It's official! Now that I've assembled my first frame and see the mistakes, as well as understand how it all goes together, I'm tackling a second frame already. There are several measurements on the downloaded plans that are off, so I'm taking the time to really think these pieces through. I've made several changes already. In addition, I'm talking with Matt and taking his adjustments into consideration as well. Looks like he and I made the same changes.
While I haven't started cutting yet, here's some of the tips I've come up with. If this frame turns out great, others may want to keep these tips in mind.
1. Whatever method you use to draw your 18" circles, make sure all three are EXACTLY the same size. Draw them all at the same time, with the same compass. I drew out two on the 3/4" ply and two on the 1/2" ply. The reason for the extra 1/2" circle is to use it to make the horizontal ribs.
2. For the money I spent on the stainless steel protractor from Lowe's, don't bother. I ended up going to Office Depot and purchased this protractor for drafting. GET ONE! For under $5.00, this is the way to go.
Order one or pick it up at your local Office Depot
3. When ready to cut your circles, cut them all at once, using the same jig. Make sure your jig solidly retains its measurement. I'll be cutting mine tomorrow or Tuesday.
So, I laid out the diagram for all 3 of my new circles, plus my extra ring. I laid out all the angles and slots for the top ring and began laying out the angles for the bottom ring. Having a project calculator handy to convert from decimals to fractions is making things incredibly smooth. I can't remember if I talked about this earlier in my blog or not. I purchased an iPhone app called "Carpenter's Helper Pro". I can enter the decimal (7.41 for example) and press the inches button twice and it tells me 7 7/16" is the closest fraction measurement. As long as I'm consistent in using it for ALL my measurements, things should be fine.
As for the difference between my small stainless steel protractor I bought at Lowe's vs. the plastic one from Office Depot, I can already tell my angles were off using the one from Lowe's. In some cases, by as much as 3/4". Again, as long as I'm consistent in using the new protractor, I think things are going to come out much MUCH better.
So, that's my latest updates. Too late to do any cutting tonight, so I'll make the noise starting tomorrow. I plan on using my Rotozip and the Circle Cutting Tool attached to it to cut the discs. WISH ME LUCK!!!!