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has anyone made a stacking rainbow?

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

I searched the forum but didn't find anything definitive.


I would like to.  I have no woodworking experience.  I do sew, so I have some experience with measure twice, cut once.  But I've never done anything beyond a little basic sanding and crooked hand sawing.  I'd love to get DD the large 12 piece stacking rainbow like the one sold here: http://thewoodenwagon.com/woodentoy/202/BSH1067.html


But I can't justify spending that kind of money right now.  So then I thought... maybe I could make it.  A friend of mine has a band saw.  Would that be the right kind of saw?  I'm kind of terrified of saws and I know nothing about where to get the supplies.  Where would I go to buy the wood?  I sometimes visit a tool thrift shop and they sell all types of saws.  Would a jigsaw work?  I found some tutorials on how to cut an arch online (here http://www.ehow.com/video_4420245_cut-arc-jig-saw.html  and here  http://www.diynetwork.com/how-to/how-to-cut-circles-and-curves-with-a-router/index.html).  Is it really that simple?

post #2 of 3

I made a small one with a tabletop scroll saw.  I think for a large one a band saw should work great.  If you can use a sewing machine you can use a band saw.  You should practice a bit on some scrap wood and you might be shocked at how easy it is.  Your friend should have some scrap laying around you could try out.  Wood can jump a bit if you hit a knot or harder piece of it, that is the only real diff. I've seen between cutting with a table top saw and sewing. 


One thing that you might want to consider is that the high quality stacking rainbows are made so that they don't warp, something you may have a problem with over time.  You should be able to knock out a well playable rainbow but when/if you paint it or it gets wet it may swell or warp a bit and not fit together as well.  You could just sand it when/if that happens or research the type of wood to get if you want the end result to be an heirloom piece.


Go for it~!!

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

Well, I just want to update.... I made a stacking rainbow and stacking "fire" arches out of mahogany scraps using a bandsaw.  They are awesome and I think have so much character.    DD loves them.  The only thing I would do differently is that I marked a pattern on them with pen, which has been a pain in the butt to sand off since I didn't end up following the pattern but just eyeballed what looked good.  Next time I would draw in the initial semicircle in pencil, then cut the rest freehand.  Total cost: $10 and about an hour of my time.


And, I gotta say, I had SO MUCH FUN doing it.  I'm totally hooked and can't wait to learn how to do more!

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