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Fence Position When Cutting Large Panels on Table Saw with 50 inch rails

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Forum topic by C_PLUS_Woodworker posted 04-04-2011 08:38 PM 1529 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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C_PLUS_Woodworker

475 posts in 1574 days


04-04-2011 08:38 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tablesaw

Scenario:

3 hp table saw with 50 inch rails to the right with extension table

Waxed tops with no sawdust

Good out-feed support

Assume fence/miter slot/blade are all parallel…..............no dialed-in toe in/toe out on fence

You have a panel of 3/4 ply that is 48×48

You want to cut 2 inches off to make the panel 46×48

Do you move the fence to 46 inches and use the fence on the right of the blade as a guide? (with the blade 4 ft away)

Or do you move the fence 2 inches to the left of the blade and use the fence on the left as the guide? (with the blade much closer to the fence)

Why?

-- We must all walk our own green mile


8 replies so far

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15702 posts in 2885 days


#1 posted 04-04-2011 08:48 PM

I would do it the first way.

I believe it is safer and easier to control the cut when the piece between the blade and the fence is larger than the piece on the opposite side of the blade.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Sawkerf's profile

Sawkerf

1730 posts in 1735 days


#2 posted 04-04-2011 08:48 PM

I almost always work with the fence on the right because it’s more comfortable for me that way. I’ve worked from the left, but only for odd situations.

-- Adversity doesn't build character...................it reveals it.

View bubinga's profile

bubinga

861 posts in 1334 days


#3 posted 04-04-2011 08:52 PM

No doubt about it move the fence to 46 inches and use the fence on the right of the blade as a guide

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View drewnahant's profile

drewnahant

222 posts in 1756 days


#4 posted 04-04-2011 09:01 PM

You always push between the fence and blade, and you always reference off of your fence, so ideally, the heavier piece of stock should be in that area, and for a straighter cut, the finish piece should always be there. if you have a large piece hanging off to the left, it can bend away as you near the end of your cut, but the section on the right can always stay true to the fence, that should be your finish piece.

If you have the 50” rails, go to the 46” fence setting. it is much more stable and safer to push that large section of the sheet against the rail

View JJohnston's profile

JJohnston

1580 posts in 1958 days


#5 posted 04-04-2011 09:19 PM

Neither. A cut like this, with the workpiece twice as wide as it is long, calls for a panel cutting sled. Just a simple one would do, with the fence at the front and no back fence at all, and a single miter slot runner. You can whip up one of these in a few minutes.

-- "Sorry I'm late. Somebody tampered with my brakes." "You should have been early, then."

View bubinga's profile

bubinga

861 posts in 1334 days


#6 posted 04-04-2011 09:34 PM

algale
Good one

-- E J ------- Always Keep a Firm Grip on Your Tool

View C_PLUS_Woodworker's profile

C_PLUS_Woodworker

475 posts in 1574 days


#7 posted 04-04-2011 09:46 PM

Thanks for the replies

I always do it the first way with the fence out on the right, but sometimes when I am just sizing a large piece with a real small drop I feel like I would like to be closer to the actual cut to keep an eye on it better.

I never have done a large piece with the fence on the left of the blade because I worried about binding the small piece.

But, was just wondering if I was missing something that I should know.

Thanks again.

-- We must all walk our own green mile

View JJohnston's profile

JJohnston

1580 posts in 1958 days


#8 posted 04-04-2011 09:58 PM

You cut it to rough size with a circular saw and guide, then make the final, squaring cut after the fence is squared to the runner. Do this with the runner in the miter slot and you’ll have the exact location of the saw cut built into the jig.

-- "Sorry I'm late. Somebody tampered with my brakes." "You should have been early, then."

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