Extreme(?) crosscut dadoes

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Alright, I'm scared. I'm getting ready to cut the dadoes into the sides of a corner cabinet. These are essentially crosscuts as far as 48 inches from the referencing edge, which would be up against the fence. !/4 inch deep. The panels are about 23 inches across. Beyond just "listening to that little voice" that says to be careful, I'd thought I would ask the group about their ideas in regards to possible kickback, as the fence is so far away, and their personal bests in similar endeavors.... Tom
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Would a handheld router with an clamp-on guide make you feel more comfortable? If something feels wrong, or even a little uncomfortable, I always try to find a different way to get the job done. The router might take a little longer, but you could get a 23/32" plywood bit, which should take off 1/4" deep with no problem, and a clamp guide something like this: http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page 448 Keep on thinking before you cut, Andy
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-------------------------

Personally, the router is one of my least-liked tools and the table saw one of my favorites, but in this case I would cut the dadoes with a router and straight edge guide.
--
Make it as simple as possible, but no simpler.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar. org
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Larry W wrote:

Add me to the choir, unless I was doing enough to justify building a new sled. I prefer dadoing on the TS, but big stuff usually gets done with the router.
To the OP: Keep in mind that dados don't kick back the same way as through cuts. It'll ruin the work, but it'll usually not develop the same sorts of forces as a trapped and lifted board.
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That's probably a large part of my fear, these "hundred-dollar-plus" sheets of cherry ply. I've been known to justify certain things for certain costs, and just these couple of cuts might justify a new big dado sled, even if only for the 3-4 cuts so far from the fence. Thank you for your input. Tom
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tom wrote:

In hear ya'!
Don't forget that the sled doesn't need to be super wide, only deep enough for the parts. None of my sleds are wider than the cast iron top of my General 650, but I use counterweights and clamped blocks to stabilize the work and the sled.
With proper counterweights, I can dado six inches from the end of a 7'-8'long, 16" wide bookcase side without supporting the end that hangs off! This eliminates lots of issues with the moving work hitting or hanging up on supports. If the sled fits the miter slots well and the saw / sled contact points are waxed, the whole thing moves like a high-end sliding table.
My favorite counterweights are full one gallon finish cans and 10 lb. chromed (not black painted) gym weight plates. The chromed plates have smooth faces, don't leave black marks on the work, and are relatively inexpensive in big-box sporting goods stores, like Sports Authority or Dick's. The weight plates have all kinds of shop uses, but I normally keep 40-50 lbs. near the table saw. You can lay the plates right on the back of the work, making a really stable setup.
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tom wrote: > Alright, I'm scared. I'm getting ready to cut the dadoes into the > sides of a corner cabinet. <snip>
As others have suggested, a router, but with two (2) straight edges, one on either side of the dado.
That way, the router is trapped with no chance of a run away cut.
If these are 3/4" W dadoes, I'd use a 1/2" bit and cut both directions.
Have fun.
Lew
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They'd better be dead parallel.

There's no danger of a runaway cut if you put the guide on the correct side of the router, and keep the router pressed against it. Easier to do that, IMO, than to ensure that two guides are parallel to each other.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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: Alright, I'm scared. I'm getting ready to cut the dadoes into the : sides of a corner cabinet. These are essentially crosscuts as far as : 48 inches from the referencing edge, which would be up against the : fence.
I thought that using the fence for a cross-cut was a no-no - too much chance of the wood binding between the fence and the blade. I'd use a router, but if I used a table saw I'd use a sled or at least a miter gage.
I've heard that if you want to use the fence on a cross-cut so that you can make multiple cuts of the same length, then you attach a stop block to the fence before the blade, use that to position and clamp the stock to the sled (or miter gage), and make sure that the stock clears the stop-block before it contacts the blade.
Do I have this wrong?
--- Chip
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On Fri, 25 May 2007 04:21:01 +0000 (UTC), "Chip Buchholtz"

