Rip Fence As A Stop

Occasionally, well get a tetter warning us about the danger of using the rip fence as a stop when pushing a piece with the miter gauge. The danger is that the cut-off piece can kick back at you. And we agree. You should never cut completely through a piece using both the rip fence and miter gauge.

The key word is "completely." And when cutting half laps, you're not cutting completely through the workpiece, so there's no cutoff piece to kick back at you.


Use rip fence as a stop so all blanks Dado are consistent blade~

Use rip fence as a stop so all blanks Dado are consistent blade~

Half Lap Grid

of each blank

of each blank

Wide Half Laps

Sometimes, a project will require a half lap that's wider than your dado blade set (This was the case with the serving tray grid, see page 6.) This means you have to cut the laps in two or more passes.

Here you have a couple options. If there aren't many half laps to cut, I'll simply set the fence (stop) for each shoulder of each lap. But if there are a lot of half laps to cut then I can save time by making a spacer and using a two-step process.

To determine the thickness of the spacer, start with the overall width of the half lap (1" on the serving tray grid). Then subtract the width of the dado blade (H") from this overall width to find the thickness that your spacer should be (W).

The nice thing is that you don't need to worry that the final half lap ends up exactly 1" wide. If it's a hair wider or narrow, that's okay—you'll rip the pieces to fit in the laps after they're cut, refer to Figs. 9 and 9a.

With the spacer in hand, if s time to cut the half laps. As I mentioned earlier, this is a two-step process. The first step is to set up the stop block to cut the shoulder farthest from the block, see Figs. 10 and 10a. (I use a long auxiliary fence and a stop block instead of the rip fence. This way, when the spacer is added, it'll "ride" along with the fence, see Fig. 11.)

After making the first pass with the blank butted against the stop block, I slip the spacer between the block and the blank, see Figs. 11 and 11a. This time, the blade will cut the shoul der that's closest to the stop block.

This spacer technique can even be used for laps that require more than two passes. Simply cut both shoulders (using the spacer for the second pass) and then remove the spacer and clean out the waste between the two shoulders in multiple passes.

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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