Saw - Basic Cuts
Setup and Features
Special Table Inserts
Table Saw Safety
Table Saw Speeds
Click here to download a printer friendly version-
(Pages 1-18, 7015KB)
Help with Downloading PDF Files
The six basic cuts: (A) crosscut, (B) rip, (C) miter, (D)
cross bevel, (E)rip bevel, and (F) compound miter.
(cutting perpendicular to or across the wood grain),
ripping (cutting parallel to or with the grain), making
miter joints and other joinery cuts--is the most common, most necessary
woodworking operation. You'll spend most of your operating time
on the Mark V sawing.
There are six
basic saw cuts: crosscut, rip, miter, cross bevel, rip bevel, and
compound miter (Figure
2-1). All other cuts, no matter how intricate, are combinations
of these basic cuts. It is essential, therefore, to master the basic
cuts in order to use the table saw to its fullest capabilities.
In this tip, we concern ourselves primarily with crosscutting and
ripping. It is interesting to note that perhaps ninety percent of
all operations on the table saw are ripping and crosscutting. It
should also be noted that the table saw should not be used in through--sawing
operations without the saw guard in place. Warning: Always use
saw guards and safety devices as recommended.
The accessories that are used for table sawing operations
are the (A) worktable, (B) extension table, (C) rip fence,
(0) upper saw guard, (E) lower saw guard, (F) miter gauge,
and (G) saw blade. The Model 510 with the extension table
system is shown.
Use the accessories
shown in Figure
2-2 for sawing operations. To set up your Mark V in the table
saw mode, follow the instructions in the Owners Manual that came
with your machine.
As you work
in the sawing mode, you'll find that the Mark V is an extremely
capable table saw with several special features:
- In the sawing
mode, the Mark V has 3-1/4" depth of cut at "0." With the table
tilted at 45°, the maximum depth of cut is 2-3/8".
- The table
tilts up to 45° right, and the miter gauge can be angled a full
60° in either direction (from 90° to 30° right or left). Both
the table and the miter gauge have auto-stops to help you adjust
the tilt or the angle quickly to "0", 45°, or 90°.
- The miter
gauge has a safety grip to give you better control over the workpiece.
- The speed
is variable, enabling you to get a better cut in many different
types of wood, us-ing a variety of blades.
- When properly
aligned, the rip fence automatically squares itself with the main
spindle-parallel to the saw blade.
- The extension
table can be mounted in either the base mount or the power mount
to give you extra support where you need it.
- The quill
feed can be used to make fine adjustments in the position of the
saw blade--making it easier to be accurate.
- The dust
chute on the lower saw guard can be connected to a dust collection
system to help you collect sawdust and wood chips.
An all-purpose blade can be used for crosscutting, ripping,
and mitering. It is a good sizing blade, but it
will not cut as smoothly as some other special blades.
There are several
types of saw blades available for the table saw. Each of them are
ground and/or set to accomplish specific wood-working operations.
The following are the most common blades and what they do:
Blade--This blade (Figure
2-3) is the sawing work-horse of most woodworking shops. The
deep gullets between the teeth provide plenty of room for waste
removal on ripping operations and the sharp tooth points do a reasonably
good job when crosscutting. An all-purpose blade enables you to
start with basic operations like crosscutting, ripping, and mitering,
but it is not the only blade you can use. You'll get better results
on particular types of sawing when you use a blade that was specially
designed for the work you are doing.
A crosscut blade has many small teeth that cleanly cut wood
fibers. The blade does a fair job on miter cuts and sawing
plywood. It should never be used for ripping.
Blade--A crosscut blade has many small teeth ground with alternating
top bevels, sharp points and shallow gullets (Figure
2-4). The teeth cut cleanly across wood fibers, and since the
waste that is produced is a fine sawdust, the blade functions efficiently
with shallow gullets. However, small teeth and shallow gullets can
cause the blade to choke if you try to force the cut.
Here, even more than with other blade designs, feed pressure should
be slow and steady--only enough so the teeth will cut as they were
designed to cut.
blade does a respectable job on miter cuts, may be used on plywood,
but should never be used for ripping.
Each tooth of the ripping blade works like a tiny chisel to
chip out its own bit of wood. Deep gullets collect and spew
out the heavy waste. This blade should never be used for general-purpose
ripping blade (Figure
2-5) has large teeth ground with a square chisel tooth, large
gullets and is designed for sawing with the grain of the wood. There
is considerable support metal to back up the cutting edges, and
generous gullets catch and disperse the sawdust.
