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Tips for Mastering Featherboards Gloversville NY

This wraparound featherboard produces chatter-free moldings, because it provides continuous pressure ahead of and behind the cutter. Cut a 2-in. arc in the end of the blank before you cut the feathers.

The Home Depot
135 Hanaford Plaza
Amsterdam, NY
Mon: 7:00am-10:00pm
Tue: 7:00am-9:00pm
Wed-Sat: 7:00am-10:00pm
Sun: 8:00am-8:00pm

Noble Ace Hardware
(518) 762-3658
130 S Comrie Ave, Eagle Chevrolet
Johnstown, NY
L. J. Hand Farm Center
(518) 922-8311
1431 State Hwy 161
Fultonville, NY
Amsterdam Riverfront True Value Hardware
(518) 684-6100
1000 River Front Center
Amsterdam, NY
(518) 954-2400
4825 State Highway 30
Amsterdam, NY
M-SA 7 am - 10 pm
SU 8 am - 8 pm

Gloversville True Value Hardware
(518) 773-3030
86-88 E Fulton St
Gloversville, NY
Tanner Lumber Inc.
(518) 883-3012
4 N Second Ave
Broadalbin, NY
Fastenal- Fonda
25 Broadway St PO Box 544 Fonda, NY, 12068
Fonda, NY
Lowe's of Amsterdam
4825 State Highway 30 Amsterdam, NY, 12010
Amsterdam, NY
Fort Plain True Value Hardware
(518) 993-3834
12 Willett St
Fort Plain, NY

Tips for Mastering Featherboards

Tips for Mastering Featherboards

The featherboard  gets its name from the rows of flexible “fingers” that act like a bird's feather and give way in one direction only. They help ensure safety and accuracy, because they keep consistent pressure on stock where it's needed most, close to the cut. They're indispensable for eliminating bumps on a molded edge or uneven bottoms in rabbets and dadoes. Shop-made featherboards are often superior to commercial ones, because they can be custom fit to your machines and they cost next to nothing. All the featherboards in this article were made from the type of scrap lumber and plywood that can be found in any shop.

Featherboards Made Easy
The safest way to make featherboards is on the bandsaw using a simple sled with a miter slot runner. Cut a 30-degree angle on one end of the featherboard blank first. Mark a parallel line about 2-1/2 in. from the angled end. Set the blank on the sled and make the first cut from the end to the line. Then, slide the featherboard over to the next mark to make the second cut and continue across the board's width. A feather length of about 2-1/2 in. with cuts made every 1/8 in. provides the right balance between flexibility (for firm pressure without being too stiff) and strength (so the feathers won't snap off) for most hardwoods or multi-ply birch. Increase the feather spacing to 3/16-in. when you are using softer woods, such as pine or basswood, or regular hardwood plywood. You can always fine-tune the length and spacing to suit your own needs.

Perfect Pressure Every Time
Positioning a featherboard can be a pain. Too close to the fence or table and the squeeze is so tight you can barely feed the stock. Too loose and you've lost effectiveness. Try taking about 1/8 in. off the first feather. Set that end against the stock you plan to machine and clamp the featherboard parallel to the table's fence. The pressure should automatically be just right.

Tall Support for Tall Stock
A tall featherboard can apply pressure against the entire height of the fence. It's especially useful for holding tall, narrow stock—for instance, a door panel—against a fence. Just glue some scraps to create a block that is as tall as your fence is. Then, cut the feathers on your bandsaw sled.

Bit-Bridging Featherboard
This wraparound featherboard produces chatter-free moldings, because it provides continuous pressure ahead of and behind the cutter. Cut a 2-in. arc in the end of the blank before you cut the feathers.

Guaranteed Square EdgesJointing an absolutely square edge on a wide board can be tricky for someone new to the jointer. The least little tip away from the fence and you'll have to start over. This paddle-style featherboard can bridge your jointer's guard while keeping your stock pushed firmly against the fence. The paddle featherboard is easy to make  and is jus...

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