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Forum topic by RussellAP posted 10-28-2012 08:50 PM 1064 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3059 posts in 1708 days

10-28-2012 08:50 PM

I don’t have opportunity to watch a lot of other WW. Most of the people I see are pro’s. Here lately I’ve been watching some Youtube vids of ordinary guys like me and one of the things I’m seeing a lot of is bad sawing habits.
One of the most common things I see folks doing when cutting on a TS is they jam the wood into the blade and push till the saw dogs before letting up and letting the saw do the work.

I wonder and I put this to you LJ’s out there. How many tolerance problems between fence and blade do people cause by forcing the wood through the tool instead of letting the blade do the work? Same for BS issues.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

11 replies so far

View nwbusa's profile


1017 posts in 1708 days

#1 posted 10-28-2012 11:28 PM

It’s a good point Russell. Forcing a cut is never a good idea. I get really nervous when the resistance gets too hard, and will always stop the cut and resolve the problem before continuing.

-- John, BC, Canada

View huff's profile


2828 posts in 2707 days

#2 posted 10-29-2012 12:29 AM


If a woodworking is “jamming” wood into the blade and just keeps pushing until the saw bogs down, then It’s obvious they have no knowledge or “feel” for feed rate. I would probably guess they have but one blade for that saw and have no idea that different blades are used for different cuts. Depending on the saw and fence, there could be a lot of compromise on accuarcy of a cut. There is nothing good about forcing a cut; whether it’s the wear and tear on the equipment, accuarcy of cut, and of course the safety factor.

I’ve been talking primarily about a table saw and when it comes to a band saw, the feed rate is even more important. Nothing will twist,bow or make a blade wonder then trying to force a cut too fast on a band saw or pushing at a slight angle when feeding the wood into the blade.

Some woodworkers have never been taught about proper feed rate. Table saw, band saw, router, shaper, jointer, drill press, just to mention a few. Some woodworkers have been taught, but never acquired the “feel” for it. Some will not realize there is a problem until the saw stops or something worse.

-- John @

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Jim Finn

2390 posts in 2344 days

#3 posted 10-29-2012 12:41 AM

I have found that when I am resawing (cedar mostly) on my band saw that if I maintain a constant pressure as feeding the wood, that the feed rate will slow when it comes to knots and speed up as I cut into sapwood. The feed rate varies a lot but my pushing pressure I keep constant and this technique seems to avoid crooked cuts. I use a resaw fence and woodslicer blades on this GO555 Saw.

-- "You may have your PHD but I have my GED and my DD 214"

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


17577 posts in 3098 days

#4 posted 10-29-2012 01:49 AM

Sounds like they are asking for more trouble than getting the tool out of tolerance!

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Grandpa's profile


3256 posts in 2097 days

#5 posted 10-29-2012 02:08 AM

Since you asked for opinions and opinions are like belly buttons, I say that you should work as a team with the tools. Don’t go too fast and don’t go too slow and let the tool help dictate that speed. Thanks for letting us render an opinion.

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13524 posts in 2763 days

#6 posted 10-29-2012 02:29 AM

i always teach to listen to the tools

they groan
and purr

when they are feeling good (the tools)
things are smooth
and steady
many newbies don’t know about things like fences to tight
or routers tipping
or miter saws grabbing into a board
and jamming up

let the tools do the work
but control them

and listen

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

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2387 posts in 2969 days

#7 posted 10-29-2012 03:32 AM

it seems this issue you speak of should be common sense for anyone with an aptitude for good woodworking. i do believe what might be a greater oversight by many of us woodworkers is using blades too long between sharpenings.

-- .

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2136 posts in 2531 days

#8 posted 10-29-2012 05:06 AM

I would say this phenonemon is a result of two trains of thought that seem to dominate our current society.

The first deals with sharpness.

Before I was born, people were very adept and comfortable with cutting tools. People sharpened axes, knives, chisels, scissors, etc. As hand tool use became less common, this mentality kind of went by the wayside. I was brought up in the grade school system where scissors were handed out dull so that we didn’t cut ourselves and junior toolkits consisted of a hammer that couldn’t strike and a saw that couldn’t cut. Since then, I bought kitchen knives that were dull, scissors that were impossible, can openers that could barely make a dent, chisels that couldn’t slice…you get the general idea. Think of the blades that come with your typical power tool and the usual newbie complaint that these tools are crap when it simply boils down to a worthless blade. Most over the counter items in your general store are not designed to be used right out of the box, yet that is how they are advertised.

Combine that with our love for demonstrating power.

Ever see a pool player that would probably be a good one if he/she didn’t think a good break only happens if the cue ball is embedded in the wall on the other side of the bar?

Or a bowler who isn’t satisfied with just rolling the ball but wants to nail the pins with an overhand throw?

Many times people will sacrifice precision for power, that feeling of making something bend to the will. Combine that with decades of cutting tools that don’t…well…cut… and you get what you see on youtube.

My belief anyway.


-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View MrRon's profile


3892 posts in 2665 days

#9 posted 10-29-2012 05:42 PM

This was a topic I mentioned in my blog on table saws. I see people doing this all the time and I can’t understand why.

View oluf's profile


260 posts in 2461 days

#10 posted 10-29-2012 07:32 PM

I can not speak for other woodworking sites, but I don’t think I have missed more than a few of the videos from the members of this LJ site. I do not recall having any examples in any of those videos of woodworkers abusing or forcing their equipment. I do know that I do not like to have burned edges on my saw cuts. I also do not want to overheat the cutting edges of my saw blades. To prevent these conditions you must feed the stock at the fastest rate that the blade is cutting clean and smooth. Cutting at a slower rate has no benefit and can cause heat problems. Each of us has his/her own perception of speed. It is very common on this site to read statements about peoples fear of table saws. If you have a fear of the saw you might have a tendency to opt for a slow feed rate. For you that may well be the most prudent approach. It might also make you inclined to think that someone else’s feed rate was too fast. The only person that can truly tell if the feed rate is correct is the person doing the operation and engaging all of his/her senses. I think this is a good and important topic. I think that it should be directed from a more positive note of how to do the operation correctly. Not on the negative note of how bad someone else may be doing things wrong.

-- 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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Bill White

4408 posts in 3382 days

#11 posted 10-29-2012 08:29 PM

I’ll go back to my new name as the “oopserator”.
Ignorance can be corrected. Stupid is forever.


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