How to Make Wooden Gears

Written by ehow hobbies, games & toys editor
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Wooden gears are an interesting and fun project. Clocks, soap box cars and other small machines all run well with wooden gears depending on the purpose of the machine. Wooden gears are fun to watch even in an abstract art project. Begin by determining the number of gears you need and how many teeth per gear. Read on to learn how to make wooden gears.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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  1. 1

    Determine the radius of your gears and number of teeth after deciding how many gears you need. The number of gears really depends on the radius of each, and the purpose of your gears.

  2. 2

    Find a good wooden gear cutting jig in each size you need and fit each round disk of wood to the jigs for cutting.

  3. 3

    Draw your design on paper if you plan on using a jig saw instead of a sophisticated jig. Glue your paper designs to the wood and cut around the lines with your jig saw.

  4. 4

    Use a belt sander or rotary sanding tool fitted with a small bit to sand all the cut edges smooth before trying to fit your wooden gears together.

  5. 5

    Finish your wooden gears with polyurethane, stain or varnish to protect the surfaces of the wood.

  6. 6

    Complete your project by joining the wooden gears together after they are completely dry.

Tips and warnings

  • Every cut surface of your gears needs sanding before finishing and joining. That includes all the inside groves and outside edges where the gears fit together. This is a tedious process, so using the small rotary tool is a great time saver.

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