Binding When Ripping Yellow Pine

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Forum topic by DrPuk2U posted 04-16-2012 09:22 AM 2001 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View DrPuk2U's profile


56 posts in 2321 days

04-16-2012 09:22 AM

Topic tags/keywords: yellow pine ripping tablesaw binding

I bought a bunch of yellow pine to build a Holtzapffel bench. I stickered it and left it for two months. About 2/3 of the wood I can rip, but about a third of it closes up so fast I can’t finish the rip. I wrote about it in my shop blog here if you want more details and pictures.

But to be clear, the saw is a new SawStop 1.75 HP tablesaw with a Freud 24 tooth LMT72 rip blade. Everything is straight and aligned, the blade was up as high as it goes but it would bind badly. Moisture content of the wood is 7-8%. Some of the wood that ripped without problems is actually slightly wetter than the ones that do bind.

Is this just yellow pine being “bad”? I have read that it is a “reactive” wood. Any mitigation strategies? Other than time or new wood?

-- Ric, Northern Illinois, "Design thrice, measure twice, cut once... slap forehead, start over"

6 replies so far

View mstenner's profile


57 posts in 3183 days

#1 posted 04-16-2012 11:02 AM

Pull the blade back down for your safety. Use feather boards or blocks from the side and top to keep it in place… Then push like hell…. Until the end of the board is past the riving knife. Then you can wedge it.

Also,if the task permits, take thinner rips. I just dealt with the same issue ripping 11” boards in half.

Another option is to start, go until it binds, turn off the saw, pull the wood off, and start again (sawing through the same kerf). Realistically, you’re not gonna have a straight rip when it closes up anyway because the wood is bending. You can always joint or re-rip (depending on how bad it is) to clean up the edge.

I rally like SYP and feel it’s worth the hassle. Good luck.

-- -Michael

View ShipWreck's profile


557 posts in 3781 days

#2 posted 04-16-2012 11:10 AM

Yellow pine can be a real PITA some times. Even when the boards are perfectly straight, you can still have binding. Although I think it is alot safer to have the blade all the way up, but I have found that lowering it will give the wood less surface area on the blade to promote binding. It is worth a try anyways.

View jmos's profile


840 posts in 2398 days

#3 posted 04-16-2012 11:46 AM

It will happen sometimes; I had similar problems with the workbench build I just completed.

Like Micheal said, after you get past the riving knife drive in a small wedge to the kerf open. If you have a band saw, and can set up appropriate supports, you can rip on the band saw which will make this much easier and safer. I only really have problems when I’m trying to rip a board with a good bit of material on both sides of the blade. So, even if the band saw rip isn’t perfect, if you come back to the table saw to make a cleanup cut (say 1/4” or so) and it won’t bind anymore.

Another thought; I have a 1.75hp Jet and recently switched to thin kerf blades. The saw works much better, and I seem to have fewer issues with the blade binding, bogging down, and burning the wood.

Good luck!

-- John

View mstenner's profile


57 posts in 3183 days

#4 posted 04-16-2012 01:13 PM

I wanted to clarify one thing. I don’t have a strong opinion about whether blade up or down is much safer in general. In this case, i was recommending “forcing” a board through the saw… I always feel a little uncomfortable when I’m putting a lot of force on it… afraid I’ll slip or the board will suddenly shift. in that case, i prefer to have the blade down just to minimize the chance of face-planting into it.

A blade guard and saw-stop would go a long way to ease those fears.

-- -Michael

View DrPuk2U's profile


56 posts in 2321 days

#5 posted 04-16-2012 02:14 PM

Thanks guys. This is good advice. Don’t have a bandsaw (yet) so I’ll probably just try resawing it and/or sticking a wedge in the kerf. I AM a little leery of the ram-it-through approach. Sounds less than perfectly safe.

What I think I’ll do is simply work on the top – there’s enough for the top, I’m pretty sure. When I get to the legs I’ll see what I need. If I have to jump through some hoops to to get the other pieces ripped, so be it. As long as they are safe hoops.

-- Ric, Northern Illinois, "Design thrice, measure twice, cut once... slap forehead, start over"

View oluf's profile


260 posts in 3067 days

#6 posted 04-16-2012 06:37 PM

Check the post on your blog on this subject.

-- Nils, So. Central MI. Wood is honest.Take the effort to understand what it has to tell you before you try to change it.

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