Thursday, October 11, 2007

Auxiliary Table Saw Fence and Accessories

The Fence
Adapting a pattern from ShopNotes magazine, Volume 10, Issue 60, I made an auxiliary fence for my table saw. It consists of a 3/4 inch baltic birch, three-sided case to fit over the main Biesemeyer table saw fence. The purpose of the auxiliary fence is to hold the many accessories necessary for various table saw cuts: "burying a dado blade to make a rabbet cut, using a featherboard to hold down a workpiece to the table surface, using a taller fence for support in cutting wider or taller workpieces, and offsetting the workpiece from the fence with a stop block. Each of these accessories is easily added to the auxiliary fence using t-track and toilet bolt/knobs.

The adaptation that I made to the original plan involves the method used to hold the auxiliary fence tightly against the Biesemeyer fence. The original pattern suggests drilling holes through both fences and bolting them together. I chose instead to use an idea from the February, 2006 issue of Workbench magazine. The change involves adding a dado on the inside of the right auxiliary frame piece (see inset). A hole is drilled in the middle of that dado and a t-nut installed in that hole to allow a bolt to turn into the the dado space and force a hardboard clamp against the Biesemeyer fence. Two of these clamps hold the auxiliary fence securely in place.
The Accessories
The feather board accessory attaches to the top rail of the auxiliary fence. It consists of two parts, a slider and a featherboard. The slider has a lateral groove which allows it to be attached via a toilet bolt and knob to the track. This attachment allows the slider to move forward, backward and laterally. for placement on the workpiece before the saw blade. The groove allows the featherboard to move laterally to accommodate the dado fence. The actual featherboard is attached to the slider piece with adjustable depth knobs to accommodate various thicknesses of wood.

The dado fence and tall fence are similar in design but very different in use. Both pieces are 3/4 inch baltic birch plywood attached to the left side of the auxiliary fence with t-bolts and nuts. The dado fence is 3+ inches tall while the tall fence is 12 inches tall. the dado accessory is meant to be consumed as the dado blade is buried in it to make a narrower dado. The tall fence is designed to provide vertical support when cutting taller workpieces.
This issue of ShopNotes has been really useful since this is the second major project I have made from it. I previously made the air compressor caddy. I like the addition of this auxiliary fence to my workshop. First it replaces a couple of poor quality accessories I had attempted to use. It also is an improvement in my mind over the original plan since I did not have to drill holes in my Biesemeyer fence. I wish I could give credit to the source for the clamping alternative but I just don't remember the source. Finally, it lends itself to further modification and adaptation so it will be fun to try to add other accessories.
Project completed October, 2007.

1 comment:

Pete said...

Thanks, just what I was looking for on the 3rd page of google. Just got a new to me table saw with this fence and trying to see what other wood workers are doing to attach other fences.