|Project by Mainiac Matt||posted 12-14-2014 12:05 AM||1862 views||4 times favorited||12 comments|
I need a sled for one reason only…. to cut panels square. And if it’s going to be a one trick sled…. it better well do that one trick dead nuts accurately.
When I sold my Craftsman 113 and refurbished an old Jet cabinet saw, I found myself sledless, because the miter slot spacing was different.
What drove me crazy on the last sled was getting the fence set accurately (which I never really did) so I hatched a plan to make and adjusting mechanism, with on end of the sled pinned, to make pivot point, and the other end with a slot that allowed for adjustments. The pinned end uses a long hex head cap screw with a T-nut epoxied into a counter bored hole in the sled bottom. On the pivoting end, I routed the slot with matching counter bore, and then made a sliding nut by cutting off the barbs of another T-nut and filing it into a rectangular shape, so it could be tightened up. Then I put a T-nut and adjusting screw in the fence itself and temporarily mounted a plate on the back edge of the base. This way I can loosen the cap screws at either end and dial in an adjustment.
I recycled the T-track runner from my old sled, and because it has just a little play, I added a second UHMW PE runner and planed it (who knew you could plane UHMW PE?) for a zero slop fit. The result is no perceptible sled wiggle and a smooth sliding action in the miter slots.
I had the sled pretty well done a couple months ago, but after about multiple tries doing the 5 cut method, it kicked my but and I set it aside out of frustration.
Fast forward to today. I NEED a sled to accurately cut plywood panels for a bench top lathe stand. So I reviewed the 5-cut video on Youtube and took another crack at it. This time, after the first correction, I was within .003” of square….. and quickly clamped the fence down tight and screwed it secure.
I don’t know what I did wrong the last time I tried this, as I was doing it exactly the same way…. but kept chasing the error.
Sled measures 43” x 27”, with clearance to cut a 24” wide panel.
Base is 1/2” Baltic Birch, Fence is a glue up of 4/4 finger jointed a pre-primed trim with a facing of the 1/2” Baltic Birch plywood on both sides. This has proven to be a very stable combination, and hasn’t warped at all in the 5 months since I glued it up. Front fence is a scrap piece of 4/4 Mahogany. All scrounged up from what I had laying aroung.
I just need to put a coat of Shellac on the top and fences and then I’ll wax up the bottom.
-- Pine is fine, but Oak's no joke!