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Why You Need A Crosscut Sled For Your Table Saw: Dual Version

By Willie Sandry on July, 19 2022
How to make my own crosscut sled

The single most used table saw accessory in my shop is a crosscut sled. I named it the X-Cut sled because the cutouts to reduce panel weight resemble the letter X.

It’s a double runner crosscut sled with large capacity to cut panels 2’ wide x 3’ long. A metal cross bridge spans the two sides of the sled and offers a unique benefit. Perfect for when you need to to trim small lengths from a workpiece, but also ideal for width where it is actually unlimited. Unlike a traditional crosscut sled with a wooden rear fence, a panel can pass under the cross bridge in some situations.

Crosscut Set Up Directions

 

The cross bridge is made from ½” threaded black pipe and common flange fittings. The long center length of pipe needs to be made to fit, with threads on both ends. Luckily, most home centers will cut iron pipe to length for customers and thread the other end, free of charge. Attach the cross bridge with #12 or #14 x ¾” long screws.

 

How to make a crosscut sled

 

An aluminum track mounts on top of the fence and allows you to mount flip stops and other accessories. Now instead of using a measuring tape and pencil for every cut, just set the stop to your required dimension and make the cut. It’s truly that simple.

 

set up crosscut sled build

 

Large over-moulded rubber knobs can be positioned anywhere along the track. Mount one over the inboard runner to use as a handle when operating the sled.

 

benefits of a crosscut sled

 

One nice thing about a crosscut sled like this – it doesn’t interfere with the saws riving knife. In fact, you can use this X Cut sled with or without the factory riving knife.

 

double runner crosscut sled benefits

 

While there are single-runner sleds that work for light duty tasks, I prefer a robust double-runner sled for most crosscuts. Plus - the part of the sled on the left side of the blade helps to support the offcut. Wooden runners are sometimes appropriate for small jigs and fixtures, but for this heavy duty crosscut sled, I’d recommend metal runners.    

 

cutting full sized sled with crosscut

 

With a full-sized sled, trimming large panels to size is no problem. No more breaking out the circular saw to cut parts to size. Just set the flip stop to the required length and trim the panel. You’ll wonder how you ever got by without one!

 

best crosscut sled ideas

 

Despite the large size of this double-runner sled, it glides effortlessly over your table saw. There’s no better table saw accessory for cutting bulky panels down to size. Plus, the 36” length capacity makes it a favorite for cutting common furniture parts.   

 

square crosscut sled

 

Perfectly square panels every time, thanks to the long fence to fully support the workpiece. There’s even a slight chamfer at the bottom of the fence, which serves as a sawdust relief. This way, accuracy won’t be affected if there’s a little sawdust against the fence.

 

how to make a crosscut sled

 

Check out the short video on making your own double runner crosscut sled…

https://youtu.be/whmbJ_cDueY

Willie Sandry is a Freelance Writer, Blogger, and Woodworker specializing in Art and Crafts style furniture. You can see his work regularly in woodworking magazines or on his YouTube channel The Thoughtful Woodworker https://www.youtube.com/c/TheThoughtfulWoodworker

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