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James Brokaw

James Brokaw

In this monthly meeting of the Scroll Saw Special Interest Group (SIG), Bob Brokaw explained some of the process he has developed since being introduced to marquetry.  He began by explaining the similarities of marquetry to intarsia except with no z-axis.  The finished objects are the product of stack cutting multiple layers of veneer and then assembling the pieces into a panel that is glued onto a substrate. He showed several patterns that he developed and their source back to intarsia patterns from Judy Gale Roberts.  He begins by tracing a picture using the spline tool of DeltaCad using a thin red line (easier to see when cutting with a 3/0 black scroll saw blade).  He augments the picture by dividing pieces to facilitate sand shading to simulate shadows and give the picture depth in the absence of a z-axis.  He demonstrated several of the stages of the development of a ready to glue panel.  Bob went on to explain several of the considerations to the glue up and subsequent finishing operations.  He finished by acknowledging his primary mentors Jane Burke ( ) and Paul Schurch ( ).


Ron Brown began the class by turning a lid and then the box from a 4 inch cube of Padauk.  He added to the intrigue of the class by turning away the inside of the box with a small gouge using a technique made popular by Nick Cook.  It is noisy and considerably unorthodox but fast and achieves good results.  After fitting the lid to the box, he went on to turn a spalted maple insert to press into the lid.  At the end, the finished piece was won by the camera operator by a raffle drawing.

Rob demonstrated the differences between how and when to use a spiral blade instead of a traditional straight blade.   Hard core straight blade users in the audience found that once they tried a #00 spiral in lieu of a #5 straight that they could cut complex fretwork and lettering much faster.  Everyone in the audience got to try their hand with each blade on a supplied portrait segment.  Even some hard core turners got in on the act in preparation for upcoming Christmas ornaments.

This was a first time for this class. In this class, Hans Meier and Karl Taylor tag teamed to cover many aspects of the use of a scroll saw. One of the class projects was to make a small scroll lidded box from wood scraps. Hans and Karl showed a variety of scroll saw projects with a few words about how each was made. The balance of the class was devoted to solving participants scroll saw “challenges”.

It is the plan to have this class once each quarter after the regular Saturday meeting as long as the interest is there.

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