Popular Woodworking 2005-06 № 148, страница 52

Popular Woodworking 2005-06 № 148, страница 52



Optical Illusion

When making legs, whether for chairs or tables, choosing your wood carefully can make the difference between beautiful and bizarre. The grain direction in your lumber can make or break the look of a piece. This goes double for tapered legs. If your grain direction is running in contrast or in harmony with the taper on your legs, it changes the look.

The illustrations below help explain this. Angled grain (in either direction) gives your leg a barber pole appearance. Your best wood selection is a straight grain (rift cut) pattern with as little cathedral as possible. This is not only better for aesthetics, it also makes for a stronger leg.

Angled Straight Angled


Rise or side

Making Taper Cuts

To taper a board, you must reduce its width gradually from one end of the board to the other. That requires holding the board with its length at a slight angle to the blade as you rip it.

A tapering jig is the right tool for this job. This jig (detailed in Chapter 2 of this series) consists of two long arms, hinged together at one end. A ledge is glued to one arm near the end opposite the hinge. A metal brace lets you adjust and lock the angle between the two arms. The arm without the ledge guides the jig along the rip fence, while the other holds the stock at an angle to the saw blade.

To set up for a taper cut, you must know the slope of the taper. You also should know whether you will cut a single taper (on a single side or two adjacent sides) or a double taper (with tapers on two or more opposing sides).

Shown at right are two tapered table legs, each 24" long. The one on the left has a single taper; the one on the right, a double taper. The foot of both legs is the same width. The rise is equal on both. On both legs, the taper begins 4" from the top and continues to the bottom, making the rise 20" (24" - 4" = 20"). The run is not equal. Although both legs are 1L/2" wide at the top and then narrow to L/2" at the bottom, the single-taper run is 1" (1L/2" - L/2" = 1"), and the double-taper run is L/2" ([1L/2" - L/2"] * 2" = Vz").

The slope is determined by the length

On a sheet of scrap paper, draw a large right triangle with the same slope as the taper you want. Use this as a gauge to set the tapering jig to the proper angle: Align one arm with the base of the triangle and the other with the hypotenuse.

and width of the taper (sometimes called the rise and run). To find the rise of a taper, measure from the starting point to the end. To determine the run of a single taper, calculate the amount by which the width of the board is reduced. For a double taper, divide that amount in half.

To set the tapering jig to the proper



4 <Mv2"




V2H k-




Single taper Double taper

Rise=20", Run=1" Rise=20", Run=V2"

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