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Thread: New 'smaller' Crosscut Sled

  1. #1
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    New 'smaller' Crosscut Sled

    Iíve been in and out of the shop lately, this week Iíve been working on another batch of cutting boards. THe last time I made boards back at the end of August, I found that on some of my boards, my cross cut sled was building in an uneven cut (out of square) when I was trimming for the flip/glue stage of the boards. To counter that, I'm making a new sled.
    My old sled was built about 8 years ago, and IĒm sure the fence can be adjusted. I didnít glue it down, just screwed it on. HOwever it is built to do panel cuts on up to 24Ē deep workpieces. Thatís all fine and dandy, but Iíve been working on much smaller pieces of late, and that honking big sled while stable and wonderful as a support isnít getting any lighter to lug around the shop.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    It is 18Ē deep by 22.25Ē wide, 3/4 borg birch plywood with maple fences.

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    Those photos were just before I made the center cut. Iím in process of doing the 5 cut square method for the rear fence. It was a bit cold out there tonight, so I shut things down Ďearlyí and tomorrow Iíll move the fence. My calculations using the method William Ng has graciously shared on youtube show that I have to move the fence .243Ē back which sounds like a lot, but hey, I want square cuts, soÖ gotta do it. Iíll post more photos tomorrow.
    Once I get that moved, Iíll add a trap box to the back of the rear fence where the blade protrudes at the end of the cut. Iíll also drill a hole somewhere in the field so that I can hang the sled up when it isnít in use. I May also inset some T-track on the rear fence so I can add hold downs and a stop block etc.. Depends on how ambitious I feel as well as how I can easily lay hands on the t-track. now that I think of it, I believe I will definitely add the t-track, but that Iíll simply screw it on to the face, and add a strip of maple to the top edge, giving me a more substantial handle to push the sled with.
    -Ned

  2. #2
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    That oughta do it Ned. I have a few sleds for different purposes; always handy to have. All have adjustable fences and that has paid off a couple of times.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  3. #3
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    Ned my sled overhangs the left side of my Unisaw so instead of a trap box I put a stop block on the saw & on the sled so that it just finished cutting through the material & stops before it goes all the way through the sled fence. Perspectives are different to me the front fence is where the T-track is & the one where you rest your hands & push the sled & the back fence just helps hold the thing together.
    "Forget the flat stuff slap something on the spinny thing and lets go, we're burning daylight" Bart Leetch
    "If it ain't round you may be a knuckle dragger""Turners drag their nuckles too, they just do it at a higher RPM"Bart

  4. #4
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    Glenn,
    I've used the heck out my big sled, but honestly, I built it for panel cutting, and I've rarely if ever cut said pieces... so smaller will be much better. Thinking about what I'd like to add on, I'm thinking a jig for 45* cuts, and/or 30*, thinking of doing some glue ups for segmented bowl/vessel turning.

    Bart,
    I use 'front' and 'rear', because the 5-cut square method video I was watching earlier today, they reference the same in the instructions. With this sled's smaller size, I won't be able to use a stop block, unless I were to move the fence forward on the sled. I'm comfortable with a trap box/block since I had a quick and dirty one on the old sled.
    -Ned

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ned Bulken View Post
    Thinking about what I'd like to add on, I'm thinking a jig for 45* cuts, and/or 30*, thinking of doing some glue ups for segmented bowl/vessel turning.
    I popped a couple of threaded inserts into the surface and bolt down a triangle that I use for 45's. For your multi-angle requirement, a pivoting fence could be just the thing. I've wished for one on one of my sleds now and again .
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  6. #6
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    wrapped up 98% of the sled today:
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    trap block on the rear.

    all of the fence surfaces are rounded over 1/8" and the edges of the plywood were broken.

    I added the t-track, I have yet to build a stop block or what not for it, think I may rotate it up to the top of the fence though. First time to cut aluminum, on the miter saw... just a touch of pucker factor there, but it did the job just fine.

    I put it to good use:
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    -Ned

  7. #7
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    Looks good Ned.

    I can't tell from the pictures, do you have a runner for each miter slot or only the one? I couldn't quite tell from the pictures.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan Mooney View Post
    Looks good Ned.

    I can't tell from the pictures, do you have a runner for each miter slot or only the one? I couldn't quite tell from the pictures.
    I'm trying it with just the right runner, that way I can move the sled over and use it from the left miter slot for dados.
    I made a ton of cuts with it tonight, trimming up 6 cutting board blanks, and other than one board which was planed slightly wierd before I glued things up, I didn't find any untoward flexing. If I find it moves too much, I can always add another runner on the left side.
    -Ned

  9. #9
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    Nice sled Ned!
    Darren

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word ďboo.Ē Ė Robert Brault

  10. #10
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    Thanks Darren!

    Works well, and one additional note on the 'single runner'...

    I'm right handed, and I tend to push with both hands , pull back with my right hand after the cut. When I pull back on the left side only it racked a bit, but nothing 'bad' happened.
    -Ned

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