Building a rip sled for a table saw

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Forum topic by mycrew143 posted 12-07-2011 08:10 PM 6159 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3 posts in 1786 days

12-07-2011 08:10 PM

Hi All,
First time poster.
I am building a rip sled to rip 2” thick mahogany after I have face to face glue up. These will be about 7’ long.
I see there are a lot of plans on the internet. I wanted to get the pros and cons on whether the rip sled should ride against the table saw fence or have it ride in the mitre groove on the table saw. I would affix either a wood or aluminum mitre bar to the bottom of the sled. My thinking is that the mitre groove would be more stable from end to end assuming that there is enough extension.


Thanks John

11 replies so far

View Bertha's profile


12989 posts in 2117 days

#1 posted 12-07-2011 09:00 PM

I must not know what a rip sled is. Do you mean a crosscut sled? If you mean crosscut, then miter slots is definitely the way to go. I built a simple one I’d be glad to share with you but there are hundreds on this site that are really well designed. If I don’t understand what you mean, just ignore my ignorance;)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

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16229 posts in 3642 days

#2 posted 12-07-2011 09:31 PM

I guess you mean a fence on which you would clamp a wavy-edged board to straighten it?

It seems to me that having it ride against the fence would be just as stable, and would be easier to adjust to the width of the board.

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

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Rick Dennington

5109 posts in 2618 days

#3 posted 12-07-2011 09:35 PM


-- At my age, an "all--nighter" is not having to get up and pee...!!!

View Gary's profile


8965 posts in 2857 days

#4 posted 12-07-2011 09:42 PM

I agree…if you have a good fence, it should be stable enough
Welcome to the site

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

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1878 posts in 2985 days

#5 posted 12-07-2011 11:38 PM

“(((?))).................!!!!” LOL, Rick

-- Joe

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KTMM (Krunkthemadman)

1051 posts in 2617 days

#6 posted 12-08-2011 05:57 AM

Ok, you are referring to a sled that would let you true up a slab of wood with two raw, unjoined sides? I f so you can screw a 1×4 to the top face of yourthe raw boardside and let that ride against the fence. Make your cut, remove the 1×4 and cut the leftover raw side.

-- Practice does not make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect. Vince Lombardi

View William's profile


9906 posts in 2266 days

#7 posted 12-08-2011 02:07 PM

For what you are talking about, I use this. When put together it is an eight foot long cutting cuide/straight edge. I keep it waxed good so it slides on my table saw top easily. Put one edge against the table saw fence. Put my wood against the other edge. Slide them both together through the cut. Remove cutting guide. Flip board and cut the other side. Both sides are now straight and parrellel.
I bought this a long time ago when all I had was a circular saw. Since getting a table saw though, I have also found a hundred and one other uses for having such a long straight edge around the shop. This is one of them since I often use reclaimed lumber that may not have a straight side to put against the fence to get started with. If it’s a particularly heavy or long piece that can sometimes be hard to handle on the table saw with the straight edge, you can also clamp this to it and use it as a guide, like it was originally meant for, and cut your first edge with a circular saw before moving to the table saw.


View Bertha's profile


12989 posts in 2117 days

#8 posted 12-08-2011 02:59 PM

I’m guessing he doesn’t have a jointer. William, I’ve used something similar to true up boards I was too lazy to pass over the jointer 100 times. I’ve been considering one that doubles as a taper jig. Hmmm.

John, I hope at least some of this answers your question. Could you clarify if the boards are crooked or cupped? Do you have a jointer? Do you trust your fence?

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Grandpa's profile


3256 posts in 2099 days

#9 posted 12-08-2011 06:45 PM

I received an ad from Rockler via internet today. It has a taper/rip jig on sale. Look it over and make something like it if you want….or buy one. It tracks in the miter groove on the saw table I think. Looks that way at a quick glance. One that rides against the fence might be more versatile.

View jmos's profile


716 posts in 1793 days

#10 posted 12-08-2011 07:40 PM

I have a sled from Rockler that is both a taper jig and straight line rip jig; might be the same one Grandpa is referring to. It works pretty well. You pretty much have to take the miter bar runner off for ripping and use it against the fence or it would have no capacity.

Another trick I saw was taking another board that already has a straight edge and stick it to the top of the board you want to straighten using double stick tape. Run that against the fence and straighten your work piece.

I think using the fence gives you a lot more flexibility than trying to use the miter slot.

-- John

View TheDane's profile


4939 posts in 3087 days

#11 posted 12-08-2011 07:46 PM

mycrew143—Take a look at the taper jig Charles Neil designed … the plan is here:

It is very similar to the one Grandpa mentioned/


-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

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