Ripping 2X4

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Forum topic by harris13 posted 02-18-2012 10:50 PM 4824 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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02-18-2012 10:50 PM

Does anyone know of a table saw that will rip a 2×4 in half in one pass. My saw takes a 10 inch blade and will only elevate to 3 inches which is not high enough. I don’t mind making two passes but it sure would be nice if I could make one pass and be done. Comments/Recommendations please.

-- Harris, North Carolina

20 replies so far

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Mickey Cassiba

312 posts in 3228 days

#1 posted 02-18-2012 10:59 PM

Delta RT 40 will do it…used one going for three grand.
Not mine, nor do I know the seller.

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760 posts in 3616 days

#2 posted 02-18-2012 11:11 PM

why not use a bandsaw? it will be safer and has less waste.

-- The secret to getting ahead is getting started.

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5688 posts in 3505 days

#3 posted 02-18-2012 11:14 PM

How about ripping it half way through and then flipping it over and ripping from the bottom side? That is what I do since my table saw only cuts a max of 3” also. It is less strain also when only ripping half the thickness at one pass.

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488 posts in 3391 days

#4 posted 02-18-2012 11:20 PM

Don’t know about where you live but Lowe’s near me (Charlotte, NC) has 2×4’s that have been ripped that way.

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2790 posts in 2493 days

#5 posted 02-19-2012 12:25 AM

I would just buy six quarter wood. Or rip the board twice as stated.

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10477 posts in 3844 days

#6 posted 02-19-2012 12:31 AM

Any 12” table saw should do it. I haven’t checked
any of the 12” saws I’ve owned (4) for maximum cut
depth but I think they were probably 4 3/8” at minimum.

Sometimes the throat plate or the stabilizer washers
get in the way of a deep cut on a table saw. If you
take off the washers on your 10” saw you may be able
to get a deeper cut. The blade will flutter more and
make a rougher cut. This is unorthodox and totally
not the sort of thing that is considered appropriate
use by manufacturers of saws, but it works and if
the blade can spin freely by hand with a smaller OD
washer pair swapped for the factory ones and the
arbor nut tight you can make the cut.

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125 posts in 2595 days

#7 posted 02-19-2012 12:35 AM

my makita 10” portable will but its not fun

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11822 posts in 3884 days

#8 posted 02-19-2012 05:55 AM

Band saw…quick , easy , safer : )

Have you checked with your local lumber yard for 4” furring strips yet ?
What are you building that you need < 3/4” thick SPF for ?

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

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980 posts in 3247 days

#9 posted 02-19-2012 06:01 AM

Amen to bandsaws.


-- Steve in KY. 44 years so far with my lovely bride. Think I'll keep her.

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16 posts in 2500 days

#10 posted 02-19-2012 02:38 PM

Hello everyone. Thanks for all the great coments and recommendations.

-- Harris, North Carolina

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3379 posts in 3281 days

#11 posted 02-19-2012 04:27 PM

My old Ryobi tablesaw does it without much trouble. Shopsmith says their new saw will do it, I know the
older ones will not. Both the Shopsmith bandsaw and my big bandsaw will do it, and if I do not like the
rough finish, their kerf is smaller than the table saw and I can smooth them out on my jointer and still have
plenty of thickness.

-- As ever, Gus-the 79 yr young apprentice carpenter

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4385 posts in 3931 days

#12 posted 02-19-2012 04:30 PM

Why not just buy furring strips? (sometimes called strapping)

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View SignWave's profile


451 posts in 3231 days

#13 posted 02-19-2012 05:02 PM

That’s a big cut for a single pass. I rip 2×4’s and 2×6’s on my TS from time to time, but I do it in several passes to relieve the stress that may cause the kerf to close up otherwise. Even if you had a 12” blade for height, that’s a pretty far distance front to back to have to deal with, making the odds that binding will be a problem even greater than with a 10” blade. A bandsaw is definitely on my shopping list, for this reason.

-- Barry,

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8144 posts in 3572 days

#14 posted 02-19-2012 06:26 PM

IIRC, owners of the Ryobi BT3000/BT3100/Craftsman 21829 saws claim they can crosscut a 4×4 in one pass, so theoretically, they’ll also have the height capacity to rip/resaw a 2×4. Not sure how stout it’ll be for that type of work, but it has the capacity. The 21829 is the only one of those saws currently still sold new….~ $450 on sale.

Cutting it in two passes, or using a BS would seem a simpler solution.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View crank49's profile


4032 posts in 3167 days

#15 posted 02-19-2012 06:43 PM

Band saw is best, but on a table saw it is much safer to rip in two passes and leave a little strip (about 1/8”) down the middle connected.
That center strip keeps the kerf open and avoids the board wanting to draw together and bind the saw blade.
After your two passes you can snap the two pieces apart or run down the kerf with a hand saw. There will be a little ridge left that will need planing.

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