What are you doing for a throat plate when using dado blades?

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Forum topic by danoaz posted 11-24-2013 02:57 PM 10071 views 1 time favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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222 posts in 2166 days

11-24-2013 02:57 PM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw throat plates dado blades

Novice here and I just bought my first set of dado blades for my Ridgid R4512 TS. Guess what my problem is? I have Ron Lee’s info about making zero clearance throat plates, but what are most of you folks doing for when you put in dado blades with all the different sizes that come with it?

Ok, maybe I didn’t make it clear – My Dado Blades don’t work with the throat plate that came with the saw. I need a throat plate for when I use the Dado Blades and just wondered if you guys make your own or what?

-- "Simplicity and repose are the qualities that measure the true value of any work of art." Frank LLoyd Wright

23 replies so far

View JustJoe's profile


1554 posts in 2035 days

#1 posted 11-24-2013 03:06 PM

I’ve been using the metal plate that came with my TS. I don’t have any tearout with my dado set (Freud) so I haven’t seen any need to make a zero clearance insert for it.

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222 posts in 2166 days

#2 posted 11-24-2013 03:11 PM

@JustJoe – Then you must have a really wide opening in your throat plate to accept the dado blades. My throat plate can’t handle that wide of a blade setup.

-- "Simplicity and repose are the qualities that measure the true value of any work of art." Frank LLoyd Wright

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304 posts in 3800 days

#3 posted 11-24-2013 03:19 PM

I just made a batch of 10 blanks, and as it turns out I have yet to use 7. My dado set (also Freud) has a lot more sizes possible than I have ever had occasion to use.

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330 posts in 3040 days

#4 posted 11-24-2013 03:20 PM

At one point in time you’re going to make a zero clearance insert. I’d say do it sooner than later. And while you’re at it make 4 or 5 or … and dedicate one for the dado set. If you feel like, look under my projects and see my approach to making a ZCI. There are tons of other ideas.

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1554 posts in 2035 days

#5 posted 11-24-2013 03:27 PM

Yes, my TS came with two throat plates – one for a regular blade and one for a dado blade.

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1615 posts in 3458 days

#6 posted 11-24-2013 03:58 PM

When I was using my table saw for dadoes I had one for every width I was using. I had a bunch of blanks that I made from 1/2” ply and when I set up a new dado I would cut a new insert. I would write the width on the back along with the set up. It would also include the number of spacers and shims included so there was no question as to what to use. I also had a small strip of plywood with numerous dado cuts on it, kinda like a story stick for dadoes. I no longer use the table saw for dado head, I went back to the radial arm for most cuts. If I cannot use the radial arm, its router and straight edge.

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their

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734 posts in 2480 days

#7 posted 11-24-2013 04:08 PM

I make dados quite often and have not seen the need for a ZC plate. I do make them for certain blades but for dados I use a plate with a 13/16” opening and have no problem with chipping.

-- I,ve had amnesia for as long as I can remember. Vernon

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23 posts in 1645 days

#8 posted 11-24-2013 09:23 PM

SOP is to make your own out of some scrap ply or MDF. It takes about two minutes with the factory plate as a guide for a flush cut bit in your router or router table.

I got talked into a fancy ZC plate for my saw when I bought it, but then realized it is just fine to make a pile out of MDF and a lot cheaper. Nothing magic about them. I have about three for for dados and one a bit wider for off-angle cuts. Then some set for ZC for different blade thickness. I really need to add riving knives to one. ( Rigid has that stupid rear mount knife and guard that is so inconvenient, I use neither which is not good. )

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18162 posts in 1853 days

#9 posted 11-25-2013 12:41 AM

My saw came with a normal plate and a dado plate. I assumed that all saws(most) came with two plates. There is probably one available for your saw.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

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Jim Finn

2656 posts in 2918 days

#10 posted 11-25-2013 02:13 PM

I made my own of MDF.

-- Website is No PHD just a DD214 and a GED

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Steve Peterson

376 posts in 3078 days

#11 posted 11-25-2013 04:20 PM

My saw also came with 2 plates. I have also made ZC inserts using laminate flooring. I had some leftover pieces that were 3/8 thick. It is a lot like pre-finished Baltic birch plywood with a really tough top surface. I used the old insert as a template, drilled 5 holes for adjusting screws, and glued on a tongue at the far end. I made 5 or 6 of them when I was cutting them, but am still using the first one.

Also, I switch to the dado insert when using the tenoning jig. This lets the last piece drop into the saw instead of becoming a 1/8” by 1” by 1” projectile.

-- Steve

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7885 posts in 2146 days

#12 posted 11-25-2013 04:30 PM

I made about 5 of them out of 1/4” ply for my 113.x craftsman saw. Pretty simple to do. Zero clearance for normal blade, 1/4”, 1/2”, 3/8”, and I have a spare one that hasn’t been cut into yet.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View Dwain's profile


524 posts in 3855 days

#13 posted 11-25-2013 04:45 PM

As with Steve and Joe, my table saw came with a standard throat plate and a wider one for dados. It seems the advice goes as follows:

1) Make a bunch of blanks with 1/2 inch MDF or ply.

2) Use inserts on your most commonly sized dadoes. There isn’t much use in cutting 10 blanks just to have the inserts. Find out what you use the most and make inserts of them. Don’t forget to mark the size, and the shims and blades used in the dado set on the under side of the throat plate.

I marked each blade of my dado set with a letter so that I can have an “equation” for specific widths. For example: A+B+C = 3/4 inch dado, or A+B+2 shims = 1/2 inch dado. It’s a little OCD, but it works well for me. By the way, I marked my blades in the dado set with a sharpee marker.

Good luck.

-- When you earnestly believe you can compensate for a lack of skill by doubling your efforts, there is no end to what you CAN'T do

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156 posts in 1679 days

#14 posted 11-25-2013 05:44 PM

Like everyone else, I make my own out of MDF. I mark them for the width once used. Standard 1/2”, 3/4”, 1” etc. I have about 5 or 6. Insert the closest one for the off sized Dadoes.

-- Still got all my Fingers!!!

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5657 posts in 2809 days

#15 posted 11-25-2013 07:14 PM

Custom made red laminate over mdf. I made a dozen of them years ago, and they are still going strong. The dado size I use most often is 3/4”. With a sacrificial fence you can cut just about any size tenon with a 3/4” dado stack.
The ZCI’s have threaded inserts and set screws for height adjustment.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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