router bits for deck railing

Listers:
I'm preparing to make a curved railing for a deck. The top railing is about 3 and 3/4" wide and I need a router bit that will span halfway across that distance so that the profile will shed water. On the bottom rail, I want the traditional deep, low angle chamfer that also spans half the distance in order to shed water. Since the railing is curved the table saw won't help. I'm thinking of using 3 1/2" raised panel bits to get the job done. Does anyone have a different idea for this problem? Are low angle wide chamfer bits available? Is there some railing bit available that will span the distance I need? Any ideas appreciated...
J. Painter
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Why so much so big? Never seen such a use of the chamfer. you seem to be asking this for this result /\ a rail for looks and comfort reasons should look like this /````\
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"J. Painter" < snipped-for-privacy@eclipse.net> wrote in message
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Actually the handrail hes speaking of slopes from the center down to the edges at about 10-15 degrees depending on tatse. I make mine from 4" wide 1 1/2 stock. I try to get the bevel cut so that it leaves about 5/8 - 3/4 of square edge on the sides of the rail. A straight rail is a piece of cake, simply run it through the table saw. For a curved piece though you must go to a shaper, router or hand method of making the beveled, sloping rail. So there one can see where a 12 or 15 degree panel raiser would work excellent for this type of rail. Stick around Oh Young One! :-)
Jim

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Other things run downhill, too.

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Precisely so, Jim, and "bevel" is the better word than my "chamfer". I still haven't found a bit that will allow me to get the rail width I want and have the bevels meet in the middle. Looks like my only choice would be to buy a shaper (not bloody likely) or compromise and have the bevels end before the center. Probably I would leave enough flat area on the top to equal the width of the spindle bottom.
I've thought long and hard about other possiblities. I can imagine a jig that would allow me to use my table saw on the OUTSIDE of the curve, but not safely on the inside. A router jig with a 2" straight bit could also be used to make the outside bevel on the curve, but the inside is still a problem. The curve radius is about 8 feet and the chord lengths of the circle are on 5 foot centers. I love hand tools, but I just don't have the time to do this by hand (especially after framing for this circular section of the deck).
Oh well, I guess some bevel made with a panel raiser is better than no bevel at all.
J. Painter
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On 10 Feb 2004 06:08:22 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@eclipse.net (J. Painter) wrote:

for one handrail- or more to the point one curved section of one handrail- the spokeshave will be faster than setting up a shaper.
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Oh boy, a hand-tool advocate! ;-) Actually, I use hand tools as much as I can and I own a large collection of wooden planes and spokeshaves that I actually use. However, this project is a large multi-tier deck with one tier being a 16 foot diameter full circle. Using a spokeshave for that much rail top and bottom would take way more time than I have. It's bad enough I'll be spending half my summer gluing up a curved rim joist, framing the tiers, and clipping down 6000 sq feet of decking. Hey, ya gotta pick your battles.
J. Painter
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On 11 Feb 2004 06:28:33 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@eclipse.net (J. Painter) wrote:

how about making a sled that rides on the rail and holds a router with a largish straight bit at an appropriate angle?
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One option would be a bit similar to this one: http://iseek.com/Projects/omnicat5/index.php?cat_id=0 656-601 TABLE EDGE BIT - Shank = 1/2"
This would get you a light curve with a flat on top for the width of hand rail in your OP.
If you wanted a fully curved profile, you could set the bit deeper to get a slight shoulder on top then a few passes with a plane (tailed or otherwise) to carry the curve over.
<standard disclaimer of having no financial association with the above link comanpy>
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Sounds to me like you got it figured out, the raised panel bit should work fine for that.
Jim

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On 9 Feb 2004 06:34:35 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@eclipse.net (J. Painter) wrote:

spokeshave
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