Author Topic: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"  (Read 1020 times)

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Offline sunny days

  • Posts: 1
Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« on: August 29, 2020, 08:07 PM »
I have a cabinet saw with a 30" fence. I am wondering what everyone is doing to make repeated cross cuts for lengths longer than what their table saw fence allows (Ie for tall gables or longer shelves)?


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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 1980
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2020, 08:39 PM »
I'd do it on a crosscut sled with an extension arm and stop block clamped to the sled. I have a JessEm miter gauge; I might also add an extension arm to it if the stock is not too wide & long. One last trick: place the saw close to a wall, and screw a block to the wall as a stop block, or some similar setup.
« Last Edit: August 29, 2020, 08:48 PM by ChuckM »

Offline MaineShop

  • Posts: 55
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2020, 09:47 PM »
Tracksaw, or chop saw for me. I don't do a lot of cross cutting on my table saw.

Offline CeeJay

  • Posts: 172
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2020, 11:20 PM »
Chop saw station. Up to 72” on this one.




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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 1980
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2020, 11:52 PM »
The OP is looking for ideas about handling long stock with a TABLE SAW!!!

Offline MaineShop

  • Posts: 55
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #5 on: August 30, 2020, 12:21 AM »
I guess my point was that it is really not the best tool for cross cutting long skinny material. A big cross cut sled can take you to a point, and works excellent for smaller pieces that balance in the sled. But cross cutting without a sled can be dangerous and a good way to have the piece kick back on a table saw, unless you have big slider. There is a reason why miter saws are as common as they are, they are much better at crosscutting long slender stock.

If a table saw is all you have on hand then I would make the widest cross cut sled I could. And for the first couple cuts I would keep the piece centered so to speak in the sled until I got the pieces to a manageable size. I am picturing processing 12 ft lumber on a 3 ft sled. Take the rip fence right off and use the cut on the sled to mark your length. Not the fastest solution but it is doable, good clamps on the sled would make life easier.

Offline CeeJay

  • Posts: 172
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #6 on: August 30, 2020, 04:10 AM »
I guess my point was that it is really not the best tool for cross cutting long skinny material. A big cross cut sled can take you to a point, and works excellent for smaller pieces that balance in the sled. But cross cutting without a sled can be dangerous and a good way to have the piece kick back on a table saw, unless you have big slider. There is a reason why miter saws are as common as they are, they are much better at crosscutting long slender stock.

That’s my view as well. Even with a crosscut sled I don’t really like cutting slender stock much longer than 48” on the table saw.


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Offline Bob D.

  • Posts: 1732
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #7 on: August 30, 2020, 05:20 AM »
The OP refers to the TS fence and cross-cutting, not sure what everyone else does but I do not normally use a TS fence for crosscuts.

I would suggest if you have multiple crosscuts on pieces wider than a SCMS can handle, or if you don't have a SCMS, use a track saw with a guide rail square like the TSO GRS-16 and cut over a piece of foam or other sacrifical surface.
-----
It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 1980
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #8 on: August 30, 2020, 08:42 AM »
As far as I know, every cabinet saw (the one the OP has), or for that matter, every table saw, sold in North America comes with a miter gauge, and a miter gauge is for cross cutting. Cross cutting is a standard and safe operation on any table saw as long as the operator knows how to use it. Every machine has its limitations, but a board that's just over 30", say 8" by 40" or 50", can be handled easily on a cabinet saw -- by hobbyists or tradespeople. Of course, even a hammer can hurt someone badly if they don't know how to use it properly.

To cross cut a piece with the fence safely, simply clamp a stop block to the fence. This basic technique has been covered in countless videos and magazines. Anyone who has watched New Yankee Workshop knows Norm did that all the time especially when he cut tenons on the table saw -- another important use of cross cutting on the table saw for those who make tenons in such a manner. Since I have the JessEm stock guides, I often use one of the roller guides as a stop block when I use the miter gauge.

Over 95% of the time -- at least for me --it's cross cutting when ones uses a cross-cut sled...that's why a cross-cut sled is called as such.  So, in short, cross cutting on the table saw is nothing new or unusual.

As for alternatives or suggestions, yes, the OP can cross cut a long stock...with other tools such as a bandsaw, a jigsaw, or even hack...a hack saw too. [tongue] And no one is disputing the fact that a miter saw -- which the OP doesn't say whether he has one -- is great for cross cutting. Especially when it comes to "repeatedly" (assuming that means multiple pieces to the same length, not just cross cutting multiple times).