No, you don't have it wrong. A very useful tablesaw accessory is a 1" block used for that very purpose. Set the fence up for the needed dimension + 1", then make the cuts referenced to the stop block. No binding, no kickbacks, very repeatable.
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Tom Veatch wrote:
> No, you don't have it wrong. A very useful tablesaw accessory is a 1" > block used for that very purpose.
Guess that is one of the reasons why the UniFence was invented, no stop block needed.
Lew
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Chip Buchholtz wrote:

No you don't .....but the original guy said he was cutting a 1/4 inch dado.....nothing is loose for a kickback, no single blade to bind or kerf to close........with even downward pressure on the wood, a solid fence or layout for material control and hands always clear of the blade you can't see, it is not a very dangerous cut or definitely safer than any cut when the blade is exposed..... For a dado I'd still rather use a router although for 12 inch or so quickies I'd use my RAS and for long grooves the tablesaw...as always there are lots of ways to get to the same place......Rod
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Chip Buchholtz wrote:

This is for through cuts only.
Remember, you're always crosscutting something in plywood. <G>
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Simply don't do it, then. Use a router.

Plywood, or wood sides? Are the sides really 96" in length? (if not, can you change/swap your "reference edge"?)

With a good cabinet saw and a long fence, this is not a particularly dangerous cut for the operator, but more so for the workpiece, particularly with only a 23" width that must be held tightly against the fence during the cut.
Rotation of the piece away from the fence during the cut (from the friction between it and the table top, and the drag induced by the cut) is what will ruin the workpiece. Whatever you can do to minnimize these two forces will help ... IOW, wax the table top, and use sharp cutters.
I make these type of cuts routinely on the table saw, but usually in sheet goods where I can dado the full width of a sheet, giving more area to press against the fence, with less chance or rotating the piece during the cut, and then rip to width.
This usually makes for more accuracy of the dado position on opposite sides of a cabinet to boot.
If this is not possible, and you don't trust either yourself or your equipment, a sled, or router is your best bet.
--
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That's what I'm shooting for, accuracy to boot. Both sides of each piece have a good bottom edge from which to measure, and it's really only in the top carcass that I get so far away from the fence that it gets "scary". I'll wax the heck out of everything(again), and try some dry runs with the blade down. Thanks. Tom
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tom wrote:
> That's what I'm shooting for, accuracy to boot. Both sides of each > piece have a good bottom edge from which to measure, and it's really > only in the top carcass that I get so far away from the fence that it > gets "scary". I'll wax the heck out of everything(again), and try some > dry runs with the blade down. Thanks. Tom
As Swingman suggests, you can cut lower dadoes using bottom edge as reference, then switch and use top edge for the upper dadoes.
As long as you cut the dadoes in matched pairs, NBD since any errors get washed out.
Have fun.
Lew
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Well, the top edges were trimmed with my existing crosscut sled, and maybe they're "close enough for government work", but I know that over the 23+ inches across, they're out of square about a 16th or a little less. It's possible that I do worry too much (insert smiley-face here). Tom
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Success, with only one little problem. It was in one of the four dadoes I was worried about, but not one of the farthest. Perhaps I was getting complacent. FWIW, the problem area will be under one side of a shelf, just a few inches below my wife's eye level. Pics of the problem at http://tomeshew.spaces.live.com/ in the works in progress album. Thanks to all for letting me fret some! Next up, pattern routing the shelves(and here we go again). Tom
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"tom" wrote in message

<Crocodile Dundee>
Problem? You call that a problem? That's not a problem, this is a problem:
www.e-woodshop.net/images/problem.jpg !!
</Crocodile Dundee>
... and why I make a couple extra of every part.
I wouldn't worry about it. It's a pretty easy fix once the shelf is installed ... and a craftsman is only as good as his fixes. ;)
--
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Well, I did say it was a little problem. That problem of yours, was that a blade height issue? Tom
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