table saw setup in a smaller shop

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Forum topic by Paul posted 01-30-2010 01:09 PM 3018 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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224 posts in 3447 days

01-30-2010 01:09 PM

I have been working out of a decent size one car garage. It’s about 22 by 12 or so and I currently have the table saw in the center and towards the front. The fence extends off to the right roughly 35 inches. Because I’m tight for space I thought I might mount a router top in the arms of the fence and use that space. The problem with that is then I have to have ample working room on the right of the table saw. Great except I find myself using a table sled probably as often as I use a table fence. I use the sled on the left miter slot and sometimes use the fence with a standoff block for repeat cuts. So sometimes the fence and sled are being used together. Using the sled means I need the most amount of space on the left of the table saw so longer boards can be squared and cut. (Don’t we all have a space problem,,,,) My sled is a single miter slot T type. I think I like it on the left because then after the cut my right hand is free and I’m able to hit the off switch while still holding the work piece.
Do any of you guys sled on the right of the blade? I just moved into the house and so the shop is currently just placed tools for now. This summer I will set it up and for now the more I use it the better I am seeing where I need what but I’m still up in the air about moving the table saw to the back of the shop or keeping it where I have it and sliding it all the way to the right and mounting a router extension on the left which will serve to support a larger T sled as well.
Are you sledding to the left or the right?

11 replies so far

View Bert304's profile


27 posts in 3126 days

#1 posted 01-30-2010 02:02 PM

I use most of my cutting sleds on the right side of the blade. Only the one I use for pen blanks is on the left. I am left eye dominant so I find it easier to look at the blade.

View RKW's profile


328 posts in 3442 days

#2 posted 01-30-2010 03:04 PM

paul, i also work out of my garage. i have a two car garage and i have taken over 2/3 of it. I have to share it with my childrens bikes and a few other things. One way i have been able to get more space is i set some of my tools up as close to the garage door as possible and open the door when im working. For example, I cant use my jointer unless the door is open, but the jointer is out of my way and with the door open i have unlimited outfeed space. Originally my table saw was set up the same way but ive upgraded and had to rearrange. obviously the weather is a factor in all of this. Some day i will have a shop, for now i just deal with it, and there is always some kind of solution.
good luck with setting up

-- RKWoods

View Uncle_Salty's profile


183 posts in 3068 days

#3 posted 01-30-2010 03:22 PM

I have the Ridgid TS 2400, and the power switch is on the left hand side. My sled is on the right. The TS 2400 fence can be set on either the right or left of the blade, depending on what you are doing.

Reallly, whether you are sledding on the right or the left is matter of personal preference and space available.

View a1Jim's profile


117090 posts in 3572 days

#4 posted 02-11-2010 01:21 AM

Most of these things are trial and error type things you have to see what works for you by trying it out for a while.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Kevin's profile


462 posts in 3200 days

#5 posted 02-15-2010 03:52 PM

Paul, my shop is pretty much the same size as yours. I’ve got my TS in the center facing toward the back. I built my sled to use both miter slots instead of just one. What I did was use Visio to design my workshop so I wouldn’t have to keep moving machines. I could move machines all day long with no sweat by using the computer :) If you don’t have visio then you can try this tool Grizzly has for free.

I’d give it a try, well worth it I believe :)

-- Williamsburg, KY

View Brian's profile


79 posts in 3706 days

#6 posted 02-17-2010 12:34 PM

I’d go with NOT putting the router in the TS.
My shop is pretty small and yet there’s room. Suggest having a router table on wheels. Mine is on the lower left of the photo. Just about everything is on wheels.



View KMJohnson's profile


165 posts in 3016 days

#7 posted 02-17-2010 01:09 PM

Good information.

-- Let's do it in the wood pile!

View Paul's profile


224 posts in 3447 days

#8 posted 02-18-2010 12:45 AM

Nice photo. I have built a router top and mounted it to the left side of the table saw for trial. The two leg supports support the table on the most outer edge of the table and then angle back to the floor and rest on the floor and sit against the base of the table saw. Like that they are not in the way ( big feet) when I’m walking back and forth. I built it temporarily and it seems to be working fine so far. It also helps support larger sheets that are being fed through the table saw. The router top is also on a hinge so when I need the room I can pull the legs and it just hangs out of the way.But I haven’t had to put it down yet. the extended table also gives me a place to put things down or out of the way like a push stick or tape measure. I am finding that beside a place to route the table top helps out all the time. So far I like it to the left of the saw. My saw does not have wheels on the bottom but my new work table does have wheels so I can push it around when needed.
My shop is similar to yours Brian. The only area I haven’t been able to figure out is the area just past the saw to the right. What do you use that area for. I see a jointer there anything between the jointer and the saw?
I too have a window in that area. Do you use that area to park tools not being used?
Thanks for all the replies guys.

View Glen Peterson's profile

Glen Peterson

556 posts in 3051 days

#9 posted 02-18-2010 04:10 AM

Hi Paul,
I’ve been dealing with similar issues. For several years I had my TS in the middle of the shop with the router built into an extension table to the right of the saw. I recently upgraded to a PM66 with a 50” fence. I decided I needed to put the right side of the saw against a wall as in Brian’s photo above. I”m struggling with what to do ab out the router table and unfortunately I need something immediately. Today I’m leaning toward bulding a rolling outfeed table a la the Wood Whisperer’s with a router table build into it. It would be relatively large, perhaps 38×48, but being on wheels it could be easily moved, and it’s doing double duty and would save space.

-- Glen

View Paul's profile


224 posts in 3447 days

#10 posted 02-19-2010 07:39 AM

So here’s what I did for router placement. I like where it is but still have not put much thought into dust control around it. I believe a fence with a dust port will catch most of the dust but I haven’t figured out a fence yet.
In the background you’ll see my new work bench in progress. two cabinets sitting under a maple top. The maple top has three strips of Cherry down the middle. The bench sits on six locking wheels. The garage floor is not that smooth and slightly out of level and so I may have to deal with that. I have a few choices; self level cement the entire space which I believe will be expensive or maybe level the space with plywood and lot of ripped strips to bring it all together. I don’t know if the self level cement will bond to the old cement. Also I seen someone put it over cement in doors and over a time it all cracked. Any ideas on how to smoothen out bumpy cement?

View Brian's profile


79 posts in 3706 days

#11 posted 02-20-2010 12:40 AM

“The only area I haven’t been able to figure out is the area just past the saw to the right. What do you use that area for. I see a jointer there anything between the jointer and the saw?
I too have a window in that area. Do you use that area to park tools not being used?”

No, nothing between the jointer and saw except the Makita compressor that’s on the floor that you can see somewhat.


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