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your crosscut sled is way too big

i'm making a new table saw crosscut sled and i've designed one that has everything you need plus a sweet extra feature that you'll find out about later this whole sled is made from less than a two foot by four foot sheet of three quarter inch baltic birch plywood though it's expensive it'll last a long time since it's durable and free from voids and delaminations that you typically see in cheaper plywood i'm gonna cut out all my parts using the cut sheet from the plans that i made which are available for purchase via the link in the description plans what do you think you are now an influencer i see what i have to deal with the final dimensions of the base measure 32 inches wide by 10 and a half inches deep which may seem shallow but i want to use a sled for mainly cutting narrower boards rather than larger panels i tend to use my miter gauge for these types of cuts but it's definitely better to use a cross cut sled when you can the problem with a miter gauge is that the work piece doesn't rest on a static surface instead it slides across this slippery wax table saw top and this is super annoying when it wanders left and right through the cut and it causes it to be out of square i already built a humongous table saw sled years ago but i rarely use it because it's so freaking heavy and i am but a little weakling there's so much room to the right of the blade here that just never gets used and it adds a bunch of weight it's also really deep but i can't think of a time when i actually maxed it out i also decided to eliminate the forward fence to cut down on the weight even more 95 of the time a table saw sled doesn't need to be so large but i do recognize the need to cut larger panels so i'll be making a very simple panel style sled in a future video that'll be a perfect sibling to this one i think i'll call it sister sled [Music] for the fence the stop block and a part of the guard i'm doubling up the thickness of plywood to make them beefier both the stop block and the guard are simple since they're just the same two pieces of plywood glued together for the fence however i want to ensure that it gets glued nice and straight so i'm going to clamp it to a two foot framing level while the glue dries it seems like it's very common to embed t-track in your cross-cut sled base to use it for accessories and expandability one reason why you might want to add some t-track to your sled base is to use some hold down clamps for really small parts where you shouldn't put your hands too close to the blade i rarely encounter this problem but when i have in the past i hold the part with the eraser end of a pencil conversely you might want to cross cut something very long and to prevent it from tipping you can secure it using these types of hold down clamps as well i can't say i've ever really encountered this either because as a hobbyist furniture maker i never have to cut anything incredibly long if i do i can just use a square with a circular saw and get adequate results or if you have an accurate miter saw even better you can also use t-track in your base to trick out your cross-cut sled with modular components to expand the capabilities of your sled like adding a miter attachment i'm more of a fan of keeping separate jigs for separate functions because it's simpler quicker and potentially more accurate in use so i won't be adding t-track to my sled base because personally i don't find it necessary since there is no forward fence holding the sled together on the far side i need to make sure that it has plenty of support back here so things stay hunky-dory so i designed a beefy bracket that doubles as a guard so the blade doesn't jump out and bite me first i gotta cut a couple of dados in this piece which is actually two different parts that make up the guard but i strategically left these as one piece in the cut sheet so that i can cut two dados at once to cut this you can use a dado stack in your table saw or conversely a rider table if you live in a country where owning a dado stack will land you 11 months in the shoe this dado needs to be the exact same width as the part of the guard we laminated before and be careful here three quarters of an inch plywood is definitely not three quarters of an inch so use the part to measure the width of the dado you need there is an additional dado going in the other direction that's best to cut now and that's the width of a single piece of plywood after splitting into two the last dado magically transforms into a rabbit and the first wide dado lines up perfectly between both pieces i did it this way because it's sometimes safer to work with one larger piece rather than multiple smaller pieces now i added a radius to any of the exposed corners of each of the guard parts so i don't shank myself you can do this with a jigsaw or a bandsaw if you don't have one then sand the part with a belt or disc sander or you can also hand sand this if you don't have either i'm also going to round over all the exposed edges with my palm router so my dainty hands don't get cut to assemble the guard bracket i'm going to clamp everything together temporarily to countersink four holes where the bottom meets the dado turned rabbet then i can add some glue and screw the bottom part into the rabbet now i can glue the laminated piece and only clamp it do not put screws in this because the blade will hit them the miter rails or miter bars are what guide the sled through the miter slots on your table saw top these can be made from wood or purchased from a manufacturer making them out of wood isn't difficult just be careful to sneak up on the perfect fit by taking the smallest amount possible off and checking each time you want the fit to be snug so you can adjust with sandpaper later if you're going to make them out of wood you want to use hardwood plywood like baltic birch since this will be both stable and dense enough to stand up to long-term use i've used hardwood in the past like maple but i find with the changing seasons i have to adjust the fit from time to time when it gets more humid only to find it becomes a little loose when it dries out don't make them out of soft wood they'll be unstable and not durable at all for the most durable and flexible option i've chosen to go with these inexpensive manufactured miter bars that you can find via a link in the description the brilliant thing about these is that they feature this expanding nylon washer that removes any slop when you tighten this allen screw they're also pre-drilled and countersunk but best of all i don't have to make them to install the miter bars on the bottom of the base i first need to establish the sled's position on the table saw top to do this i measured from the left of the sled and made a mark this let me know where the blade will intersect the base now i slid the fence from the left and secured it down where it touches the base in this position do not move the fence ever again like forever i p

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