Police K-9 Silhouette Plaque

This plaque is a result of one of the many tips and suggestions that I have received from some of my viewers. Chris Rader made a rustic flag after watching one of my videos. He did a great job on the flag and later, Chris sent me a picture of a K-9 Plaque that he had made and I really liked the idea. After getting some suggestions from Chris and asking permission to use his idea here, I made this plaque using the profile of a local K-9, Zorro.

This is a pretty simple and inexpensive project. I started by getting a picture of a local K-9 and a copy of the PDF file that Chris had made. I emailed the file and the picture to Office Max and asked them to print the PDF file to 18” in diameter and to print the picture of the K-9 to the size that would replace the generic K-9 picture that was in the PDF file. Since I was replacing the generic K-9, I could have simply drawn my own circle and inserted the picture that I had but I wanted to use the flag overlay that Chris had already created.

I wanted to keep this project really simple so instead of gluing a panel together, I used Chris’ idea of buying a ready made round panel. I found an 18” diameter, 1” thick panel for just over $10.00.

I don’t have a large compass or a marking gauge so I used a paint paddle to mark the circle just inside the outside edge of the panel. I did this by using a tape measure to find the exact center of the panel. After marking the center of the panel, I put a nail through the paint paddle at one end and placed the sharp end of that nail on, not in, the center of the panel. I then determined how far in from the edge I wanted the circle. I marked that distance on the paint paddle, made a small notch for a pencil end to follow and used that to draw a perfect circle around the panel.

I then placed the picture of the K-9 on the panel and centered it up. I placed a piece of carbon paper under the picture and traced the outline of the K-9 onto the panel. After transferring the picture to the panel, I used the original K-9 picture to lay over the one that I outlined so that I could transfer the flag overlay to the panel.

I started by using a #192 carving bit on my Dremel tool to follow the inside of the circle and around the outside of the K-9 head. Once I had outlined the part that I wanted to carve, I continued carving that area until I had removed approximately .25” of wood. After carving that area, I used a sanding drum on the Dremel tool to smooth the area that I carved.

I then used a small detail torch to scorch every other stripe that I had transferred over the K-9 head. I used a scrap piece of oak as a straight edge to protect the light stripes from the flame so that only the targeted stripes would be scorched. I also scorched the union and the outside circle on the panel.

After scorching the union, I used my star stencil to mark the stars in the union. I used the Dremel tool with a #106 carving bit to carve through the scorched layer on the stars to reveal the bare wood underneath. I then used the torch to lightly tint or antique the stars and the light stripes.

I used painters tape to tape around the stripe below the union (the 8th stripe on a standard flag) so that I could paint that stripe blue. I used Rust-Oleum # 7251 Cobalt Blue Metallic spray paint for the blue stripe.

Once the blue paint had dried, I sprayed the panel with one coat of Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane. The one coat of spray helps protect the K-9 head and all that had been scorched while I hand carved the area around the head that I had previously carved with the Dremel tool. Hand carving leaves tool marks that help give it a rustic look and it removes any unwanted burn marks and blue overspray.

After all hand carving was completed, I brushed on two coats of Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane. Once the panel had dried I added a hanger to the back and it was ready to be displayed.

One thing that could be added to make the panel unique would be to engrave the name of the K-9 under or above the profile.
Thank you for visiting www.thefurrminator.com

Jeff Furr