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  • Template Materials

    What do you use for Templates???

    I use Floating Floor for Templates. We redid our floors in our basement years ago and I ended up keeping the extra pieces we had and used it in the shop as template material. They worked out great.
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  • #2

    Re: Template Materials

    I use 7mm BB plywood and hardboard
    bogmer likes this.
    My brain hurts!

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    • #3

      Re: Template Materials

      I can see how the Baltic Birch will last a while how long does Hardboard last???

      I know when I use plywood I end up putting a couple of coats of laquer on it because I like using double sided tape and the laquer tends to be strong enough to not rip the plywood appart quickly.

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      • #4

        Re: Template Materials

        I use 1/2” MDF for router table work. I have a template set for Norm Abrams Adirondack Chairs
        bogmer likes this.

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        • #5

          Re: Template Materials

          Originally posted by Mike in Waubaushene View Post
          I use 1/2” MDF for router table work. I have a template set for Norm Abrams Adirondack Chairs
          I am not trying to nitpick here... All the MDF templates I have done all get nicked up pretty badly after a couple of uses. Just wondering how do you protect them for the long term.

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          • #6

            Re: Template Materials

            An other material that I have tried that didn't work like I hoped. Plexiglas... I wonder if there's some kind of high impact clear acrylic out there that might work and where could I find such a thing.

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            • #7

              Re: Template Materials

              I've used hardboard, BB but for big shaper template work I'll use at least 1/2" MDF. It's nice to have a little more heft to secure the piece to!
              bogmer likes this.
              Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club.

              http://www.youtube.com/c/DovetailTimberworks

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              • #8

                Re: Template Materials

                Originally posted by bogmer View Post

                I am not trying to nitpick here... All the MDF templates I have done all get nicked up pretty badly after a couple of uses. Just wondering how do you protect them for the long term.
                That's a good point, I would use BB if I thought I'd be keeping them beyond a couple of uses. Then I would also finish and sand them smooth and drill a hole in them to hang on my wall. I'd also write on them in large sharpie what they were used for so I would remember!
                bogmer likes this.
                Proud member of the Wadkin Blockhead Club.

                http://www.youtube.com/c/DovetailTimberworks

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                • #9

                  Re: Template Materials

                  Originally posted by bogmer View Post

                  I am not trying to nitpick here... All the MDF templates I have done all get nicked up pretty badly after a couple of uses. Just wondering how do you protect them for the long term.
                  I've brushed on glue size & that made the edge much more durable. I wouldn't use ultralite MDF for a template though (or for anything else) because the edges crumble & turn to fuzz very easily.
                  bogmer likes this.

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                  • #10

                    Re: Template Materials

                    It would of course vary at least in thickness what you intend to guide along it such as a ball bearing and so forth. But in most cases, ¼" Masonite. It cuts easily and sands smoothly, takes a beating and lasts. Plexiglass (™), e.g. acrylic, polycarbonate and so forth are great but hard to work with. MDF is too soft in my opinion. Plywood is to fractious, although Baltic Birch is great if you have pieces on hand. Masonite does it all for me.
                    MartyFromKingston and bogmer like this.
                    Start slow and wind down gracefully

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                    • #11

                      Re: Template Materials

                      Originally posted by Woodwreck View Post
                      It would of course vary at least in thickness what you intend to guide along it such as a ball bearing and so forth. But in most cases, ¼" Masonite. It cuts easily and sands smoothly, takes a beating and lasts. Plexiglass (™), e.g. acrylic, polycarbonate and so forth are great but hard to work with. MDF is too soft in my opinion. Plywood is to fractious, although Baltic Birch is great if you have pieces on hand. Masonite does it all for me.
                      The reason why I thought Plexiglas was going to be a good material is because sometimes you want to go around a knot or you want a curve to follow a funky grain or something like that. When you can see though it you have an advantage. It's expensive and like I said it's not very impact resistant so it's not the greatest for templates. Plus it ruined a router bit I was using to make the template. It was a straight cut flush trim bit and I swear it chipped it or wore it out.

                      I will try and see if Polycarbonate would do the trick. There's nothing wrong with trying.

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                      • #12

                        Re: Template Materials

                        Hold on. You make a good point as to visibility. But,. "plexiglas" is a copyrighted commercial trade mark. Note the "™". What you are describing says you are not using the right bit. Carbide bits specific to acrylics, polycarb and so forth are what is needed. I can give you names tomorrow if you want but you won't find them at WW stores, need a carbide shop. A straight cut flush bit is not a great choice. 'Plastic' bits are generally spiral. I haven't had too much trouble with impact and I am excellent at dropping things given my wrist and hand problems. I'll post some catalog pages and pics tomorrow of the bits.
                        Start slow and wind down gracefully

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                        • #13

                          Re: Template Materials

                          My Adirondack chair templates are made from prefinished wall panelling, a luan based product popular in the 60s and 70s. It is about 1/8'' thick and I used them only to mark out parts with a pencil so maybe they are patterns rather than templates? I think I have made around 600 chairs and some of the parts occur multiple times per chair and the patterns are still in good shape.
                          Rob

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                          • #14

                            Re: Template Materials

                            Originally posted by bogmer View Post

                            I am not trying to nitpick here... All the MDF templates I have done all get nicked up pretty badly after a couple of uses. Just wondering how do you protect them for the long term.
                            I use this particular template to trace out the shape of the individual parts on pine or white cedar when I can get it, cut close to the line, reattach with carpet tape and finish off the piece on a router, usually taking off the last 1/8” or less. Pine and cedar doesn’t take much pressure to fine tune it. I’ve made around 20 or so chairs over the years when I have no other projects needing to be done. The templates don’t show any distortions. Even if it did, it’s a yard chair.
                            bogmer likes this.

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                            • #15

                              Re: Template Materials

                              I use Baltic Birch plywood.....Rod
                              Work is the curse of the riding class.

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