Saturday, June 19, 2010

Crosscutting with the Fence

It's funny that a small nondescript block sitting on a saw fence gets asked about more than anything in my shop.  Maybe the rest is too messy... This block is simply two pieces of 1/2" MDF glued together with a 5/16" hole drilled in one edge.  I use it to do crosscuts with the fence.

When crosscutting, you cannot normally use the fence since you're highly likely to pinch the offcut between the fence and blade setting up a spectacular kick-back.  This block, being 1" wide, makes a perfect spacer for aligning a cut to the fence (plus a burned inch)...

...but it isn't involved once the cut gets started.

The 5/16" hole in the top works well with a fence clamp.  I usually don't use the clamp as I'll put the block there, align the stock, and remove it. The size of the block stows perfectly on top of the fence between the sides.

And so this isn't completely boring, voilà, what 20lbs of Cocobolo and 5 lbs of Ebony look like... lots of plugs, miter keys, inlays, handles, and other nice things to come.

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