Marking walnut end grain
#8
  
I'm making a small box where the ends are curved on top. The inside top of each end is rabbeted on the inside -- a curved ledge that the top nestles into. (Actually two half-tops, hinged on each side and meeting in the middle). Each half top is made from two edge-glued narrow boards with angled edges (chevron shape viewed from the end).  Then I hollow out the bottom to fit the curved ledge (round bottom plane). I'm making models to get the process down.

The hardest part is marking the end grain of the tops to match the ledge shape. I rigged up a way to register the tops and the box ends for marking. For my poplar models (about 5 so far  Big Grin) I trace the curve with a sharp pencil. Any suggestions for marking dark walnut? I thought about using blue tape and a fine Sharpie. But one, the tape would probably get demolished coming in and out of the bench dogs (lots of trial fits), and two, I'm not convinced I want to plane right up to a piece of tape. 

Any suggestions? Thanks!
Best,
Aram, defying laws of geometry

"Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” Antoine de Saint-Exupery


Web: http://awacs.smugmug.com/Woodworking
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#9
  Re: Marking walnut end grain by Aram (I'm making a small b...)
Never tried it, but there are white pencils.  Check with your local art supply store.
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#10
  Re: Marking walnut end grain by Aram (I'm making a small b...)
Aram,
I use a marking knife or xacto to make a line and then go over the line with a white colored pencil.  You have to keep the tip sharp and I wipe off the excess from the cut line.  It isn't a real bright line but it works and it's easy to reapply.

Lonnie
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#11
  Re: Marking walnut end grain by Aram (I'm making a small b...)
Red ballpoint pen is  good for marking walnut.  Get a fine point if you can.  They can be tough to find these days but the Pilot Better ball point is perfect.
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#12
  Re: Marking walnut end grain by Aram (I'm making a small b...)
I generally use chalk on walnut but the line would probably be too big in this case. Next thing I would do is make a template with a white index card, cut it out, and lightly glue it to the end grain.
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#13
  Re: Marking walnut end grain by Aram (I'm making a small b...)
Can you cover the end with blue painters tape and then mark it with a knife. After you mark it just pull away the tape to one side of the line you cut. This is a method I use with students who have a hard time seeing the lines for dovetails. Personally I have some white quilters pencils that I use most of the time but if I need to be really exact I use the tape and knife trick.
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#14
  Re: Marking walnut end grain by Aram (I'm making a small b...)
Blue tape does do surprisingly well, particularly if you score the layout lines with a sharp knife and remove the tape from the waste areas.  Then, placing your saw teeth right next to the edge left by the tape, you should be on the perfect cut line.
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