holding solid wood

Discuss Thermwood 3-axis Machinery, Controller, and Software.

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Dave Burtchell
Junior Member
Posts: 98
Joined: Thu, Jun 30 2005, 10:04PM

holding solid wood

Postby Dave Burtchell » Sun, May 03 2009, 3:27PM

We've been doing more and more cutting of curved solid wood pieces, mostly teak. Up to 12/4 thick and 12" x 96". We've tried everything to hold it down. Right now we put a 3/4 sheet of plywood down and set the wood blank on top. Run the program so it just skims the blank and screw it down to the plywood out side the cut. We leave 1/8" skin and flush trim after. We need something better.
Has anyone tried a grid table like the one made by NEMI? We've been thinking about making our own, holding it down with the 18hp Becker, but using the high vacuum pump we use for bagging to hold the wood down.

Any suggestions?


David Egnoski
Senior Member
Posts: 189
Joined: Tue, May 17 2005, 1:05PM
Company Name: Richmond Cabinet
Location: Delavan, WI

Re: holding solid wood

Postby David Egnoski » Sun, May 03 2009, 4:18PM

I've been cutting a lot of solid wood moldings for a pair of church doors I'm making. I've been using scrap 1/4" melamine as a holding fixture. I dry run the outline cutting a few thousandths into the fixture so I know where the blank should be. Then I drill a couple of small holes for screws run in from the under side to hold the blank. Flip the fixture and rout away. For some post caps, I used gasket material instead of the screws and cut away much of the interior for vacuum. That worked great. I really didn't need to cut out such a large hole though. The vacuum really works great. The pictures should help explain what I've done.

I'm just learning how versatile this machine is and I've only just begun to experiment. Good luck with your project.
Fixtures 013 small.JPG
Fixtures 013 small.JPG (17.45 KiB) Viewed 1254 times
Fixtures 010 small.JPG
Fixtures 010 small.JPG (16.73 KiB) Viewed 1254 times
fixtures08 small.JPG
fixtures08 small.JPG (17.74 KiB) Viewed 1252 times
Dave Egnoski
Richmond Cabinet & Millwork

Will Williamson
Guru Member
Posts: 403
Joined: Thu, Dec 08 2005, 6:10PM
Company Name: Williamson Finewoodwork
Location: Capac MI

Re: holding solid wood

Postby Will Williamson » Sat, May 09 2009, 2:57PM

What I have been doing is run the outline on my spoil board then I take 1/16 inch thick foam tape from allstar adhesive and inline the profile . then I drill a 1/4 inch hole through the spoilboard . If I'm concerned about the tape holding up the edges and the middle being sucked down to the spoil board( which will cause your edges to be slightly out of square ) i take some edgebanding with the iron on hot melt and run strips every few inches .There fore creating a grid that holds your part 1/32 inch up off the table. this method is very fast to setup and when I'm done I take a hot glue gun and fill any holes that were created. I usually locate a spoil board with my pop up fingers and then shoot a couple of pins in the corners to keep it from moving accidently when you deactivate the vacuum. I use mdf for all my holding fixtures some times stacked 3 or 4 inches thick and if I want to seal them up I brush on some shellac.


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