Random idea for a shop built rail-guided saw and router

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Blog entry by Jeison posted 01-06-2010 09:08 AM 1423 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Ok bear with me here, I just had this idea and I’m trying to crystalize it while I type (and its too cold in the shop to experiment)...Ok first of all, one of the first things I made for myself when I started woodworking was a set of straightedge guides for my circular saw and router. A wide chunk of 3/4” MDF with a MDF fence glued on top, and trimmed the edges to get a nice straight guide. Well, in hindsight that was a bad idea, for one thing the motor for my skilsaw rides above the fence, and its thickness prevents it from dropping down completely, meaning I can’t make deep cuts (ok for plywood, bad for dimensional stuff) and on the other side for the router, the 3/4” thickness of the base means I loose alot of potential depth, such as on my 1” length straight bits. Ok, live and learn, I’ve since made new ones, but the old ones (an 8’, 4.5’, and 3’ length) are still sitting on the shelf.

Then it just occured to me, what if I rout out T-slots in the 3/4” MDF base of the old straight edge guides (since I saw Rockler’s T-slot routing bit I want to put t-tracks in everything hehe). Then, make a base plate out of say 1/4” hardboard for the router and circular saw. Glue on a 1/2” filler block to bring it even with the top of the guide, then a piece of plywood on top of that that will overhang onto the MDF with the t-track, secure it with some t-bolts and knobs (not too tight, it has to slide). Then just clamp the guide down, slide the baseplate next to it, and it should keep the saw/router/whatever on a nice straight cut without it being able to wander away, plus its easy enough to make the baseplates with zero-clearance cutouts. Maybe use toggle clamps to hold the tool in place so it can easily be removed and used elsewhere.

I can’t wait till winter’s over, I have all these ideas and I can’t test any of em out :( I’m definetly budgeting for a heated garage sigh

-- - Jei, Rockford IL - When in doubt, spray it with WD-40 and wrap it with duct tape. The details will attend to themselves.

2 comments so far

View Derek Lyons's profile

Derek Lyons

584 posts in 3770 days

#1 posted 01-06-2010 07:47 PM

You don’t need a fence per se, just a guide.

I made my guide by gluing a 1/2 piece of MDF to a 1/4 piece, then using the saw the guide was meant for, cutting ‘right handed’ down one side and ‘left handed’ down the other. (It’s also handy to mark the guide with the saw and blade the guide is for.)

-- Derek, Bremerton WA --

View Jeison's profile


968 posts in 3310 days

#2 posted 01-06-2010 11:05 PM

I already made replacement guides that I’ve been using, I just still have the old ones sitting around and I don’t know what else to do with em, other than slice them up to reuse the MDF in other projects, which I haven’t bothered to do since I already have a ton of MDF to go through LOL. Besides MUST MAKE STUFFS!! :D

-- - Jei, Rockford IL - When in doubt, spray it with WD-40 and wrap it with duct tape. The details will attend to themselves.

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