Crosscut sled

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Project by Jeff posted 06-03-2010 07:04 PM 5075 views 19 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I don’t know why I didn’t make this years earlier. I always made due trying to line up a straightedge on a pencil line and using a circular saw, but it never, and I mean NEVER worked out to be square enough.

After trolling the web for ideas I finally settled on this design. I can crosscut up to 24” wide and I suppose the maximum length would be whatever I could clamp safely enough. I didn’t incorporate any T-track or measuring tape that I had seen in other examples as I wanted to keep this simple (hence avoiding my tendency to screw something up).

I have tested it by crosscutting a 22” wide panel and flipping the offcut to double any errors. I couldn’t see any gap, which means the error is half of that, which is good enough for anything I will use it for. There is another method for testing called the five cut method but it seemed like overkill to me.

The base is 3/4” baltic birch. The solid fences are made from Ash, the runners are QSWO. That little knobby block at the back will safely encompass the blade at its full height after a cut to protect my hands. When I first attached the fence I fixed one end and used a bolt in an oversized hole in the other end for adjustability. Once I made that beautiful test cut I drove a bunch more screws from underneath to lock the fence in place.

If you have been “making due” and “getting by” with a framing square and circular saw, don’t put it off any longer, these sleds are a great improvement in my opinion.

-- Jeff

10 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3600 days

#1 posted 06-03-2010 07:07 PM

A good sled Jeff looks great

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View schloemoe's profile


709 posts in 2960 days

#2 posted 06-03-2010 07:09 PM

nice sled I fought for years not to build one and then when I did I didn’t know how I lived without it. Welcome to LJ’s hope you have a good time here

-- schloemoe, Oregon , http://www.

View Dennis Fletcher's profile

Dennis Fletcher

467 posts in 3077 days

#3 posted 06-03-2010 07:54 PM

Jeff, well done work. I just built something similar, but can’t get my sleds to work out right. Mine won’t slide smoothly, even though I made the slides to fit nicely in the wholes.

Any suggestions?

--, Making design and application one. †

View schloemoe's profile


709 posts in 2960 days

#4 posted 06-03-2010 07:57 PM

Try a little wax on the runners that seemed to work for me…..........Schloemoe

-- schloemoe, Oregon , http://www.

View Jeff's profile


116 posts in 2937 days

#5 posted 06-03-2010 08:52 PM

Dennis: Did you attach the runners to the base while it was actually sitting on the saw? This will make sure they are parallel to eachother and don’t bind.

If they are still sticky, rub a pencil along the vertical side surfaces of your mitre slots and then slide your jig back and forth a few times. This will leave pencil residue on the offending spots on your runners. Then take a card scraper and shave off the darkened areas…. and repeat until you have a good balance between smoothness without any side to side play.

+1 on schloemoe’s suggestion to use wax afterwards.

-- Jeff

View mikethetermite's profile


597 posts in 3289 days

#6 posted 06-03-2010 10:19 PM

I’ve been “making due” and “getting by” like you for years. Now I just need to get off my butt and do it. Nice job, thanks for sharing.

-- Mike The Termite ~~~~~ Working safely may get old, but so do those who practice it.

View Sailor's profile


543 posts in 3288 days

#7 posted 06-04-2010 02:14 AM

I agree, these things are great. I just built a simple one a few weeks ago and it gets used alot. It is so much easier to make accurate cuts.

-- Dothan, Alabama Check out my woodworking blog! Also my Youtube Channel's Facebook page

View Robsshop's profile


907 posts in 2997 days

#8 posted 06-04-2010 02:57 AM

Very nice job and I could not agree with You anymore ! Love the crosscut sled for making simple and safe cuts.

-- Rob,Gaithersburg,MD,One mans trash is another mans wood shop treasure ! ;-)

View Doug's profile


10 posts in 3248 days

#9 posted 06-04-2010 03:08 AM

I might get myself blacklisted for suggesting a non-wood runner: You could try using plastic runners made out of UHMW polyethylene. I’m not sure who would carry it around you, but McMaster-Carr is always an option. It is soft, but is dimensionally stable through moisture changes and very slick.

-- Doug, WA

View andyboy's profile


565 posts in 3296 days

#10 posted 08-05-2011 09:42 AM

Yes I had an old Masport combination saw I sold because I couldn’t do half of what I wanted. I only discovered the sled idea years later. Good on ya mate.

-- Andy Halewoodworker. You can't finish if you don't finish. So finish it, because finish is everything.

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