question on "Arched" raised panel doors

Hi, I'd like to make a raised panel door that has the "arch" on the top Stile (the top horizontal piece of the door frame that holds the panel in.
I've made the traditional rectangle raised panel doors before. However, when running the rail/styles in the router table, I've found I need a featherboard pushing hard on the wood to keep the panel grove cut accurately.
So, how do you cut the arched stile? It doesn't seem like you can use the router table fence. It seems like you just have to do it freehand and use the bearing on the bit.
I guess you'd have the same problem cutting the raised panel as well. So, how do you do it?
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You are correct in that you do it on the router table freehand.(With a bearing on bit). The way I did it for my doors (first time) was to leave the board much longer than needed and was able to feed the board without getting my fingers close to the cutter. I did a 2 door set and cut the arch and routed it before cutting in to 2 pieces. Hope this helps. Bruce
bf wrote:

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Actually the Stile is vertical, you are describing the Rail.

Pushing vertically down on the piece or horizontally against the fence?

The arched horizontal Rail is cut with the band saw or jig saw to form the arch and then free hand fed into the bit. The bearing controls the depth of cut. If you have to push hard your bits may be dull or not spinning fast enough.

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If you want Rockler makes a template set. http://www.rockler.com/ecom7/product_details.cfm?&offerings_id 393&objectgroup_id#7&catid=7&filter=template
This makes cutting them very easy but limitis you to thier shapes.
Dave

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TeamCasa wrote:

http://www.rockler.com/ecom7/product_details.cfm?&offerings_id 393&objectgroup_id#7&catid=7&filter=template
Simple enough to make one's own template...which is what I recommend.
If at all possible, take an initial pass w/ a slightly oversize bearing and then do the final pass to cleanup the cut and minimize tearout. Make sure you have a really sharp bit and use most straight grain pieces you have.
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I recently made my first pair of arched doors for our kitchen. Instead of a wood panel, I used a distressed glass - looks real nice.
Anyway, since we wanted to mimic the other arched doors in our kitchen, I traced the outline of one that was closest to the size door we wanted. Cut it out on the bandsaw, shen shaped it with sandpaper to get it as perfect as I could. This was my template (MDF).
Next, I cut out some oak to the approximate size then used a pattern trim bit. As Bruce said, leave some extra length to trim later.
Next, I ran the slot/roundover shape with a door trim bit on my shaper. It was the first time I ever freehanded anything, so I made a holder with a couple handles out of scrap as a safety measure. It is important to use a pivot point of some sort to get you started - my shaper has a metal bar for that purpose.
I actually messed up the first pair of rails I did because I coped them first and the bit nosed-dived into the door when I got to the end of the cut. On my second try, I left them long, did the curve, then trimmed to size and finally ran the cope. Much better result.
Good luck (be careful!)
Lou

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new wood that is intentionally marked up with hammers and even hatchets (in an exposed beam house). So "distressed glass" made me spit-laugh, for which I thank you. -- Igor
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Hi Igor,
I knew someone would pick up on this. Got to measure your words carefully around here.
I actually squared off the back of the doors to avoid any glass problems. SWMBO picked out the actual glass at a local glass place. It (the glass) had no name, so I made one up.
She wants me to take a couple of photos & post them on ABPW.
I like it, but YMMV!
And, you're welcome!
Lou

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IF! your glass is not optically clear and has thin lines running through it here and there, it is Antique glass. Antique glass was laid out hot and left to cool on straw. The straw would make the thin lines intermittently appear in the glass. Scatter in the mix some small air bubbles.
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Stained glass suppliers do a pretty good job of faking this type of glass so it might be contemporary
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Yeah, I shoulda mentioned that the "Antique Glass" style is still produced today to look like the old stuff. Still the particular look I described is referred to as Antique glass regardless if is old or brand new.
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Freehand on a router table with a pivot point, and a feather board over the router bit.
I first make a bevel cut on my TS using a combination of a fence/tenoning jig to hog out as much material as possible. Makes the routing much easier.
-nick

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Hi (again) bf,
I posted some pics of my arched door kitchen project in ABPW if you're interested in seeing them.
Lou
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Thanks for everyone's advice here.. some of it covered stuff I hadn't even thought of.
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