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
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:
Keep on thinking before you cut,
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
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.
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
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.
> Alright, I'm scared. I'm getting ready to cut the dadoes into the
> sides of a corner cabinet.
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.
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.
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
: 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
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
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?
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.
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.
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
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
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.
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
> 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.
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
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
Problem? You call that a problem? That's not a problem, this is a problem:
... 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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