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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is there a tool for cutting (or a way I have not figured out with my tools) a small circle from wood? I will give the application and an example.

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/gallery/showphoto.php?photo=183&limit=recent

I made this by drilling a recess with a forstner bit. Then layed out the same sized circle with a compass and cut it on the scrollsaw. I had to finish dressing the insert on the stationary belt sander for a good fit.

It seems there ought to be a better way, that took 25 minutes to make 2 circles just right. I had thought about a hole saw without the pilot bit stuck in the drill press, but don't have any that the "slug" o.d. will match the recess i.d. I know they make adjustable hole cutters (I am only cutting thin stuff, 1/2" or less) but they too have a pilot. I need a solid unmarred circle.

What am I missing?
 

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Daren, make a jig for your router. Use 1x2 to form a square frame that your router base can butt against on the inside (your router base is round right?) You will have to experiment with the frame, but you can get it to cut perfect circles with a straight cut bit. Measure from the edge of the base to the edge of the bit to get a starting point on the frame. You should be able to add the radius of your circle to the other to get the distance from center to the inside edge of the frame.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Stew, that gets me closer and thnking along the right lines. I have one of those little spiral cutout deals too. But the tool I think I would be most comfortable with is my Dremel, it has a round router base attachment (with head lights even :laughing: , so I can see good).

I am cutting small circles out of thin wood, I think that would work fine with the Dremel. I could cut a big circle with a large holesaw (maybe, if I have the right size or just with the scrollsaw, it is just one cut for the jig that can be used over and over) that is the size I need in a board and use it to run the tool around the inside for my finished circle.
 

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I would cut a rough blank to within 1/4 inch of finish size then make a disk out of MDF and make it an accurate template. Use some double sided tape and attach the template to the rough cut disk. Then use a straight shank router bit with the bearing on the top of the bit next to base. You should get perfect circles everytime. I would mount the router in a table and put the fence as close to the bit and still allow you to turn the disk to final shape.
 

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I Have A 1/2" Solid Oak 2" Wide 2' Long, Holes Drilled Out For Dif Dimentions Metal Sleave For Smooth Turning Screw Goes In Threw The Sleave Into Your Piece Of Wood, On The Other End Hole For Coller In Router Using A 1/4" Straight Bit Gives A Perfect Circle Works Great.
 

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I have a circle cutter attatchment for my dremel and my rotozip....both work fine.
 

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For 1/4 type stuff I'd use the spiral saw as described. Anything more and I'd jig up a router.

Joasis' plan would be awesome if you were in a production sistuationand had to crank these out. But not with my lathing ability..lol
 

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The Dremels and Robo's are too slow and the bits too delicate for my liking. How about using a sleeve on your router? this way you could make the i.d. of your templates the same as the o.d. of your stock, plus the the distance between the cut of the bit (nearest the stock) and outside of your sleeve. Would be super simple and you could cut almsot as fast as your 1/2" spiral or flute bit could eat. Of course the downside is the 1/2" waste. And of course you have to plunge to get started but that's no big.
I haven't tried one but I saw somewhere, where (MLCS I think) is making 3-bladed flute and other bits now.
 

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those look nice. I have had good luck with a hole saw with a broken pilot bit, they have a use:laughing: . You should be able to get real close by adding 1/8 to the hole saw size to get the plug you what, 2" plug use 2 1/8" hole saw. Then fine tune it with sand paper. Also open up the hole saw by filing the inside teeth a little.
 

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hello daren,
you could try the adjustable hole cutter without pilot bit by clamping wood on to the drill press and not cutting all the way through(leaving a couple of mm)then cut through rest of cut with stanley knife then tidy up with a little sanding.
 
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