Just a note to anyone who is reluctant to try edge jointing on the
table saw. I've been thinking about this in light of some recent posts.
Last night, I tried something akin to the method described below.
It took about 5 minutes to make a semi-sacrificial fence and start
jointing a beat-up piece of mystery wood from my scrap bucket. I got
some machine marks, but not nearly as prominent as I sometimes get when
doing a conventional rip. The machine marks came out with a few swipes
from a jack plane. The results were extremely encouraging.
What makes this sort of a gloat is the slackluster effort and
substandard machinery I put into it. The saw was a Delta Shopmaster
TS220LS, one of the beefier benchtop saws with the decent-sized
aluminum table. The blade is the one that came with the saw, and it
needs cleaning, and I have not done *any*
alignment on the saw (and
this is kind of embarrassing, now that I see it in writing) for several
years, during which time it rode in the back of a truck from Maryland
to Wyoming. The result had no right to be as good as it was.
Similarly, the jack plane was a Buck Brothers el plane-o special from
the Borg that's been lying around in the state to which such tools seem
accustomed (unused) for several years. All I did was take it apart and
put it back together semi-right. (The cap iron is probably too far
back, and there's probably too much mouth showing.) I did not lap the
sole nor oven hone or sharpen the iron, much less flatten the
horribly-finished cap iron. And this plane took the machine marks right
off and produced nice curly shavings and left a glassy finish. I was
amazed. This very plane is frequently described as "unusable" and
"garbage" and "a door stop" and "unsuitable even for a dog to throw up
on," and I was expecting it to live up to that rep. It was sort of a
due diligence test before tuning it up and then finally shelling out
for a L-N. Not to say I don't still want one, or that the Home Cheapo
model is in the same league-- I was just surprised that it worked at
I figured this experiment would be a total wash until I set everything
up correctly, but much to my surprise, the results were pretty good.
Now when I clean and align and sharpen everything, I expect the results
will be good enough. It's so easy that I wonder why I ever hesitated to