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How do I cut out a circle in exsisting wooden counter top and use the cut out piece as a lid (flush) so it doesnt fall through? e.g. a "stepped edge? Obviously I am not using the correct terminologly, hopefully someone knows what I am trying to say. Thanks in advance to all replies, much appreciate

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    Does it have to be a stepped edge? Is it ok if it's straight but tapered like a cone? You're not really going to be able to just cut a step shape like that. if you do do a cone shape keep in mind it'll be slightly smaller than the hole because of the saw blade thickness, so you'd still want to maybe line it with rubber or something to recover the space so it sits flush. – Jason C Sep 27 at 1:02
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    You could also cut a straight circle out then perhaps make a lip for underneath out of a different piece of wood, and attach that to the underside of the countertop. Either way the tool you probably want is a jigsaw. – Jason C Sep 27 at 1:04
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    Hi, welcome to StackExchange. You can't do this and use the cutout. The removable portion must be another piece of wood, shaped separately. So begin with that info and consider if you want to proceed. – Graphus supports Monica Sep 27 at 7:27
  • @JasonC In order to use a jig saw you need to drill a starter hole. This will create a an indent on the perimeter profile. – Ashlar Sep 29 at 15:36
  • @Ashlar I usually start this kind of thing with a slot from a 1/8" cutting bit in a dremel, only leaves about 1/32" indents. Or 1/32 hole + a coping saw if it's accessible. But yeah. Even trickier with a beveled cut. – Jason C Sep 30 at 0:59
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You can't do exactly what you want. The problem is that however you cut round the lid, there will be some thickness which you turn into sawdust (the kerf). If we ignore the difficulty of cutting a stepped edge, it will end up like:

|:
 --------
 _____  :
      | :

where the solid lines represent the edge of the hole, and the dotted lines the kerf. The horizontal kerf will cause the lid to drop - so it won't be flush, and the vertical kerf will cause the lid to slip from side to side.

What you could do, is to cut a cylindrical hole (either with a jig saw, or with a large hole saw), line the hole with a contrasting material (aluminium, stainless steel, a contrasting wood, rubber, etc), and fit a lip under the worktop so that the lid fits snugly into the hole.

Alternatively, as Graphus suggests in a comment, use a different piece of wood to make the lid.

Either way, you will need to put a handle in the lid.

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