Need advice on handling large pieces

Since I established a wood shop in my garage that I share with 2 motorcyles and all the other misc. junk that a garage accumulates, I have been working on small projects, such as decorative boxes etc., but now I would like to start building storage cabinets for my garage and eventually my Kitchen.
Since I am now starting to deal with full sheets of Melimine and plywood, I could use some advice on handling and cutting these large pieces. I am in the process of researching putting an outfeed table on the table saw, which will help somewhat, but does not solve all the issues.
1) What I would really like is a Panel Saw, but they are expensive and take up a lot of room. However, is this the only option that is open to me? I saw an ad in the Rockler cataloge for plans for a build your own panel saw and was wondering if anyone has purchased the kit and built it and what they thought of it/
2) I would like to attach a infeed table to the saw when needed, does anyone have any suggestions on how to attach one? I have a Delta cabinet saw with the Unifence.
Right now when I need help to cut something, I need to ask the neighbor for help, but this is/will quickly become a bother to them. I have seen pictures of other people's shops who had large tables built around thier table saws, which would be nice if we had that much room in our shops.
Thanks
Joe
jdavis (at) divi (dot) com
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I waste a little wood but when dealing with 4 x 8 panels, I lay them on some junk 2 x 4s on the floor, cut a little proud of the mark with the circular saw and then cut to finished size on the table saw. I, too, would like to have a panel saw some day but the aforementioned has gotten the job done so far.
bob g.
hdjoe wrote:

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Robert Galloway wrote:

straight cut. You still want to tidy it up on the TS but with little waste.     jo4hn
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hi joe, i too have these problems in my own shop. A good part of the reason we are having a "man's" garage sale this weekend. I finally have some room! as of now, i use the circular saw and a set of collapsible sawhorses as a poorman's panel saw. I layout and cut the 4x8 sheets into oversize but managable pieces and finally cut to final dimentions on the table saw keeping the factory edge against the fence. For the long rips, i have 2 portable roller stands i use at work set up for infeed and outfeed support. hope this helps -dave

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hdjoe wrote:

Joe...
I had the same kind of problem. My solution was to build a tilting cart that can be used for many different purposes. I've posted pictures at http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/shop_cart.html which might provide some ideas.
--
Morris Dovey
DeSoto, Iowa USA
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Slicker 'n goose poop on a golf course, that is!
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Also, making some roll around tables that you can use for assembly/etc when not used as tablesaw extensions would be a solution in a shop where a permanently setup outfeed tables would be too much
John
wrote:

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Ingenious!!! A panel table that tilts by using solar energy. ;-)                         Mark L.
Morris Dovey wrote:

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Mark L. wrote:

Yabbut what I really wanted was a solar powered forklift that I could use/keep indoors. )-:
--
Morris Dovey
DeSoto, Iowa USA
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We all face that problem, no matter how big our shops are. I think you will find most folks use a circular saw to get the sheet into manageable size, and then finish the panels on the tablesaw. It is rare that you need a panel larger than 1/2 sheet of stock, either half in the length or half in the width.
For me, I buy the sheets at the store and put them on their provided cart. I get an employee to help me if necessary. I roll the cart to my truck and they slide off the cart into my truck bed without lifting. I get home, back up to the shop, place horses behind my tailgate and slide the sheets off onto the horses, again no lifting. Use the circular saw to cut them to a bit over the sizes I need. Only then do I lift them.
-- Bill Pounds http://www.billpounds.com/woodshop

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From there I find the PS Panel Saw Jig invaluable. About $100.00 but I feel worth it.
On Sun, 22 Aug 2004 11:02:47 -0700, "Pounds on Wood"

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I have a 4'x8' sheet of stryafoam 2" thick that I lay sheet goods on and set a circular saw to just cut through, lets me kneel right on the work piece
MikeM
On Sun, 22 Aug 2004 12:18:34 -0400, " snipped-for-privacy@vcoms.net"

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MikeM wrote that he used 2" Styrofoam with is a great idea and it works great. You don't even need a 4 x 8 sheet as if you have some strips of the same which you can put under your sheet. Nice thing about the foam is that you can cut into it and never both anything. The other thing I do is use a piece of particle board 12" wide x 8 foot for a guide for my saw. The particle board it great as it is absolutely straight and cheap.
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I like the foam, but not the kneeling. Motto: never do anything kneeling that could be done standing up, sitting, reclining, or laying down. :)
-- ******** Bill Pounds http://www.billpounds.com

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There are many options available to you. When you purchase your lumber yoou can usually get the yard to make one cut with their panel saw. This will get you to approximately the dimension you want. An output roller stand makes an enormous difference in feeding long pieces through your table saw. It need not be attached to the saw. Others have mentioned reasonable methods for cutting your panels to size. Cutting should not be your problem.
If you are building several kitchen cabinets in one run you will quickly run into a space problem for storing partially finished cabinets.
Dick

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<snippage>

The woodworking program at the Adult Education center has a panel saw. Even though I have an unreasonably well-equipped garage shop, for someone of my abilities, I take at least one class per session, so as to have access to some of the tools I don't have. The folks who hang out there are also generally enjoyable to be with.

Consider a moveable assembly table at tablesaw height, if you need infeed support. My router table and workbench were built at this height, for that very reason.
But I don't cut panels that way very often any more. It's awkward at best, and generally not as accurate as it needs to be. A good circular saw, with cutting guides seems to me far safer. Guides don't need to be fancy or expensive. Final trim cuts, on the reduced sized panels, are made at the cabinet saw, with far less excitement. I do believe that the good sized folding outfeed table makes for safer, more accurate operations.
Patriarch
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I have the store load my pickup. I drive home and set up a couple of saw horses behind my truck. I pull a sheet onto my saw horses and cut it up with my circular saw and some straight edges. I stack the pieces in my shop. These stacks get taller than me. I frequently do 30 sheets at a time. If I need accuracy I trim the pieces with my table saw later. I plan this for a dry day. I make cutting lists so I can work fast.
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