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Miter Gage on the left side or the right side of blade?

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Forum topic by Blackie_ posted 03-13-2013 01:04 PM 2213 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Blackie_

3442 posts in 1177 days


03-13-2013 01:04 PM

I’ve not really used a miter gauge that much and when I have it’s always been on the left side of the blade much less the new INCRA 1000se Miter gauge I just bought, I have a question for the more experienced tablesaw users, is there any difference or advantages, disadvantages to using the miter gauge any miter gauge for that matter on the right side of the blade rather then the left side?

Reason I ask, I will mostly be using it for 45 degree miters for box making thus it makes since to using it on the right side of the blade being the blade is angled to a 45.

Thanks

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs


19 replies so far

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15702 posts in 2883 days


#1 posted 03-13-2013 01:39 PM

I rarely use my saw with the blade tilted because I use my miter saw for 45’s, but I can see your point about using the gauge on the right if you have a left-tilt saw. I’ll be watching the responses.

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

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6942 posts in 1579 days


#2 posted 03-13-2013 01:45 PM

It would depend on the length of the piece being crosscut. I have limited shop space left of my TS, and I have an extended cast iron wing on the right side. Using the miter on the right makes sense under these circumstances.

Truth be told, I have hung up my Incra 1000HD on the wall and use my TS SuperSled for all but plywood sheeting.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3809 posts in 2328 days


#3 posted 03-13-2013 01:46 PM

With the blade tilted (I have a left-tilt saw), I move my Incra miter gauge to the right side, and attach a sacrificial fence that extends to the left through the cut. That supports the workpiece and reduces tear-out.

I make sacrificial fences out of MDF … 24” wide and 3” to 4” high. I route a 1/4” groove in the MDF, then run a T-slot cutter through it. That way, I can attach the fence to the miter gauge with T-bolts and plastic knobs.

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

View Blackie_'s profile

Blackie_

3442 posts in 1177 days


#4 posted 03-13-2013 01:48 PM

Charlie I too have a very nice miter saw, Dewalt 717, but I just feel as though I can get more accurate with the table saw.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

View Blackie_'s profile

Blackie_

3442 posts in 1177 days


#5 posted 03-13-2013 02:03 PM

Mike I agree, though I would like to have a sled, not sure it can be used for 45s, how is your super sled different then the Incra Express? As I’ve considered that as well.

Thanks Gerry, yea that is what I was thinking about doing as well, I too have only a left tilt and would rather not be cutting with blade angled to many things to worry about.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

View Greg..the Cajun  Box Sculptor's profile

Greg..the Cajun Box Sculptor

5140 posts in 1973 days


#6 posted 03-13-2013 02:20 PM

Randy…I have an Incra HD1000 and I always use it on the right side of the blade when I cut miters for my boxes. With the built in stop it is extremely accurate and repeatable. The HD1000 gets used exclusively for miters on the right side of the blade and never gets used on the left side. I check it weekly to make sure it hass not gone out of adjustment…and it always seems to stay dead on accurate. It is also important to make sure your stock is perfectly square before cutting the miters… I demand tight fits for my miters and this setup has easily and consistently produced the results I want. When I combine the setup with using the Wixey angle gague for the blade it becomes easy to setup quickly, easily and most important accurately.

I also take my blade off the saw frequently and clean off any resin that has accumulated. Every small step makes a difference and i always go the extra effort to do it right.

-- If retiring is having the time to be able to do what you enjoy then I have always been retired.

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6942 posts in 1579 days


#7 posted 03-13-2013 02:21 PM

Backie, I found the Incra miter to flex on longer and thicker 8/4 pieces being crosscut (>2ft or so). It was only about 1 degree or so, but that put the accuracy back to where my 12in mitersaw is.

As far as the sled, it might be best to build a special purpose sled for 45-degree work. On the other hand, what about building a sled for 90-degrees and then use a jig/wedge to hold the piece at 45-degree compound angles?

Check this thread out on another site for ideas:
http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f5/45-degree-miter-joints-table-saw-sled-struggling-28594/

Notice the miter slot that keeps this square.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15702 posts in 2883 days


#8 posted 03-13-2013 02:33 PM

I like that jig, Mike. I’m going to have to copy that one.

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

View needshave's profile

needshave

150 posts in 624 days


#9 posted 03-13-2013 02:40 PM

I rarely use the miter gauge. The saw is left tilt but I rarely tilt the blade. For 45 degree cuts I either use my miter saw (which is very accurate) or the sled. I have made several sleds and I tend to make and keep them for special applications and remakes. Once set up and built, it’s set up for the next time I need it.

View Manitario's profile

Manitario

2351 posts in 1548 days


#10 posted 03-13-2013 02:51 PM

I use my Incra mitre gauge on the right side of the TS; I used to use it on the left but it just didn’t feel right. As well, using it on the right gives me the advantage of using the long TS wing on the right for support.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

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Grandpa

3154 posts in 1340 days


#11 posted 03-13-2013 03:09 PM

I was taught to always use the miter gauge on the left side of the blade. This does two things. First, most people are right handed. You push the gauge with the right hand and hold the stock snuggly in it with the left hand. If you move the gauge to the right side of the table your left elbow would be over the blade. Secondly we were always told that a table saw can and will throw things at a high rate of speed toward the rear of the blade. This moves your heart out of the path of the projectile. Don’t want any giant splinters in your heart. If you are not afraid of that then you probably should throw your safety tools away becauser you are not afraid of anything. protect your heart.

View JesseTutt's profile

JesseTutt

804 posts in 775 days


#12 posted 03-13-2013 04:05 PM

I have a sacrificial fence on my miter gauge. If I put it in the left slot I already have a cut for the blade 90 degrees. If I put it in the right slot I already have a cut for the blade at 45 degrees. This way I can cut the two most common angles without having to change the fence. Additionally, the existing cut allows me to line up the mark with the edge of where the blade will cut.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View Blackie_'s profile

Blackie_

3442 posts in 1177 days


#13 posted 03-13-2013 04:17 PM

Jesse, I like your way of doing it.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10974 posts in 1355 days


#14 posted 03-14-2013 02:35 AM

Randy, When doing miter cuts for box sides, I always put my gauge on the right side of my left tilt saw primarily for safety. The small offcut should fall below the blade where there is less chance of it getting flung back at your face. “Let’s be careful out there”

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Cosmicsniper's profile

Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1823 days


#15 posted 03-14-2013 04:05 AM

Always on the left side, regardless of the tilt, for exactly the reason Grandpa described so well. I am right handed.

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

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