Ripping without a table saw - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 05-19-2010, 10:42 AM Thread Starter
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Ripping without a table saw

Hi!

I am VERY new to woodworking and have just purchased plans to make an adirondack chair. I have a jigsaw and access to a circular saw so I'm wondering how best to cut my pieces out of my material.

I've seen systems like the EZ Smart Guide and whilst that looks amazing, I am wondering if there are cheaper ways of accomplishing that same aim... I gather that to jigsaw out all the pieces would result in less than perfect edges and to circular saw them might give similar results...

Any thoughts?

P.S. I don't live anywhere near the kind of place that might be willing to do my cuts for me.
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post #2 of 10 Old 05-19-2010, 10:53 AM
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For pieces of that length you should be able to get decent cuts with a circ saw.

you will have to clean up the edges.

Or you could clamp a straight edge for your saw table to follow.

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OH, wait a minute ............Yep!.............That's what he said!

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post #3 of 10 Old 05-19-2010, 11:23 AM
where's my table saw?
 
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I Agree

Most circular saws come with an adjustable edge guide for ripping.
Use that for your long cuts, follow up with a hand block plane to smooth the edges and chamfer them and the jigsaw for the curved ends. Some hand sanding and you should be good to go. bill

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 #4 of 10 Old 05-19-2010, 11:24 AM
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Assuming you have the basic skills with the tools you'll be using, there are a few ways to do this. First, you could do this with a handsaw. That would be your monthly workout, but it is a method, and it would work.

You could use a jigsaw, but you will have edges to work on. If you have access to a circular saw, that would work with certain jigs. Cutting the narrow sizes may get a bit difficult. Or, you could mount the circular saw to the underside of a substrate of sorts, like melamine, and use a straight piece of plywood for a clampdown fence.

So, what you've created is an archaic form of a table saw. Not as easy to use as a real one, but it will work. You might consider renting an equipped table saw for a day or two. Or, contact some cabinet shops in the area and see if they will cut your pieces.

If you doubt your abilities, seriously reconsider the project. If this will be your one and only woodworking project for the rest of your life, you have here a few suggestions. If you plan on other projects, getting a good tablesaw would be a wise decision.



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post #5 of 10 Old 05-19-2010, 04:51 PM
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Fine Woodworking "Getting Started" series season 2 had a pair of videos on building a workbench, they show you how to make and use a cutting guide from MDF or plywood or something like that. A cutting guide lets you guide the saw good and straight, and also lets you know exactly where the saw is going to cut... A table saw is best for this task, but a circular saw and cutting guide will work great. Use MDF and you won't be that much $$ into your guide either...

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post #6 of 10 Old 05-19-2010, 08:21 PM
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circular saw and straightedge or guide

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post #7 of 10 Old 05-20-2010, 03:55 AM
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post #8 of 10 Old 05-20-2010, 08:47 AM
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Actually, cabinetman is right on in suggesting a handsaw. A good sharp handsaw can give you a very accurate cut if handled properly.

Gerry
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post #9 of 10 Old 05-20-2010, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerry KIERNAN View Post
Actually, cabinetman is right on in suggesting a handsaw. A good sharp handsaw can give you a very accurate cut if handled properly.

Gerry
Key word there is IF... Yeah, a good handsaw is hard to beat, and it sure is a LOT less prone to annoying the neighbors to boot! But how do you properly guide a rip cut using a hand saw?

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post #10 of 10 Old 05-21-2010, 08:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbhost View Post
Key word there is IF... Yeah, a good handsaw is hard to beat, and it sure is a LOT less prone to annoying the neighbors to boot! But how do you properly guide a rip cut using a hand saw?
I agree, there is always an "IF". I have had good luck by drawing my cut line, and laying the board down on a couple of sawhorses so that the cut line runs parallel to the sawhorses, but between them. Start the saw cut at one end, angling the saw blade back toward you so that you are cutting into the line. With the blade angled back toward you it is fairly easy to guide the cut and keep it on the line. As your cut progresses you can put cross boards under the piece being ripped to support the cut line. True, a handsaw is not the fastest or easiest way to rip boards, but it certainly works when needed.
I have actually found that I am using my handsaws more frequently these days beacause there are just some places that you can't get a skilsaw into comfortably. I have also started collecting them. They are pretty much out of fashion, it seems, and can be picked up quite cheap.

Gerry
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