Because it has
a special design, the ripping blade should never be used for general
A hollow-ground blade does not have set teeth. Kerf clearance
is provided by gauge reduction from the tips of the teeth
to the center core that is indicated by the arrow. The blade
requires more projection than other designs.
Blade--A hollow-ground blade (Figure
2-6), or planer blade as it is sometimes called,
produces a cut nearly as smooth as a planed edge. Most blades have
set teeth; that is, alternate teeth are bent a bit in opposite directions
This forms a kert that is wider than the blade thickness so the
blade has clearance in the cut. The hollow-ground blade is reduced
in thickness from the points of its teeth to the full-gauge center
area that is indicated by the arrow in the photograph. Since this
design, rather than set teeth, gives it clearance in the cut, it
produces smoother cuts than other blades. The blade can function
without binding or burning itself or the wood by using it with the
In a strict
sense, it is a combination blade, but it is not one to leave on
the machine for general sizing cuts. It does fine on plywood, but
may not be tempered to stay sharp for an extended period of time
under the abrasive action of the plywood glue. Additional uses for
the hollow-ground blade include smooth crosscuts or miter cuts,
trimming moldings, and other advanced cutting techniques.
A plywood blade has many small teeth and ve,y little set.
It is used for trimming and cutting plywood and laminates,
and for finish crosscuts in soft woods. It produces a smooth
and near splinter-free cut.
plywood blade has many small teeth and very little set (Figure
2-7). This blade trims and cuts plywood and other laminates.
Because of the very small teeth, it produces a smooth cut and also
reduces splintering along the kerf. The plywood blade can also be
used for crosscutting soft woods, preferably finish cuts only. General
use will dull the teeth quickly, as will certain types of plywood
cores (particle and fibre). For cutting particle or fibre core plywood
and other sheet stock, it would be better to use a carbide-tipped
Carbide-tipped saw blades are smooth cutters used for many
operations and different materials: (A) combination, (B) crosscut,
and (C) rip.
Blade--Carbide-tipped blades (Figure
2-8) are more expensive than conventional blades; but, since
they stay sharp for much longer periods of time, they can prove
to be more economical in the long run. They are high-quality saw
blades specially designed for splinter-free results in hardwoods,
softwoods, and materials like hardboard and plywood, whether you
are cross-cutting, ripping, or mitering.
Carbide is a
tough material, but it is also brittle. Be careful when handling
such blades; store them so they can't contact another blade or object.
Never use a car-bide blade to saw second-hand lumber that could
any table saw blade, remember that the teeth above the table's surface
rotate in the direction of the operator and enter the top surface
of the workpiece first; therefore, place the wood with the finished
side upward. This applies to plain plywood, veneers, and any form
of plywood with laminates attached. When both sides of the wood
are finished, use a fine-tooth blade with minimum set or a hollow-ground
blade. Also keep in mind that the kerf is the slot formed by the
blade. Its width will differ depending on the style, the gauge,
and the amount of set on the teeth of the blade. The kerf should
always be on the waste side of the cutline.
Any saw blade will work more efficiently when it is clean and free
of deposits that sawing wood can leave. Don't remove deposits by
working with a sharp instrument like a knife. Some woodworkers use
a commercial pitch remover or work on the tooth areas with a solvent
and old toothbrush. An easy method to try is simply to soak the
entire blade in warm water and detergent. Wipe the blade with a
cloth while it is in the soapy water, rinse, then thoroughly dry
it. Apply a very light film of paste wax and buff.
are, of course, a must. They cut more efficiently and are safer
to use since the operator doesn't have to utilize excessive force
to feed the stock-a situation that could cause hands to slip.
sharpen their own blades, but it isn't recommended. A less than
perfect job will do more harm than good and can even ruin the blade.
The cost of sharpening is small, and the professional's experience
and special equipment will ensure that the blade will be returned
in like-new condition.
A specialstorage case will protect your saw blades. Add a
handle and you'll have a tote for cariying blades.
The simplest way to store blades is to place them on hooks that
are spaced so the blades won't touch each other. This, however,
requires much space. To minimize space requirements, use a hook
long enough to hold several blades, and use heavy cardboard or some
other soft material as spacers between the blades.
