Hand Tool Builder's Collection

368 Milescraft Router Pantograph

June 23, 200910 Comments

I’ve had this really neat router pantograph in my own shop for about a year or more and being able to use it to craft, out of the ordinary signs, that your typical router sign making kit just can’t do I was really excited when the guys from Milescraft asked if I’d be interested in demonstrating it at the Woodcraft Vendor’s/Dealers show in Charleston, West Virginia.

The beauty of the Milescraft router pantograph is that you can use a wide assortment of fonts, pictures and shapes to create unique signs with your own router that typically you might have been able to only do with a set of carving chisels or a lot of experience with routing freehand.

It’s no secret that Milescraft has provided the show with some great products to give away as part of our regular schwag drawings. So I hope you don’t mind if in the coming weeks I include this along with a few other items as part of a new segment I’m calling “Try It Tuesdays”. The goal is to hopefully be able to tryout some interesting tools that perhaps have either just come on the market or managed to fly in under the radar.

Interested in getting your hands on one? You can find them at Amazon.com by following this link Milescraft Router Pantograph

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  1. Randy Macklin says:

    I watched your clip about the 368 Milescraft Router Pantograph. I was just given one as a gift. I have fee handed some signs of my own with difficulty but rewarding. What I am wondering is the 3D effect if there is a special router bit that should be used. I am sure on line drawings or lettering depending on the depth you want you could use a straight bit or v-groove bit. Is there a specilal bit for 3Dplease help me.

    • Matt says:

      Hi Randy,

      Sorry for the delay in responding to your question. Regarding a particular bit for the 3D routing, I don’t think there is any 1 particular profile that will excel over another.

      For fine detail, I imagine a vee groove bit or narrow diameter straight cutting bit would be best. Maybe even a narrow diameter spiral cutter.

      The only downside to this would be that obviously with a narrower profile, depending on how much material you need to remove, you’ll have to make more passes. But there’s no reason why you couldn’t use a larger straight cutter or spiral bit to remove more material and then switch to the narrower bit for the detail work.

      I hope this helps a little or a lot preferably. Thanks for writing.

  2. Keith Fyhr says:

    Hello Randy (though a response this late is mainly intended for future readers…)

    This is Keith, Product Manager at Milescraft.

    As Matt pointed out, there is no particular cutter style you *should* be using. As with 2D carving, the correct bit to use for 3D work is a matter of preference and style.

    However, the original manual for this product was written for Craftsman about 30 years ago. In that manual they suggested 1/8″ Veining Bit for 3D Carving. You can find an adapted version of this manual on our website at
    milescraft.com/instruction/1298en.pdf

    I’ll be happy to answer any other product questions at kfyhr@milescraft.com or post the question here and I’ll try to come back sooner…

    -Keith

  3. Matthew Bogdanski says:

    I would like to see or talk to some about the 3-D drawings and how to make them.

    I bought your 3-D Pantograpgh and I am looking forward to using it.

    Thank you for providing a demonstration video.Is there any trick to spacing any print other than the privded lettering. ( If I were to try to use the 3-d pantograph and make say the Ford Motor Car Logo. Do I need to blow up the logo?).

    Can I call someone to answer some questions? Is the telephone # 847-683-9200?

    Thank you for your time.

    Matt

    • Matt says:

      Hi Matt,

      I’m forwarding your questions to my friends over at Milescraft. They’ll be able to answer your questions without any problems.

      The video I have posted on my show are just demonstrations of my personal experience with the pantograph.

      What I’ve found for using the pantograph with lettering not included in the kit is to print them out at a size similar to the included fonts. Remember, the pantograph can be adjusted to make the original fonts or drawings 40, 50, or 60% of the size of the original. So if you want the Logo or lettering a specific size, it’s best to print them out much larger than what you wanted the final size to be.

      As for spacing of letters, again use the original fonts included as a guide. Other than that, a little trial and error will help you find the correct spacing. That’s the beauty of the pantograph, it gives you a lot of freedom to experiment.

      I hope this helps. And as I said, the folks at Milescraft will be able to give you more information for sure.

  4. anthony says:

    just wanted to say thank you for your video. i have the craftsman pantograph and was afraid to use it and didn’t understand the directions enough to feel secuure. your video was very helpful. thought i didn’t quiet understand when you kept saying “mark it” with your pencil when you would go from spacing to location dot.. what was you marking and why. it looks like the router bit location . and i wasn’t sure if the “hold down socket with cord holder” was screwed down. at first when you were moving the router you never show it in the video. you only says ” remove it from the snap” i hear you snaping in and out the pivot arm.does this need to be bolted to the plywood so the router doesn’t move except with the other pivot arms or does this just lay on the table. wasn’t sure. but it looks as though it lays.. but if it did. why didn’t it lift when you was showing how to wedge wood and lifted the router..
    thank you sorry for sooo many questions and so much text but i wanted you to know that i appreciate the video and can’t wait to try it.
    anthony from central islip n.y.

  5. jerry says:

    whem making letters with a 1298 pantograph to make it 50%or60% do you need to move the projecting pin or part #1580 to make it work

    thanks jerry

    • Matt says:

      Hi Jerry

      To adjust the size, the entire router plate needs to be moved. Loosen the screws in each cap on either side of the router plate and move them to the appropriate holes on the arms.

      The first set of holes closest to you are for 40%, the middle set of holes are for 50% and the last set are for 60%.

      Hope this answers your question.

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