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Thread: How to cut a clean square hole into wood?

  1. #1
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    How to cut a clean square hole into wood?

    On one of my arcade machines, I'm going to be installing a card reader. Now, I want to cut a smallish sized (about 4 inches by 2 inches) into the front bottom of the arcade cab. I will be cutting the hole from the middle of a thick board, essentially. What tool would I need to do this to make sure it's clean, so when I put the card reader in, it will look like it belongs there instead of some idiot hacking away at it?

    edit: I think I found it. Use a dremel. It just so happens, I have a dremel set.... hope it's not too big for the job, don't want to wear out the wheel.
    Last edited by Spike Spiegel; 01-09-2009 at 06:03 PM.

  2. #2
    King's Bartender
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    A circular saw


  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by alec View Post
    A circular saw
    into the side of an arcade machine?

  4. #4
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    A Jig-saw would be ideal, and a drill for the starter holes.
    for a decent hole without much special tools, i'd use a drill with a 2" bit to take most of the material out, then a small hand saw to trim the corners. (or a bunch of smaller holes if you dont have a 2" bit)
    A dremel will do OK, but it can be hard to keep the cuts clean
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    measure twice, cut once.
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  6. #6
    "Nice boat, pale face." norton9478's Avatar
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    Didn't anybody here take woodshop in Junior High?

    You need a router....

    I'd only recommend a dremel if the board is thin.
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  7. #7
    a circular saw is great for making square holes.

    when i did electrical work, it was the best thing for cutting into the outside of a house or similar for an access panel or whatever.

    unlike a jigsaw you dont need to run the tool all over the surface, and it doesnt need to go that deep.

    depending on the thickness of the wood you may need both though. the circuilar saw to do the bulk of the work, and then the jigsaw to clean out the corners, since a circular saw is round it wont cut as deep at the ends vs the middle.
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  8. #8
    Mr Neo Fix-it channelmaniac's Avatar
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    You need:

    1 drill
    1 jigsaw
    1 wood rasp (file)
    1 roll of masking tape (optional)
    1 pen

    If you are cutting on finished wood - say a painted or laminated cabinet, lay down the masking tape and draw the cutting line on it. The masking tape will help protect the edge of the cut AND keep the jigsaw feet from scratching up the surface of the wood.

    Use the drill to put a pilot hole on the inside of the line you wish to cut. Give yourself about 1/2" of room between it and the line.

    Insert the jigsaw into the hole, cut down to the line and then along the line. The jigsaw takes about a 1/2" to turn a corner so cut up to the corner, back the blade up about an inch or so then slowly cut while turning to cut along the next line.

    Don't turn too fast or your'll break the blade.

    When done with one direction you can flip the jigsaw around and cut back along the line the other way to cut the other side of the corner cut.

    Use the file to smooth the edges.
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  9. #9
    Strangles Collaborators LoggedOff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by channelmaniac View Post
    You need:

    1 drill
    1 jigsaw
    1 wood rasp (file)
    1 roll of masking tape (optional)
    1 pen

    If you are cutting on finished wood - say a painted or laminated cabinet, lay down the masking tape and draw the cutting line on it. The masking tape will help protect the edge of the cut AND keep the jigsaw feet from scratching up the surface of the wood.

    Use the drill to put a pilot hole on the inside of the line you wish to cut. Give yourself about 1/2" of room between it and the line.

    Insert the jigsaw into the hole, cut down to the line and then along the line. The jigsaw takes about a 1/2" to turn a corner so cut up to the corner, back the blade up about an inch or so then slowly cut while turning to cut along the next line.

    Don't turn too fast or your'll break the blade.

    When done with one direction you can flip the jigsaw around and cut back along the line the other way to cut the other side of the corner cut.

    Use the file to smooth the edges.
    What he said.

  10. #10
    circular saw would be easier.
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  11. #11
    Yamazaki's Pupil
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    first you drill 4 holes( app size 1cm about the size of the jig saw blade) on to the corner of your square then slide the jig saw blade in and connnect the drill points then file /sand it down
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  12. #12
    Just smash the board over Wizkid's head.
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  13. #13
    Strangles Collaborators LoggedOff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by not sonic View Post
    circular saw would be easier.
    To cut a 2" x 4" hole in the center of a piece of board?

    I don't follow.

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