder on a lathe, attach some sanding paper to it, then put that into a drill press / oscilating sander and just work the hole like that.
- if the work pieces wasnít so large, I could potentially mount small blocks on a lathe and just bevel it that way
Just some extra information about me / the project:
- the wood that will accept the drink holder is about 20mm thick
- the wood is kiaat (very similiar to teak)
- Each "player station" (i.e. piece of wood that I need to make the beveled hole in) is 720mm in width and 180mm wide. Thus the pieces could be man handled quite easily.
- I am based in South Africa, so we have a limited selection of tools available
- I am just a hobbyist but am comfortable with power tools and hand tools (just a bit lazy to pick up the hand tool first)

Now, I am sure I am not the first person that ran into the above issue, so I think I am missing an obvious trick on how to pull this off. Now safety is quite important for me hence me rather asking how other people will do it


Kind regards
Skouperd
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post #2 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 08:56 AM
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Having never done it, I am sorry to say that I don't have any tricks. But I will say that this option sounds pretty good ...

"- I can turn a replica of the cup holder on a lathe, attach some sanding paper to it, then put that into a drill press / oscilating sander and just work the hole like that."

Maybe start with a coarse grit and move up as it gets closer to the final shape ... ?

... turning perfectly good wood into firewood every day ... :smile3:
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post #3 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 09:14 AM Thread Starter
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Just thought of another option which I can consider, and that is to use a jig saw with the base tilted.
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post #4 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 09:37 AM
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Make a tapered sanding plug

Your idea:
- I can turn a replica of the cup holder on a lathe, attach some sanding paper to it, then put that into a drill press / oscilating sander and just work the hole like that.

I would use a 1/2 drill motor which runs around 400 RPM, with a 1/2" bolt run through a hole in the plug. Cut 2 slots into the plug to accept the sandpaper, 60 grit to start with. Fold the paper into the slots. The paper will have to be conical in shape. Make a paper pattern first. You might angle the slots to oppose the rotation direction to prevent the sandpaper from coming out?

A jig saw may not give you a refined edge or a smooth surface, but it will eliminate a lot of hand work. If you could "section out" the cup holders from the larger piece and still have it look good, that's another option for making the taper on the lathe.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #5 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 09:49 AM
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Will the drink holders completely cover the holes?
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post #6 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 10:01 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gj13us View Post
Will the drink holders completely cover the holes?

The idea is that the cupholders will be flush with the top yes. It does have a slight "lip" on the edge but the lip is too small to prevent it to fall through if it is a straight hole. (lip is only about 1.5mm wide). So, another reason I would like it tapered is because the tapered sides will also ensure that the drink holder doesn't fall through the hole.


The attached image, just drilled into a piece of plastic have the hole slightly smaller than the cup holder (the brown cup) which may make it clearer. The idea is that it sits flush with the top yes. The glass inside it is a normal beer glass so if it is flush, then the glass will only protrude about 2 cm above the top.
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post #7 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 10:05 AM Thread Starter
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Seems like the lathe with drill press is the route to go. The oscillating sander will not really work as one have less control. Given the size of the plug, I might even reduce the speed lower than 400. I like the idea of the slots in the plug, that makes sense.

Yes, will start on low grit and move up through to the finer grit.
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post #8 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 04:29 PM
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Since you have a lathe, turn the cup holders then insert them into the hole previously drilled in the table. Either turn them with a small lip or cut them to have a friction fit.
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post #9 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 04:39 PM
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Why not just glue three narrow wooden blocks spaced equally around the bottom of the hole thick enough to support the cup holder from tipping. Not an elegant solution but fairly simple if they can't be seen.

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

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post #10 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 07:14 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by earlmac View Post
Since you have a lathe, turn the cup holders then insert them into the hole previously drilled in the table. Either turn them with a small lip or cut them to have a friction fit.
Not sure i follow. I currently havent drilled any holes yet (barring the plastic test piece). I do however like the idea of turning my own cup holders. Just a question, will you not be concerned with condensation from the glass messing up the turned cup holders?

Also what kind of wood/finish whould you recommend on such cup holders?

Ps, I am thinking I might deploy your idea for coffee mug holders! Basically have the mug holder plug into the "cup holder's" hole and standing out above the table. (Mug bottom is bigger than the hole diameter).

