Drawing arcs

■ Some of the most interesting projects have curved shapes. And I'll ordinarily use a small compass to draw the parts of a curve. But for large curves (with a radius over 6") 111 improvise.

large arcs. A simple beam compass can be made from a scrap piece of thin material cut a couple inches longer than the desired radius, see Fig. 1.

A hole toward one end holds a nail that acts as a pivot point. And a notch cut in the other end holds a pencil for drawing the arc.

larger arcs. For larger arcs, I use a flexible stick as a drawing guide, see Fig. 2. First, locate three points on the workpiece. Then drive in a pair of small nails to indicate the desired ends of the arc. The flexible stick bridges the nails to indicate the desired crown (the third point) of the curve.

Trace along the edge of the stick to draw the arc.


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