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  • Dado question

    I am building a bookshelf as part of my built in entertainment center project. I decided to cut long dado's the length of the bookshelf sides (~80") for an adjustable track for shelves. I did one side with the router and it was quite a bit of effort (lots of clamping, multiple passes, had to be done in 2 sections also due to clamping diffulty) Anyways this was a PIA, so for the 2nd side, I used my 3650 and Freud stacked dado set. I've never used a dado set before, but I followed the instructions and used common sense (or so I thought) and had a few issues.

    1. Freud instructions say the outer blades should have the lettering facing out. If you are to do this with both blades then the teeth will be backwards on one of them. I put one face out and one face in.

    2. Chippers should be placed 90 degrees. That's fine for the first 2 chippers, but when you add a 3rd (I was doing 5/8" dado) it squeezes in pretty tight to the first.

    3. The biggest problem of all, on both cuts near the end of the cut, the ply started to shift uncontollably away from the fence. I need to stop the saw and re-saw the dado. The result is a nice clean 5/8" dado for 75" and about 1 1" dado for the last 5" - is this because the stock was too long? Was I dadoing on the wrong side of the fence? Stock was 18" I had fence set at right 2.5" and I pushed from left of blade against the fence - not too much force.

    The piece is usable, and I am considering this a learning expeience. Thanks for helping a newbie.

  • #2
    I cut dados in the shelving I built a couple of months ago. I used a router, and had few problems. I used a single piece of plywood (edge scrap from the shelf uprights) as a guide. You can even size it so that all you need to do is make tyhe edge flush with the edge of your shelf. I bought a 5/8 " straight bit which allowed me to make the cut in a single pass (it is a tight fit with the rails. A small amount of sanding takes care of this). The only problem I had was the edge of the router wanted to slide under the plywood guide in the middle. A third clamp in the middle took care of this. FYI the uprights were 74" long, I wouldn't think about cutting dadoes that long on a table saw without infeed and outfeed rollerstands and featherboards on top and the side. I think it is much easier to rout them.
    Last edited by Clovishound; 02-23-2006, 03:01 AM.

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    • #3
      Let me try to answer your 3 questions.

      1. Yes the lettered side must face out. If one of your outside blades faces backwards when doing this it means two things could have happened. First let me say they are not reversible. The teeth are made to be either left or right outside cutters. You have a set with either 2 left or 2 right cutters. I did say two things could have happened, the other being that it was painted wrong. either way I would return it.

      2. As far as the chippers and 90 degrees goes I just evenly space them.


      3. What kind of an out feed setup do you have? There is no right or wrong side of the fence. I would try using feather boards to hold the stock to the fence. After running 75" OK I think it is just the size of the stock being hard to handle.
      SSG, U.S. Army
      Retired
      K.I.S.S., R.T.F.M.

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