Scroll Saw Name Chain


Making some name chains for four of my young friends in the neighborhood.

Looked around Internet and zeroed in on a pattern style that I liked...

Using Word, I created a name in large Cooper Black font (~200).

This filled the page in landscape orientation

Then on the advanced tab of the font selection, I played around with settings until the letter overlap looked about right for scroll saw work...

Spacing = Condensed > By = 13 points
Then on the Format Text Effects tab...
for a nice working template look...
Text Fill = No Fill
Text Outline = Solid Line
Wood Prep
I used a thin blank of African padauk...left over from the jewelry cabinet.
Surfaced with a bevel up smoother...
Squared with a jack plane...
Scroll Work

Scroll saw blade selections...

for tight outer cuts...Olsen 5R reverse skip tooth

For inner cuts, Olsen #2 spiral tooth,
Downsized the names, printed the them to the  wood blank...glued on with 3m #45 spray adhesive
 The spiral blade required a 3/64 inch pilot hole.
CTD test for blade and bit selections
After the full template is cut out...

The template paper removed...Goo Gone...
Sanding, Rasping and Finishing
For the flat surface sanding I used 220x and 320x grits adhered to a granite slab...edge sanding was done with a variety of grits with small backing pieces

For shape refinement I used wide variety of Auriou rasps and Auriou or Ajax Plinky rifflers.

A great finishing cutter was a Murphy knife with a long cutting blade.

Amber shellac...brushed onto inner and outer edges......padded onto flat surfaces.
Drilled a 1/16 inch hole for eye hook...the bit was too small to fit in the drill press.

At first I designed these to have the hook in the first letter of the name and the unit would be vertical...
...later changed to placing hook to hold the name horizontally.
I experimented with options to hold a smaller bit in the drill press...I put the small bit into a pin vise and then secured that in the drill press chuck.

Reasonably particular, it made the hole drilling easier to keep aligned vertically.

Name Chains 2022
Doing a batch of name chains for Christmas 22, used  African mahogany cutoffs from blanks that went in the drive cabinet.
The cutoffs were jointed on one side with bandsaw marks on the other.
Ran the cutoffs through the drum sander until I had consistent thickness...a slightly fat 1/8 inch thick.
Here are the templates of the 10 name chains. 
The templates and the blank were coated with contact cement.

Note:  Spray can had powerful force and blew the templates all over the time secure them.

The blanks were then downsized at the bandsaw.
I learned previously to leave a blank space at the front of the names...this gives the piece a hand hold while scroll sawing.
At the press I drilled 3/64" pilot holes for inside cuts using the #2 Olsen spiral tooth.
I used  8 tpi skip tooth blades for the outside cuts and began to to shape out the names at the scroll saw.
While working in this phase, I had a health problem that made me unable to work at the scroll saw.
My fine motor control of my fingers forced me to avoid the power saw and  I switched to hand saws. 

The material was too thin for the vibration of the hand saws.
 I worked hard to secure the material.
Finished one of the thin name chains...
It was difficult to drill a hole in the top...
So, I created a thicker stock and worked it with hand tools...
Thicker stock made everything a bit easier...
Using the thicker stock also allowed the name chain to stand on its could be placed on a shelf.





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