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Pivoting Fence for a Crosscut Sled

By: John Doyle
A crosscut sled is handy to have around there's no doubt about that. One with a pivoting fence is even better.

The table saw crosscut sled is the most used jig in my workshop. However, on it’s own, it’s not very practical for making angled cuts. To make my sled even more versatile, I decided to modify it by adding a pivoting fence. This allows me to easily make angled cuts. To adjust the fence, simply loosen the knob, pivot the fence to the desired location, and then lock the fence in place with the knob. You can then position your workpiece against the fence and secure it in place with a hold-down clamp. In order to make the fence easy to use, I also marked lines on the base of the sled at 30° and 45° for quick reference. These are two common angles that I use frequently.

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The illustration below shows the dimensions for my sled. It consists of a 3/4" plywood base with hardwood stock used for the rails and the runner. After removing the rails, I cut a dado for a length of standard, 3/4" T-track. The T-track is used to lock the pivoting fence in place as well as secure the material hold-down clamp.

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I made my fence out of three layers of plywood with a hardboard face. The middle layer consists of two shorter pieces. This creates a slot for the knob. A hole drilled near the end of the fence anchors it to the sled base and serves as the pivot point for the fence. To keep workpieces from sliding during use, I also attached a strip of adhesive-backed sandpaper to the fence face. 90° positive stop. Since I still want to be able to quickly make 90° cuts on the sled, I installed a bolt on the inside face of the front rail to act as a positive stop. This is simply a threaded insert with a bolt and lock nut screwed into the insert.

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Published: Nov. 15, 2018
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