Cutting a opening for sliding mechanism?

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Forum topic by Col posted 04-06-2009 10:52 PM 1075 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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6 posts in 3376 days

04-06-2009 10:52 PM

Here’s a dumb question! I am wondering what would be the best, safest, way to create an opening through the middle of a 2×4 (wide side) possibly 3/8 inch wide? Looking to create an artist easel and there will be several parts that require the ability to slide up and down to provide height and angle. Thinking one sliding area could be about 4 feet long, and the other about 3 feet long. Would it be better to use a router to cut the mortise? (for lack of a better term.) Maybe set up to cut with a jig saw? Possibly set up a dado blade and slowly lift up the blade at the begining until you have the depth you need and then cut till finished with the length needed.

Hope this isn’t too confusing? Thinking of using some kind of star knob to tighten a bolt to keep the easel shelf in place. Would love other ideas for this if there are any!!!! Various heights would be determined by the size of the canvas used.

Thanks, Kip

-- KipS

6 replies so far

View 's profile

593 posts in 3998 days

#1 posted 04-06-2009 11:27 PM

You could always use an ”azebiki” saw, they are designed to start cuts in the middle of panels without a previous hole. Of course, YMMV depending on your handsaw skills.

View boxman's profile


104 posts in 3458 days

#2 posted 04-06-2009 11:53 PM

any time i’ve had to make a dado i’ve used my router if you have the support on the out feed side & have the space i don’t see a problem but what ever you feel comfortable with or if you have the tools to do the job.

-- john, Moose Jaw, Sask,

View sIKE's profile


1271 posts in 3780 days

#3 posted 04-07-2009 12:33 AM

I would use a router with a 3/8” upcut spiral bit to make these type of cuts. I am thinking that these will be stopped dadoes and will require a plunge cut to start. You could do this either on a router table or with a plunge router.

Practice on a couple of test pieces until you get the start and stop down to your satisfaction. Trying to make a existing dado longer will result in the slot being wider than 3/8”, trust me it is painful when it is on a good piece.

-- //FC - Round Rock, TX - "Experience is what you get just after you need it"

View gbvinc's profile


628 posts in 3973 days

#4 posted 04-07-2009 12:39 AM

I would use a router as suggested above. But if you are uncomfortable with that, just drill holes in a row and clean the slot out with a chisel.

View BTKS's profile


1986 posts in 3490 days

#5 posted 04-15-2009 03:42 AM

Router with an attached guide would be my choice. The upcut spiral mentioned above will save a lot of heat and remove the debris effectively. A router table is another good choice.
Best of luck, BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

View Frankie Talarico Jr.'s profile

Frankie Talarico Jr.

353 posts in 3383 days

#6 posted 04-15-2009 05:13 AM

how about glueing up pieces, leaving a finished slot that resists wear and nice square stops on the inside. Depend on what it looks like.. I’m assuming something like 2” x 48” x 3/4”

so you have two pieces 13/16” x 3/4” x 48”

and two pieces 3/8” x 3/4” x 4” or whatever needed

and sandwich those together for a simple slot that holds, Maybe even use biscuits for strength

-- Live by what you believe, not what they want you to believe.

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