A blade storage
case like the one shown in Figure
2-9 will hold six blades and, when fitted with a handle, will
serve as a tote for a full assortment of blades. Layers of 1/4"
2-10), some solid and some with a semi-circular cutout, are
laminated to make up the storage area.
Construction details of a saw blade storage case. You can
widen it for more blades by adding layers of plywood to create
more slots. Click on image for larger view.
You can provide
for more blades by adding more plywood layers, but you must adjust
the dimensions of the hinged cover if you do. To hold the blades
steady and keep them from moving about, cement a piece of thick
foam rubber to the underside of the cover's top piece.
Special table inserts can be made of 1/4" hardboard: (A) Model
510 and (B) Model 500. Use a standard insert as a pattern
for the shape and hole locations.
There are times
when you can substitute a special insert for standard equipment.
The purpose of a special insert is to minimize the clearance around
a cutting tool. A special insert is necessary, for example, when
cutting pieces of wood so thin that the saw blade pulls them down
beneath the table.
Special inserts install into the table just like standard
To make the slot in the insert, slowly lower the table as
the machine is running. Note: The saw guard is removed for
like those shown in Figure
2-11, are easily made from 1/4" hardboard by using a standard
insert as a pattern for shape and hole location. Once the special
insert is made, raise the table to its highest position and install
the insert (Figure
2-12). To cut the slot in the insert, turn on the machine, set
the speed dial to the proper speed, and very slowly lower the table
over the blade (Figure
2-13). Each time you use the insert you must align the slot
exactly with the blade.
Before using the table saw, read and understand these important
danger zone on the Mark V in the sawing mode extends 3" on all sides
of the blade, 2' in back of the blade, and 8' in front of the blade.
The reason for the extended danger zone in front of the blade is
that a saw blade can kick a board back. The blade may also kick
a board forward, but not as hard as backward.
for Table Saws--Here are some safety rules for operating the
- Always wear
proper eye and ear protection.
- Always keep
your hands, fingers, and other parts of your body out of the danger
- Use push
sticks, push blocks and other safety devices to help guide and
- Never operate
the table saw without the upper and lower saw guards in place.
The one exception to this rule is when you saw part way through
a board--cutting a dado, groove or rabbet--then you must remove
the upper saw guard. Whenever you remove the upper saw guard,
keep the lower saw guard in place and work with extreme caution.
Use safety devices to move the stock past the blade.
- Never stand
directly in front of or in back of the blade; always stand to
one side or the other.
- Make all
adjustments with the blade stopped, with the one exception of
changing the speed. Never try to change the configuration of the
table or the power plant before the machine has stopped.
- Let the blade
get up to full speed before cutting.
- Always cut
against the rotation of the blade. This keeps the blade from grabbing
the wood out of your hands.
- Use the miter
gauge or rip fence to guide your work. Free-hand cuts are extremely
dangerous, inaccurate and not recommended.
- Make a five-point
check: all five locks--power plant, carriage, table height, table
tilt and quill--should be secure.
- Never reach
under the table to tighten the locks, remove scrap or make adjustments
while the saw is running.
- Never reach
over the blade while It's running, even with the upper guard in
- Do not rip
large sheets of plywood or similar materials by yourself. Get
at least one helper.
- Always use
the proper table insert for the operation.
- Turn off
the power and let the machine come to a full stop before you remove
workpieces or clear scraps away from the blade.
Mark V is equipped with saw guards to provide a physical barrier
between you and the moving blade, no matter what height or angle
you adjust the worktable.
These saw guards
have several other safety features. The lower saw guard has a dust
chute that allows you to attach a dust collection system so you
can collect the waste while you're sawing. The upper saw guard is
clear so you can see the cutline. There's a removable plastic insert
in front of the blade to catch wood pitch. This can be easily cleaned
to keep your line of sight clear.
The upper saw
guard on the Model 500 is mounted on a splitter that keeps the saw
kerf from closing and binding the blade. On this splitter there
are two anti-kickback pawls that help keep the blade from kicking
the stock back toward you.
The upper saw
guard on the Model 510 has a riving knife that is positioned 1/8"
from the blade regardless of stock thickness. The riving knife has
anti-kickback cams that help capture the stock in the event of a
Kickback--If, for any reason, the saw blade should bind in the
workpiece, it can kick the stock back toward the operator with great
force and speed. Also, if any piece of scrap (or other object) is
left on the table and slides into the moving blade, it can be thrown
with considerable force. Actually, kickback is one of the greatest
hazards in running a table saw. Some of the common causes of kickback
- Failing to
use the upper saw guard and safety devices.
against the rip fence without using a spacer.
