So much of ATM involves doing stuff in the shop, working with wood. If you are like me, you may not exactly be next in line to host the New Yankee Workshop. So I am creating this topic to collect tips and tricks to do common stuff that an ATM may need to do, instead of having it be spread across a bunch of topics. For it to be usable, it must be searchable, so I propose that replies all start with a descriptive "How to...", like the following which appeared on my build thread yesterday:
How to cut a taper on a table saw without a taper jig:
jtsenghas, on 13 Jul 2019 - 11:56 PM, said:
As for cutting a taper on a table saw, one needn't build a taper gauge (though I have). Just set the fence a little further from the blade than the initial width of the piece you want to taper, perhaps 6" here, slice a piece of plywood or other sacrificial stock to that dimension, and attach your workpiece to that for a subsequent tapered ripping cut. Even two sided adhesive tape is adequate for that. If you want one end of the board to end up 3 1/2" and the other to be 1 5/8" more than that (5 1/8"), then tape the 2 x 6 on to that sacrificial piece so that one end is 3 1/2" on top of it and the other end is 5 1/8" on top of it. Rip again with the blade set a little above the combined thickness of the two boards, or, if your saw hasn't that range of depth, flip the two boards over and cut it with the workpiece on the saw bed and the sacrificial piece still riding against the fence.
I'm sorry if I'm going into a lot of detail on an option not being considered if you consider it done already. I just wanted to show you how simple it is to taper boards on a table saw. Simply measure the end dimensions you want and set the workpiece ends that far from the cut edge of the sacrificial piece, or calculate one of those dimensions by multiplying the tangent of the desired angle by the length, and then add or subtract the result to the chosen width at the other end. You don't need a taper gauge if you keep sacrificial scraps on hand and you can simply set the fence to a carrier board you already have and not even make a cut on the "sacrificial board". Easy peasy! You can also start with a longer board and screw the ends to the carrier board and then trim the ends off after making the taper cut.
It's not rocket science and takes less time to do on three boards than it took me to post this...
I hope this turns out to be useful to people.
Edited by totvos, 14 July 2019 - 08:45 PM.