View Full Version : Making Grate

Chadd Hamilton
04-23-2003, 08:32 AM
I would like to make some grate for the cockpit sole of my boat. I was hoping that someone in here has tackled this before and can point me the right direction of the easiest way to approach this.


Bruce Hooke
04-23-2003, 09:25 AM
I seem to recall there having been an article in WoodenBoat on this recently...

Chadd Hamilton
04-23-2003, 09:30 AM
Thanks for the link, Donn, but I'd rather make it at home from some spare cypress I have leftover. I gots plenty of time, just trying to figure out if I can make it without having to buy a dado blade for my tablesaw. I thought I read somewhere where a guy made it with a router and a piece of MDF.

Cedarhill Boatworks
04-23-2003, 11:12 AM
It can be done with a router, I did it. It took much too long and if I do it again I will do it with my table saw and a dado blade. I did it with a router because thats the way my old man wanted it. We used 1x teak stock ripped to 3/4x3/4 for the long peices and 3/4x 1/2 for the short peices with3/4x3/4 spaces. The long peices were notched on the upper surface 1/4 and the short peices were notched on the bottom 1/4. The long peices sit on the cockpit sole and the short peices sit up to allow for drainage.
The router jig is a very simple affair. simply affix a peice of 3/4 stock about six inches long to the router sole 3/4 away from the cutting edge. Make the first pass as close to the end of the stock as possible, reverse the router and let the guide ride in the slot. Just keep moving along and setting the guide in the last slot that you routed. You can make some etra time by carefully stacking and aligning peices on the bench and routing them together in one pass.
If I had to do it over again with the router I would buy the widest boards I could find and rout them before ripping them.

04-23-2003, 11:41 AM
If I had to do it over again with the router I would buy the widest boards I could find and rout them before ripping them. Hey, that's good thinking.

I dig it. Now I just gotta do it.

Chadd Hamilton
04-23-2003, 11:45 AM
Thanks, guys! Just what I wanted to know. I'm gonna get a dado blade after work and play with some scrap. Might have to make a jig for my crosscut sled to get the dados consistient though. I'll take a pic or two if I have any fingers left.

Cedarhill Boatworks
04-24-2003, 09:50 AM
Now you're thinking. Use the grooves for your crosscut guide to align the jig. The jig is very simple. Take a piece of ply and fix a guide to run in the groove. On the top of the ply fix two guides the same size and spacing of the slots you are going to cut. One of them should be right on the edge of the ply, the second one just inside the first, the same space ar twice the spacing of the slots.
Make first pass over the dado without the jig using the crooscut guide. Now lay the stock on top of the jig with the first groove on the guide, adjust your dado upwards to compensate for the thickness of the jig and just make pass after pass as you move the stock across the jig. If you are using long stock you will want to have a piece of ply the same thickness as the jig on the opposite table of the saw. Use double sided carpet tape to keep it in place.

Mike Keers
04-24-2003, 11:24 AM
A method I've used successfully a few times with the dado blade is to dado wider boards across the grain, rather than the finished narrow strips themselves. Then simply rip the boatd into the strips needed. For example, dado 6-8" wide boards using jigs as mentioned above, then simply rip the boards into strips. If you plane the boards to uniform thickness, set up the dado carefully and are accurate with the ripping, the strips end up fitting perfectly and are uniform.