Alois's pantograph inlay experimentsThis article also available in German.
I became aware of your pantograph from your "Guitar inlay experiments" article with Pat Hawley. I also build arch top guitars in my spare time, so I wanted to try this out.
The first two inlays I cut freehand milled with a Dremel.
I prepared all the parts and marked the drilling positions.
I first thought of using a compressed air motor because I already knew that my Dremel has some runout. For the compressed air motor, a simple guide arm would have been enough. Nevertheless, I immediately started with the material for a stronger motor mount.
I use carbide cutters from Toolstore.de, with a shank diameter of 3.2 mm. These are the only ones I could find. The air motor needs cutters with a 3 mm shank, but I could not find any cutters that size. So I did my first experiments with the Dremel. The 0.5 mm cutters are available for 6.20 €. For 0.8 mm or larger they only cost 4 €. I bought them here
My first attempt with the Dremel and 0.8 mm diameter cutter. Not bad, but I wanted to do better.. I also had to go over some parts repeatedly to make it fit. I figured I may have distorted the shape by not photographing it exactly straight on.
I marked where the pin needs to be inserted to avoid the possibility of assembling the pantograph incorrectly.
So I photographed the inlay again, this time from very close and as directly overhead as possible. I used grid paper with 5 mm grids as a background. But with this pattern I still had to make adjustments to get a fit.
So I tried it again, photographed from a greater distance and correcting for the scale. This time, I almost didn't need to go over any parts to make it fit. I always cut slightly outside the outline to make it easier to fit the inlay, and the margins can be filled with glue. With my last attempt, I was not as careful as I was with previous experiments. I'm very satisfied with the result and highly recommend this method.
Another option that occurred to me, but too late, is to scan the inlay with a flatbed scanner. This would eliminate camera distortion and perspective errors. Then use your BIGPRINT program as before.
I cut my inlays with a jeweler's saw, from purchased pieces of mother of pearl. I drilled the holes with a small Ø 0.5 mm carbide drill (cost 4.30), bought here
More projects by Alois:
wood briquette press
Alois's laser table saw
Alois's router lifter
Alois's three bandsaws
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