LumberJocks

Milling down to small dimensions - such as for miter slot?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Wood & Lumber forum

Forum topic by MikeDVB posted 03-22-2015 04:44 AM 1053 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View MikeDVB's profile

MikeDVB

115 posts in 643 days


03-22-2015 04:44 AM

Hey guys!

I understand the larger operations such as ripping a board or crosscutting, etc.

What I am having a hard time wrapping my head around is safely milling a piece of wood down to fit a miter slot [3/4×3/8].

Say I have a piece of 1×3 OAK that is 4ft long – I’m not 100% sure how I should go about milling down to that size. I do have a jointer and planer but I don’t think working down to stock that small would be a good idea on those machines?

I am sure this seems like a simple task for an experienced woodworker but it occurred to me that I wasn’t sure how to work safely with such small pieces of stock.

-- Mike


12 replies so far

View barada83's profile

barada83

76 posts in 647 days


#1 posted 03-22-2015 05:01 AM

I would plane the board to 3/4 so that the whole board fits in the miter track. Then, rip it to width. I would aim for slightly under the height (you can mark it while it’s in the track). That is unless you have a hand plane to plane down your strip to exact height.

-- Mike

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5764 posts in 947 days


#2 posted 03-22-2015 05:39 AM

What he said.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5764 posts in 947 days


#3 posted 03-22-2015 05:40 AM

Watch william ng’s 5 cuts to perfect sled (YouTube)and see how he does it. I do it the same way. Hard to go wrong.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View ElChe's profile

ElChe

630 posts in 797 days


#4 posted 03-22-2015 05:47 AM

The problem I have with milling thin long parts on a tàble saw is that unless I use straight grained wood the darned things dont come out straight. The wood releases tension and I end up with bowed sticks. For spindles I use my bandsaw and cut the stock proud and then flatten with either a plane or a drum sander.

-- Tom - Measure twice cut once. Then measure again. Curse. Fudge.

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2408 posts in 2383 days


#5 posted 03-22-2015 12:14 PM



I would plane the board to 3/4 so that the whole board fits in the miter track. Then, rip it to width. I would aim for slightly under the height (you can mark it while it s in the track). That is unless you have a hand plane to plane down your strip to exact height.

- barada83


This is what I have done when making sliding jigs (sleds) and then wax it to slide easily.

-- "You may have your PHD but I have my GED and my DD 214"

View Mark Davisson's profile

Mark Davisson

597 posts in 2778 days


#6 posted 03-22-2015 03:15 PM

What they all said.

-- I'm selfless because it feels so good!

View MikeDVB's profile

MikeDVB

115 posts in 643 days


#7 posted 03-22-2015 06:25 PM

I do have a planer as well as a low angle jack plane and a jointer plane but I am new to all of this so I wasn’t sure the best way to approach it.

I’m wanting to get a little more comfortable with the process of hand planing before I rely on it but ultimately I imagine I’ll be using my planes quite a bit.

Thank you everybody.

-- Mike

View daddywoofdawg's profile

daddywoofdawg

1010 posts in 1036 days


#8 posted 03-22-2015 08:14 PM

If you have a 3/4” deep slot mill it to less than that say 5/8 you don’t want the bottom to drag in the bottom of the slot.then place a couple small thin washers in the slot and place the stick on top,glue you let’s say sled on the stick/sticks,place some weight on top over the slot/stick area and let dry overnight, then very carefully remove and add screws.doing it that way you know the runners and slots will line up.then remove the washers from the slots;the washers keep the runners spaced so the runners won’t drag in the bottom of the slots.

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2190 posts in 941 days


#9 posted 03-23-2015 11:11 AM

Start by planing down to miter slot width but don’t try to get it right off the machine do that by hand
AFTER you’ve ripped them to height.

You can cut several out of this piece of wood and save for future jigs.

You must use a push block and featherboard when dealing with narrow cuts like this.
You could also use a featherboard hold down if desired.
Be sure to keep blade just above board.

Joint each strip to width with a handplane

If its bent no big deal just bend it back when attaching.
You will fine tune it after its attached.

Used plane blade makes a great scraper for fine tuning after mounting (look for dark rub marks).

Quarter sawn wood is the most stable for this.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

4208 posts in 1660 days


#10 posted 03-23-2015 11:22 AM

You must use a push block and featherboard when dealing with narrow cuts like this.

Or just use a thin-rip jig, which is a bit safer IMHO.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View OggieOglethorpe's profile

OggieOglethorpe

1211 posts in 1571 days


#11 posted 03-23-2015 02:07 PM

Remember…

The thickness of a miter bar rarely needs to be precise. Look closely at your slots…

First of all, you’ll notice the sides don’t go all the way to the bottom. Once you’re more than about 1/4” deep, there’s nothing for the sides to ride against, so there’s no need to be that deep.

Next, note that the bottom is rarely smooth or free of debris. This means that bars that ride on the floor of the slot may not slide as well as you’d like. Reread the first point, now decide if you really need bars of an exact thickness.

Also, if the jig rides on on the slot floors, it means the jig floor is not riding on the table surface. In some cases, this can introduce flex, in cases of single runners, the floor can rock.

That said, my favorite shop-made miter bars of all time are 1/4” birch ply, cut so the surface plies are along the long dimension, and the end grain is across the short way. Plywood is incredibly dimensionally stable, the end grain you’re riding against is as hard as it gets, the end grain holds wax and burnishes to an incredibly smooth surface, and the material is often scrap.

View MikeDVB's profile

MikeDVB

115 posts in 643 days


#12 posted 03-24-2015 12:06 AM

1/4” Birch Ply sounds like a good idea.

The ‘thin rip’ jig looks interesting but I couldn’t really tell from the close-up pictures how it works so I’m going to have to google it a bit.

-- Mike

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

HomeRefurbers.com