|Forum topic by runswithscissors||posted 10-24-2014 01:10 AM||2054 views||4 times favorited||20 replies|
10-24-2014 01:10 AM
From time to time a question comes up concerning the sawing of thin strips on the TS. I have made a jig that simplifies the task, provides a lot of safety, and is very quick—depending, that is, on how hard it is to adjust your featherboard.
Essentially, this is like a sled, but for ripping rather than crosscutting. The “hook,” whichg pushes the stock through, is morticed into the main piece, but not glued, so that it can easily be replaced when it gets too chewed up; because as you can see, the blade cuts into the hook as you finish cutting the strip. I’m still puzzling over how to make this work better. The hook actually shouldbn’t stick out to the left as far as it does, because it runs into the featherboard. As it is, it limits how narrow the stock from which you are cutting the strips can be.
This is very easy to use. Simply move the fence over until the gap equals the thickness of the strip you want to cut. Set the featherboard just in front of the blade. You can cut identical strips as fast as you want, pausing only to remove the strips as they are cut, and to adjust the featherboard.
A couple of things could use improving: first, I would like to be able to push the strips right on through, letting them drop on the other side of the saw; I did this with the first crude prototype, but the hook has to be very long to avoid cutting it off. Second, there should be some sort of hold-down for the stock, but I’m not sure how best to mount a featherboard to do that. With the blade set low, the stock wants to rise both at beginning and end of the cut. I just hold down with a stick with my left hand, but that isn’t really satisfactory. Raising the blade higher might help. Obviously, this works much better with a riving knife, or at least a splitter. You could probably use your blade guard with it also.
To my surprise, it seems to work well to just withdraw (pull back) the jig/sled, and the newly cut strip follows along, without getting scarred up from blade contact. This may have to do with the way my fence is adjusted.
The handle appears to be mounted on the wrong side of the sled, which was not intentional, but due to a blunder on my part. But in fact, it does seem to offer some protection to the fingers that way. I also tried mounting it so it projected over the TS fence, but it seemed too wobbly in that configuration.
I’m sure that anyone who tries this can think of improvements, but as it is, it works very well, and feels really seccure and safe while using it. I’ll certainly be interested in suggestions from the LJ contingent. I’m also wondering why that featherboard has the S curve in it. I can’t think of a single worthwhile function, and it makes it awkward and annoying to adjust it.
-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened