Small diamond Jig and instructions for the inlay The dimensions I give for the jigs may need to be altered to fit your tool(s). Common denominators You have to start with square stock and for This insert you’ll be using at least 2 different types of wood, so each block needs to be exactly the same size. I’ll assume that you purchased square stock of sufficient size to turn your grip or that you have cut a larger piece into a suitable rough square. Your first step is to run it through a jointer to flatten one side and square it to another. It may take a few passes and when done, mark this side and place it against the 90° fence and flatten the side you squared to. Mark this side also. Next run all your pieces through a thickness planer making sure that the sides you jointed and marked are opposite the knives. If you don’t have these tools go to a cabinet shop and see if they will do this for you. Your stock has to be square and uniform in thickness or your final results will be less than desirable. I start with 1 1/2 ” rough square stock and will end up with 1 1/4 ” or 1 3/8” finished stock. The next important component is that your jigs must have a flat bed. Plywood will work; choose your piece carefully. A better material is MDF, medium density fiberboard; best would be solid surface counter top material. All of these materials should be available at a lumberyard or from a contractor and can easily be worked with common wood working tools. If you can come up with the solid surface material great! If not you will need some hard wood to make runners out of. You won’t need a lot of this so see if you can come up with some scraps somewhere. I’ll give guideline dimensions later. Since I’m sure someone will ask, I use Tightbond II for glue most of the time. If I know I have the time to wait I’ll use rod bond to glue the inserts and handle pieces. Tightbond’s set time is much shorter and I’m impatient. Lastly, spend some time making absolutely sure that the table on your saw is 90° to the blade. If this is off, the pieces won’t fit together nicely. I made my jig for the band saw because the waste from the blade cut is less. You may need to adjust the dimensions of the measured drawing for the tool you will use. You will need to size a hardwood runner for the miter gauge slot. Fit this to your machine and make
sure they are snug enough to not have any side slop, but loose enough so they can slide. In other words, cut them “just right”!! Consult the measured drawing to size the pieces needed. Lay the bed for jig on your tool table as square as possible to the miter gauge slot and mark the location of the slot on one edge. Flip the bed over and square off the mark you just made. Now fasten the runner to the bed along that line. I glue these and use a pneumatic nail gun to fasten them until the glue dries. The nail gun works the best because the wood doesn’t move as the nail is driven home. Short of having one of these available, I’d clamp the runner in place and pre-drill some holes for screws. It’s not imperative that the runner is attached exactly on this line or that it is parallel to the blade. You’ll see why in a minute. It’s also a good idea to clamp these in place once secure until dry. Place the runner of the jig in the miter gauge slot. Turn your saw on and push the jig into the blade making your cut about 3” long. Turn the saw off and back the jig out of the blade. Since the blade cut is parallel to the runner it will be the line that will serve to set your fences to the precise angles you need. Now lets set the fences on this jig. Get or make something that fits the kerf of the saw blade, the length of the cut. I used a piece of aluminum I had laying around. To make sure the angles are right I’ve got a 45° plastic drafting triangle that I set against the aluminum in the saw cut. This is where you will attach your fence. Again, glue and fasten the fence tight to this line. Use the same procedures as you used attaching the runners. If these fences move as you attach them, your jig will be firewood. Let the glue dry before you use it. (the picture shown is for another jig but the procedure is the same) Now for the adjustable stop block. Position the stop block to the fence so you can see one of the squared lines drawn earlier (see drawing) in the center of the insert hole and drill it. A trick here would be to grind a point on a ¼’ bolt, screw it into the insert and drag it across these lines. (I’m using a drill press, if you don’t have one you’ll have to improvise.) Repeat for the other end of the block. Now you have to connect these 2 holes. Lower the bit into one of these holes and clamp the drill head in that position. Clamp a straight edge to the table. Now you can drill a series of holes to connect the first 2 you drilled. To clean it up, just push the block from side to side Drive an insert into the backside of the fence, more rod and another knob. The jigs done, it should have plenty of adjustment to do about any handle you want.
I make these so the ending thickness is @ 3/8”. You need to cut 2 pieces of your main trim wood that are roughly ½ that thickness. Thicker is better, you can always trim them when you are done. You will want to cut at least 2 extra pieces to serve as test pieces; this is not an exact science. Also cut the square pieces that will be inserted. I make mine 1/8”. Find dead center and extend the line across the face. Picture On the edge mark a 45° angle that starts at center of the thickness of your pieces and extend that line down across the face. Fit the stop block so that the 90° face is toward the blade. Place your test piece in and adjust the stop so that the blade will cut on the line you drew off 45°. Make your first cut stopping at the mid point of the thickness. Stopping short is better than going to far!! Flip the piece and cut the other side. Test fit the insert piece to make sure the corners match the edges of the cut and adjust the stop block as necessary. When you’ve got this nailed, make all of these cuts necessary for the inlays you are making. Flip the stop block so the 45° side is toward the blade and repeat the process. Complete the insert buy cutting short pieces of the 1/8” square stock to go into the groove you cut, glue and clamp.
Lay out Frontal view
Mid lines removed Here’s where to cut.
Lastly, spend some time making absolutely sure that the table on your saw is 90° to the blade. If this is off, the pieces won’t fit together...