- Using a dull
or dirty blade or a blade with insufficient set.
- Cutting freehand
or ripping badly warped wood.
pieces of stock on an unguarded saw blade.
- Letting go
of material before it is past the saw blade.
- Ripping stock
with loose or large, unsound knots.
- Cutting wet
or improperly seasoned wood.
Before beginning a table saw operation, adjust the table height
so the blade protrudes 1/4" to 3/8" above the stock, as shown.
Click on image for larger view.
2-14) refers to the amount of blade that is visible above the
workpiece. Except in the case of hollow-ground blades, which are
set slightly higher, keep the projection within 1/4"and 3/8".
The upper guard
has a depth-of-cut scale so it is easy to adjust the projection
of the blade. Just lower the guard over the blade and then adjust
the table height. For example, if you are sawing 3/4" stock and
want a 1/4" projection, adjust the table height until the tip of
the blade aligns with the 1" mark on the guard.
Use a step gauge to set blade projection.
to set blade projection is to use a step gauge like the one shown
2-15. A gauge you can make by laminating 1/8" pieces of hardboard
is shown in Figure
Both the scale
on the saw guard and a height gauge can be used to set the projection
of saw blades and other cutters like the dado accessory.
Construction details of a homemade height gauge.
Before you begin
any table saw operation, set the Mark V to run at the correct speed.
To do this: turn the machine on, turn the speed dial to the correct
speed and let the saw come up to speed. Caution: Never turn the
speed dial when the Mark V is stopped. You could damage the speed
changing mechanism. Always turn the speed to Slow before
turning off the machine.
speed is determined by the operation you're about to perform and
the type of material you're sawing. Generally, you can use faster
speeds in softer woods. Faster speeds will also give you a smoother
cut. Slower speeds give the machine more torque to get through hard,
the right speed for the job, refer to Table 2-1. A good rule of
thumb is: The deeper the cut or the harder the wood, the slower
the speed. But if the blade turns too slowly, you may get a rough,
cutting a board perpendicular to or across the grain, is one of
the most common wood-working operations. It's also known as a cutoff
operation, or cutting a board to length.
To make a crosscut, first mount the proper saw blade. Make sure
both the upper and lower saw guards are in place and that the splitter
on Model 500 or the riving knife on the Model 510 is directly in
line with the saw blade.
Adjust the table
height so that the saw blade will protrude about 1/4" above the
stock. When the table height is properly adjusted, make a five-point
check. All five locks--power plant, carriage, table height, table
tilt, and quill--should be secure.
Check that the
miter gauge is square to the blade, and adjust the safety grip to
the thickness of the stock. Warning: Always use the miter gauge
to guide the stock as you saw it.
Decide on which
side--right or left--of the blade is the most comfortable for you
to stand when you saw. Warning: Do not stand directly in line
with the blade. Place the miter gauge in the slot on the same side
of the blade that you're standing.
Mark the stock where you want to cut it, using a square and
a sharp pencil. An "X" will help you remember which is the
waste side of the stock.
Mark the stock
where you want to cut it, using a square and a sharp pencil (Figure
2-17). Remember that the saw usually makes a 1/8" kerf as it
cuts. If you cut straight down in the middle of your line, your
stock will be 1/16" short. Instead, cut on the outside of the line.
safety grip to clamp the stock in the miter gauge. Push the stock
forward until it touches the saw teeth so that you can see if the
cutline is properly aligned with the blade.
Use your free hand to help support the board and keep it flat
against the miter gauge.
Pull the stock
away from the blade. Turn on the Mark V, turn the speed dial to
the proper speed, and let the machine come up to speed. Then carefully
guide the stock past the blade. Use your free hand to help support
the stock and keep it flat against the face of the miter gauge (Figure
narrow stock or cutting off a thin piece, use a special insert (Figure
2-11) or move the blade close to the table saw insert on the
side of the blade where the stock is being cut. This will help keep
small pieces of stock from falling through the insert.
Don't feed the
stock any faster than the blade will cut. If the machine bogs down,
slow your feed rate and let the saw get back up to running speed.
Never use your free hand to push against the free end of the stock.
This binds the blade and can result in a dangerous kickback.
