Building my first sled

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Forum topic by savbooks posted 03-10-2010 04:11 AM 1652 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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6 posts in 3205 days

03-10-2010 04:11 AM

Topic tags/keywords: jig tip question

I have a walker-turner cabinet saw and I am wanting to build my 1st miter sled. I have looked at a bunch of sled but I need help on the sliding rails. What kind of wood should I use? Should’t it be kind tight? Please explain the rail setup where I can make a great sled.

-- Savbooks

4 replies so far

View 308Gap's profile


337 posts in 3202 days

#1 posted 03-10-2010 05:12 AM

make em out of wood or….............

-- Thank You Veterans!

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3373 days

#2 posted 03-10-2010 05:24 AM

308Gap’s got it right.

I did one sled with oak rails (hardwood is far better than softwood, for this). Did the other one out of Incra miter rail stock.

They work fine, too, and are more easily adjustable (well … if you need to expand them. Making the hardwood bars narrower is pretty easy, too!).

Good luck!

-- -- Neil

View Rick S...'s profile

Rick S...

10913 posts in 3232 days

#3 posted 03-11-2010 06:13 AM

First of all, I must say that I have NOT yet used these but will be shortly, and have seen a number of Sleds made with them. Buy an everyday white Polyethelene (White Plastic) cutting board and cut it to the required width and length. It’s easy to cut and clean up with a bit of sanding. The nature of the product allows it to slide with very little effort.

My first concern was the Holding Power of the srews. I tried a few experiments with one I already had. A SMALL Pilot hole worked best with counter sunk screw heads. However when I do it for real, I’ll probably go with a small nut, bolt, lock washer, countersunk on both sides.

I HAVE used the Poly for “0” clearance inserts for my Table Saw. Use your existing insert as a pattern, rough cut on a bandsaw, double face tape to hold both together and router it with a flush cut bit. Screw holes to suit. I noticed that with a 0 clearance insert the saw dust had a tendency to pile up at the front of the blade (Downstroke) which doesn’t exactly help with the task at hand. A 1/2” hole drilled through the Poly, at that point, remedied that.

OR! (I like this one ..LOL..) Cut a piece 2’x4’? 4’x4’? of THIN 1/8” plwood (Old Wall Panelling?) Place one edge up against the TRUE fence, set where you want make your cut, and drop (sorry) place it over the blade. You now have a “Sacrificial 0 Clearance Oversert” (Say What?). Just keep re-using it until there ain’t no more to “Sacrifice”. A few pieces of double face tape in between is not a bad idea either.

Sorry Guys. Got off topic, but might be of some use. NEIL: Great looking Sled! The Photo itself ain’t to shabby either. I’ve noticed that on some of your other projects also. Helps a lot!


-- I Chose "The Road Less Travelled" Now I'm Totally Lost! (Ontario, CANADA)

View Glen Peterson's profile

Glen Peterson

556 posts in 3255 days

#4 posted 03-12-2010 03:28 PM

I built my first big sled (25 inches deep) for cutting cabinet parts with oak runners about 15 years ago. I used it for years and I could definitely feel changes in the runners due to seasonal humidity changes in New England. It was much tighter in the summer than winter. I’ve made other sleds for cutting 45’s etc, with wood runners, but I’m sold on metal now.

Unfortunately I a sucker for a good woodworking sales pitch. In January I bought an after-market miter sled called a Dubby by In-line. A buddy and I were at a woodworking show near Springfield, MA. I scoffed at the Dubby at first because I’ve always built my own sleds, but when my friend decided to buy one the price for two became low enough that I jumped in. The Dubby also came with a dial indicator and table saw set up jig, which is $80 from Woodpecker. The Dubby also has an adjustable fence so I can use it for angled cuts. To connect back to your thread, the Dubby has a metal slide. The metal slide has allen screws in it that let you adjust it so it fits the miter slot perfectly. I like this sled so much that I sold my rockler after-market miter gauge. Based on this experience I’ll go with metal slides for other specialty jigs in the future. Please understand that this isn’t a sales pitch, but maybe I’m trying to justify yet another woodworking purchase to myself.

-- Glen

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