A table saw sled is an important tool for safety when using a table saw. You can use it to guide and hold your stock as you cross the blade. The sleds are usually a narrow board with one end fixed at the front edge of the table and that end goes up against the fence on the left side of your saw. The other end can be clamped or glued to any piece of wood with an edge on it, which is commonly referred to as miter gauge extension, therefore locating it perpendicular to your cut line.
There are two designs for these sleds: one-sided (with crosscut notches) and double-sided (with only one set of notches).
In this guide we will discuss crosscut notches and how to make them for your table saw.
How to Make a Cross-cut Sled for a Table Saw
- Best Hybrid Table Saw
- Grinder or Angle Grinder
- Chop Saw or Bandsaw or Circular Saw
- T Track
Duration: 30-45 Minutes
Budget: $50-$100 (USD)
Step 1: Start with a chunk of wood that can serve as your sled (it should be just slightly wider than your table saw’s rail). Using our table saw’s rails as a guide, we cut our sled from 2×10 lumber using our crosscut jig. If you don’t have a crosscut jig, use whatever method is available to you.
Step 2: Cut an 18″ lengthwise strip off the edge of two pieces of particle board, plywood, or another type of wood. These strips will be used as runners. Don’t worry if you can’t find materials that are 3-1/2″ wide. You can trim the width down to 1-1/2″, which is less than half an inch off from our final 1-3/4″ width anyway.
Step 3: Cut a block of wood to the size of your workpiece. Attach the particle board runners to this piece using screws and glue. This block should be narrow enough so that it can slide in between your table saw’s rails and your sled. The length isn’t very important.
Step 4: Attach the bottom assembly to your sled along with a set of T-track rails. We used 5/8″ wide T-track on our sled, but 1/2″ wide track would work as well. If you have 3/4″ thick runners like we did, you need to cut down your T-track to 1/2″ so that it slides into the runners properly. You’ll use screws and glue to attach the bottom and T-track together. Make sure that when you align the track with the edge of your sled, it leaves about 1/4″ of clearance from the side so that you can clamp your work in place later.
Step 5: Attach a fence to either side using L brackets and T track clips. (Don’t worry about the fence height for now). We used the “L” shaped clips included in this set of 100, but you can also use these or just use screws directly into the T-track. It’s important to note that even though these are intended for table saw fences, they will still work if your sled is wider than your workpiece. Simply place the end of the clip against the part of your sled that is closest to you and it’ll stay in place.
We’ve used our table saw sled for a while now and have been very happy with it. It’s extremely versatile and has cut down the amount of time we spend on ripping and crosscutting jobs. We used it to rip down a sheet of plywood to 1/2″ wide material for a small project, as well as making some 1-1/2″ wide strips to hold things in place while we attach them to larger items. It was also helpful to us when we were ripping down 1-3/4″ wide materials so that we could get them all the same length and thickness. We’ve tracked the entire process here for your reference:
Step 6: When attaching your fence, you’ll have an extra margin of space between the T-track rails at right angles. Use a guide to attach it securely and prevent slipping.
This is just an example of how versatile the table saw sled can be, so let us know if you have any questions about building your own or if you have other ideas for using it in your shop!
DIY Crosscut Sled for Table Saw Video
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do I need a sled runner?
No, not everyone needs a sled runner for their table saw.
Do I need a miter sled?
Not necessarily, but it helps with a lot of woodworking projects.
Can I use a miter sled for a miter saw?
Yes. You can use a miter sled for a table saw.
Will a table saw jig help in making a cross cut sled?
Yes, a table saw jig can help you in this project and speed up the process. If you don’t have one, learning how to make a DIY Table Saw Jig can be helpful not only on this project but on other projects as well.
Do I need a cross cut sled if I have a sliding table saw extension?
The answer is no, since a sliding table saw will have better features than what can be achievable with a cross cut sled. The cross cut sled will then be redundant. You can also learn how to make your own DIY Sliding Table Saw Extension.
DIY Crosscut Sled for Table Saw
This ends our How To Guide of DIY Crosscut Sled for Table Saw.
We hope the knowledge you gained here will help you in the future with your DIY or Professional Woodworking projects. We want you to be sure of that what you get from us are 100% facts, so please don’t hesitate to ask for advice or to advise us in return with accurate facts.
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