Use your free hand for additional support only. After the cut is
complete, turn the speed dial to Slow and turn off the
machine. Warning: Never pick up a cutoff while the blade is still
running. Your hand holding the miter gauge could slip Into the blade;
your free hand might nudge the cutoff into the blade, causing a
kickback; or the action of the blade on the cutoff might pull your
free hand into the blade. It takes only a few seconds for the
blade to stop after the switch has been turned off.
Chances are that when you start cutting boards to length, you'll
start out with boards 8' long or longer. Crosscutting a long board
can be awkward on a table saw, but here are a few simple techniques
to help make this task easier.
don't start by cutting. little pieces off the end of the long board.
This is hard to do accurately. Instead, start cutting long boards
in the middle. This gets them down to a manageable length quickly.
When crosscutting long stock on the Model 510, use the extension
Use an extension
table mounted in either the power mount or the base mount-whichever
end of the board needs the most support. If you crosscut a lot of
long boards, you will want to invest in a second extension table
so that you can support the stock at both ends. The Model 510 has
the extension table system that provides additional support for
cross-cutting operations (Figure
A miter gauge
extension will also provide extra work support because it increases
the surface area of the miter gauge. Actually, it's good practice
to use an extension on all crosscut work, especially if the workpiece
The standard miter gauge extension provides extra support
that is available for the Mark V, shown mounted in Figure
2-20, comes with attachment hardware and is easily mounted because
of the pair of slots that are part of the miter gauge design. The
position of the extension can be reversed so it can be placed in
the miter gauge for use on either side of the saw blade.
It's a good
idea to have several extensions on hand, each one for a specific
purpose. Should you wish to make your own, the standard extension
can be used as a pattern or use the dimensions and hole locations
Dimensions and hole locations for a homemade miter gauge extension.
Construction details of an adjustable miter gauge extension.
2-22 shows an adjustable miter gauge extension that is ideal
for crosscutting and mitering. Use a router to form the 1/4" slot
that positions the extension on the miter gauge. In the same way,
form a 5/8" wide counterbored slot centered on the 1/4" slot to
accept the two carriage bolt heads. Glue fine sandpaper to the face,
as mentioned later, for more holding power.
Use a long miter gauge extension when crosscutting long stock.
extensions do not have to be a specific length. When crosscutting
extra-long pieces, the extension can span across the table and beyond
2-23). When necessary, the extension can rest on the extension
table. When you use a long extension, the saw blade will cut through
it. This will not harm the extension, and the kerf that is formed
can be used as a guide. The cut line can be marked on the stock
with a square and then aligned with the kerf in the extension. Thus
you know beforehand the line that the saw blade will follow. When
you mark the stock, be sure to place the head of the square against
the edge that will bear against the extension. Check the miter gauge
adjustment if the kerf doesn't follow the line. You can use the
miter gauge safety grip with an extension.
face extensions with fine sandpaper to provide a high-friction surface
that is an aid on all operations, but especially useful when the
miter gauge is adjusted for an angular cut. The sandpaper helps
to keep the workpiece from moving or drifting when cutting miters.
The sandpaper may be applied to the extension with rubber cement.
The kerf in a miter gauge extension can be used as a guide
when crosscutting to length.
Except for squaring
off the end of a board, crosscutting is usually done to cut a piece,
or several pieces, to an exact length. When you need only one piece,
the simplest method is to cut to a line that you have marked with
a square. You can visually align the mark on the workpiece with
the saw blade or YOU can use a miter gauge extension that has a
kerf through it (Figure
should be used when you need more than one piece of the same length.
One method is to work with the miter gauge stop rod (Figure
2-25). By adjusting the two rods, any number of pieces can be
cut to any length up to 18". The stop rod can be used at either
side of the miter gauge, which allows it to be used whether the
miter gauge is on the left or right side of the blade. For short
pieces, up to 8" long, secure the short rod in the miter gauge and
use the long rod as an adjustable stop. For longer workpieces, up
to 18", secure the long rod in the miter gauge and use the short
rod as an adjustable stop.
The miter gauge stop rod can be used to gauge the length of
long or short workpieces dependir on which rod is secured
in the miter gauge.
To adjust the miter gauge stop rod for length of cut, measure
between the rod and blade. If the blade has set teeth, measure
from the tip of a tooth that points toward the rod.
Adjust the stop
rod for the length you require (Figure
2-26) by measuring between the end of the rod and the blade.