Thanks, you gave me a couple of ideas!
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post #11 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankC View Post
Why not just glue three narrow wooden blocks spaced equally around the bottom of the hole thick enough to support the cup holder from tipping. Not an elegant solution but fairly simple if they can't be seen.
That could work. Just to explain the table a bit more, it is a multi functional table. Basically it will have three different tops each serving a different function. As a dinning room table (replace the poker inserts / poker top with Solid boards. (Ie flush table top with no cup holders etc. The poker table with a floating top about 20mm lower than the dinning table. (Remove the dinning top to reveal the poker top) If it is not a dinning table/poker table then it could be a normal games table that is sunked 150mm for the kids lego (and mine) and or puzzle building etc.


The sides of the table is 200mm high. With the bottom insert it allows me about 150mm room between the top of the player station and the bottom. If i am to glue the 3 pieces of wood, I will do that on the bottom of the poker insert not necessarily the bottom of the table. Reason being the positions of the cup holder may change depending on the orientation the player want to install his insert (left or right).

Even so, your idea will give it definitely more stability yes. Thanks for the idea if i need more stability I now have a solution.
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post #12 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 09:48 PM
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You could turn the cup holders as thick as you have room for. I would finish them with polyurethane, line the bottom with 1/8" self adhesive cork, and drill a hole in the center of the bottom (for accidents). If the area you are putting them is not large enough to accept a cup holder that is turned thick enough to prevent warpage, you could turn the cup an inch or so thick, cut a rabbet on the outside top of the holder and insert it from the bottom using Titebond III.

Any way you go, you are going to have a beautiful piece of furniture.
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post #13 of 18 Old 05-10-2018, 10:36 PM
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Drill straight cylinder holes. Have a saddle-maker sew up a set of tapered leather dice cups and sink them into the holes.
Leather always looks good.
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post #14 of 18 Old 05-11-2018, 02:55 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robson Valley View Post
Drill straight cylinder holes. Have a saddle-maker sew up a set of tapered leather dice cups and sink them into the holes.
Leather always looks good.
Now theres something i did not consider. I will however just pause that idea for version 2 for now.
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post #15 of 18 Old 05-11-2018, 02:58 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by earlmac View Post
You could turn the cup holders as thick as you have room for. I would finish them with polyurethane, line the bottom with 1/8" self adhesive cork, and drill a hole in the center of the bottom (for accidents). If the area you are putting them is not large enough to accept a cup holder that is turned thick enough to prevent warpage, you could turn the cup an inch or so thick, cut a rabbet on the outside top of the holder and insert it from the bottom using Titebond III.

Any way you go, you are going to have a beautiful piece of furniture.
Thank you very much.

Fortunately space/size will not be an issue. Main reason for building this table is we are ten guys playing once a month and we are all big blokes. Previous tables were all a bit uncomfortable so we made this one extra big.

Thanks, time to unpack the lathe
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post #16 of 18 Old 05-11-2018, 12:18 PM
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On a nice table like that I would consider using an insert for the glasses. The insert is made to hold the glass (think of a new car console drink holder). Depending on the type, some are removable for easy cleaning. You need something to catch the moisture besides your table.

If you don't have time to do it right the first time, when will you have time to do it over?
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post #17 of 18 Old 05-12-2018, 02:44 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolman50 View Post
On a nice table like that I would consider using an insert for the glasses. The insert is made to hold the glass (think of a new car console drink holder). Depending on the type, some are removable for easy cleaning. You need something to catch the moisture besides your table.
The cup holders are effectively removable inserts yes.

By the way, in case anybody ever wants to do something similar, and without me breaking advertising rules, i see there are companies that does make "variable angle router bits" just google them. Bit on the pricey side for a home table but the option does exist for the professionals.

Btw I ended up using the more traditional drink holders (stainless cup) with straight edges and they work fine. I figure my other cup holders is bigger so if they did not work i could always go bigger. But the ideas on this forum have really helped me a lot so thanks to everybody.
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post #18 of 18 Old 05-14-2018, 08:07 PM
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I know I'm late to this party, but I'm shocked that more of you did not suggest the router with an 8 degree bit. 8 degrees is a standard dovetail cut so the bit is easy to obtain and cheap. The router setup would be to install the bit under a common collar (guide bushing). The collar would be sized to just clear the bit shank. Then, a simple template (to match the collar size) mounted on the underside of the table top, and ten holes would take only minutes to form.

https://www.amazon.com/PORTER-CABLE-...70_&dpSrc=srch

https://www.amazon.com/Freud-22-122-.../dp/B0000225Y1

Another $000,000,000.02 worth of advice,
Mark
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