Wide Panel Crosscutting

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodworking Skill Share forum

Forum topic by pmulry posted 09-18-2007 07:24 PM 1542 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View pmulry's profile


21 posts in 3995 days

09-18-2007 07:24 PM

Hi guys. I’m nearing the end stages of a custom credenza that I’m building to match a table I completed a couple of months ago and I’ve run into a problem that I can’t figure out an easy way to solve. Help!

The credenza has a number of shelves and dividers. I’ve ripped them to width after glueup but now I need to crosscut the shelves and dividers to length and they’re wider than the crosscut capacity on my table saw. I could final cut with my router and a clamped-down straight edge, but I’m wondering if anybody has a good trick for doing this on the table saw without adding a sliding table to the table saw? Thanks in advance guys.

-- Pat Mulry, Dallas, Texas ||

3 replies so far

View Mark Mazzo's profile

Mark Mazzo

352 posts in 3937 days

#1 posted 09-18-2007 07:56 PM


If I understand your need here, I would suggest making a simple panel cutting jig for the table saw.

You may have seen one of these before – Norm Abrams uses one all the time. Basically, it consists of a base (mine is ~ 20” x 24”) made of MDF or plywood, a fence piece attached square to the blade and a strip underneath that runs in the miter gage slot on the saw. It can run in either slot, but I use the one on the right so that I have my entire right side outfeed for support.

I usually use 1/4” or 1/2” MDF for the base with a jointed straight piece of scrap screwed to it for the fence. To make it, cut your base to size and attach the miter bar portion to the underside of the base (just get it as close to square as possible). When you do this, do it so that you will have to cut part of the base off when you push it through the blade for the first time (this creates a precise line for you to align your cut lines with when you cross cut). Then attach the fence piece. I put the fence at the back side of the jig so that the panel you are cutting pushes against it as you guide it through the saw blade. Attach this fence precisely square to the blade with screws from underneath. Now push it all through the blade cutting off any excess length of the base and fence.

To use the jig, lay the panel you want to crosscut on top of the base and tightly against the fence and align your cut line with the very edge of the jig. Now slowly slide the entire piece through the blade. If you made the jig carefully, you should end up with a perfectly square panel edge. In essence this is a poor-mans sliding table for the table saw. If your pieces to cut are very long and extend well beyond your outfeed support, you can set up something for them to glide on top of along side your saw. Sometimes, if I need just a little extra support I will put a scrap from the original base over to the right of the jig for the panel to glide on so that it does not tip to the right as I am sawing.

Hope that this is clear and that it helps.

-- Mark, Webster New York, Visit my website at

View pmulry's profile


21 posts in 3995 days

#2 posted 09-18-2007 08:38 PM

Excellent idea, Mark. I don’t watch Norm much anymore, but I think I know just what you’re talking about and that should work just fine. Thanks a ton.

-- Pat Mulry, Dallas, Texas ||

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 3987 days

#3 posted 09-18-2007 08:59 PM

It’s a cutoff sled. Niki posted how to make one not long ago. Mine will take a panel 36” wide. Be sure to include some kind of stop to guage length. Then cut sll similar parts with the stop gauge. The box might be off a1/32 but it will come square.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics