Holding Stock For Rough Cuts. - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum

 
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post #1 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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Holding Stock For Rough Cuts.

I am working on the bases for some bookshelves and I needed to rough cut the 1X3 stock so I could easily handle it at the table saw. I was using my new track saw because I like the dust collection feature and the plunge cutting ability. But I had problems with my first attempt to cut the stock. I had trouble holding on to both halves of the stock and my first cut actually wound up going into the saw horse. I have two of Workmate style saw horses, so I came up with this to hold both ends of the 1x3.



You can see that both ends of the 1x3 are firmly supported. The cutoff does not drop to the floor and get banged up. Total control and I like it. Here I am ready to make a cut. All I had to do was plunge down, no lateral motion was needed.



And it works for short pieces too. Here I am set to cut the last two 11" pieces.



I do love those saw horses and use them all the time.

Oh, second tip. As you can see in the third photo, I marked the approximate center of the track. This helps a lot when making cross cuts like this as it makes it easy to be sure the track is balanced on the work. I did this the first day I was using the track saw.

Disclaimer: After looking at the photos I noticed that Grizzly is plastered all over them. I have no association with Grizzly other than as a customer, mostly a satisfied one. If it helps, the second saw horse is a store brand.

Last edited by EPAIII; 01-07-2016 at 04:17 PM.
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post #2 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 04:51 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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I didn't think track saws did that

I thought track saws were for cutting down the length, not cross cuts. Wouldn't that be a perfect operation on a miter saw, a chop saw, or a circular saw with a cross cut guide? I often use a saw guide when working outside or on a scaffold.



Also I never hold the off fall end of the workpiece or it will bind and jam the saw. You would have to have the workpiece exactly balanced and supported equally for this to work.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specfic. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo

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post #3 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
I thought track saws were for cutting down the length, not cross cuts.
That was my first thought too. Why not use the miter saw? It would be much faster.
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post #4 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 05:00 PM
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The double workmate support setup is a very smart idea. I've broken the corners off of way to many pieces being too lazy to properly support the off-cut.

I have that same Griz saw setup. I've never used it for cross cutting like that, but if I did, I don't think I'd bother with the track. I'd just set the shoe right on the lumber and plunge down like you said. It would be about perfect for that operation.
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post #5 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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My shop and wallet are small so I must make do with just a few tools. I purchased the track saw first for dust control. My wife has allergies and I want to create as little sawdust as possible. Yea, I know there is a bunch on the floor in the photos, but that was from the router and I had no way to avoid that. And it is great for long, straight cuts. It provides a lot of control.

Track saw not for crosscuts? Why not? It works just fine. And I do not have or plan to have a miter saw, but yes it would be faster. I have no space for it and the space on both sides for the stock to stick out. And I have to wonder just how accurate they can cut angles with all the weight of the saw hanging on the rotating support. And how long will that initial accuracy last.

Besides, as I said, this was just to rough cut the pieces. They are 1/2" oversize and will be trimmed on the table saw. I have a more conventional circular saw and with a good blade, it makes nice cuts. But I liked the idea of just sitting the track saw in place and then plunging down. I had absolutely no problems with jamming. Down and up and done.

As for using the track, it only took a few extra seconds and it was easier to see the cut lines that way. Also, with the rubber strips on the back, there was little tendency for it to shift. The saw, by itself, may easily move around during the cut and then there might be binding or other problems.

I have been using the track saw for a couple of months now and I do love it. Perhaps it is not the fastest way to do things, but it does a lot and does it very well. I did buy a good blade for it, the Griz blade that came with it was not the best.

Last edited by EPAIII; 01-07-2016 at 05:45 PM.
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post #6 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 05:50 PM
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Meh, I just find the track unwieldy. No matter. It's a good setup if it works for you!
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post #7 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 07:13 PM
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I built 2 "jack-stands" from pallet junk wood which have the nominal height of my 10" Delta miter saw. Twisting the island bench a little and coming down the hall, I can cut 1/4" off the end of a 20' 2x4. Or, cut it in half. I guess that we all make do with what we have!
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post #8 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 09:35 PM Thread Starter
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Wanna swap shops? Mine is roughly 21 feet square and I do both wood and metal work in it. Sounds like you have two or four times that.

In one shop where I had a lot more space I added two 10 foot wings to a stationary saw. It was great. But that won't work here. No way. Presently my wood tools must be stored when not in use and moving the saw is a lot easier for a long cut than moving the wood.



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I built 2 "jack-stands" from pallet junk wood which have the nominal height of my 10" Delta miter saw. Twisting the island bench a little and coming down the hall, I can cut 1/4" off the end of a 20' 2x4. Or, cut it in half. I guess that we all make do with what we have!
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post #9 of 20 Old 01-07-2016, 10:35 PM
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The previous owner and designer/builder used to butcher hogs and sheep in that room. I'm quite content to have more benign uses.

Sad to say but the walk-around floor space is less and less. My wood carving benchs to suport poles and so forth eat a lot of space.
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post #10 of 20 Old 01-08-2016, 07:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
I thought track saws were for cutting down the length, not cross cuts. Wouldn't that be a perfect operation on a miter saw, a chop saw, or a circular saw with a cross cut guide? I often use a saw guide when working outside or on a scaffold.



Also I never hold the off fall end of the workpiece or it will bind and jam the saw. You would have to have the workpiece exactly balanced and supported equally for this to work.
Agree.

Why make the job complicated.

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post #11 of 20 Old 01-11-2016, 11:39 AM
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Maybe even freehand cut a bit long and trim in the miter saw or table saw later.
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post #12 of 20 Old 01-11-2016, 02:47 PM
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I have often thought that a plunge saw with about 4" - 6" of travel with a stop on the base that you could just lay against a plank would be very handy in construction.

“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
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post #13 of 20 Old 01-11-2016, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EPAIII View Post
My shop and wallet are small so I must make do with just a few tools. I purchased the track saw first for dust control. My wife has allergies and I want to create as little sawdust as possible. Yea, I know there is a bunch on the floor in the photos, but that was from the router and I had no way to avoid that. And it is great for long, straight cuts. It provides a lot of control.

Track saw not for crosscuts? Why not? It works just fine. And I do not have or plan to have a miter saw, but yes it would be faster. I have no space for it and the space on both sides for the stock to stick out. And I have to wonder just how accurate they can cut angles with all the weight of the saw hanging on the rotating support. And how long will that initial accuracy last.

Besides, as I said, this was just to rough cut the pieces. They are 1/2" oversize and will be trimmed on the table saw. I have a more conventional circular saw and with a good blade, it makes nice cuts. But I liked the idea of just sitting the track saw in place and then plunging down. I had absolutely no problems with jamming. Down and up and done.

As for using the track, it only took a few extra seconds and it was easier to see the cut lines that way. Also, with the rubber strips on the back, there was little tendency for it to shift. The saw, by itself, may easily move around during the cut and then there might be binding or other problems.

I have been using the track saw for a couple of months now and I do love it. Perhaps it is not the fastest way to do things, but it does a lot and does it very well. I did buy a good blade for it, the Griz blade that came with it was not the best.

Man, you need a work bench!

I do all of my work in a one car garage. Have all sorts of power tools and the washer/dryer/H/W heater and a freezer in there, along with a full miter saw station and a huge toolbox.

When I bought my track saw (Scheppach, same as the Grizzly), it came with two 25 inch tracks and connectors. I use one of those for cross cuts, especially when I am cutting cabinet sides to length.

Here are a few pics of my workstations. They work great. My work bench also serves as an outfeed table for the table saw. With dog holes and T track, it is very versatile and every project winds up on this table at some point. Face frames, cabinets, liquor cabinet, toy boxes, doors and drawer construction...everything.

I also built an adjustable height workstation (with dual routers) so I can operate the router(s) at a higher working height (about 39 inches) so I don't kill my back, or lower it to do assembly work, or adjust it to the same height as my do-it-all work bench. A RV scissor jack provides the lifting action.

My mobile workstation is really handy to have around. It has multiple options for clamping stuff (see pic of 3 different style clamps). My secondary purpose for this workstation was to have a place to store my Porter Cable dovetail jig. Formica prevents glue from sticking.

I bet one of these would come in real handy for ya. I don't have any plans. I just winged it.

Good luck. Hope you get some inspiration from these ideas.
Mike
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post #14 of 20 Old 01-11-2016, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankC View Post
I have often thought that a plunge saw with about 4" - 6" of travel with a stop on the base that you could just lay against a plank would be very handy in construction.
Yep, seen those jigs on You Tube. Cheep 'n easy to build.
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post #15 of 20 Old 01-11-2016, 03:09 PM
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Quote:
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I have often thought that a plunge saw with about 4" - 6" of travel with a stop on the base that you could just lay against a plank would be very handy in construction.
That would be very do-able with the track saw. All you'd have to do is cut a small section of track and screw or weld a "fence" onto the bottom. If it were around 16", it would be pretty handy. Perfect 90's "on the line" every time, plus the riving knife, plunge capability and dust collection. That would be sweet.
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post #16 of 20 Old 01-13-2016, 06:13 AM Thread Starter
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I presently have one bench and a temporary one (saw horses & 2x12s). I am working on setting up the shop but it will have both wood and metal working equipment so space will be scarce.

I am trying to get this bookshelf project out of the way so I can finish the shop. I always bite off too much.



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Man, you need a work bench!

...<snip>...

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post #17 of 20 Old 01-18-2016, 09:00 AM
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That's what a ras is for. Miter saw would work also.

If you will cutting to size on the ts later, and don't have a ras, or miter saw, I would just crosscut with a circular saw. No fence/guide required.
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post #18 of 20 Old 01-18-2016, 09:21 AM
where's my table saw?
 
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Here's why a RAS or miter saw is "better"....

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That's what a ras is for. Miter saw would work also.
The RAS and a miter saw has a flat table which supports both sides of the workpiece and does not allow any flexing during the cut. If the work flexes or shifts, it may bind the blade and cause a kickback. The track saw "plunges" down on the top of the workpiece which may also cause it to flex unless it is equally support along it's length. To solve this issue using your setup, just put a plank across the horse or tables to support the workpiece.

As suggested a shorter track would help also. It would eliminate the need to balance along track on a narrow workpiece. I still favor the cirular saw guide which you can grip with your left hand wrapped around both guide and the workpiece so it can't shift. I've used one for 40 years and still do for either rough OR precise cuts on long planks on the job site. There's just not a "better" way aside from a RAS with along table extension.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specfic. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo

Last edited by woodnthings; 01-18-2016 at 09:32 AM.
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post #19 of 20 Old 01-27-2016, 04:24 AM Thread Starter
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Woodnthings, I have to agree that a RAS would be nice. I worked with one that I had set up with 10' wings on both sides and it was great. But, as I said above, my present shop is extremely space limited and that thing was 25 feet wide.

I also have a nice circular saw that I have used for years and it cuts great. But my wife is allergic to sawdust and most everything else. I purchased the track saw more for the dust collection than for the tracks. But I like it.

Using the longer track was not a problem if it is set down centered. I really did not even need the clamps. It just sat there. I also had no problems with binding. I just clamped the drop in the second saw horse and all went very smoothly.

Perhaps this was not ideal, but the results were excellent and, with the shop vac running, there was almost no saw dust. It would have been faster with a radial arm saw or a miter saw, but I am happy with the time it took.
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post #20 of 20 Old 01-27-2016, 05:41 AM
where's my table saw?
 
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OK then!

If you're happy and the wife is happy, very important.... I'm happy. Your solution is obviously well thought out and works for you, so that's all that matters. All opinions and other solutions to the contrary don't mean "jack".
Good for you.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specfic. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo
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