Stumbled across this on the web. I have no affiliation, it just looks
like a cool tool if you've got a lot a baseboard to install. OTOH, it
could be a piece of junk.
In brief, you make a mold of your baseboard's profile and use it as a
template to guide a router.
There's videos available at the site.
Seems like a LOT of trouble to go through. <G> It would seem that if
you spent the same time it took to make just one pattern practicing, you
could master the skill. Coping gets easier and easier each time you do it.
Might be useful if you only have a couple profiles. For a pro who's
doing a bunch, you'll run out of the plaster.
Another option for coping is the Collins coping foot for a jigsaw.
- By the time I set up all that stuff, I'll have cut 3 or 3 moldings
- a coping saw.
What if you were the trim guy for a builder who used a specific
baseboard 95% of the time? Assuming the template could handle the
wear and tear of hundreds of router passes, wouldn't it save time in
the long run to spend 20 minutes up front making the template? (I'm
not defending it...just asking!)
The video addresses survivability during repeated use, too: they suggest
making the first cut from the molded piece in plexiglass, then using *that* as
the template for subsequent cuts in wood.
Looks like their market is high-volume professional trim carpenters, and
DIYers who lack either the dexterity or the confidence to make coped cuts.
I'm not going to be buying one. But it's a clever idea, and I wish I'd thought
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
on 9/5/2007 4:18 PM DerbyDad03 said the following:
I can cut a piece of baseboard, or a piece of plain crown molding in
less than a minute, using a miter saw (powered or hand sawn) in less
than a minute. Intricate crown molding is best beveled cut. I did work
for a GC installing base molding throughout the house. Only one end of a
base molding needs coping.
on 9/5/2007 4:45 PM Doug Miller said the following:
Nope. The guy that taught me ran a piece of molding through the miter
saw, and then with the edge of a carpenters pencil, marked the edge of
the miter for better visibility, and use the coping saw angled a little
back to saw the molding, so only the face made contact with the other
molding's face. Piece of cake!
Text on website says "guaranteed to save ... hours on every job."
Video says "... but we recommend that you leave the template overnight so that
it cures completely."
Just how long do they think it takes to cut a coped joint by hand, anyway? I
can cut and fit an awful lot of coped joints in the time it takes that sucker
to cure overnight...
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
So Doug, every time you glue something do you sit there twiddling your
thumbs for how long it says on the bottle? Does moulding even usually
get put up the day it arrives on the jobsite?
The full video may say leave it overnight, but short video doesn't and
the website says:
"Allow the template to harden and cure completely. This time will
vary depending on room temperature, but it usually between 10 and 15
minutes. Removing the baseboard before it has hardened may cause the
mold to shrink. (Once you pour the template you can simply leave it
overnight in the tray.)"
I'll assume you aren't making that up, I haven't got time to download
a 150 mb file to check.
If something like this were to be popular then you could see profiles
for standard mouldings that you could buy. The moulding manufacturers
could even provide a template along with the stock and you'd be good
to go without any screwing around making molds.
Well let's see. To cope you've got to cut a 45 on the board then make
your hand cut. If the baseboard is tall then you may not be able to
cut it standing up, you'd have to lay it flat and bevel the blade.
Then the cut at the other end is back at 90. Maybe you plan ahead and
rough cut everything first then bevel them all at once. I would
imagine you'd do the same thing with the coper. But it would seem to
me by the time you'd have the miter cut you could have the stock
clamped up in the jig and the router in your hand. By the time you
picked up the coping saw the router would be done. Are you going to
save "hours"? Well I would doubt that if you've got pretty
straightforward rooms with 4 corners.
There's also the fatigue factor of doing all the cuts. The first one
or two might be a little rough while you shake off the rust, then
you'd probably have a real good run for a while. Then if you're
perhaps less concerned about the quality of your work than you should
be you might start saying "good enough" a bit more than you ought to
and "a little more chaulk on that one" a few times. The router
doesn't get tired or bored. So for a general contractor, I can see
the appeal of no matter who is doing the work it's going to be
consistent quality. I'm sure there's plenty of guys out there for
which this thing isn't going to improve their work or allow them to
get it done a whole lot faster, but I'm also sure there's plenty of
guys out there for which it would.
I've used "The Coper" since it was first available and I would not
want to be without it. For me it has paid for itself several times
over in time saving. Additionally, in my case the eyesight is failing
a bit so I'm a bit fuzzy close up and this device makes up for my lack
of absolute vision. I'm a regular renovation contractor and do not get
involved with top end homes, use only paint grade mouldings. I'm sold.
You'd still have to mount the piece in the jig, pick up the router, route
and touch up the finished product (1/4" radius will not make a tight fit on
For $122, I'd say it's hardly worth the trouble.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.