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Thread: Sacrificial Table Saw Fence Clamps

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Whittier, CA, USA
    Posts
    512

    Sacrificial Table Saw Fence Clamps

    I never liked having the clamps standing proud of the face when using a sacrificial table saw fence. I liked the pretty blue Rockler fence clamps, but I realized I almost always used three clamps to make sure the board didn't bow out. So I decided to make my own set of three.

    I made a set for myself from some old clamps. Then I made some sets for my brother and dad. The cost for each set using the Bessey Mighty Mini bar clamp and 3/8"x5" cap screws from Lowes was $18, the same cost as the set of two from Rockler. I considered using round steel bar stock but it seemed too mild for my preference.

    Cut the cap and thread off the screws.



    Remove the fixed jaw from clamp. I used a Dremel type cutoff blade to cut a slot and then a cold chisel to split the pot metal of the clamp jaw.





    Weld the screw rod to the clamp bar and grind/file the welds to clean it up.





    Paint.



    Here they are in use.



    The photograph angle makes it look like the middle clamp is in danger of getting hit by the blade, but it isn't.

    Cheers,

    Dan Gonzales
    ───────────
    Whittier, CA
    Last edited by Dan Gonzales; 03-23-2009 at 04:03 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Billings Missouri near Springfield Mo
    Posts
    4,551
    Now that is a sweet idea Dan I like it
    Jay

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Odessa, Tx
    Posts
    1,813
    Good job on the clamps Dan. I like and have those Rockler clamps too, and the only thing I personally do differently than you have is: Due to the Predominance of "Mr Murphy", (Of Murphy's Law Fame) and his sporadic visits to MY shop, I just couldn't place a clamp in the middle, as shown in your pic, because I just know he would inadvertently drive my subconscious mind to move the fence over too far and let the blade get into the clamp.

    I always use a clamp on the fence just before the blade and close after the back of the blade, (Just in case)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Whittier, CA, USA
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    512
    Norman -

    The middle clamp is 1" ahead of the blade. The photograph angle makes it look like it's right in the blade's path, but I assure you it isn't. I definitely don't want to drive my dado set into a piece of steel!

    Dan Gonzales
    ───────────
    Whittier, CA, USA
    Last edited by Dan Gonzales; 03-23-2009 at 05:18 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Odessa, Tx
    Posts
    1,813
    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Gonzales View Post
    Norman -

    The middle clamp is 1" ahead of the blade. The photograph angle makes it look like it's right in the blade's path, but I assure you it isn't. I definitely don't want to drive my dado set into a piece of steel!

    Dan Gonzales
    ───────────
    Whittier, CA, USA
    Oh, Oh, MY Mistake. Sorry about that, I guess I'll have to clean my glasses better before I look at any more Pictures. (It's always GOOD to be prepared for "Mr. Murphy").

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    Dan, that is an excellent idea, and very well executed too!

    I have the Rockler clamps and the worked fine on my smaller DeWalt DW744 saw, as the fence is rather short, but I've yet to try them out on the SawStop, which has a MUCH longer fence, if I find I need one more near the middle, I'll be borrowing your idea

    Did you weld them yourself?

    MIG welder?

    I sure find I've used my MIG welder in my workshop a LOT more than I thought I would have.

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Whittier, CA, USA
    Posts
    512
    Norman - I think Mr. Murphy lives near me because he likes to drop in quite often.

    Stu - Yes I have a little MIG welder that I end up using a lot around the house. It really expands your horizons when tooling around with cars/trucks/tractors and garden equipment as well as shop equipment. When I was in Tokyo I took a train out to Tamasakai just to see a store called Cainz Home. Do you ever go there for supplies or equipment? I spent a couple of hours just walking around the two stores absorbing the Japanese perspective of do-it-yourself. Taking the subway back I had a couple of saws and bamboo rakes sticking out the top of my backpack and probably another 30 pounds of hand tools, garden tools and the cool japanese style hatchets as well. I also bought three bottles of sake there while I was at it! Quite a store.
    Dan Gonzales
    Whittier, CA, USA
    Dona nobis pacem

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
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    Hey Dan, if you ever come again, stop by for the nickel tour of the Dungeon, and I could maybe get you a good deal on a good bottle of sake

    I've been to Cainz Homes, not a bad store, but I like Joyful Honda and Super Viva Home better, even more orientated to the carpenter.

    Cheers!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
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    30,002
    Those look great, Dan. I'll definitely be filing that one away for future reference.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  10. #10
    Great Idea and wonderful demonstration but..., (always a BUT) When I make jigs, fixtures, and such... I usually go to Harbor Freight and buy the Knock-off version of the better tool to chop up and use parts for the jig. Sure would help on the cost, Their version is $3 compared to your $18 clamp
    http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=96210

    But I do like the idea and thanks for the post and the good details.

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