Best way to do accurate miters--shooting board?

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Forum topic by groland posted 12-03-2011 09:43 PM 1835 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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183 posts in 3411 days

12-03-2011 09:43 PM

I am working on a base for an audio turntable, and I hope to use 1×4 lumber, on edge, for the base with mitered corners. I have tried several times to set a table saw up to do accurate miters, either with the stock upright on its 1” edge or flat on its 4” face and I do not seem to be able to get an accurate miter joint.

I have David Charlesworth’s DVD on shooting boards, including a segment on a “birdhouse” shooting board for planing the miter’s end grain. I understand that such a shooting board was used in his video for very small parts, on the order of ca. 1/4 inch thick. I know that a 45 deg. cut on a 1” thick piece of timber will result in a fairly large surface to plane, necessitating a lot of force.

I’m kind of at a loss as to where to go from here in terms of what techniques might be best for me to invest my time trying to perfect.

2 replies so far

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Bill White

4931 posts in 3960 days

#1 posted 12-03-2011 10:01 PM

You didn’t say what you’ve done about the TS. What kinda lumber are ya gonna use? If the wood is going to be from a borg, well…...I’d let it stabilize a bit before I did any dimensioning. If the wood is pine (which I don’t suggest) it will probably “wiggle” a bunch. The miters will open after cutting.
I’d spend time getting the saw tuned up properly. You should be well able to create good miters with a TS. It would take a good miter gauge with “stops” so you can cut accurate lengths, and of course it will require the miter slot to blade adjustments to be correct.
If you can give us more info we’ll be better able to help.


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183 posts in 3411 days

#2 posted 12-03-2011 10:12 PM

Sorry about the inadequate info. I am still “prototyping” this project. (I usually have to make something 3-4 times before I get something that’s any good.) I hope eventually to use cherry, but for my tests, I’m planning to use poplar.

I have access to a jointer, thickness planer and a Delta Unisaw. Last time I was experimenting I used a draughtsman’s 45-90 deg triangle. I tried setting the miter gauge up by the blade, and in another attempt, to the miter slots in the table. Neither resulted in very good miters.

If I’m wanting the saw blade vertical, I usually use the triangle and make test cuts, checking them with a try-square until they seem to be vertical.

What else should I do to tune up the saw?


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