Curved moldings can be challenging, especially when you need to incorporate decorative elements like flutes or v-grooves. You can build jigs for curved pieces, but there’s a better way to route these flutes, grooves, and channels: use the Eagle America Arched Fluting Jig.
You can also have it set up and ready to use within minutes of taking it out of the box!
Arched Fluting Jig Set Up
First, you’ll need to drill a few holes in the jig so that you can attach it to your router—the easiest way to do this is probably to remove the base plate from the router. Then place it on your workbench and put the clear plastic jig on top. Line up the opening in the jig with the opening in the center of the base plate. Finally, mark the hole locations on the jig, and then drill and countersink the holes.
Now you can attach the edge guides to the jig and mount the router. Use the two plastic knobs and bolts to secure the edge guides, and mount the router with the screws that normally secure the base plate. You don’t need to tighten the knobs all the way; you’ll do that in the next step.
*Tip: You can use this jig with a fixed base router, but you’ll get better results with a plunge base—especially if you want to make stopped cuts. Here’s why: to route profiles that don’t go all the way to the ends of your stock, you’ll need to tilt a fixed base router into the work at the beginning of the cut. It’s difficult to control the router with this method, and you’re almost sure to make mistakes. You may even ruin a good piece of stock. A plunge base eliminates this problem.
Making the Curved Moldings
Before you can route anything, you should make a mark on the stock to indicate the center of the cut. Install the appropriate bit in your router and place the router on top of the molding. Center the bit over the mark and butt the edge guide bearings against the stock. Make sure the edge guide with the single bearing is on the inside of the arch. Tighten the knobs.
Route the flute. If you want to route additional flutes, just repeat the last step (center the bit over the cut and re-position the edge guides). You should get perfectly concentric cuts. If the edge guides are set properly, you may have trouble pulling the jig off of the work piece when you’re done routing. Don’t try to lift the router straight up. Instead, slide it off of the end of any curved moldings.
That’s all there is to using this simple but extremely helpful jig!
*Tip: The Arched Fluting Jig isn’t just for curved stock!
It’s also great for routing dados, slots, rabbets and other joints in straight pieces. Instead of installing the edge guides with the bearings towards the center of the jig, put them on with the straight edges facing each other. To position the guides before routing, center the router bit over the cut line and butt the guides against each edge of the stock.