Milling Interlocking Wooden Rings

[Johan von Konow] wanted to make something special as a wedding gift to his wife. He decided a pair of interlocking miniature rings would be the perfect keepsake. He started his search for a way to mill the wooden rings from a solid piece of wood, and documented his journey for our enjoyment.

This project poses an interesting challenge. Most CNC mills offer three axes of freedom, but he only had a 2D mill meant for routing PCBs. This means the cuts can only be made from the top down at one depth. In order to fabricate the rings he needed to cut from more than one side. With more study, [Johan] discovered that it would be necessary to cut the wood stock from eight different angles before the rings would be complete.

The solution to the problem was to first mill a jig to hold the wood stock. It has positions to hold the stock at each different angle. The final step before starting the cut was to mill the stock itself to perfectly fit his custom jig. We think it turned out great, thanks in part to hand filing, sanding, and polishing to smooth the marks left from milling.

22 thoughts on “Milling Interlocking Wooden Rings

    1. I remember sitting in church(when I still believed in such things) whittling one of those windmill rubby things you see in old gift stores from time to time where when you rubbed the stick one way, the “propeller” went one direction, and when you rubbed it another way, it went the other direction.(the real secret was how you held the stick, not how you rubbed it)…nobody even looked at me twice for having a knife….

    2. and we got the kids in the neighborhood together in a local field and did pickup games of baseball. and rode in the back of the pickup after we picked apples from the orchard in the fall. damn, I am feeling nostalgic.

      I wonder what my daughter is going to say about her younger years when she hits middle age?

  1. I saw instructions for the ball-in-cage-attached-to-a-chain in Boys Life magazine circa 1977. I carved one for art class, and it was stolen from our school’s art show. :-/ I used a coping saw blade and a pocket knife. It was a great deal of fun, and not that difficult.

  2. @Velifer.

    That wouldnt make it onto hackaday though would it? And I would like to see your pocketknife skills apply to your CNC programming skills.

    Different skillset, not less skilled.

  3. Actually I’d be impressed if anyone made a robot capable of so much as sharpening a pencil with a pocket knife…. as a first stage for a whittle bot, not a specialist arduino containing electric pencil sharpener.

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