If the blade has set teeth, be sure to measure from the tip of a
tooth that points toward the rod. Once the setting is made, any
number of pieces can be sawn to the same length by butting the end
of the workpiece against the stop rod and making the pass. Warning:
Do not position the miter gauge stop rod so that it crosses in front
of the blade.
The miter gauge extension has a sliding stop so it can be
used to gauge the length of one or more workpieces. Notice
how the extension table provides extra support.
A miter gauge
extension that you make yourself can be used for cutting duplicate
2-27). The extension, which can be used whether the miter gauge
is on the left or right side of the saw blade, will allow cutting
of duplicate pieces as long as 24". To use it, measure between the
sliding stop and the saw blade and then do the sawing.
Construction details of a miter gauge extension with sliding
stop. Click on image for larger view.
details of the extension are shown in Figure
2-28. When you make the stop, allow just a fraction of clearance
so it can slide smoothly in the extension's T-shaped slot. Accessories
you make, like this one, should be carefully made, smoothly sanded,
and given one or two applications of a penetrating sealer. When
you treat them right, they become tools that will function for as
long as you do woodworking.
The workpiece is placed well ahead of the blade and butted
against a spacer that is (A) clamped or (B) screwed to the
rip fence. When the pass is complete, there will be ample
room between the fence and the blade so the cutoff can't be
trapped and kicked back.
the Rip Fence--The rip fence can assist in cutting-to-length
operations if a spacer is clamped or screwed to the rip fence (Figure
2-29). The spacer must be at least 1-1/2" thick. Figure
2-30 shows how a screw-type spacer is made. Warning: The
rip fence alone must never be used as a stop to gauge the length
of a cutoff. The cutoff, when the pass is complete, will bind between
the fence and the blade and be kicked back.
Construction details of a screw-type spacer.
Another stop design. Its advantage is that it can be locked
at any point along the rip fence. This makes it usable for
more than cutoff work.
between the fence and the blade minus the thickness of the spacer
determines the length of the cutoff. The workpiece is butted against
the spacer and then advanced for cutting. When the pass is completed,
there is ample room between the rip fence and the blade so the workpiece
can't be trapped.
design is shown in Figure
2-31. An advantage of this one, made as shown in Figure
2-32, is that it can be placed anywhere on the rip fence, which
makes it usable for other wood-working operations. Warning: The
workpiece MUST clear the spacer well before the end of the cut to
avoid binding the work-piece between the spacer and the blade.
Construction details of a movable spacer.
The front table extension, an accessory for Model 500, can
line up with either table slot and increases table depth in
front of the blade by 7".
wide boards requires maximum support in front of the blade. On the
Model 500, actual table length in front of the blade with projection
set to cut 3/4" stock is about 7", which is good support for average
work. On the Model 510 there is 10" of table in front of the blade.
A front table
2-33) is available as an accessory for the Model 500. This increases
the usable table depth in front of the saw blade by 7". A single
locking knob makes it easy to attach or remove; its miter gauge
slot is compatible with the slots in the worktable.
You can cut extra-thick material by working this way. Make
one cut a bit more than halfway through the stock. Mark the
cutline, invert the stock, and make a second pass. Warning:
Work with extreme caution because the upper saw guard Is removed
for both passes.
When you are
cutting unusually thick material and the machine's maximum depth
of cut won't allow you to cut through in a single pass, you can
do the job by making two passes. Warning: When cutting part way
through stock, it is necessary to remove the upper saw guard. Whenever
the upper guard is removed, keep the lower guard in place and work
with extreme caution.
Set the blade's
projection to a little more than half the stock's thickness and
make one pass. Use a square so you can pencil mark the line of the
kerf down one side of the stock. Invert the stock and place it so
the pencil mark is in line with the saw blade and make a second
To set up for ripping, use the quill feed to make fine adjustments
in the distance from the saw blade to the rip fence. Measure
from the fence to the tip of a saw tooth that's set toward
the fence. Click on image for larger view.
