Has anyone designed Crosscut sled inserts?

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Forum topic by kanihoncho posted 06-19-2010 02:04 PM 1519 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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60 posts in 3251 days

06-19-2010 02:04 PM

I’m in the middle of making a crosscut sled. I’ve looked but only found mention of switchable inserts for different blades. I was thinking about a 4 inch wide strip that is used as a ZCI insert. This way I can make just one sled and change out the inserts.

I could drill out two holes in the bottom of each fence to epoxy in the metal threaded inserts (to accept machine screws) so that repeated switching out of the inserts wouldn’t strip out the fence material?

What do you think of the idea and does anyone have any recommendations or photos? Many thanks.

4 replies so far

View a1Jim's profile


117283 posts in 3755 days

#1 posted 06-19-2010 05:18 PM

I guess it depends on what kind of operations your thinking of. If it’s just blade sizes it might be a good idea.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View GregD's profile


788 posts in 3314 days

#2 posted 06-22-2010 07:22 PM

Hmmm. Not much feedback on this topic. I have put off making or buying a crosscut sled out of the same concern – how to keep zero clearance near the blade.

I’m leaning toward a simple sled that only supports the work on one side of the blade like the Dubby since I find that I’m always cutting to rough size first and trimming a bit to final size. I’ve had several ideas on making the cut edge replaceable along the lines of your ZCI idea. But I’m leaning toward the option of leaving that complication off initially and retrofit something if I find its needed.

I’m not sure I understand your design. It seems you plan for fences at the front and back of the sled that extend to both sides of the blade, and then have a 4” gap at the cut line in the permanent part of the sled base to be filled by an insert. The insert would be fastened to the bottom of the front & back fences. That seems both simple & effective. If your fences are wood, why not just use threaded metal inserts rather than epoxy? Of course you want to countersink or counterbore the insert a bit deep to keep the screw heads from scratching your table.

-- Greg D.

View kanihoncho's profile


60 posts in 3251 days

#3 posted 06-22-2010 08:02 PM

You got it. I decide to go with a 3 inch insert and use 2 dowel nuts in each fence. That way I can replace the inserts repeatedly. There will be half-fence inserts on the back fence that will fit each blade setup so it will prevent the tearout on the back side of the piece.

The dowel nuts will be installed perpendicular to the plys for strength and I can use countersunk machine screws through the insert into the ply fence and then the dowel nut and still have a strong joint. I guess the big concern right now is drilling into the end plys and not tearing out a nasty hole.

View spaids's profile


699 posts in 3871 days

#4 posted 06-22-2010 08:10 PM

I think its a great idea. A buddy of mine had the same idea and has plans to make his cross cut sled with this same feature. I’m gonna add you to my buddy list because I don’t wanna miss this when you get it finished.

You know you could hardwood edge it if you are unsure about drilling into end ply.

-- Wipe the blood stains from your blade before coming in.--

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