Rip capacity vs crosscut sled - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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Rip capacity vs crosscut sled

Hello,
I am looking at a table saw with 24.5 inch rip capacity.

I want to create panels for art, with nice 90 deg angles. Let’s say I want to make a 36x36 inch panel from, say, a 40x40 inch stock.

Can’t I use a crosscut sled to trim off the 4 inches? (Update, I think I realize now why this is not a good idea)
Any other ways to accomplish this with this saw?

Thanks. Just trying to be SAFE.

Last edited by 8stitches; 11-14-2019 at 07:35 PM.
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post #2 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 06:28 PM
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Ripping and crosscut are two completely different operations that have nothing to do with each other.



Have you ever used a table saw to do either?


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post #3 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8stitches View Post
Hello,

I am looking at a table saw with 24.5 inch rip capacity. Wondering, what does rip capacity really matter if I remove the fence and use a crosscut sled?



I want to create panels for art, with nice 90 deg angles. Lets say I want to make a 36x36 inch panel from, say, a 40x40 inch stock.



Cant I use a sled to trim off the 4 inches?



Thanks. Just trying to be SAFE.

Lets see if I can give you a proper answer.
If you have a 40x40 panel and you want it to be 36x36 you do need to trim 4 from adjacent sides.

Typically sleds are used to crosscut narrower pieces. You could build a sled but it would be an unwieldy sled as it has to take the full 40 depth of the panel. Add 3 for the front and back of the sled and now its 43 deep, only 5 less than the width of a sheet of plywood.

I have a full size table saw with 33 rip capacity and a top that is 31x40. I would be very hesitant to put a 43 deep sled on top.


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post #4 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 07:11 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks David that helps
George, no, I have used lots of power saws but am looking to purchase first table saw. I do understand the difference between a rip and cross cut. Just making sure i buy the right machine for what I want to accomplish.
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post #5 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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So David, can I ditch the sled idea and cut the 4 inches off by setting the fence 4 inches from the blade?
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post #6 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 07:35 PM
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If you cut a lot of sheet goods...aka plywood .....

You may want to get a vertical panel saw rather than a table saw. They are great for sizing plywood and other large sheets to what ever dimensions you need:




There are horizontal versions of this type of jig:
https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...+cross+cut+jig



The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 11-14-2019 at 07:51 PM.
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post #7 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 09:39 PM
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Rip capacity vs crosscut sled

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Originally Posted by 8stitches View Post
So David, can I ditch the sled idea and cut the 4 inches off by setting the fence 4 inches from the blade?

You can but it is not advisable because of the risk that the narrow cutoff will get trapped between the blade and the fence and shoot back.
If it were me I would make a simple jig that uses a circular saw to make the cuts.

Edit: I cringed watching the opening of the second video above. If someone using my tablesaw passed their hand that close to the blade even one time they would be done cutting.
Thats unbelievably unsafe.

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Last edited by DavidR8; 11-14-2019 at 09:44 PM.
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post #8 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 09:51 PM
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No, that's not the reason .....

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You can but it is not advisable because of the risk that the narrow cutoff will get trapped between the blade and the fence and shoot back.
If it were me I would make a simple jig that uses a circular saw to make the cuts.


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The "narrow" cut off is no problem. The real issue is the cut is a "one time and done" operation. You don't get another chance to recut it. If you are having "shoot back" issues when ripping narrow stock, your fence and blade are out of alignment and are pinching the stock after the blade cuts the material. You should be able to leave a narrow piece between the spinning blade and fence for as long as required to finish your operation with no issues. That's how my saws are set up.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #9 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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This is all very helpful

Woodnthings, can you Please explain the one and done issue? Not sure I see the problem you are trying to convey?
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post #10 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 10:02 PM
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I watch these guys work and apparently they don't worry too much about their fingers. Makes me wonder why one guy always wears a left hand glove. Maybe because he lost a digit or 2?

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Retired woodworker, amongst other things, Sold full time cruising boat and now full time cruising in RV. Currently in Somerville, Tx
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post #11 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 10:27 PM
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Sure ......

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Originally Posted by 8stitches View Post
This is all very helpful

Woodnthings, can you Please explain the one and done issue? Not sure I see the problem you are trying to convey?

When you are cutting the waste side off a panel and leaving the "good" side to the left of the blade, you get one chance to make the proper measurement and cut. Why? Because now the piece is either perfect, not wide enough, or too wide and it won't fit between the blade and fence because of the limited rip capacity..... "one and done" sorta thing.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #12 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 10:30 PM
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I was astonished myself .......

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Originally Posted by Tony B View Post
I watch these guys work and apparently they don't worry too much about their fingers. Makes me wonder why one guy always wears a left hand glove. Maybe because he lost a digit or 2?

I watched this guy in the video I posted above, run his hands way too close to the blade and it is real curious why he wears a glove only on the left hand, unless it's a rubberized glove to increase the grip on slippery material. I have some like that and they have their place in the wood shop, but not near a lathe!

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #13 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 10:43 PM Thread Starter
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Wink Got it

Quote:
Originally Posted by woodnthings View Post
When you are cutting the waste side off a panel and leaving the "good" side to the left of the blade, you get one chance to make the proper measurement and cut. Why? Because now the piece is either perfect, not wide enough, or too wide and it won't fit between the blade and fence because of the limited rip capacity..... "one and done" sorta thing.
Thanks!

So you all answered my questions. Much appreciated. Since I have not used a table saw before, I think Ill play it safe and not try to exceed rip capacity. Ill make a nice jig with my new saw to cut larger panels with my circular saw.
And I wont wear gloves while using rotary tools
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post #14 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 10:57 PM
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For cutting large stock, you shouldn't really be using a cross cut sled anyway. In that scenario of 40x40 trying to achieve 36x36, 4" is plenty safe distance to size flat on the fence, especially with a riving knife; and 40" is small enough to make it wieldly. If we're talking about 8 foot stock here, then thats another animal best suited for track saw/circular saw uses.
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post #15 of 16 Old 11-14-2019, 11:08 PM
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I look at a glove as an extension of your hand and so does a rotating saw blade. The glove is larger than you hand and i doubt that a saw blade will neatly slice of a soft piece of the glove. The larger target, the glove, if caught, will pull toward the blade. At that point, the saw dont care whats inside the glove.
I see a lots of guys on youtube doing some really nice and some times ingenious woodworking projects but i do not consider them as knowledgeable woodworkers. Some dont understand the basic concepts that apply to woodworking or safety.

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post #16 of 16 Old 11-15-2019, 12:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8stitches View Post
So David, can I ditch the sled idea and cut the 4 inches off by setting the fence 4 inches from the blade?
Yes you can. . . . But it would be better to set the fence to 36 inches and cut. It is a bit safer to make the wide cut and you are less likely to score the intended "good" edge.

Rich
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