Use a router with a straightedge as a guide -- something you've ripped on the
table saw, or jointed, to get a nice clean straight edge.
If the panels to be fit into the dados are plywood, DO NOT assume that their
actual thickness is the same as their stated thickness. Likewise, do not
assume that all sheets of plywood, even if bought at the same time from the
same lot from the same source, are the same thickness. Cut your dados using a
router bit that's smaller than the thickness of the plywood. Then either shift
the guide and make a second pass with the router to get the exact width, or
use the table saw to cut a slight rabbet on the panels.
If the panels are solid wood, it's easier to cut the dados at whatever size
you wish, then plane the panels to the correct thickness.
Remember that a router motor spins clockwise as viewed from the top, and
position your straightedge so that the force exerted on the router by the wood
pulls it *into* the guide, not away:
guide ===================router O
feed direction ----->
feed direction <-----
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
Since it is a corner cabinet I would go with the TS if you have a 50"
fence. That way you won't have any alignment troubles.
If you want to use a router, make a jig like:
Make a jig that you can clamp onto the cabinet sides and restricts
your router base to cut a perfect dado. Test the jig on a scrape piece
and make adjustments as needed. Most of your time will be in making
the jig, but once that's done cutting perfect dadoes will be easy.
If you have a dado blade for your table saw and you have a 50" fence,
the table saw will work. You must keep the work tight against the
fence by applying the force between the blade and the fence. Depending
on the size/weight of the cabinet sides, this may not be safe. If
there is safer way, it is a better way. It is a good thing to listen
to that little voice!
On Fri, 25 May 2007 14:09:30 GMT, Phisherman wrote:
Reminds me of a short demo video that Pat Warner put together, and might
be available on his website. He used a piece of the shelf material, and
a sheet of paper, to set up a jig like that. The jig, in this case, was
nothing more than two straight boards and some clamps.
Using the actual shelf would take care of at least some of the variation
in material thickness.
Assuming that your table saw is setup properly, and workpiece hangs over the
edge of the table saw to the left of the blade, here's another way to do it
with the table saw, which I forgot to mention:
Retract the blade below the table top; set your fence to the proper distance
for the cut; lay the workpiece, with the center over the retracted blade,
onto the table top with the "reference edge" squarely against the fence;
securely clamp a straight, pre-cut "guide board", underneath the workpiece,
and snugly against the table saw's left top edge.
Now, make sure the piece slides easily, but with no rotation, between the
clamped guide board and the fence, with the blade still retracted.
If done correctly, this will seriously reduce any rotation of the workpiece
when doing the cut, and will allow you to control the cut from the left of
the blade, instead of from the fence, some distance away.
Set the blade to the correct height and you now have two options for the
1. Some will feel uncomfortable trapping the workpiece between the guide
board and table saw fence.
For a 1/4" non-through cut, I would not hesitate to do so, but YMMV.
2. Move the fence back, and just use the clamped "guide board" against the
edge of the table saw top as your guide to make the cut.
Whichever way you prefer, the cut is now much easier to control because the
distance between your new temporary "reference edge" and the blade is likely
to be much less than the width of your cabinet side.
I have used this method when I have had to dado slightly bowed stock and
needed to be in better position to put downward pressure than I would be
when trying to control the cut closer to the fence.
Strictly FWIW, YMMV ...
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