Trouble cutting squares - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
  • 1 Post By maybedave
  • 2 Post By Steve Neul
  • 1 Post By GeorgeC
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 6 Old 11-25-2017, 11:28 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 14
View West North West's Photo Album My Photos
Trouble cutting squares

Seems like it should be the simplest thing in the world, right? I'm having a hell of a time cutting consistent squares on my Ryobi table saw. I'm trying to make a chessboard, and have the strips cut and glued now. I am going to do the perpendicular cuts tomorrow to create the final surface, and am very worried, because I had to decrease the dimensions of the initial strips because I could not get them perfectly squared up. I've tried my best to get the fence perfectly parallel to the saw blade, but things just never come out right. Any thoughts on what I might be doing wrong, or otherwise? How do you guys cut perfect squares and rectangles?
West North West is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 6 Old 11-25-2017, 11:33 PM
No shop woodshop
maybedave's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Orange County, CA
Posts: 26
View maybedave's Photo Album My Photos
Before you even get to a square, you have to get a perfectly parallel strip. Are you able to accomplish that with your saw? The problem may be the fact that blades will tend to flex a bit with material shoving it away from the fence. Using multiple shallow passes will help with this.

Once you can get consistent strips, I would think that it's just a matter of using a cross-cut sled?
new2woodwrk likes this.

Making it all up as I go...
maybedave is offline  
post #3 of 6 Old 11-25-2017, 11:43 PM
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 25,995
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
Instead of cutting squares glue up 9 strips of wood alternating light and dark wood. Then cross cut the panel into strips of equal width. Then glue them together alternating the light and dark wood. After it's all glued together cut to 8x8 rows.
amckenzie4 and new2woodwrk like this.
Steve Neul is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #4 of 6 Old 11-26-2017, 07:59 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Florida Panhandle
Posts: 12,008
View GeorgeC's Photo Album My Photos
He entitled the thread cutting squares, but then wrote that his problem was not being able to get the fence parallel to the saw blade. Doing that always confuses people. Cutting the squares came after this problem.

Question. How have you been going about making your fence parallel to the blade? Does the fence move when you are trying to lock it down? Do you think the fence is parallel when you lock it down and then the cut wood is not parallel? Give us as much information as you can.

new2woodwrk likes this.
GeorgeC is online now  
post #5 of 6 Old 11-26-2017, 09:07 AM
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Panama City, Florida
Posts: 838
View new2woodwrk's Photo Album My Photos
Sounds to me like your table is not tuned properly - that was my problem for quite awhile.

If it is, what I've started doing is working towards the final size - in other words, if I need a cut that is 2x2 I'll make it 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 and trim off until I get to my final size.

Still though, it does sound like either you need to tune the saw or something going on with your fence (another issue I've had before and thanks to the responses here was able to isolate and fix).

Good luck
new2woodwrk is offline  
post #6 of 6 Old 11-26-2017, 07:41 PM
Senior Member
nywoodwizard's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Lindenhurst,NY
Posts: 182
View nywoodwizard's Photo Album My Photos
I did this once, but cutting small chess table squares individually is not easy even with a good saw, parts are so small, easy to screw up. I didn't put mine together yet but I'm using left over Brazilian cherry flooring & corian left over from another project.

Blade stiffening washers and a "good" fence is paramount.(Also a blade with more than 40 teeth, 60 maybe but 80 preferable )

I ripped 12" strips on table saw slightly larger then needed, then cut & squared ends on miter saw slightly larger then needed, recutting opposite end each time before sliding down to stop block to ensure ends were spot on. I then trimmed to final size on table saw. (Nibbled about 1/32" or less each pass). Yes its tedeous but patients will yeild a better result.

"You must become one with the wood grass hopper"
nywoodwizard is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
First cutting board - test project only JBrianBaker Project Showcase 8 04-09-2018 01:46 AM
Help with Edge Grain Cutting Board - Thickness and Suspension Tool Agnostic Design & Plans 15 11-11-2017 06:20 PM
how to join edge-grain border to end-grain cutting board? jgall01 Joinery 6 11-16-2016 12:26 PM
frame and panel border around edge grain cutting board? jgall01 Design & Plans 3 11-16-2016 11:35 AM
Cocobolo Ulu knife w/ Zebra wood Cutting Board firehawkmph Woodturning 4 01-24-2016 04:23 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome