When cutting wood, a taper cut is made when the angle of the cut makes one end of the piece smaller than the other. For it to be a real taper, there needs to be a smooth change from one end to the other.
So, we’ll walk you through the steps on How to Cut a Taper on a Table Saw and take the guesswork out of making curved cuts with a table saw. Really, it’s not that hard, and you should be able to figure it out quickly.
Why And How To Safely Cut Paper With a Table Saw?
There are a lot of situations in which you’ll require boards or planks that aren’t quite straight. When it comes to work that involves a kitchen fit-out, tapers collaborate with fitters to create one-of-a-kind tables that are both creative and crafted to fit precisely within complex kitchen fit-outs.
It’s common practice to utilize tapered planks as the legs for furniture like tables, bookcases, chairs, and benches while crafting these items. Tapers are typically an excellent method for shaping wood so that it can fit into unusual forms or locations that have restricted space.
What’s Required To Cut A Taper with A Table Saw:
When making taper cuts with a table saw, you’ll need the following tools and materials to get a straight and accurate taper.
- A basic cutting jig or a Rockler taper jig.
- Pieces of wood that are bigger than your bank
- Some wood screws can drive themselves.
- An electric drill or a driver with a hammer
- A measuring tape and a pencil or pen
- A Simple push stick or push block
- Wear safety glasses and earplugs.
The Proper Way to Cut Taper with a Table Saw
Here are the Steps for Cutting a Taper on a Table Saw:
Using this approach, you will create something resembling a sled for your wood. If you plan on using a table saw to perform taper cuts, then it is highly recommended that you invest in a tapering jig.
Take note that the sled that you use with your table saw can be as straightforward or involved as you choose. On the other hand, if you only need to make a few taper cuts, there is no reason to go to such great lengths. If you only needed to make one curve or two cuts, we would design the sled as straightforwardly as possible.
In spite of this, if you need to cut more than one taper, you might wish to beef up the stability of your sled so that the full procedure can be completed in a shorter amount of time.
Measure and mark the taper line on the blank you want to trim. The best way to do this is to mark the width of each end and then use a ruler to connect the marks. Mark the end of the curve where you want it, even if the blank is longer than the final cut. If you mark the end of the blank instead of the length you want, the curve won’t work right.
Once you’ve marked the piece of wood, make sure you remember which side is the side you’ll throw away. This is the part of the blank that you won’t use for your project. You might want to mark it now so you don’t end up with two pieces of the same length and have to figure out what went wrong.
Decide where the sled will sit. You need a flat piece of wood with one straight edge and a width big enough to cover the part of your blank that will be thrown away.
The base should be a few inches longer than the blank, if possible. This will help when putting the guide in place. It is very important to have a straight edge. Your table saws rip fence will run along this edge. If the edge isn’t straight, the cut won’t be either.
Use screws to connect the blank to the guide. You should put the discard on top of the sled so that the side you want to keep hangs off the edge. Your trim line needs to be in line with your sled’s straight edge. The best way to do this is to line up the other edge of your sled with the trim line you drew.
Making marks on the guide is another way to line up your blank. To do this, you can measure the width of the discard’s ends and mark them on the guide. So that the blade doesn’t cut the sled, you need to make sure that the curve line is just a little bit over the edge. It’s best to glue the blank to the side you’re not going to use, so you don’t damage the piece you need.
You need to determine whether you will utilize the blank more than once or simply the one time now that it has been attached to the sled. You can cut the blank using the procedure described up top if you just intend to use it once before throwing it away.
Add blocks to your sled if you need to make a few of the same taper cuts. With these blocks, you can quickly and easily place your next blank without having to measure and line it up. You only need two small scraps to make blocks. They should all have straight edges and, ideally, be thicker than the blanks you’re cutting.
Put the blocks in place so that they are flat and hard against the edge of the blank. You should put them at the beginning and end of the blank. Screw them into the guide once they are in place. When you need to line up a blank in the future, just put the edge against the blocks and screw it down.
