Sunday, October 22, 2006

Measure Once, Cut 48, and Start All Over

"This would be a pretty misleading weblog if I just showed the stuff that went right..." (Entry from December 10, 2005.)

Mike had some unexpected free time today, so we decided to try cutting the small strips that make up the bottom of the foot shells. Unfortunately, we misinterpreted the blueprints. Instead of cutting a bunch of strips of PVC at an 18 degree angle, we cut them all at a 36 degree angle.

Only after we were done cutting up a few sheets of PVC, and a few hours on the table saw, did we realize the error.

Oh well, these things happen.

We hope to try again next weekend. Looking at the bright side, it was good practice, and we got a usable jig out of it. In the meantime, there are a lot of PVC sticks offering a vertical support structure to trash in the trash can.


Matt McCormick said...

Thanks Victor for the links to these posts about your work on the bottom edges of the feet. I'm still not seeing what thickness of PVC you guys are using for these strips. The cutting properties of PVC are different than the ABS and the styrene that I have also been using. PVC is stiffer, I think, and a bit more brittle. So maybe it cuts better. If I tried to cut like you guys did here with .060 styrene, it would just be a flapping, melted, non-straight mess.

Also, I know that this it two years old, but you guys are stressing me out running this material through the tablesaw with your bare hands and fingers that close to the blade. Use a push stick. Too many people cut a finger off this way.

Thanks again for your careful work and for sharing it with us.

Matt McCormick

Victor Franco said...


The PVC is 1/8" thick, as is the case with all the flat PVC that we worked with.

And you are absolutely right to be concerned with safety. Matthew Henricks fed a finger into his table saw, and now the finger tip is numb. I was with Mike Senna when he nicked a finger tip on the table saw blade. He was very lucky, it only chipped the nail and drew a small amount of blood. (Another Senna secret revealed.)

These power tools still give me a healthy dose of fear, and there are some tools I simply won't use because I lack the proper training.