You might be looking and marveling at how some woodworkers effortlessly install those intricate crown moldings. But frankly speaking, installing those crown moldings might look easy. Yet, its installation indeed requires skills and techniques. If you are a tyro in woodworking, you need to learn those skills and techniques to be a well-rounded woodworker. Besides, you need to undergo a type of apprenticeship to learn those skills and techniques.
Remember that each crown molding installed is profiled for a ceiling projection and fixed wall. Hence, it will help if you determine first the projection of the ceiling. Only then can you reproduce with accuracy and consistency the measurements in miter cuts. Afterward, you must install the coped joint. In this way, you can avoid the issues concomitant with irregular corners, lumpy tape, and lousy framing jobs. If you cut precisely, the coped joint will fit most of the time.
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How to Make a Coping Jig?
As you become more dexterous in woodworking, you will soon find that you can have coping jigs without necessarily spending much money on expensive coping jigs. You only need to use some scrap wood pieces and a couple of screws.
The crown molding coping jigs, of course, come in handy in holding your workpiece upright at a precise spring angle. These jigs make the coping process easy for you. When cutting your molding in an upright position at an angle, you can look down straight at the profile edge, letting you see if any excess or meat is remaining.
As you measure and calculate the spring angle, you will determine the run of the molding. This run is from the ceiling down when you hold the molding at the precise spring angle.
Once you have gotten this measurement, you can make a box with a width set according to the width of the run. Once you’ve assembled the coping jig, you can clamp this jig to your workpiece surface. You can cope using the right-angle grinder while the jig holds the molding. Your goal is to make a cut backward at a right angle along the crown’s entire thickness.
As a beginner, you might get fidgety and feel awkward when coping. But as you get the hang of it and learn some necessary coping techniques, you will soon become a master of installing crown molding. You can use a wood file when softening hard edges.
The Best Crown Molding Coping Jigs
If you’re not in the mood for devising your coping jigs, you can always purchase one of these coping jigs. Two of your best options when it comes to coping jigs for crown molding include the following:
1) Rockler (Speed-Cope) Crown Molding Jig
If you’re looking for a ready-to-use coping jig for crown molding, you should check out the Rockler Speed-Cope Crown Molding Jig. This jig allows you to make those tough cope cuts easily. In this way, you can make the building of crown molding faster.
This jig stabilizes the crown molding as you make the cope cuts using your jigsaw. The package comes with a DVD outlining the crown, base, and cove molding installation basics. You can adjust this jig to handle a maximum width of seven-and-a-quarter inches at forty-five and ninety-degrees flat miters and inside miters.
2) Collins Tool Company Coping Foot
If you want to transform your jigsaw into an accurate coping tool, you can use the Collins Tool Company Coping Foot. This one is a dome-shaped base that lets you turn, bevel and pitch your jigsaw blade while changing angles during the cutting process.
With this coping foot, you get the blade supported at the kerf. Thus, with this coping foot, you can make short work of twisting cuts. You can also make clean and accurate cuts with the help of this coping foot.
This device is relatively compact. With it, you can saw near any obstacles. Moreover, you can make easy work of a big scribing job with this coping foot, allowing you to back bevel with ease sans adjusting the screw. This coping foot is suited for Bosch 1591 and 1590 as well as Porter-Cable jigsaws. Nevertheless, it won’t function on Festool Carvex.
Coping crown molding is a skill that every woodworker should learn. However, you can raise your coping skills into art through experience and learning from the experts. This skill, of course, is founded on your knowledge of basic math, common sense, and trial and error.
In the past, when power tools and the internet were not yet available, aspiring woodworkers learned the tricks of coping crown molding by apprenticeship. At present, many still learn the skills of coping crown molding by training, but many DIYers learn these skills from the internet. Yet, nothing beats apprenticeship when it comes to learning these skills.
Jason is a 40-year-old woodworker and carpenter who have been involved in the woodworking and woodcraft industry with 17 years of experience. He is expertise in technical aspects, woodcraft and furniture building projects.