Ripping is cutting
parallel to or with the grain of the wood. It's also known as cutting
Mount the proper saw blade. Before turning on the machine check
that the saw guards are in place, adjust the table height, and make
a five-point check. All five locks--power plant, carriage, table
height, table tilt, and quill--should be secure.
use the rip fence to help guide the wood. Mount the rip fence to
the table, slide the rip fence so that it's the desired distance
away from the saw blade, then lock it in place. Use the quill feed
to make fine adjustments (Figure
2-35). Be sure to measure from the fence to the tip of a tooth
that's set toward the fence. When properly aligned, the rip fence
automatically sets itself parallel to the saw blade. However, on
critical setups, it's wise to check this. Measure the distance from
the rip fence to the saw blade at both the front and back of the
machine. Mount a feather board in front of the blade to help hold
the stock against the fence.
The rip fence gauges the cut width and acts as a control throughout
the pass. Hands are placed so they can't come close to the
Stand in front
of the Mark V, on the opposite side of the blade than the rip fence.
(This position will help you keep the stock pressed against the
fence as you rip it.) Turn on the Mark V, turn the speed dial to
the proper speed, and let the saw come up to speed. Place the stock
on the table and against the rip fence. Slowly feed the stock into
the blade while keeping it pressed firmly against the rip fence
2-36). Don't force the cut or go any faster than the blade can
cut. Warning: As you finish the cut, use a push stick or push
block to help feed the last portion of the stock past the blade
2-37). This will keep your hands and fingers out of danger.
When the cut is complete, turn off the machine and let it come to
a complete stop before removingthe stock or any scraps.
As you finish the rip cut, use a (A) push stick or (B) push
block to help feed the last portion of the stock. Click on
image to see larger view.
When ripping narrow stock, use a fence straddler to help finish
narrow stock--1-1/2" to 3" wide--use the fence straddler to finish
the cut (Figure
2-38). When ripping stock less than higher than the thickness
of the stock (Figure
2-39) and screw it to the rip fence so that the fence doesn't
interfere with the saw guard or the stock being cut. Use a similar
size piece of scrap stock to push the good stock past the blade
2-40). Caution: Do not use the plastic push stick from the
safety kit. When the good stock is clear of the blade, turn
off the Mark V. Hold the scrap push stick steady until the blade
comes to a complete stop, then move it away from the blade. To keep
small pieces of stock from falling through the table insert, move
the blade close to the insert on the side of the blade where the
stock is being cut, or use a special table insert. The construction
details for the special table inserts are shown in Figure
Construction details of a spacing fixture that is used when
ripping stock less than 1-1/2" wide. Click on image for larger
Clamp a spacing fixture to the rip fence to keep the fence
from interfering with the saw guard or the stock being cut.
To rip wide stock, mount the rip fence so it straddles the
extension table and the worktable. The rip fence accurately
guides the stock.
If you're ripping
stock that is 5-1/2" to 8-1/2" wide (Model 500) and 8-3/4" to 10-3/4"
wide (Model 510), you can mount the rip fence so it straddles the
extension table and the worktable. Be sure that the extension table
and the worktable and rip fence are properly aligned, then slide
the power plant and carriage to the right so that the worktable
butts against the extension table. Position the rip fence so the
saw blade is the desired distance from the rip fence and make fine
adjustments with the quill feed. As you feed the stock, the rip
fence will accurately guide the stock (Figure
A support table ne/ps support large stock at the outfeed end
of the worktable.
need to rip large pieces of stock such as plywood, paneling and
other sheet materials it is very important that the stock be properly
supported throughout the cut. Also, get a helper if the material
you're ripping is too large to safely handle by yourself. There
are several setups that provide the proper support.
One setup for
ripping sheet materials is to mount an extension table on one or
both sides of the machine, then mount the rip fence on the extension
The Model 510 extension table system supports wide stock.
You can also
mount a support table (Figure
2-42) or use a roller stand at the outfeed end of the worktable.
For even more support, also use a support table (Model 510 only)
or roller stand at the infeed end of the worktable. With the Model
510, you can also use the extension table system (Figure
When ripping long stock it is extremely important to support the
stock during the cut. Warning: If the stock is too long to safely
handle by yourself get a helper to assist you.
Use a support table when ripping long stock.
One way to support
the stock is to mount a support table to the outfeed end of the
2-44) or position a roller stand 1' to 4' away from the outfeed
end of the worktable (Figure
2-45). You may also want to position a roller stand at the infeed
end of the worktable. If the stock is extremely long (over 6'),
you will want to use a roller stand positioned 2' to 4' beyond the
support table (Figure
2-46). On the Model 510 you can mount a second support table
at the infeed end of the worktable for extra support.
A roller stand provides support for long stock.
