Q: Table Saw Zero Clearance Plates with Replaceable Inserts


Has anyone tried the zero clearance plates that have replaceable inserts? If so, how did it work out? Would you buy one again? (I've seen them, but don't remember the brand, sorry.)
Yes, I know it's not difficult to make them, and I do so currently, but I have special reason for this request, and that is Dados. I don't want umpteen different plates for varying dado widths, and the replaceable insert style would make it much easier to deal with.
Thanks,
Greg G.
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Greg G. wrote:

Greg, do you know how much they cost? I think they are around $80. Have you found them cheaper? Ted
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You realize that with the plate that uses replaceable inserts that you will have just as many as you would with the home made kind but more expensive.
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Leon said:

But they are a lot smaller. And in this shop, every square inch is precious. But after looking more closely at the plates, however, I have seen the folly of it all. I thought they used homemade inserts, but no - $17.95 per 2 or $10.00 per 5, depending on the brand.
The Betterley TRU-CUT does have nice spring loaded balls, however. Something I've always wanted...
Greg G.
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"Greg G." wrote in message

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to design a table saw dado sled with homemade replaceable inserts.
Let us know when you're done.
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Swingman said:

And it has to handle 32" x 72" sheet goods... yea, right.
I *hope* you are kidding...
Greg G.
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"Greg G." wrote in message

Why? ... most cabinet parts that would have dado's are less than 24" wide.

Just partially ... been thinking about it lately, so might decide to do it myself. I'll let you know.
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Swingman said:

I guess if you did only cabinets and other shallow things, it actually would work. But desks, entertainment centers, router stations, etc. are closer to 30+. Mine are, anyway. And what about a 'lengthwise' dado? (The 72" dimension?)

For cabinet work, I guess I could see some advantage. But in my case, it's just another HUGE jig to take up space.
Even though I mentioned the shop is 19x19, most of the wall space is eaten up by: a 6' wide storage closet with doors, the kitchen door, an outside door, and 2x 9' garage doors. I wish there weren't so many fracken doors. Your shop looks so roomy compared to mine. I don't have one stinking corner that doesn't have a door in it. :-\
I had to use a CAD program just to fit the tools inside without breaking my back moving them around. Had to allow for foot traffic - which I could do without as well. If I get scared out of my wits by one more unexpected 'visitor' behind my back that I can't hear due to a noisy power tool, I'm going to end up cutting my fingers off. And it apparently does no good to plead for no interruptions. Lock the door you say? Ha! They turn the lights on and off to get my attention - yea, that *really* helps a lot.
I like the Big Red Sign over your shop door - NO TRESPASSING! (As best I could make out...) And the fence - Razor wire?
Greg G.
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Swingman wrote:

That would be SOME set of chippers!
I know what you mean, but the image popped into my head anyway. <G>
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I cut 48" with my sled. that is one reason I built it.
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How is that really difficult? Make a standard sled, route out a 2" wide groove deep enough to hold some 1/4" hardboard, and screw the hardboard down. Make your cut; when you dado width gets wider, replace the hardboard.
--
Clint
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How special of you to share that. I'll keep the vertically offset ones I have, thank you.
:)
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yeah, but then you gotta make the inserts, or go buy them, which is a silly waste of money and more importantly time.
make a good fitting template and run off a dozen or so with a pattern bit on the router. have separate ones for all of your most used dado widths and bevel angles.
changing out throat plates has to be easier and faster than changing out inserts.
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Why do you need zero clearance inserts for Dado cuts? Just use the standard wide throated insert for those cuts. It's not like you're going to lose the workpiece into the opening on a cross cut.
The only exception I can see is if you use your dado set to make an end cut on a tenon. I've used a 3/8 inch spacer between my two outside blades from my dado set to cut the perfectly thick tenon where centering wasn't critical. The zero clearance insert is essential in this case but it was a rather unique case that I was more than willing to dedicate an insert to.
I don't bother with zero clearance inserts for normal dados as there is usually plenty of material in the workpiece to keep it flat on the TS surface.
TWS
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TWS wrote:

I agree. I have one homemade insert for all dado operations, regardless of how many chippers are installed.
Dave
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David said:

To each his own. I personally prefer my 2x4s to have unfrayed edges. :-\
Greg G.
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Greg G. wrote:

if you were in the neighborhood, I'd give you a demo, Greg. ZERO tear out, EVERY time.
Dave
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TWS said:

Uhhh...Tearout - the same reason I use them on a standard cut. And probably the same reason everyone else uses them as well.
I don't cut stock small enough to slip into the opening anyway.
It's a moot point anyway, I'll just make my own. I didn't realize when I asked the question that the inserts are not standard materials and that they cost almost as much as a standard insert. I was under the mistaken impression that you could use plywood to make your own replaceable inserts. Further research shot that one down pretty quick.
Greg G.
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