The next element I worked on for the legs was the shoulder horseshoes.The horseshoes attach to the outside of the leg frame that I have been building in my previous posts. The tricky part of making this component is the ridges that you can see along the inside edge of the horseshoe. There is also a groove between the horseshow and the main part of the leg.
Most people make these using eight thin layers stacked together. The even numbered layers are made a little smaller on the inside then the odd numbered layers so you get the groove effect. I took a slightly different approach. I made each horseshoe out of 4 layers of 1/4” MDF and then used a router to cut the groove on the bottom side of each piece.
To cut the shape of each layer I went back to the router table and a pattern cutting bit, so just like with the leg frames we need a template to start with. I started with a printout of a full size template from the plans which I glued to a piece of 1/4” MDF that was cut to the exact width of the part.
To make the outside cut I went back to my router table circle cutting jig that I used for the body frame components. The cross slide slot on the router table was to far from the bit for this cut so I attached a thin piece of plywood to it to get it close enough.
To make the inside circle I used a circle cutter mounted in a drill press. Cutting MDF generates a lot of dust so I clamped the hose of my shop vac as close to the cutter as possible and wore dust mask. I also firmly clamped the piece I was cutting in place instead of trying to hold it.
For the straight cuts on the inside I used the table saw.
I made the angle cuts that lead into the center circle on the band saw. There was really no way to guide this cut so I carefully did it freehand. The final cuts were the angle cuts on the bottom, I made these on a miter saw. Here is the final template.
In my next post I will show how I used this template to make the actual parts.