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Ideas for a featherboard

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  • Ideas for a featherboard

    What is the best and/or most accessible kind of wood to use to make a featherboard? (I only have lumberyards available to me). I would like to make my own but am a little concerned about the safety in doing so. I do not have a bandsaw. I saw the design for a featherboard in the TS2424 table saw manual. Is that one acceptible?

  • #2
    Ivan,
    I made my own feather boards, lots of them in assorted sizes, thickness, length, width, all permutations. I made them for use on a TS2424 and made them on a TS2424. Turned out great.
    All I used was spare bits of wood that I had. That was Oak, Maple, Birch and Poplar oh and some wood I couldnt identify (Hardwood from west coast, Abutus I think.) I have a bandsaw but found the cuts too thin, tried my TS blade but perhaps a little too thick ideally, but made some and then made more with a thin kerf blade, again worked fine.

    Go ahead, just try to use straight grain wood.

    Cheers Ivor in Calgary

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    • #3
      What I have for wood possibilities are pine, poplar, maple and oak. Should I stay with the harder woods? What effects do the various dimensions have on their uses? (i.e. length, width, thicknesses, etc.) Which sizes are the most important? Will the kerf on the standard TS2424 be too wide to make them?

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      • #4
        Ivan,

        Usually a hard wood is better for a feather board. The maple and the oak are good choises. I made mine out of cherry useing the TS2424 and a regular 1/8" kerf blade. I set up the saw for the first finger to be an 1/4" thick. So with a ruler I was 3/8" to the outside of the blade. Then I move the fence 3/8" for the rest of the fingers. To control the lenght I set up a stop block & I pre cut the angle in the feather borad stock. I uesd an 30 degree angle. The with of the stock was 6". The lenght of the stock was 30" before the angle was cut.

        I hope this helps

        [ 06-05-2002, 07:49 PM: Message edited by: Andy B. ]
        Andy B.

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        • #5
          Can someone explain the theory of construction of a featherboard? Why is it so long? Are the variables in construction according to its application? (for example, the length, width, angle of the fingers, distance between cuts in the fingers, etc.)

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          • #6
            Length has mostly to do with horizontal use, so you can reach a clamping point. That's why the little ones that clamp into the miter slot are so popular---need a slight bit of filing to fit the slots on the 2424, but work.

            Agree--hardwood a good choice, but I've also used pine (no knots or sap pockets) with good success. I cut mine with a regular ts blade, making the fingers about 3/16" wide. Takes time, since you should stop the saw at the end of each cut---don't back out the wood, but it will work.
            Dave

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            • #7
              The farther the fence and board are farther form the the saw the longer the board needs to be. The angle is a personal choise & the with of the fingers.

              [ 06-06-2002, 12:16 PM: Message edited by: Andy B. ]
              Andy B.

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              • #8
                So the length was due to convenience for anchoring. I guess I was thinking too technical. I thought there might be other issues having to do with leverage, impact absorption, etc.

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                • #9
                  Sorry for all the questions but I am still learning. My first featherboard worked great. It was so nice not worrying about my board moving away from the fence. Any suggestions as to the smallest width a featherboard should be? (for example, 4", 5", etc.) The manual suggested 8" but that sure seemed large. Does it depend on what you are holding in place?

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                  • #10
                    The larger the board the more pressuer aginest the fence! The with should be bewteen 6-8".

                    [ 06-07-2002, 03:43 PM: Message edited by: Andy B. ]
                    Andy B.

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                    • #11
                      Ivan, Of my homemade selection of featherboards I have a couple as narrow as 2 inches, oak scrap. Sometimes long and thin is useful.

                      Cheers Ivor in Calgary

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