The Dodecahedron and the Sled

I have actually been wishing to make a out of . A is a 3 dimensional object made from 12 pentagons. I decided I needed to make a brand-new sled for the table saw to have the ability to cut out the pentagons as well as the angle in between the various pentagons. I cut 2 t-tracks into the bed of the sled which would permit me to connect an adjustable fence to the sled. This would allow me to cut any angle I required to. The dodecahedron worked out and glued together rather easily. It has less pieces than the 20-sided icosahedrons I have made in the past. In the future, I want to make segmented dodecahedrons that I can turn into spheres.

Tools used in this job can be discovered at

Woodturning tools:.

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0:00 (introduction).
0:44 (the sled).
9:33 (The dodecahedron).
14:42 (conclusion).

The Dodecahedron and the Sled

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  1. Heck yeah, another amazing video! Loved it and it gives me inspiration to make a sled for my table saw too!!

  2. As always, your curiosity and visuals are top notch! But I think that the tolerances of the machines, the numerous variables involved to get a perfect 90/45/22.5/etc are not possible without sanding, putty/filler or other means. The material is wood. But if anyone can get close to perfect results, its you, Frank!

    1. They are certainly possible if you take the time to adjust your machines.
      I made a rhombic triacontahedron in oak (a 30 sided “dice) for a friend once. Took me 3 Attempts put i managed it to pull it off. Without sanding, a CNC or filler.
      When you start to go in the process with the mindset “I can sand that” or “I can put some filler on that” you will not put the time in to adjust your machines correctly because why bother.
      Sanding and filling is for me even less accurate and takes Sometimes more time.
      Do regular maintenance, adjust them regularly and take your time setting them up. Then it is certainly not impossible and easier than you think.

  3. Nice project.. instead of adjustable fence, you have to set precisely every time, you could fix the fence with dowel pins, after at successful test cut

  4. I like that this video was practically more about the sled than the Dodecahedron. Watching the process on getting to where you can make it was very fascinating to see.

    1. One of my favorite things about this channel. Absolute shame he doesn’t have 10 million viewers.

  5. What would be cool is to make the triangles of the pentagon angled inward. That way it would look like the shape has big indentations, but yet still holds the shape of an almost sphere

  6. I love how your videos don’t just show the project that you’re working on, but equally shows the problem solving that has to be done in order to do the project.

  7. Truncate it by cutting triangular holes on the points with your C&C router, and then turn it spherical. Make sort of a lattice sphere. Really cool project, can’t wait to see the end result.

  8. Whoa, love the new schematics and 3D overlays! very cool to see them update w/ the project steps. Maybe a temp faded background color could help delineate the action from the diagrams when they update? Packing in so much info is tough to balance and and I love this direction you’re taking. Thanks for all the insight

  9. Nice video! Have you read about the different types of solids?
    in 3d geometry anything with all the faces, edges and vertices identical is a platonic solid, having been described by Plato.
    There are five, your dodecahedron with twelve pentagonal sides, Icosahedron (I think you said isohedron) with twenty equilateral triangles, tetrahedron with four equilateral triangles, octahedron with eight equilateral triangles, and the cube.
    Known by tabletop RPG players all over the world as 5/6 (or 5/7 if you like the redundant extra d10) of a standard D&D dice set. If you think of these as regular shapes, there’s also a host of semi-regular ones called archimedean or catalan solids!
    Dodecahedrons are my favorite. (you don’t put the emphasis on the last vowel like that though)

    1. nice to see this explained so clearly. this gives me an idea to make and wood Turn each of the platonic solids

    2. @frank howarth if you’re looking for an objects to make spherical, and look nice in contrasting woods, a sphere such as the first diagram here is quite nice: Lots of ‘great circles’ to help construct it as two hemispheres, and the subdivisions show the dual relationship between icosahedron and dodecahedron. There is a corresponding sphere for cube and octahedron, and a third for two tetrahedra. Before woodturning, you could start with a (a d120) but getting all the angles right would be cruel. Better to start with an icosahedron with 6 pieces per face, since you have already worked out all the angles. Keep 4 of the faces as halves (3 small pieces) so you end up with two hemispheres. Get in touch if you want someone to work out the angles.

    3. @frank howarth To expand on this, and into a different hobby that I’m also into, the platonic solids make up a subset of the polyhedral dice used in D&D and other table-top RPGs (TTRPGs). Each die is called a dX where the X is how many faces it has. A normal die is the 6-sided cube, and the d20 (the most important in D&D) is the icosahedron you’ve already done. This video added the d12, so the d4 (tetrahedron or triangular pyramid), d6 (cube), the d8 (octahedron), and 1-2 d10s (pentagonal trapezohedron or deltohedron) are all that is missing. If you look up “polyhedral dice” you’ll find the typical sets that are used. Would be really cool to see you have a whole set of oversized wooden die; especially if you used the cnc machine to get the numbers inlaid in the faces.

  10. nice work. takes good engineering/ design of equipment and attention to detail to get those angles to marry in 3D. love your videos.

  11. I don’t know how close to parallel you made your rip fence, but I think having it “open” (away from the blade) a few thou is an anti-kickback measure. (at least it used to be and makes sense). Thanks for the video, Frank. Nice sled!

  12. Great video! By the way, the 20-sided polyhedron that’s made up of triangular faces is called icosahedron.

  13. damn, what an incredibly insightful and truly inspiring piece this is
    btw those 3d animations are great, please continue with them

  14. I like your shaded diagram highlighting the section you’re discussing. Really helps tell the story. Love this project, too, Frank. Really like your vids.

  15. As always, another fine video. The sawdust chamfer is great until you want to cut a very thin piece of plywood or veneer. I found this out right after I made my sled.

  16. It’s a small thing, but I love that you have weights to offset the force from the radial arm saw when it’s climb cutting! Great little touch to make that tool a bit safer and more manageable.

  17. Great sled Frank. Reminds me much of the one the Wood Knight has on his channel. I made it myself and LOVE it.

  18. I love your videos, you clearly love both woodworking and cinematography and you’re great at both, keep up the good work 🙂

  19. You’re going to love the removable zero clearance inserts, trust me. I did this, and I just batched out a lot at once, drilled them all, and when one ZCI gets chewed up, I just replace it on the fly. This has allowed me to use my crosscut sled with a ZCI plowed for 45-degree cuts and 3/4″ dados, so now I can do dead-square shelf dados without worrying about trying to keep the board tight to a miter gauge, etc., while avoiding the spinning blades.

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