How To Cut A Circle In Wood

How To Cut A Circle In Wood?

Certain DIY projects require certain skills.

Sometimes, you just need to cut a straight piece of wood. On other occasions, you may need to cut wood into different shapes and sizes.

But, a circle is one of the hardest shapes to cut out of wood.

Cutting a straight line can be hard enough, so the idea of cutting a perfect circle can be pretty daunting.

Luckily, if you have the correct tools and follow the proper method, it is possible to cut a perfect circle in wood quite easily!

There are a few ways of going about this task. However, one method may work better for you than another.

Also, various techniques can offer more accuracy, whereas others may offer less accurate cuts but can be done quicker.

So, whether you need to run a pipe through a piece of wood or include a circular piece of wood for an art project, you will need to learn how to cut a circle in wood without causing a mess!

Whatever the reason, we are here to help!

Read on as we guide you through the process of cutting a circle in wood with different tools and techniques in just a few simple steps.

Cut Circles In Wood Using A Hole Saw

A hole saw is one of the best tools for cutting a circle in wood.

To use a hole saw, all you need to do is lock it into your drill’s chuck. You can also use a drill press. Then, you simply start cutting.

Hole saws allow you to cut circles from only ¾ of an inch up to 7 inches in diameter.

For instance, if you’re in the process of making cornhole boards, a 6-inch hole saw is the best option.

Although hole saws are easy to use, they have some disadvantages. Firstly, they are prone to overheating.

This is why you should only use a little pressure when cutting before pulling it up every few seconds.

This is so the sawdust does not build up and can escape. Otherwise, your hole saw may overheat and league scorch marks on the wood.

Hole saws are also limited in the depth they can drill. That is why they may not be the best option for thicker wood planks.

However, there may be a way around this issue on occasion. Start by cutting the hole on just one side of your piece of wood.

Once the hole saw bottoms out, take the drill out by reversing it.

Then, insert a standard drill bit into the center hole of the circle that remains after the hole saw bit. Now, drill through to the board’s other side.

Next, turn the wood over and line the center bit of the hole saw up with the hole you drilled. This will result in a clean cut on either side of the wood.

Hole saws can also blow out on the other side of the hole you cut. Pressure from your hole saw can result in the board splintering rather than cutting smoothly.

To prevent this, clamp a piece of wood under the wood you’re working on. This will hold the wood fibers in place while you cut.

Cut Circles In Wood Using A Jigsaw

Cut Circles In Wood Using A Jigsaw

There are a few ways to cut a circle in wood using a jigsaw.

Some methods are great for quick cuts when you don’t need much accuracy, while others offer more precise circular cuts.

Here’s how to cut using a jigsaw:

  1. Start by measuring and drawing a circle on the surface of the wood. The best way to do this is with a beam compass. Lock in your circle’s radius and place the main point in its center. Next, draw the circle. You can also tie a string to a pencil for a cheaper alternative.
  2. A freehand cut is best for cuts that don’t need to be perfect. When cutting a circle, start at the edge of the wood and guide the jigsaw’s blade to the line you drew. Ensure that you cut on the outside of the edge. Then, sand down the edges to achieve the precise diameter you desire.
  3. For circular holes in wood, drill a smaller hole for the blade of your jigsaw. Then, use a drill bit to get the hole as close to the cut line on the circle’s inside. Next, put pressure on the jigsaw, push it down into the hole, and cut the circle. Follow the inside edge of the line you drew—finally, sand down the edges.

Cut Circles In Wood Using A Bandsaw

Another tool you can use is a bandsaw. Like a jigsaw, a bandsaw has a narrow blade that is ideal for curves.

Although you can cut a freehand circle with a bandsaw, we recommend doing so with a jig.

Before you start cutting, make sure your bandsaw settings are correct. The cut typically needs to have precise measurements.

If the blade tension or bearings are a little off, your circle may not be accurate.

Cut Circles In Wood Using A Table Saw

Using a table saw is usually an option for those more experienced with cutting pieces of wood.

Table saws are not ideal for cutting circles, but with the help of a jig, table saws can cut very accurate circles in wood.

Rather than moving your saw, you need to use a jig that allows you to spin your piece of wood against the blade.

When you start this process, you will cut long passes and cut off square corners.

But, as you continue, the cuts become smaller until you gradually spin the wood on the blade’s edge. Eventually, you will have a circle.

In Summary

There are many tools and methods for cutting circles in wood. Take a look at the tools mentioned above and see what method suits you best.


Diarmuid Brock

I'm a carpenter by day and an amateur woodworker by night. I don't believe in limitations, and I love to help others. I'm here to answer your questions and make your life simpler. I craft and create with all-natural, reclaimed, and repurposed materials.

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