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Thread: Stack Dado setup gage

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Stack Dado setup gage

    One of the things I hated about using a stack dado was getting the stack to the right width. Sometimes it took me several attempts to get the right width. I used to just dread having to set up the dado especially on odd sized plywood.

    I had a gage in mind but kept putting of making it. Finally one day I gave in and made my gage. After using it a few times I just had to wonder why I waited so long to do this! It took 30 minutes maybe and it has saved me that many times over!



    There are some details on my web site. It's pretty simple to make but it is WELL WORTH the time!

    Dado setup gage
    God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway,
    the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
    and the eyesight to tell the difference.


    Kudzu Craft Lightweight Skin on frame Kayaks.
    Custom built boats and Kits

  2. #2
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    Jeff,

    That's a neat idea! I was cutting some this weekend, and I could have used something like that.

    I do have a silly question, though: I don't have a lot of experience with dados, and I only have this set: http://pricecutter.com/12-piece8-dado-set-/p/601-3000/

    On saturday, when I was doing the setup, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get the thing aligned without using shims outside the chippers and inside the blades. No matter what, the carbide teeth were always interfering with each other if I didn't shim. Is this just because it's a cheap dado set, or something stupid I was doing, or just the nature of all such beasts?

    I don't want to give the wrong impression, they were the best fitting dados I've ever gotten, and dead on accurate. I was just a little frustrated by the set up process...

    Thanks,

    Bill

  3. #3
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    I have the same set. It's a decent set. I will replace it one day with a better one. To answer your question I have to ask an obvious question. Were you making sure the carbides were in the gullet (opening) of the outside blades? Mine fit in there no problem.

    Now, when I run the two with no chipper they do touch slightly but I just let them touch. But a chipper I never have a problem.
    God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway,
    the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
    and the eyesight to tell the difference.


    Kudzu Craft Lightweight Skin on frame Kayaks.
    Custom built boats and Kits

  4. #4
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    Thanks Jeff. Another wonderful example of a short amount of extra time spent saving volumes of time in the future.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  5. #5
    Good idea, Jeff. Thanks for sharing.

    BTW, a pencil would cause carbon dust floating around in the spaceship. That would be bad for the instruments and people. But I do get your comment about excessive complexity.

  6. #6
    Jeff, that is a good suggestion, I assume you list the componants on each of the guage slots. (maybe I should read your site)

    Bill, even the cheapest of Dado sets has an extra wide Gullet on each of the outer blades to allow room for the chipper blades to nestle in w/o contact to the other teeth. Check to be sure you are placing them in correctly. (common error)

    This is what I use, simple design a 5/8" bolt through a piece of wood but allows me to try different componants w/o having to reach in the saw and as much trouble as it is to on/off with the arbor , etc. Brings it up front and in view of my sore eyes and woreout back. You can see in this picture that the chippers are located in the Wide gullets provided.

    But I do like the idea of prepraed info and then you don't have to figure it out each time. Good thinking and thanks for the posting.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails P3080017.JPG  
    Last edited by Bill Simpson; 01-31-2008 at 05:00 PM.

  7. #7
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    Jeff,

    Did Woodworker's Journal "steal" your idea?

    Hard to say ... but check out their take on the dado gauge [HERE].

  8. #8
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    I think they did!!

    Oh well, Not like I could patent it and make money on it.
    God grant me the senility to forget the people I never liked anyway,
    the good fortune to run into the ones I do,
    and the eyesight to tell the difference.


    Kudzu Craft Lightweight Skin on frame Kayaks.
    Custom built boats and Kits

  9. #9
    Not to be a jerk at all here, but I seem to live without a dado cutter just fine. Maybe I am missing something, but it always seemed to me to be faster to make my dado's with my radial arm saw or tablesaw by making several cuts with the regular blade installed. I then clean up the bottoms with a shoulder plane and I'm done.

    As I said I am not trying to trump your idea Jeff in any way, it just seems like everyone uses these blades but me. Am I missing something? It just seems to take too much time to change blades back and forth all the time when you can get by with multiple passes with a regular blade and finish up with a chisel or shoulder plane.

    Maybe its the dado stack I got. Its a cheap set and I always seem to get rippled bottoms on my dado's.
    I have no intention of traveling from birth to the grave in a manicured and well preserved body; but rather I will skid in sideways, totally beat up, completely worn out, utterly exhausted and jump off my tractor and loudly yell, "Wow, this is what it took to feed a nation!"

  10. #10
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    "Bill, even the cheapest of Dado sets has an extra wide Gullet on each of the outer blades to allow room for the chipper blades to nestle in w/o contact to the other teeth. Check to be sure you are placing them in correctly. (common error)"

    Bill, I saw that and went right out to the shop to check. I must have a *really* cheap set... all the gullets are exactly the same.

    Curses, foiled again!

    Thanks,

    Bill

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