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Guide for Circular Saw

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  • #16
    Re: Guide for Circular Saw

    Originally posted by blind bill View Post
    Here's the niftiest jig since the invention of the fish hook.

    I’ve found that handling large sheets on the table saw alone is both dangerous and difficult. As a result I concocted this jig that I adapted from a woodworking magazine (I can’t remember which one). I cut a 15” by 8’ section off a 4 x 8 sheet of ¼ plywood. I then cut 2’ off one end leaving me a 15” x 6’ piece. I placed it on the table saw so that I could raise the blade under it about 6 inches from one end and 7-1/2” from one edge. I then cut a slot in the piece stopping about 6” from the other end. I cut three evenly spaced 1” diameter holes with a spade bit along the slot to use for alignment. Next I put the circular saw in the slot and at each side of the foot plate placed a ¼” section of stainless steel channel that was 6’ long along each side of the saw’s foot, being careful to get it fairly snug against the foot. These rails came from Home Depot’s shelf section. I think they are used for support on the back side of shelves. They cost less than $10 for the two.

    I put a 1“ x 2” x 15” stop on the bottom of the jig and another stop between the rails on the top at the other end to stop the saw after it has traversed 4’. Both are placed at right angles to the slot.
    The bottom stop is used to set the jig at right angles to the long side of the sheet.

    After I built the jig I sanded and waxed it between the rails and on its bottom and waxed the bottom of the foot on the circular saw.
    The first time I used the jig I had to cut through the bottom stop because the saw must start in front of the side of the sheet to be cut.

    To use the jig place the full sheet on two 2 x 4’s supported by sawhorses. Mark the cut line with an ice pick (sharpened) so you can feel the cut line through the holes in the jig and align the jig using the bottom stop to set the end up against the side of the sheet. If you can see use a pencil instead of the ice pick. Once the jig is in place clamp it on to the sheet and have at it.

    This jig took me about an hour to build and works so slick you can't believe it. No tear out, no danger, fast and accurate.

    Blind Bill
    I am having trouble visualizing this jig, would it be possible to post a photo; sorry for being a pain.

    Comment


    • #17
      Re: Guide for Circular Saw

      enwannabe,

      Unfortunately I don’t have a camera available so I’ll take another run at painting you a verbal picture. I don’t blame you for being confused. I went back and read the description and I was bum fuddled even though I wrote it and built the jig. Obviously I wasn’t meant to be a technical writer (or any other kind for that matter.)

      The jig is used to slice off a 4 foot piece (any length in the 8 foot direction) from a 4 foot x 8 foot plywood or mdf sheet. I like to take the sheet down to a manageable size before I use the table saw to further reduce the pieces.

      The ¼ inch plywood base is 15 inches wide and 6 feet long. A slot is cut into it 7-1/2 inches in (midway) from either side that is 60 inches long and the width of my table saw blade. Three 1 inch holes are drilled into the base for alignment of the jig along the cut line on the plywood sheet. They are drilled at either end of the slot and in the center along the slot. Since the saw blade on the circular saw is not in the middle from side to side of the foot on the saw the best way to determine where the rails should go is to insert the saw into the slot and put the rails on either side of the circular saw’s foot, one on the left and one on the right. The rails are “u-shaped” stainless steel that I found in the shelf department at HD. They are about ¼ inch x ¼ inch x 6 feet long. I fastened them to the base with small wood screws. Now I had the saw captured between the two rails and it can’t possibly go off-line.

      To determine where the jig should be placed on the plywood sheet I put a small stop (1 inch x 2 inch x 15 inch) board at right angles to the slot under the base at the near end so that I could easily align the base to the plywood sheet. I then used the holes cut in the base to line it up with the cut line and clamped it on. Because I can’t see the end of the slot I put another 1” x 3” board between the rails on the end of the base that would be furthest from the start of the cut. In my case it acts as a stop and keeps me from extending the slot in the base too far and cutting my jig apart (not desirable). I think most people wouldn’t need this piece because you can readily see when you get to the end of your cut.

      The final step is to sand and wax the top side of the jig base, the rails and bottom and sides of the circular saw foot. The saw should glide smoothly the length of the slot with no work piece underneath the blade. If it doesn’t either your kerf is smaller than the width of the circular saw’s blade or the rails are too close together. After a few dry runs the kerf will adjust itself to the width of the blade you’re using. It may be necessary to adjust the spacing of the rails. In my case I was lucky and they were bang on.

      If this description doesn’t work let me know and I’ll try again. Sorry for the lousy job of picture painting.

      Blind Bill
      Benwannabe,

      Unfortunately I don’t have a camera available so I’ll take another run at painting you a verbal picture. I don’t blame you for being confused. I went back and read the description and I was bum fuddled even though I wrote it and built the jig. Obviously I wasn’t meant to be a technical writer (or any other kind for that matter.)

      The jig is used to slice off a 4 foot piece (any length in the 8 foot direction) from a 4 foot x 8 foot plywood or mdf sheet. I like to take the sheet down to a manageable size before I use the table saw to further reduce the pieces.

      The ¼ inch plywood base is 15 inches wide and 6 feet long. A slot is cut into it 7-1/2 inches in (midway) from either side that is 60 inches long and the width of my table saw blade. Three 1 inch holes are drilled into the base for alignment of the jig along the cut line on the plywood sheet. They are drilled at either end of the slot and in the center along the slot. Since the saw blade on the circular saw is not in the middle from side to side of the foot on the saw the best way to determine where the rails should go is to insert the saw into the slot and put the rails on either side of the circular saw’s foot, one on the left and one on the right. The rails are “u-shaped” stainless steel that I found in the shelf department at HD. They are about ¼ inch x ¼ inch x 6 feet long. I fastened them to the base with small wood screws. Now I had the saw captured between the two rails and it can’t possibly go off-line.

      To determine where the jig should be placed on the plywood sheet I put a small stop (1 inch x 2 inch x 15 inch) board at right angles to the slot under the base at the near end so that I could easily align the base to the plywood sheet. I then used the holes cut in the base to line it up with the cut line and clamped it on. Because I can’t see the end of the slot I put another 1” x 3” board between the rails on the end of the base that would be furthest from the start of the cut. In my case it acts as a stop and keeps me from extending the slot in the base too far and cutting my jig apart (not desirable). I think most people wouldn’t need this piece because you can readily see when you get to the end of your cut.

      The final step is to sand and wax the top side of the jig base, the rails and bottom and sides of the circular saw foot. The saw should glide smoothly the length of the slot with no work piece underneath the blade. If it doesn’t either your kerf is smaller than the width of the circular saw’s blade or the rails are too close together. After a few dry runs the kerf will adjust itself to the width of the blade you’re using. It may be necessary to adjust the spacing of the rails. In my case I was lucky and they were bang on.

      If this description doesn’t work let me know and I’ll try again. Sorry for the lousy job of picture painting.

      Blind Bill
      Benwannabe,

      Unfortunately I don’t have a camera available so I’ll take another run at painting you a verbal picture. I don’t blame you for being confused. I went back and read the description and I was bum fuddled even though I wrote it and built the jig. Obviously I wasn’t meant to be a technical writer (or any other kind for that matter.)

      The jig is used to slice off a 4 foot piece (any length in the 8 foot direction) from a 4 foot x 8 foot plywood or mdf sheet. I like to take the sheet down to a manageable size before I use the table saw to further reduce the pieces.

      The ¼ inch plywood base is 15 inches wide and 6 feet long. A slot is cut into it 7-1/2 inches in (midway) from either side that is 60 inches long and the width of my table saw blade. Three 1 inch holes are drilled into the base for alignment of the jig along the cut line on the plywood sheet. They are drilled at either end of the slot and in the center along the slot. Since the saw blade on the circular saw is not in the middle from side to side of the foot on the saw the best way to determine where the rails should go is to insert the saw into the slot and put the rails on either side of the circular saw’s foot, one on the left and one on the right. The rails are “u-shaped” stainless steel that I found in the shelf department at HD. They are about ¼ inch x ¼ inch x 6 feet long. I fastened them to the base with small wood screws. Now I had the saw captured between the two rails and it can’t possibly go off-line.

      To determine where the jig should be placed on the plywood sheet I put a small stop (1 inch x 2 inch x 15 inch) board at right angles to the slot under the base at the near end so that I could easily align the base to the plywood sheet. I then used the holes cut in the base to line it up with the cut line and clamped it on. Because I can’t see the end of the slot I put another 1” x 3” board between the rails on the end of the base that would be furthest from the start of the cut. In my case it acts as a stop and keeps me from extending the slot in the base too far and cutting my jig apart (not desirable). I think most people wouldn’t need this piece because you can readily see when you get to the end of your cut.

      The final step is to sand and wax the top side of the jig base, the rails and bottom and sides of the circular saw foot. The saw should glide smoothly the length of the slot with no work piece underneath the blade. If it doesn’t either your kerf is smaller than the width of the circular saw’s blade or the rails are too close together. After a few dry runs the kerf will adjust itself to the width of the blade you’re using. It may be necessary to adjust the spacing of the rails. In my case I was lucky and they were bang on.

      If this description doesn’t work let me know and I’ll try again. Sorry for the lousy job of picture painting.

      Blind Bill
      Last edited by blind bill; 08-13-2007, 08:55 PM.

      Comment


      • #18
        Re: Guide for Circular Saw

        Not only am I not a writer I'm not a computer nerd either. I've been trying for over an hour to modify or delete the message before this one but no luck struck. Please ignor it and look at this one. Sorry about that, but if at first you don't succeed, give up.

        Benwannabe,

        Unfortunately I don’t have a camera available so I’ll take another run at painting you a verbal picture. I don’t blame you for being confused. I went back and read the description and I was bum fuddled even though I wrote it and built the jig. Obviously I wasn’t meant to be a technical writer (or any other kind for that matter.)

        The jig is used to slice off a 4 foot piece (any length in the 8 foot direction) from a 4 foot x 8 foot plywood or mdf sheet. I like to take the sheet down to a manageable size before I use the table saw to further reduce the pieces.

        The ¼ inch plywood base is 15 inches wide and 6 feet long. A slot is cut into it 7-1/2 inches in (midway) from either side that is 60 inches long and the width of my table saw blade. Three 1 inch holes are drilled into the base for alignment of the jig along the cut line on the plywood sheet. They are drilled at either end of the slot and in the center along the slot. Since the saw blade on the circular saw is not in the middle from side to side of the foot on the saw the best way to determine where the rails should go is to insert the saw into the slot and put the rails on either side of the circular saw’s foot, one on the left and one on the right. The rails are “u-shaped” stainless steel that I found in the shelf department at HD. They are about ¼ inch x ¼ inch x 6 feet long. I fastened them to the base with small wood screws. Now I had the saw captured between the two rails and it can’t possibly go off-line.

        To determine where the jig should be placed on the plywood sheet I put a small stop (1 inch x 2 inch x 15 inch) board at right angles to the slot under the base at the near end so that I could easily align the base to the plywood sheet. I then used the holes cut in the base to line it up with the cut line and clamped it on. Because I can’t see the end of the slot I put another 1” x 2” board between the rails on the end of the base that would be furthest from the start of the cut. In my case it acts as a stop and keeps me from extending the slot in the base too far and cutting my jig apart (not desirable). I think most people wouldn’t need this piece because you can readily see when you get to the end of your cut.

        The final step is to sand and wax the top side of the jig base, the rails and bottom and sides of the circular saw foot. The saw should glide smoothly the length of the slot with no work piece underneath the blade. If it doesn’t either your kerf is smaller than the width of the circular saw’s blade or the rails are too close together. After a few dry runs the kerf will adjust itself to the width of the blade you’re using. It may be necessary to adjust the spacing of the rails. In my case I was lucky and they were bang on.

        If this description doesn’t work let me know and I’ll try again. Sorry for the lousy job of picture painting.

        Blind Bill

        last try at editing 9:20 pm PDT.

        Comment


        • #19
          Re: Guide for Circular Saw

          I use a $15 straight edge that came with two small c clamps from the home depot. Its two pieces that are 4 feet aluminum that has a slide system to mate them together.Works nice and its light an flat, sucks clamping it up though all the time with a block underneath also so it doesnt dent ply.
          The all in one clamp seems quicker.

          Comment


          • #20
            Re: Guide for Circular Saw

            Trash the cheapo C-clamps that came with your guide and use something like the Irwin Quick-grip clamps. Their jaws are wide enough and the padded cushion that they have will not mar the work surface. Easy one-hand clamping too.
            "It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?" Bob D. 2006

            https://www.youtube.com/user/PowerToolInstitute

            Comment

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