« Last Edit: August 30, 2020, 09:10 AM by ChuckM »

Offline cpw

  • Posts: 217
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2020, 08:46 AM »
Assuming a 3/4" side, a 24" deep cabinet, at 95" you are around 37lbs that you need to manipulate.

I'd probably use a circular saw (or better yet, a track saw) and gang cut if I needed 2 pieces for tall (say 95") cabinet sides to be exact.

I would not attempt it on a jobsite saw because there isn't enough heft for a long piece and long sled.  I would think about it on a contractor or cabinet saw.  I'd use a long sled, and make sure there was a roller stand on the side to provide some support to avoid having the workpiece lever up.

Offline tjbnwi

  • Posts: 6311
  • Cedar Tucky Indiana
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2020, 09:25 AM »
We process every sheet goods piece with TS-55's.

Average build we'll go through 3 bunks of 3/4" plywood.

Tom

Offline cubevandude

  • Posts: 82
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #11 on: August 30, 2020, 10:14 AM »
I built a sled for my table saw and it's better for wider boards than a miter saw.

If you build it with a zero clearance then you just line up your mark with the edge of the saw blade cut.

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 1980
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2020, 05:17 PM »
I built a sled for my table saw and it's better for wider boards than a miter saw.
snip
If you build it with a zero clearance then you just line up your mark with the edge of the saw blade cut.

“To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”

To a woodworker with a miter saw (or track saw).... [big grin] [big grin] [big grin]

Offline jcrowe1950

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  • Posts: 108
    • Woodcraft Chattanooga, TN
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2020, 05:43 PM »
I built a sled for my table saw and it's better for wider boards than a miter saw.
snip
If you build it with a zero clearance then you just line up your mark with the edge of the saw blade cut.

“To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”

To a woodworker with a miter saw (or track saw).... [big grin] [big grin] [big grin]

The thing about doing long cuts on narrow stock, or any width stock on a crosscut sled is repeatability. If all you are doing is a one-off, cutting to a line can work. If you are cutting some number of pieces square on the end, a good miter saw (Kapex IMO) with extensions and flip stops is the way to go. If you are cutting wide stock like cabinet sides, I have found either an MFT for shorter lengths or something like TSO parallel guides if your length is up to 50" and for a longer single run I would still use the TSO square and gang cut the opposite cabinet sides. Once you get a method of work, stick with it. Perfecting your repeatability and accuracy skills gets that out of the way and then you can concentrate on other aspects of your work.
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 1980
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2020, 10:13 PM »
Once you get a method of work, stick with it.

I fully agree with that as practice makes perfect, except when an established method doesn't work anymore for a particular situation -- seemingly that's what happened to the OP who cross cuts things on the table saw -- then I'll look for shop-made solutions, instead of going out and buying more tools or accessories or both. Money rarely is the issue, space is.

For the same reason, I've stuck to my cabinet saw, miter saw and bandsaw for all kinds of sawing tasks (short and long) -- without failure so far. I've used those saws inside and out, establishing methods of work as well as workflow that serve all my needs.

I had a TS75 and tracks, but they got so little use that I sold them after a year or two of ownership. I seldom deal with any sheet goods over 4'x4'...when I do, I have them cut to rough sizes at the lumber yard or home centre for transportation.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2020, 10:35 PM by ChuckM »

Offline JimD

  • Posts: 474
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2020, 04:26 PM »
I have a big crosscut sled for my PCS but it does not work well for me on big pieces of wood, solid or sheet.  I could probably figure out how to make it work but what I do instead is use my track saw with track dogs in the holes of my outfeed/accessory table.  My holes are not perfect, I used a router base and pegboard to make them, so I have a fence with a threaded screw adjust to square it to the track then I can cut away, accurately and easily.  Up to about 32 inches.  For one cut I do not bother to set this up, I just mark and cut with the track saw.  But for a bunch of pieces that are wider than my CMS can handle I use the track saw, not the table saw.

Offline rst

  • Posts: 2446
Re: Repeated crosscuts at lengths greater than 30"
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2020, 06:46 PM »
I have an MFT that I installed an 52" Incra with multiple flip down stops mounted over the side rails so I can crosscut 27 1/2" for wide stock and a 12" Makita slider with 8' on both sides, again with multiple Kreg flip down stops for narrow stock.  Everything else gets cut with my TS 75 or TSC 55 on a knockdown cutting table. My advantage is that my (just built) shop is mostly commercial and also my play house.