If the stock is extremely long, use a support table and two
As you feed
the stock, it comes off the outfeed end of the table and the support
table and/or the roller stand will support it.
Use a rip fence extension when ripping long and wide boards,
and even plywood.
2-47 shows a rip fence extension that is used for ripping long
and wide boards, and even plywood. To make the rip fence extension
2-48), use 3/4" plywood or clear straight hardwood. Drill and
counterbore holes for the mounting bolts. Attach the support to
the back with glue and screws. Mount 1-3/4" wide strips to the bottom
edge for more support.
Construction details of a rip fence extension. Click on image
for larger view.
with Irregular Edges
Construction details of a guide used for ripping stock with
irregular edges. Click on image for larger view.
piece of stock may not have an edge that is straight enough to be
used against the rip fence. Maybe the piece has been cut on both
edges with a jigsaw or bandsaw, or it might be uneven, rough lumber.
These pieces of stock can be rip cut by the guide-strip method.
A narrow, straight piece of stock is clamped or tack-nailed to the
underside of the stock to be used as a guide. Or make a guide as
shown in Figure
You can straighten stock with irregular edges by working this
way. The guide rides against (A) the rip fence on the Model
510 and(B) against the edge of the table on the Model 500.
On the Model
510, mount the rip fence to the extension table and lower it until
the top of the rip fence is flush with the top of the table. The
guide will ride against the rip fence (Figure
2-50A). On the Model 500, the guide rides against the edge of
the table (Figure
2-50B). Where you place the guide strip will determine how much
of the irregular edge of the stock will be removed.
Since the worktable
can be moved along the way tubes, some large-sized pieces of stock
can be handled in this fashion.
Construction details of a taper guide. Click on image for
Taper rip cuts,
needed for many projects, call for a taper guide that has one straight
side that can move along the rip fence and an adjustable side that
can be locked at an angle to gauge the amount of taper. You can
buy a taper guide or make one as shown in Figure
2-51. Surface-mount or mortise the hinge on the ends of the
legs. The crosspiece, or brace, that is used to secure settings
can be made of metal instead of wood.
Mark across the legs 12" away from the hinged end; then you
can measure between the marks to set the guide for a particular
taper per foot.
After the guide
is assembled, mark a line across both legs 12" away from the hinged
end. Because of the 12" marks, you can preset the guide for particular
tapers by measuring between the legs (Figure
2-52). For example, if you were making a stool with legs that
are 12" long, 3" wide at the top, and 2" wide at the bottom, you
would need to cut a 1" per foot taper. By separating the legs 1"
at the 12" mark, you would have the correct setting for the guide
to cut the taper on two adjacent sides only.
You can calibrate the cross brace for particular taper-per-foot
To provide a
scale for future adjustments, separate the legs to various dimensions
across the 12" marks and use a pencil to mark the settings on the
cross brace (Figure
When a project
component, a table leg, for example, needs to be tapered on four
sides, make one pass and then a second pass on an adjacent side
of the stock without changing the guide's setting. Adjust the guide
to twice the original setting and then make a third and fourth pass
consecutively on the next adjacent sides.
This is how the workpiece is placed in the taper guide. Place
hands as you would for regular rip cuts. Be sure the guide
rides against the fence throughout the pass.
Use a taper
guide as shown in Figure
2-54. The workpiece is placed flush against the leg of the guide.
Both the guide and the workpiece are then moved forward to make
the cut. Notice that the worktable is positioned at the right end
and lined up with the extension table to increase the work-piece
support area. The operation is done just like a routine rip cut.
The only difference is that the workpiece is fed forward by moving
When you require the same taper on opposite edges, reposition
the workpiece, set the guide for twice the originaltaper,
and make a second pass.
When the same
taper is required on the opposite side of the stock, make the first
cut as just described; then adjust the guide to twice its original
opening. Position the stock so the edge already tapered is against
the guide, and make a second pass (Figure
Techniques--The step guide, diagrammed in Figure
2-56, is a good aid for production-type work because it eliminates
having to set the variable guide for different tapers. The steps
in the guide, which are dimensioned for particular cuts, gauge the
amount of taper. Each step will consistently produce the same taper.
The work is placed so that one corner is in the correct step and
the opposite end butts against the arm of the guide. The straight
edge of the guide rides against the rip fence. against the rip fence.
A step guide is a good aid if you do production work and will
frequently be needing a particular taper. Click on image for