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Old 11-08-2018, 06:23 AM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Segmenting questions

Hello,

What are most of you using to cutdown the wood into the patterns you make? I have an older 10inch craftsman table saw but I feel like I’m destined to lose a finger or two trying to get the wood thin enough.

Should I look into a bandsaw? Or are there better options?

Thanks,

Jake


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Old 11-08-2018, 07:18 AM   #2 (permalink)
 
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Hi Jake, I have cut thin slices on a Craftsman Table Saw, a Bosch Contractors Table Saw and a Byrnes Model Makers Table saw. Each, can work - how you construct your sleds will be important. Zero tolerance inserts are also important depending on the sizes of your pieces.

These are just a few thoughts to get you started. I know others will chime in and will have excellent suggestions. Many ways to get to the same result, and knowing how to use what you have available is vital for safety.
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Old 11-08-2018, 08:37 AM   #3 (permalink)
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When the fear of losing a digit is the number one criteria of a person, then the bandsaw seems to be the saw of choice - but it too can cut off a digit just as quickly. Bandsaws do not have the kickback that circular motion saws have.

For those who have considerable experience and are totally focused on where their fingers are at all times, a table saw with sled is the saw of choice. When cutting smaller parts and segments, smoothness becomes an issue and a TS is a requirement.

Look for a thin kerf blade and make a sled. Sleds with hold downs take some of the danger out.

Several years ago, I made my own Byrnes type of saw from a circular saw and made a sled within a sled in which I could cut to better than .01 accuracy repeatedly.

Circular saws/Table saws such as Byrnes is necessary when making laminates as BS will make smooth cuts but in laminates, the grain cut will show up. Thickness sanders can sand the cut marks out but that becomes much more work.



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Old 11-08-2018, 10:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakePWM View Post
Hello,

What are most of you using to cutdown the wood into the patterns you make? I have an older 10inch craftsman table saw but I feel like I’m destined to lose a finger or two trying to get the wood thin enough.

Should I look into a bandsaw? Or are there better options?

Thanks,

Jake


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You ask the question of what are you using to do segmenting work. Well I have a shop full of tools and know how to use them safely and efficiently and each tool can play a roll in my rendition of segmenting pen blanks because that is what it seems we are talking about. I have no fear of my tools but do respect them and use all safety measure that I feel necessary to get an operation done. These methods suit my needs and comfort levels.

My point here everyone is different and everyone has certain tools to work with in their shop. Everyone has a different comfort level of using these tools. So no one person can tell you what tool to use. We make suggestions but again it is what we do and use.

Basically the 2 tools to cut and slice wood for segmenting is a tablesaw or bandsaw. The bandsaw if more about saving material because of the thinner blade. All tools in a shop can and will hurt you if not properly used. The adapting of sleds to do some of the procedures is always a good thing if constructed well and thought out. They will help keep the fingers and hands further away from the blades and can make cuts much more accurate. If you have good blades and keep sharp you can probably get away with out doing alot of sanding. They do have many companies that sell all dimensions of woods and other materials so that maybe an option. All tools need to be tuned properly to give them maximum use.

I can not give you a specific tool because I use them all. Now if you have more direct questions on how to do something I would be able to help you more. Good luck and work safely.
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Old 11-08-2018, 02:09 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Thank you all for the feedback. I supposed my question should of been “how do you use a table saw safely to make thin accurate cuts” in which case it seems that a sled is best. I will do some looking into those. My primary concern with the table saw is that it hasn’t been taken care of very well over the years and could use some TLC and a new blade.


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Old 11-08-2018, 04:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
 
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Thank you all for the feedback. I supposed my question should of been “how do you use a table saw safely to make thin accurate cuts” in which case it seems that a sled is best. I will do some looking into those. My primary concern with the table saw is that it hasn’t been taken care of very well over the years and could use some TLC and a new blade.


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That is the start of things. Get it back to shape and get yourself a nice Freud thin kerf 60 tooth blade and dive in. There are so many examples of good looking and good working sleds on the net. Everyone tweaks them just enough to suit their needs but bottom line is hold down clamps and tall enough fence to keep the fingers away from the blade. I use my tablesaw almost every day I am working in the shop and would be lost if I did not have one. My switch just went on me yesterday so I need to replace that after over 30 years of use.
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Old 11-08-2018, 04:57 PM   #7 (permalink)
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John T gave some good advice above.

If you don't use your TS for other things that much, check and see if your saw can hold a 7 1/4 inch blade. As long as you can get an inch depth of cut out it, you can find some 7 1/4 in blades with 1/16" kerf blades that are great for blank segments.

Freud makes a 5/64 kerf blade 8 inches in diameter.

If kerf thickness is not a problem Freud makes a 10 inch 3/32 kerf 10" blade.
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Old 11-08-2018, 07:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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From experience, I don't see any major issue using a good quality miter box and hand saw for segmenting pen blanks. Sure, it might take a few seconds longer to make the cut but I'm not in that much rush usually. Very thin kerf is an advantage too. And the fear level pretty low
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Old 11-08-2018, 08:23 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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I understand the benefit of getting a blade with a higher tooth count.

Does kerf only matter in regards to how much wood is wasted from the cut? Or would there be another reason that I am unaware of where a thinner kerf would be beneficial?

I appreciate all the information, this forum has been a wealth of knowledge for me


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Old 11-08-2018, 08:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
 
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Originally Posted by JakePWM View Post
I understand the benefit of getting a blade with a higher tooth count.

Does kerf only matter in regards to how much wood is wasted from the cut? Or would there be another reason that I am unaware of where a thinner kerf would be beneficial?

I appreciate all the information, this forum has been a wealth of knowledge for me


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Most of my segmenting is Celtic knots, where I cut most of the way through the blank to insert the knot pieces. Using a 1/16" kerf 7 1/4" blade in my table saw allows me to use finer material to make the knot.
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