Next, put the guide’s straight edge between the tapered jig and the table saws rip fence. This should move your taper line toward the blade, and if you use the suggested table saw taper jig, you can keep yourself safe from the table saw blade.
If necessary, the height of the blade can be adjusted. It ought to be around 18 inches taller than the aperture. If you want all of your fingers, you shouldn’t lift the blade any higher than it now is. Even if your hand brushes the blade when it is only 1/8 of an inch above the blank, there is a very low chance that you will lose a finger.
Make sure to fix and set the fence so that the taper line can pass through the blade without any resistance or obstructions. Using push blocks or a push stick, slowly but firmly push the blank through the blade.
Cut all the way through the blank so that the side that you want to keep can fall away from the sled. Remember to turn off the saw when you’re done cutting.
Last but not least, here’s a quick tip for beginners to help you avoid confusion and anger. If you want to use the sled again, make sure you take the side you just threw away before you join the next side.
Additional Factors To Consider:
Sometimes the things you get go of end up being more valuable than the things you preserve. When the larger piece of the sled, which should be kept, is attached to the smaller piece, which should be discarded, it can be difficult to move the sled.
When faced with challenges of this nature, you should attach the keep to the sled. You can’t drill screws in from the side that has nothing on it though; you have to do it from the side that has the sled. By doing it in this manner, you can prevent the screws from damaging one side of the blank.
Keep in mind that the straightness of your cut will only be as good as the edge that is running along the fence. If the guide edge that you are using isn’t straight, your cut won’t be straight. Make sure that the guide is square before you attempt to cut a curved edge with it.
If you want to create a sled but don’t have any plyboard or random pieces of wood, you should visit the hardware store in your area. You should be able to purchase scraps for a few bucks most of the time.
Advice on Achieving Accuracy:
- When working with masking tape, it is important to avoid using too much of it because doing so may increase the entire width of the wood and result in an erroneous cut.
- Before beginning the cut, make sure that the mark is aligned with the saw blade so that you get precise and straight edges.
- On a regular basis, you should inspect the saw blade for broken or missing teeth as well as splits.
- Use a blade that is designed specifically for the task at hand if you are working with damp wood or lumber that has been treated.
- Make sure you’re using a razor-sharp blade that has the right amount of serrations. More teeth on the saw blade result in a better cut but also a longer cutting time, whereas larger teeth result in faster but more ragged cuts.
How to Stay Safe:
- It is not a good idea to be directly behind the blade or too near to it in case it kicks back at you. Kickback is a very risky maneuver that must at all times be avoided.
- When using a table saw, you should not protect your hands by wearing gloves. In addition, remove any rings, bands, or other pieces of jewelry from your fingers that could potentially become entangled in the table saw or the material.
- When you are cutting, position yourself to one side of the saw blade, and make sure that no one else is standing directly in front of the blade while it is moving.
- Avoid moving a piece of wood or trying to keep it down by reaching across the saw’s blade.
Bottom Line: How to Cut a Taper on a Table Saw
Anyone who works with wood should learn how to cut a curve on a table saw. Getting a straight and even taper is easy if you follow the step-by-step instructions in this article.
When using a table saw, make sure to always follow safety rules and use the right size diamond saw blade for the job. With practice, you’ll be able to cut a taper on a table saw like it’s nothing, and you’ll be able to make beautiful, useful furniture with ease.
Can Table Saw Cut at Angles?
When ripping wood, which means making long cuts straight to the grain, table saws can be used. With the miter gauge, you can make complex cuts on your table saw that you would normally only be able to do with a compound miter saw or radial-arm saw.
What Does a Taper Jig Do?
A tapering jig is a tool for woodworking that makes cuts that get deeper along the grain of a piece of wood. For example, table legs are often made with tapering tools, with the taper cut into the two sides of the leg that face the inside of the table.
Can I Replace a Jointer with a Table Saw?
With a fence made in the shop, you can edge-joint on your table saw. But steel jointer knives may have trouble cutting man-made materials like hardwood, while carbide table saw blades don’t have this problem.
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