Need To Straighten Out 12 ft. Ash

  • Advertise with us

« back to Wood & Lumber forum

Forum topic by bbc557ci posted 03-02-2013 08:51 PM 1839 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View bbc557ci's profile


595 posts in 2099 days

03-02-2013 08:51 PM

A couple of months ago I picked up some kiln dried rough cut ash, that I pan to use for interior trim here at my house. I’ts +,- 4/4 in the rough. I have allot of 10 and 12 footers fron 4 to 6 inches wide, and a few +9 inch wide pieces. Also have some 8 footers.

I need to get 1 straight edge on the pieces then I can rip them to the proper widths. No garage so I’m doing everything in my basement, so room is a bit limited, but not too bad as my makeshift shop area is about 26 feet x 19 feet. I have a ceiling mount filter, plus I can crack a window at one end of the room, and put a fan in the window at the other end, which does a pretty good job at sucking out the fine dust particles. Also have a HF 2 hp dust collector that I will be able to connect to the table saw.

My question is, what is the best way to get one edge straight on these boards? I’m working alone so only two hands here. Any suggestions/feed back would be greatly appreciated.

I’m gonna go back down to the basement and do some more head scrathing on this subject and will come back in a while.

Thanks in advance all !!

-- Bill, central where near the "big apple"

22 replies so far

View nwbusa's profile


1021 posts in 2311 days

#1 posted 03-02-2013 08:55 PM

Plenty of options here. Assuming you don’t have a jointer, I would either:

A) Use a router with a straight-edge guide
B) Secure the ash boards to a table saw ripping sled
C) Use a #7 or #8 hand plane

-- John, BC, Canada

View crippledcarpenter's profile


26 posts in 2472 days

#2 posted 03-02-2013 11:29 PM

the answer to the question realy depends on what tools you have. of course a jointer is the best solution. if you have a router table you can use that as a edge jointer with the correct set up. clamp a straight edge to the board and use a router with a pattern bit is a good option as well. or hand planes work well too.

-- haste makes firewood.

View Tennessee's profile


2873 posts in 2539 days

#3 posted 03-02-2013 11:35 PM

Assuming you have basic power tools here.
I’d use the router with an edge bit, with a straight edge clamped to the boards so you can get a position on the bearing and let the cutter portion do the work. If you’ve a table saw, you might be able to get a straight edge just kind of edging it through the blade, but it seems like the other side would not let you run true, so that is out.

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

View nwbusa's profile


1021 posts in 2311 days

#4 posted 03-03-2013 12:00 AM

Router table might be kind of tough with a 12’ board… I guess it depends on how big the router table is. Or you could use some auxiliary infeed/outfeed supports.

To rip a straight line edge using your table saw, clamp or otherwise secure the ash board to a board (sled) with a known straight edge (plywood or MDF works well), and run the edge of the straight board against the fence. Make sure the board you’re ripping extends slightly past the edge of the sled on the blade side, and rip away. You might need to gang up the sled platform to make it long enough for 12’ boards.

-- John, BC, Canada

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3602 days

#5 posted 03-03-2013 12:13 AM

A jig like this works well

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View paratrooper34's profile


915 posts in 2977 days

#6 posted 03-03-2013 12:26 AM

bbc557ci, you don’t say what tools you have. If you have a table saw, the jig that Jim shows above will work nicely. If you have a bandsaw, you could do this: Snap a chalk line for a straight line and rip it on the bandsaw. Then use a jointer or jointer plane to get your edge straight. Done.

Good Luck.

-- Mike

View REO's profile


928 posts in 2099 days

#7 posted 03-03-2013 12:27 AM

clamp a long strraight board to the table or fence and ru n it through with the convex side to the fence. it may take a couple passes depending on your curve. no need for holding it to another peice. if you dont have any help you can clamp suppports to the main board so that it doesent drop past the guiding surface.

View bbc557ci's profile


595 posts in 2099 days

#8 posted 03-03-2013 12:51 AM

Wow!! Thanks for all the feed back!!

For table saws I have an old 10” Atlas, an old 10” Craftsman, and a 10” Makita. I’ve been rejuvenating the Atlas and Craftsman TS’s. Think they are both useable, but haven’t put them to the test yet. The Makita was my job saw back in the day, when I had my small construction biz. It’s a light weight but ok in a pinch. I have a 6” Powermatic jointer that I bought in the early 90s, and a couple of older but very serviceable PC routers. So I’m ok with power tools :o)

I’ve moved twice in the past 3 years so I’m not well organized at all. I’ve been out of woodworking for about 15 years and obviously need to buckle down and make up some infeed/outfeed tables, and get my shop space organized!!

All that aside (sorry for all the history), I rigged up a 12 foot guide for my circular saw. Seems to do the job ok, but there is room for improvement, just allot of fussing around going from board to board. I really like the idea of the sliding rip jig a1Jim put up!! And I should be able to use/convert what I made up for the circular saw, and use it on the TS. Also like the idea of using the router. I got to digging through some of my stuff and located a couple of 1/2 in. carbide spiral bits. They’re up cuts, but they should work just fine with decent eye/face protection.

Thanks again for the suggestions, they were a big help and I really appreciate it. They helped get me back into the wood mode :o)

-- Bill, central where near the "big apple"

View RogerInColorado's profile


321 posts in 1979 days

#9 posted 03-03-2013 05:09 AM

I absolutely agree with a1Jim’s jig. It will help keep the board stable while you run it across the saw. I also think that for something this big and cumbersome, and since you don’t have someone to help you keep it under control, that it is the safest solution.

View NGK's profile


93 posts in 1936 days

#10 posted 03-03-2013 05:18 AM

Simply snap a chalk-line near one edge and rip on the line free-handed with no fence. Then us that “nearly straight” side of the board against the fence. It may take 3 or 4 passes to get nearly perfect edges.

Another trick I use is to clamp a 6- or 8-foot level to my fence, thereby lengthening the fence.

View AlaskaGuy's profile


4205 posts in 2334 days

#11 posted 03-03-2013 05:32 AM

Honey! I need to buy a new track saw.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View nwbusa's profile


1021 posts in 2311 days

#12 posted 03-03-2013 05:34 AM

Simply snap a chalk-line near one edge and rip on the line free-handed with no fence.

That’s asking for a kickback in my opinion.

-- John, BC, Canada

View Quanter50's profile


278 posts in 2321 days

#13 posted 03-03-2013 06:29 AM

I made all the trim in my house from rough cut white oak, then planed it and shaped it of course. Same thing you are dealing with. I put the boards on 2 sawhorses, snapped a straight line with a chalk line, and then used a long steel/aluminum “straight edge” to run my Porter Cable 146-A down. Perfect results! I straightened out a lot of boards this way.

View bbc557ci's profile


595 posts in 2099 days

#14 posted 03-03-2013 05:07 PM

Been pondering this a bit more and have decided I need to take the ime to rig up decent if-feed and out-feed tables. And pick up a few clamps similar to those seen in the photos that a1Jim posted. Because I’m doing so much cutting in the basement I’d like to use the TS as dust control will/should be better than if I use a circular saw.

Thanks again everyone for the responses… they helped get my mojo go’n lol

-- Bill, central where near the "big apple"

View RedShirt013's profile


219 posts in 3687 days

#15 posted 03-03-2013 05:33 PM

I like Jim’s jig, good for a router and a table saw.

I think REO meant concave in his advice?

And NGK you must be very brave (and skilled) to rip a 14’ board freehand on a TS. I would only dare try that with a bandsaw, skil saw or jigsaw.

-- Ed

showing 1 through 15 of 22 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics