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Improved Crosscut Sled Granite Falls NC

Crosscut sleds have been around for a long time, but few are ideal. Many are heavy and hard to store. Most develop an extra-wide saw cut in the fence and allow the blade to throw sawdust in your face. The following design solves all these problems.

Klingspor’s Woodworking Shop of Hickory
(828) 326-9663
856 21st Street Dr. SE
Hickory, NC

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Lowe's
(828) 304-6420
1450 2Nd Street Ne
Hickory, NC
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M-SA 6 am - 10 pm
SU 8 am - 8 pm

Ace Hardware
(828) 322-3492
2310 N Center St
Hickory, NC
 
Lenoir - Auth Hometown
(828) 757-0505
112D Wilkesboro Blvd Se
Lenoir, NC
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Mon:9-19
Tue:9-19
Wed:9-19
Thu:9-19
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Ace Home & Auto Store
(828) 754-4091
101 Mulberry St NW, on the corner of Harper Ave. & Mulberry St
Lenoir, NC
 
The Home Depot
(828)327-9200
1530 8th St Dr SE
Hickory, NC
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Mon-Sat: 6:00am-10:00pm
Sun: 8:00am-8:00pm

Bethlehem Do it Best Hardware
(828) 495-8351
9771 N.c. Hwy 127
Hickory, NC
 
Lowe's
(828) 726-5246
1201 Hickory Blvd. S.E.
Lenoir, NC
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M-SA 7 am - 9 pm
SU 9 am - 7 pm

LOWE'S OF LENOIR, N. C.
828 726-5246
1201 HICKORY BLVD S.E. LENOIR, NC, 28645
Lenoir, NC
 
LOWE'S OF HICKORY, N. C.
828 304-9063
1550 21ST STREET DRIVE S.E. HICKORY, NC, 28602
Hickory, NC
 
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Improved Crosscut Sled

Improved Crosscut Sled

A split fence guarantees accurate cuts

by Tom Caspar

Whenever I want to make an accurate square cut, I reach for my crosscut sled. Unlike a miter gauge, its right-angle setting doesn’t need constant tweaking. My cuts are always right on the money. 

Crosscut sleds have been around for a long time, but few are ideal. Many are heavy and hard to store. Most develop an extra-wide saw cut in the fence and allow the blade to throw sawdust in your face. My design solves all these problems.

3 New Features

Take a look at these great features:

Zero-clearance subfence. The subfence is composed of two adjustable sides, like many router table fences. When the saw cut between the sides widens with use, simply remove the subfences, re-cut their ends square and re-install them. A zero-clearance slot allows you to quickly make a super-accurate cut. Just align a pencil mark on the workpiece with the saw cut in the fence and you’re good to go. A zero-clearance slot also eliminates tear-out.

Adjustable stops. Two stops mount on the sled’s T-track, making repetitive cuts very easy to set up. One stop is for short stuff; it only travels the sled’s width. The other stop is on a long arm; it’s used for pieces 18 to 48-in. long.

Easy storage. This sled stands upright on either end. In addition, this sled weighs only 24 lbs., making it easy to lift on or off the saw. A clear plastic guard over the blade keeps sawdust from flying in your face. Blocks behind the fence surround the blade when it exits the cut.

I’ve engineered this sled to give you years of reliable use. The fence and back brace are laminated to prevent twist or warp. They won’t sag because they’re stiffened by aluminum. The runners won’t be loose in one season and tight in another, unlike most sleds, because they only bear against one side of the miter slots. 

Sizing Your Sled

Stood on end, this sled is 31-in. tall and just fits under my saw. If you make a shorter sled to fit under your saw you’ll reduce the sled’s 24-in. crosscut capacity.

I used one full sheet (60-in. x 60-in.) of 1/2-in. thick Baltic birch plywood to make my sled’s base, which is 36-in. wide and 31-in. deep. If you’re willing to give up 1-in. of crosscut capacity, you can make the base from one half-sheet of Baltic birch plywood (30-in. x 60-in.). 

Make the Base

1. Cut the base (A) to size. 

2. Make the runners (B). I made mine from the same material as the base: Baltic birch plywood. It’s 1/2-in. thick, but the runners must be 3/8-in. thick. To make the plywood thinner, cut a piece 4 in. wide by 33 in. long. Remove the tablesaw’s guard, raise the blade 1-in. high and set the fence 3/8-in. away from the blade. Stand the plywood on edge and rip both sides. Replace the guard, lay the plywood flat and cut the runners about 1/32-in. narrower than the miter-gauge slo...

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