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Thread: String Inlay tutorial

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Zushi, Japan
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    739

    String Inlay tutorial

    I am doing a dining table now and have just completed the stringing on the legs so I thought I would share the process with you. This was my first time to do this but I read a couple of articles and then went ahead with it, forward march into the void. I found it to be fun and interesting plus for what it is worth the end result adds a touch of class to an otherwise standard dining table. I am quite happy with the results.

    1. Pictures 1 and 2 show my router setup for stringing. It is a Dremel tool with a router base made by guitar outfitters Stewart and McDonald. I also buy the router bits from them as they make a nice downcut 1/16" carbide bit for use with the Dremel. I originally set the depth a little too deep and broke one bit. Actually for some reason I thought I had made it 1/16" and even did a test cut to confirm. Then after the bit broke I confirmed the depth to be 2.5mm. 1/16" is 1.6mm. Had to order another. On the second run I set the bit 1/16" deep, double confirmed it and was able to finish with no problems.

    2. Picture 3 shows my stop block setup. The end blocks are rabbetted so they simply fit on the ends and clamp down. Also they they are sized so that the rectangle is equidistant from the all edges concerned.

    3. Picture 4 shows the routing. Patience and a steady hand.

    4. Pictures 5 and 6 show the routed groove. Just have to chisel out the outside corner to make it 90 degrees and then they are ready to take the stringing inlay.

    5. Picture 7 shows the stringing next to the legs. I cut them on the band saw and table saw then I put them through the drum sander.

    6. Picture 8 and 9 show my method for cutting the mitered strings to length. I am using a 45 degree shoulder square and sharp chisel. This way I am able to make the thinnest cut if I need to trim or make a space filler.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Zushi, Japan
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    739

    Part 2

    7. Pictures 10-12 show the inlay proud. Just have to make it flush.

    8. Pictures 13 and 14 show the finished leg with the inlay flush. I used an orbital sander to make them flush. I think most would use a card scraper to trim the excess and then hand sand in order to keep the edges square but I find I am able to keep the sander flat with no problem and use a 240 grit paper for a not so agressive abrasion.

    Any comments or criticisms of my method and results are kindly welcomed.

    My apologies for the layout here. I am still not clear how to insert my text above the thumbnail.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Nanaimo B.C. Canada
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    131
    Very interesting.

    Great job on that Alex, thanks for sharing
    --------------
    Cheers! - Jim

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
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    29,086
    Cool stuff, Alex. Thanks for the walkthrough. We expect to see the finished table, of course.

    There's a tutorial here that might be of some help on the pictures:

    http://familywoodworking.org/forums/...ead.php?t=3082
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
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    Hey, that is fantasitc!

    What are the woods?

    Are you going to turn the feet at all,or just camfer the very bottoms?

    Can't wait to see the rest of it!

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Houston, Texas
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    Hi Alex,
    That is a marvelous addition to the legs and the knowledge of "how to" opens the door to many possibilities. Thanks alot.
    Shaz
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Placitas, NM in the foothills of the Sandia Mt
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    688
    Thanks for the tutorial. The inlay really makes those legs sing!
    Don't believe everything you think!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Zushi, Japan
    Posts
    739
    Thanks for the comments guys.

    Vaughn I will check out the how to on posting pics with the comments for the next time. Thanks.

    Stu I am using bubinga, maple and ebony for the feet. I thought about turning the foot portion only and have it go into the taper but I have never done it and at this stage don't feel like experimenting. I will probably camfer the edge.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Smithville, TX
    Posts
    358
    Really nice work, Alex. I would have used a shoulder plane or block plane to get them near flush before sanding (strictly for speed), but that definitely makes those legs jump. Beautiful.
    Mini Max Tool Acquisition Mediator.
    "An old man to most kids and a young man to those who are dead."

    www.samantics2.com

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