My personal woodworking tip du jour

I had a small brainstorm today and thought I'd pass it along in case it's of use to anybody else.
I found myself having to do a bunch of taper cuts for some table legs. Each leg consists of three pieces (hard to explain why) so I was looking at a dozen cuts that all had to be the same. I got out the taper jig, the one made out of two pieces of aluminum held together by a cheap pin and adjusted by a cheap wing nut. I set it up, checked it and rechecked it and did everything I could to put off committing to the first cut. I was dreading what I would if the jig slipped or got knocked before I had 12 identical tapers. That's when it occured to me.
I grabbed a scrap of 1/2" plywood big enough to hold the work pieces and then some. I cleaned up the edges and squared them all up to each other. Then I laid the taper jig on it, holding them both tight to the rip fence on my saw, and traced a pencil line along the angled fence of the jig. Grabbed a scrap of 3/4" ply a couple inches wide and screwed it down to the 1/2" "sled", along the pencil line, mirroring the angle of the jig. Then I screwed another small 3/4" scrap at the tail of the sled and square to the angled fence, to push the end of the work piece. At the last minute I decided to add a pair of toggle clamps to the angled fence to hold the work piece solidly against the fence and flat on the "sled". The whole jig took me less than 10 minutes to assemble.
I double checked my set up and ran a test cut to confirm it. Satisfied, I relaxed and proceeded to cut a dozen matching tapers. To rework an old phrase: "Measure twice, cut 12 times."
Hope this helps somebody,
Ian
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On 19 Dec 2003 22:48:39 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (Ian Dodd) wrote:

I've seen those things before. they look so cheezy and flimsy that I can't imagine dedicating the space in the shop to STORE one, much less plunk down $7.95 to buy it.
had a few tapers to cut last week. did it just about how you did, except I dogged it down instead of using toggles. and my tapers were all different, so I changed settings for each one, but you got the idea...     Bridger
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Know the feeling all too well. Although I've cut many tapered legs using one of the aluminum jigs and never had a problem, the pucker factor goes up every time. Cut four this week (stock 1/4" taller than the max blade height of the TS increases pucker factor enormously), and put it off for a whole day in hopes that they would somehow cut themselves.
After the task is done, I have much the same feeling I got after each *required* parachute jump.
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Swingman wrote:>After the task is done, I have much the same feeling I got after each

Sounds like you didn't jump enough. Hook up again! Tom
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Only way now would be if the crate is going down, preferably with smoke pouring out, so's i could be certain. What's that they used to say about jump school?: First week separates the men from the boys, second week the men from the fools, and in the third week the fools jump.
All the way ...
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Swingman wrote:

Interesting. In the US armed forces, the only /required/ jumps are combat jumps - all others are voluntary; and it's possible to leave jump status at any time up to the point when combat orders are issued.
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Perhaps he didn't know he could "quit" any time he wanted. Pehaps he did make combat jumps. Me, I just like to see folks get off the "dope-rope" and into freefall. More people to play with, more fun for me! Tom Morris wrote: >Interesting. In the US armed forces, the only /required/ jumps

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Sure thing, Bubba ... like dodging bullets, is "voluntary". It may be different now, but 35 years ago one static line jump every three months was "required" by Army regulations to maintain status.
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Swingman wrote:

It probably is different now. In the last 20 or so years, more US troops have died or been seriously injured in training accidents than in combat.
No, I can't back that up with any experience or any facts. It's just an impression I have after a lot of assorted reading. One of the things the "what's new in today's military" type blurbs focus on is how much safer training is these days.
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"Silvan" wrote in message

Bingo ... the genesis of my remark re that "cheated injury/death again" feeling after using a taper jig. Ironically, the only time there was no requirement to jump was my combat tour in RVN. "Inserting" into a triple canopy LZ on the end of a helicopter rappel must of made up for it. ;>)
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