Author Topic: Cutting gears on a small router table  (Read 20419 times)

John Hilgenbergh

  • Guest
Cutting gears on a small router table
« on: June 27, 2008, 07:22:05 AM »
Has anyone tried cutting gears with a mini-router table such as the Shop Fox or the Dremel accessory table?  I do not have such a tool and am not even sure if freehand cutting would be manageable or safe.  But if it works, the price of the tool would be reasonable.  The Shop Fox seems more robust but spins at 9500 rpm -- perhaps slow enough to grab a feehand workpiece.  The Dremel operates up to 35,000 rpm but has a reputation for low torque and burning out quickly.  Each offers a minimum straight bit size of 1/8", but I think 1/16 bits can be found.  If the tool works for freehand, then it might be a logical next step to make a pantograph jig for cutting good tooth profiles.

John Hilgenberg

mstrick96

  • Guest
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2008, 09:39:08 AM »
Hello,
I have just joined the forum and am new to clockmaking.  I started  on making the clock design published in Scrollsaw Magazine a little over a year ago and got very frustrated with trying to cut the wheels with a scrollsaw.  I cut one decent wheel, but then couldn't get another one cut without messing up at least one tooth.  I then had some (unrelated!) health problems and am just beginning to start thinking about clockmaking again.

My problems with the scrollsaw got me to thinking about some sort of router arrangement.  Have you been able to try freehand cutting for a wheel or pinion?  It seems to me that it would require at least as much dexterity as the scrollsaw!

My ideas have now centered on using a Rotozip to do the cutting using it as a pin router with an overhead pin using a piece of drill rod as a guide pin.  I would make a template out of 1/4 inch hardboard by cutting out the gullet between two teeth.  The template would be centered at the center of the wheel and would then use some sort of indexing arrangement to rotate the pattern around the wheel, cutting one tooth at a time as I index around the wheel.  The spiral bit on the Rotozip would have a zero clearance where it comes through the table to reduce splintering of the wheel plywood.  The bits are 1/8 inch.  Seems to me that a 1/16 inch bit would break too easily.  I can't even keep 1/16 drill bits in one piece.

I think this idea would work.  I just need more time to implement it.

Mike S

Dave

  • Guest
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2008, 01:31:05 PM »
John and Mike, have a look at the davewestclocks.co.uk site, i placed an article there some years ago, (router used for brass) or something like it. I will be using the same idea when i make my first wood clock, regards Dave

Offline jss

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 46
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2008, 03:00:02 PM »
Fine Woodworking ---- Wayne Wesphales Article describe how to rout gears and gear tooth form.
(March/April 1986)

This may be of some help!

Offline theaggie

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 1
    • http://d-mwoodcraft.itgo.com
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2008, 08:18:28 PM »
Has any of you looked at the clock kit from Woodline? They have developed a pin router setup and have the gear patterns in UHMW plastic. Take a look here:

http://www.woodline.com/c-470-wood-gear-clock.aspx

The kit contains UHMW plastic patterns for all the parts except the front and rear plates. It also contains the router bit for the patterns. Basically, you will need a table mounted router because the overarm pin routing attachment is over the bit.

Thanks

Denis

Offline jss

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 46
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2008, 07:34:48 AM »
Great link.  Make sure you also click on the link for the INSTRUCTIONS  tab and select the clock instructions.  The PDF pictures the pin router and the templates.  66 pages may give additional info.

John Hilgenbergh

  • Guest
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2008, 09:05:15 AM »
Thanks, guys -- lots of good ideas here.  I don't think Dave's article is still posted on the Dave West site.

John

Dave

  • Guest
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2008, 12:56:05 AM »
Hi John, its still there in the tools section near the bottom of the home page, cheers Dave

markiep

  • Guest
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2009, 01:37:02 AM »
My problems with the scrollsaw got me to thinking about some sort of router arrangement.  Have you been able to try freehand cutting for a wheel or pinion?  It seems to me that it would require at least as much dexterity as the scrollsaw!w to clockmaking

My ideas have now centered on using a Rotozip to do the cutting using it as a pin router with an overhead pin using a piece of drill rod as a guide pin.  I would make a template out of 1/4 inch hardboard by cutting out the gullet between two teeth.  The template would be centered at the center of the wheel and would then use some sort of indexing arrangement to rotate the pattern around the wheel, cutting one tooth at a time as I index around the wheel.  The spiral bit on the Rotozip would have a zero clearance where it comes through the table to reduce splintering of the wheel plywood.  The bits are 1/8 inch.  Seems to me that a 1/16 inch bit would break too easily.  I can't even keep 1/16 drill bits in one piece.

I think this idea would work.  I just need more time to implement it.

Mike S

Hi
This is my first post and I was wondering if you have put your ideas in to practice?
I was also looking at the possibilities of using a router to cut wheels and was also thinking along the lines of making a template say with one or two teeth.The obvious problem here is the method of indexing the template.while the method in the in one of the links provided works well it does require a template of the whole wheel.

Another thought would be using a CNC. router.I would see this as a possibility and an interesting project also.I found a good website on this while researching-
http://buildyourcnc.com/default.aspx

I would still very interested in any idea's with one or two tooth template and the indexing.

Cheers Mark

Offline bobledoux

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 42
Re: Cutting gears on a small router table
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2009, 07:45:53 PM »
Read Clayton Boyer's ideas about cutting wheel teeth:

http://lisaboyer.com/Claytonsite/frequentquestions.htm

His approach is to remove the bulk of the material between the teeth.  He often uses a band saw for this function.  He then uses a sander to finish the teeth to the template line.  Looking at his products I can't fault this approach.

He told me he had his Simplicity clock running during a long Saturday of work.