I didn’t think this appropriate for a listing in the projects but I thought I’d post here to throw out an idea. I’ve been making various size spoons (some big (sauna) and some flat (salad) using the router to cut the “spoon” part and then the bandsaw and belt sander to rough-shape and smooth. Forks are even easier because they require no CNC process but I included a picture because usually a set made from the same wood makes a better gift. The majority of these are oak and the light ones are poplar. I use a 1.25" bowl cutting bit for the large flat ones and a 3/4" bowl bit for the smaller ones.
oh, yeah the project file in case you’d like to see it: https://easel.inventables.com/projects/TMnZPd-G5SkVb4FVn3HAjw (just a series of concentric circles you stretch and fit to your blank)
These are really nice. So do you CNC the shape and rough concentric circle steps and then finish with the bowl cutting bits? Is there a technique you use? I’ve yet to get a bowl cutting bit, but I’m sure interested. Thanks for sharing. J
The bowl cutting bits do all the work. The key to getting a fairly smooth spoon part is setting the stepover fairly high (maybe 80%) and running a first pass to hog it out. Then, do another pass and only change the stepover to something like 20 or 30 percent. It took a bit of trial and error but they end up pretty smooth and I only have to sand them a bit with the tip of the orbital sander. Bigger, flatter spoons were great using a 1.25" bit but obviously the smaller ones required a much smaller bit. A 5/8" works great for the smaller ones (like sauce or stirring). For a few of the smaller ones, there might be a tiny bit of material left in the exact center that the bit doesn’t get to. I use a tiny endmill in a Dremel tool to clean that up.
That’s great. For the outside convex, is that a pretty manual material removal process?
Yes, rough it out with the bandsaw and finish with a pretty coarse grit on the stationary belt sander (lots of dust and be careful!). Then over to the 1 inch belt. Finally, a bit of polish on the orbital. I suppose a true craftsman could draw knife them out and finish with carving chisels, but that’s not me.
This is a classic two sided project, easily done in V-Carve. Otherwise try making two separate files one for the concave and one for the convex. use the router to drill a 1/4 hole at each end centered along the long axis that is deep enough to go into the spoil board the Insert 1/4 dowel in holes, Machine concave then flip on long axis precisely using the dowel holes. Machine convex including cutting it out with tabs.
Hey thanks Richard! That’s great info. I’m sure this is the more precise way of creating spoons but I really just wanted to play around with different shapes and sizes. Also, I really like the sharp bandsaw blade for its’ speed and on the fly creativity. You might notice in my picture that some of my handles are crooked and definitely not precise. I think it gives them more of a handmade feel and I’m mainly making these for gifts. Also, I’ve been cutting the forks using only the bandsaw. It’s very efficient for my purposes. I suppose I could set up a number of different plans in Easel but that seems like a lot of work. Thanks again for the tips. The picture is of two new sets I just did - Paul Bunyan size! (biggest spoon is 28")