kstano83
I have made two animals from the "Scroll saw patterns for toy dinosaurs" for my kids today but they did not last long. Three drops, three cracked legs. My plan was to  make several more as a give away but if they brake this easily they would not make a long lasting gift. Or is it something that can not be avoided with soft wood? 



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cynthia lewman
Hi kstano83,

First, let me say your photos show excellent finishing and craftsmanship! Beautiful work.

You're correct about Spruce in that it's about the weakest wood you could use. It would help to run the grain lengthwise. You can see from your photos that the legs are snapping with the grain.

Using Poplar, Oak, Maple or Walnut would be the best woods to use and would remedy the problem you're having.

We hope to see more photos from you! Thanks for posting.

Cynthia
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Bucko
Fantastic craftsmanship I agree, Poplar cuts pretty much as easy as Spruce and is light if the kids drop them on their toes.
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kstano83
I blame the noisy picture for smoothing out the cuts, but thanks for compliments! 😉 I will try to cut the legs lengthwise and see if that helps. If not, I will try to use the easiest available  wood from the above mentioned.

(I just hope I have not been collecting all the free spruce pallets wood needlessly 😉)
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kstano83
I´m getting kind of confused looking for poplar wood in my area. Some state it as softwood and some call it hardwood. May I please know how much harder poplar is compares to spruce?
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Bucko
I just looked and your from Slovakia and I’m not sure of your Poplar trees but my local Poplar here in Ohio at the U.S. is soft. I’ve used Spruce before and it’s softer than my Pine and the Poplar is equal to my Pine. I do have local Maple that is both hard and soft but not Poplar, your Poplar may be a different tree than my local Poplar.
The light color woods in this VW / Ribbon is Spruce which shows you may still be able to use yours in other applications. Click image for larger version - Name: 4B992BC8-918C-41E7-AFC3-AEB1DE5FDC8A.jpeg, Views: 18, Size: 610.76 KB Click image for larger version - Name: 8CD89249-27AB-4124-A19B-9FC9939B7338.jpeg, Views: 20, Size: 591.73 KB
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kstano83
I got hard maple to test out 😉 I will let you guys know how it will hold up. 
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BadBob
The terms hardwood and softwood do not refer to the headness of the wood. Deciduous trees that shed their leaves every year are hardwoods. Conifer trees do not shed their leaves are softwoods. Balsa is a hardwood. Southern Yellow Pine is a softwood but old growth yellow pine heartwood is far from being soft.

The above is a generalization. For more accurate info check here.



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BadBob
One way to make the legs stronger is to laminate good quality plywood to the back of the legs. It is much easier and neater to do before you cut them out.

If you do this I strongly suggest that you also add a couple of pins to the legs. Kids that play rough with their toys will literally tear the veneer of the plywood.
 

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