I have some gourds for projects I have.
What do you use to cut them? Dremel?
That would be what I would use.
The dust, especially from the stuff that's inside before you scrape it clean, is supposed to be toxic. (OK; as a kid I loved to play with mercury; I siphoned gasoline by sucking on the tube until I got all the air out; and worse; then again, a friend of a friend died of CCL4 poisoning from cleaning a bike in a tiny, enclosed area...) A Dremel will kick up a lot of dust. You likely will be discarding some amount of the gourd. Why not try a sharp Exacto knife (that worked for me) and/or something with teeth like a coping saw. (There are Exacto blades in that category.)
I use either a handsaw or bandsaw to cut the top off. For soundholes, I first drill a small hole then finish cutting the hole with a coping saw. A coping saw allows you to change the the blade orientation with respect to the frame of the saw and this allows you to work around the gourd once the blade is in the hole.
Harbor Frieght has a handle that takes Sawzall blades. They tend to be a little wide for intricate work but I find this tool quite useful. Maybe somebody makes one that will take saber saw blades.
All good science begins with a risky childhood. America's technological decline began when drug stores stopped selling potassium nitrate to kids;)
Yeah, I have a tool that holds hack saw blades. You made me think of it.
Why not use a Sawzall blade in a Sawsall?
Seems to me a Sawzall would cut all the gourds you'd ever imagine cutting!
True, I have one, but could I hold a straight line or make a perfect circle?
Yes if I could wrap it in a rag or have a hand tool to hold it.
Don't worry about cutting a perfect line with a Sawzall!
How about using the Sawzall to cut big enough bit off, to get a long-handled spoon in there and clean out most of the crud?
Put on your dust mask, and begin.
Cut it a good inch or more beyond the line you WANT.
Then, hold the gourd against your big disc sander, and grind to the line.
Use a coping saw or similar to get to the line, since you've got an easy way in.
I imagine that a serrated blade knife from the Dollar Store might work just FINE.
Cut fairly ABOVE the line, and if it doesn't work, stop.
Almost always a good idea to test a new technique on a scrap area.
I’ve used everything from a sawzall to a pumpkin carving knife to cut gourds. Every gourd is different and it would be wise to have several tools with different cutting techniques to get the best results. Nice all around tool to get straight fast cuts is a nice hand saw (I used a Japanese rip saw) and a jig to guide the saw blade.
Be gentle if you take the power tool route. It’s very easy for the teeth on your oscillating blade to grab a chunk of gourd and rip it off forcing you to go deeper than you were planning.
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