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Super Duper Sled #1: The Sketchup Plans

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Blog entry by AttainableApex posted 09-04-2010 08:25 AM 3046 reads 6 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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Well here is my latest sled design.
Cropped 2/2

This sled is a combination of many sleds that i have seen in the past. One sled that really influenced it, is the super sled by john nixon at eagle lake woodworking. I like the t track on the sled part (the sheet part) but i am going to use real t track. I also liked the t track on top of the fence, which i incorporated, but it stops there. This sled should be able to do just about everything. You can cut 45’s ( blade tilting at 45 deg ) and every other angle, and you can cut dado’s. So here is it, lets get started.


First the fence. The fence will be made out of baltic birch plywood, 3/4” and 1/2”. I will sandwich 3 layers of 1/2” and 2 layers of 3/4”. The fence length will be 36” long, 6” high and 3” thick. I am using ply because on the one i have now i have 2” of red oak and it bowed on me and its not perfectly parallel between the faces. I am hoping that the ply will fix this.

Cropped 2

Starting from the left there will be a piece of 1/2” ply cut at 4 3/4” tall, then a piece of 3/4” at 6”. Then another sheet of 3/4” cut at 5 1/2”. And finally two sheets of 1/2” ply at 6” tall. All these will be 36” long. The reason for these cuts is to accommodate incra t track. On the face, where the 4 3/4” piece is, a t track plus will go there (it has a t track and a ruler), and another set of t track in the 1/2” by 3/4” slot on top. The reason for using sheets of ply was to make it as simple as possible to put together and to make as little of technical cuts ( dado’s to fit the t track), so the error’s could be kept small.

Another advantage i thought of is that with the 1/2” sheet on the face, i could easily make a cut out for a sacrificial face plate to go.

Cropped 2

The red and pink holes will receive threaded inserts for a 1/4” – 20 screw. The pink holes, maybe an inch deep from the face, will attach the sacrificial piece. While the red holes will be drilled all the way through and will be used to make the insert piece flush with the face of the fence. I thought adjusting it from the back would be much quicker then removing the sacrificial piece and fiddling with set screws. I was also thinking of veneering the back and sides but am a little reluctant as too the t tracks not being flush with the face.

Now for the sled portion. Since i want to be able to use this for dado’s and angled cuts (blade tilting) i had to make a sacrificial piece for the middle ( where the blade will be).

Cropped 2

Cropped 2

I will again use threaded inserts placed in the sled for the sacrificial pieces to removed and replaced. The sled will be 3/4” ply and will have a 1/4” rabbit along the inside edge to attach the sacrificial inserts. I will make a long strip, one piece, that will fit the opening and chop it down and make a bunch of them. The two slots on either side of the center section will have some incra t track.

Cropped 2

Cropped 2

I am pretty sure i am just going to make the t track and center sacrificial piece go all the way through to the back as to have easier cuts.

Cropped 2


And now attaching the two together. To be honest i haven’t ironed this out very well. i think i am going to make 4 or 6 recessed holes (1/2” to 3/4”) underneath the t track on the top part of the fence. I don’t have the hardware yet for this so its subject to change.


And the runners Haven’t come up with much. i don’t want to pay $20 a piece for the incra ones, and i definatly don’t like the wood ones on my sled now. I would go with some umhw but i have no where to get it. I think i might even use some plexi-glass. I have a sheet of scrap about 3/8” thick.

That was a mouth full. Well there is my design. I have overhauled this thing 4-5 times adding new things and trying to make it easier to make, and cheaper. Right now my sled is almost un-usable, and i can’t wait to get this thing rolling. To be honest, i wish i could just get this cnc milled from a single piece of aluminum, just so i never have to make another. But it is a woodworking tool so i guess its only fitting that i make it from wood. Please, give me some criticism and or pointers, i really want this to come out well. Ya if you want to look at my sketch up file just message me. o ya, this is the first thing i made on sketch up, as well as my first blog entry, ever, on any site, in the world, woot!!

-- Ben L



11 comments so far

View Tomw's profile

Tomw

99 posts in 1952 days


#1 posted 09-04-2010 09:45 AM

I really like the sacrificial strip; may have to modify mine to add this feature. I’ve never seen a sled without a “fence” on the leading end to tie the two halves together. How does that work? I guess the miter slot runners keep it aligned while in use, but is it floppy when removing it for storage?

