How can I cut wooden rods into special shapes (like a star) when viewed from the end?

What is the best tool for doing this in quantity? I want to carve the so the entire cross-section is the desired shape.

jtobako8 years ago
Two ways that I can think of. One is to have a set of router bits that make the right shape and run the raw material through (if you look at enough dowels, you can start to see where some didn't go through the half-round router right and have a slightly oval cross section). Depending on the shape and your comfort factor you might be able to do it on a table saw. Here's a cutting pattern to show how to keep enough wood touching the table of the saw to make accurate cuts. The second is to make a set of draw plates that will scrape the dowels down to shape in small increments. You have to be careful to line up the pattern each pass, and, depending on the depth of the pattern, you might need a lot of shaped holes.
instr cut 1.jpeg