Here's a wood project I made a while ago, so it is not as documented as it should be... But it gives a couple ideas on how to practice very fine cuts with the scroll saw to make and then assemble tiny tiny parts to make tiny tiny projects. There won't be many pictures as I didn't really take any during the process but I'll try and describe it as good as I can. (And the only pictures I have were taken before the finish was applied)
I figured that it was a 1:60 replica as the actual car was around 3 meters long and mine is about 5 centimeters long.
Welcome to this Ible, let's get started!
Step 1: Researching and Designing the Pieces
It started with wanting to make a tiny model of something and, even
though I don't really care about cars, I thought the Ford Model T looked amazing and I thought it would look even better in wood, and tiny. So I started looking around for blueprints and found a lot of inspiration, and then came across a woodworking book (the name of which I forget now) that had all the blueprints to make a 20 inches long wood Ford Model T. I was very happy to find that, but 20 inches was way too big for what I wanted to do, which was to practice my fine motor skills, precision glueing and patience.
Now, what follows is something you can do with any project you find in a woodworking book if you want to make it very tiny, or at least tinier than the proposed size : The book said to photocopy the blueprints and enlarge them 10 times. I simply didn't do that, and used tracing paper to outline the pieces directly on the book, then cut and glued the tracing paper on pieces of wood directly. I chose wood approximately 10 times thinner than the book suggested to keep the size ratios happy.
Step 2: Tools and Materials
As always, we might need a couple of things to create a physical object ;) But as this is a very tiny project, the total cost was $0 and a couple of hours, because I had scrap wood and metal parts laying around.
Scraps of pine or any other wood really, different thicknesses
Scraps of plywood
A stylish nail.
A scroll saw (Variable speed will be a plus!)
Tiny/thin scroll saw blades
A metal saw blade (optional)
Any finish you like, but remember that stainers will soak more in cuts across the grain compared to in cuts along the grain
A paintbrush if need be
Step 3: Cutting, Assembling, Glueing
The pieces I needed to cut were :
The side panels
The roof/body which are a single part (the dashboard, ground, seat, back and roof are continuous)
The mud-guards (I'm sure there's an actual word for that ?)
See the (very) annotated picture for more details.
All were cut out of pine except the base which was plywood. I cut those pieces on a scroll saw using high speed and the smallest blade, with the smallest teeth I could find. I would have used a round blade but I did not have one at the time.
I made the wheels by cutting dowel slices and drilled a hole in the middle, then drilled two hole of a slightly larger diameter across the baseplate and used two pieces of metal wire as axles for the wheels, the fit tightly in the wheels and loosely in the baseplate to allow the car to roll like the good times :)
For the windshield, I used the same metal wire and bent it in shape, then drilled two vertical holes to put it in place.
The stirring wheel is a nail cut close to the head and glued in a tiny hole
The engine valve is a piece of yet again the same wire
The headlamps are slices of a bamboo skewer fitted inside an appropriate-sized hole
I made the notch in the engine with a metal saw blade
All the wood parts are sanded from 150 to 800 grit
When working with very tiny pieces, a very good way of preserving you fingers, your piece of wood, your blade and your honor is to simply use a piece of plywood as a baseplate for the scroll saw : turn the saw on, push a little piece of plywood halfway through and tape it there, it will help your stability tremendously and provide much working comfort.
If I have to make the same piece several times, I like to stack them and glue or nail them together and cut them all at once, which came in handy when I made three of those tiny cars in a row.
Tread lightly with the clamping, I used clothe pins for the tiniest parts
Thanks a lot for reading ! Sorry for the lack of pictures but feel free to ask anything in the comments if you want to make something similar, I am usually quite responsive ;) If you liked this project, please consider voting for me in the tiny spaces contest!
Until next time,
Participated in the
Small Spaces Contest