Split Cherry

Undertook a pretty simple project to continue my introduction into wood working. A small table made from 3/4 cherry I found on sale on my local wood purveyor. The table, from the Nov-03 Popular Woodworking mag, has the legs made from a template using a flush trim router bit, after rough cut with a jig saw (band saw would have been better, but not in my inventory.yet). Made the template, came out fine. Rough cut the first cherry leg (PITA with an old B&D jig saw), and trimmed it with the template. Came out pretty good. Second leg...perhaps a bit too aggressive with the router, the bit caught, and split the piece nearly in two. One for the scrap pile. Brushed it off as "one of those things", a lesson learned (take it easy on the router). Probably happens to everyone now and then. Tried again. This time I took very small, slow cuts with the router. No problem, until the bit caught again, and split the piece nearly in two. Grrrrrr. Someone tell me that this kind of thing happens occasionally, and that I'm not completely retarded (even if you have to lie to me). Stay tuned for the results of attempt #3. O.
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You're making something with curved legs, I take it, and routing uphill on the short grain.
Don't know the particular plan, but do know that you don't want thin sections unless the grain is running long through them. Next task is to pay attention and rout downhill - may require being able to flip the piece on the pattern. I'd rather leave little protrusions on the piece to pin-reference my pattern, then trim them off by hand. If you care to, stops and clamps work as well. Alternative is climb-cutting, where you have to have a death grip to keep the bit from pulling you in, and guaranteed burned cherry.
Oh yes - ALWAYS us a starting pin or such when using a flush-trim bit. Good idea on any bearing-guided bit, actually.

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