-- Tom

View AttainableApex's profile

AttainableApex

338 posts in 1557 days


#2 posted 09-04-2010 10:20 AM

mine right now doesn’t have that end fence and its fine.
i mean my fence is 2” thick and im using 3/4 ply with like 6 3” screws for each side.
ya i thought about modifying mine right now with a sliding dovetail insert but, it was a little much.

-- Ben L

View BritBoxmaker's profile

BritBoxmaker

4422 posts in 1761 days


#3 posted 09-04-2010 12:44 PM

The theory looks good. Can’t wait to see the real thing.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging. http://www.theartofboxes.com

View BigTiny's profile

BigTiny

1664 posts in 1613 days


#4 posted 09-04-2010 02:39 PM

I say go with the plexiglass for the runners. Screw one in place square to the rear edge, then put the other one in it’s groove on the saw table, put the sled on top with the attached one in it’s groove, and slide everything a couple of inches back until the end screw hole is exposed, and screw it in place. Then slide it forward until the other end screw hole is exposed and repeat the procedure. Now flip the sled over and finish screwing the rail in place. They are now set in place parallel to each other and square to the sled. When you cut your center slot you can fine tune the squareness of the rear fence.

I’m getting ready to make one of these myself, but instead of T rails, I’m going with plexiglass as a top with the 1/4 bolt slots in it and the 3/4 dadoes under the slots deep enough to clear the heads of the T bolts. This gives me a hard, stiff slippery work surface and is rigid enough to take the strain of the T bolts when in use. MUCH cheaper too, as I have a source of plexi from the scrap bin of a company that makes lighted store signs. (check and see if there’s one near you, as they are usually happy to let you go through their scrap. The more you take, the less they have to pay to have disposed of.)

-- The nicer the nice, the higher the price!

View crank49's profile

crank49

3481 posts in 1695 days


#5 posted 09-04-2010 02:57 PM

UHMWPE, or dozens of other plastics, can be purchased from:

http://www.mcmaster.com

They have it in sheets, film, bars, rods, tubes, blocks, disks, or tape.
Will ship UPS or FedEx.

-- Michael :-{| “If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.” ― A H

View HerbC's profile

HerbC

1205 posts in 1584 days


#6 posted 09-04-2010 03:46 PM

I think the large white cutting boards you can get at SAMs Club are umhw. I’m going to cut up an old one to make runners for a sled when I get to that point in my table saw upgrade.

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

View AttainableApex's profile

AttainableApex

338 posts in 1557 days


#7 posted 09-07-2010 06:01 AM

well i got a sheet of 1/2” ply, now i just the 3/4”.
hey where do you guys get incra t track from for cheap, i found toolzone had good prices. anyone?

-- Ben L

View Tomw's profile

Tomw

99 posts in 1952 days


#8 posted 09-07-2010 02:35 PM

It’s not Incra, but Rockler has a pretty good package deal: 4’ of track plus 8 t bolts and knobs for $20.

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=21276&source=googleps&utm_source=GoogleBase&utm_medium=organic&utm_campaign=Google&utm_source=sortprice&utm_medium=cse&utm_campaign=V9131

-- Tom

View AttainableApex's profile

AttainableApex

338 posts in 1557 days


#9 posted 09-09-2010 08:37 AM

well i just purchased my t track from tool king (great price).
1 36” t track
4 48” t track
1 36” t track plus
i figure im going to need t track later on so i got 4 at 48” even though i could get by with 2.
$88 bucks thrown into the project so far.
damm if i can get a full sheet of 3/4” birch ply for 12 bucks :P i could keep this under $100

well my first sled cost me 4 bucks and it is unusable, so i hope this works.
ya, i used the sled to make 11 panels and they all got messed up, went back to the miter gauge, lame. might post that project as well

-- Ben L

View AttainableApex's profile

AttainableApex

338 posts in 1557 days


#10 posted 09-13-2010 08:04 AM

hey so i was thinking, how am i going to attach the t track to a quarter inch thick material?

-- Ben L

View AttainableApex's profile

AttainableApex

338 posts in 1557 days


#11 posted 09-20-2010 01:01 AM

well i just got my t track and go figure i forgot this little fact.
3/4 in ply is not really 3/4 and so goes it with all other wood.
fail.
now to fix this. lame.

-- Ben L

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