Introduction: Homemade Table Saw Fence Mechanism

Picture of Homemade Table Saw Fence Mechanism

In this instructable you'll see: How I built an easy, quick, simple and really steady homemade table saw fence mechanism, made of MDF, OSB, Pinewood, Plywood and a pair of ball bearing drawer slides.

Step 1:

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Firstly, I cut these pieces for the fence, which are made of OSB.

Step 2:

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Because I didn’t have a single big piece of plywood, which is a really good wood for many uses & constructions, I made this project from woods I found in my workshop like (MDF, OSB, Pinewood & Plywood).

Step 3:

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Because OSB leaves splinters, I had to sand every surface of the wood really well.

Step 4:

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I assembled these pieces of the fence in order, from the biggest, to the smallest.

Step 5:

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The big piece is 60 by 7cm, the middle one is 40 by 7cm and the small one is 20 by 7cm.

Step 6:

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I repeated the same process for the other piece and then I rounded all the edges with the router.

Step 7:

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Now for this part of the fence I cut a big piece of OSB, with dimensions 1,2m by 10cm.

Step 8:

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In order for the pieces of wood, that I will later cut, using the table saw, to slide smoothly on the fence, I also glued a piece of plywood 4mm thick over the 15mm OSB piece.

Step 9:

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I clamped them down together and let the glue do the job.

Step 10:

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For this part of the fence, I cut 4 pieces of 91,8cm by 7cm, the length depends on the thickness of the drawer slides and the width of the surface of the cabinet I’m going to make.

Step 11:

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I used this piece of OSB to find exactly the center of the other piece of wood and then I drilled holes on all 4 sides.

Step 12:

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Then with a countersink bit I drilled all the holes again, so that the head of the screw that I will later place, can go under the top of the wood without splitting it.

Step 13:

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I sand it very well and rounded all the edges.

Step 14:

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Then I cut this part of the fence which consists of two 8,5 by 8,5cm pcs of plywood.

Step 15:

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Nailed them, drilled them, countersink the holes, screwed them, sanded them and rounded all the edges.

Step 16:

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Now, under the top of the table saw there is this piece of OSB, which consists of one piece with dimensions 70 by 7,2cm and two pieces with 70 by 4cm.

Step 17:

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...and I repeated the same process... nailed, drilled, countersink the holes, and screwed.

Step 18:

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Also, under the top of the table saw there is this piece of plywood with dimensions 7 by 7cm, that is going to slide into the slot I previously built.

Step 19:

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After the piece of the fence has dried, it’s time to cut the extra piece of plywood.

Step 20:

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Now, for the top surface of the construction, I used MDF: 1,2m long, 80cm wide and 2cm thick.

Step 21:

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Then, I made exactly in the center, a slot using the router, in order to be able to move the fence with the bolt and tighten it at whatever length I wish.

Step 22:

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Then I cut some pieces of pinewood in order to keep the whole MDF surface straight and so that I will be able to install the drawer slides later.

Step 23:

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The width of these pieces are 5cm.

Step 24:

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Nailed all the pieces together and marked the framework on the MDF, in order to make the drill for the screw, exactly in the center.

Step 25:

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I made all the holes perimetrically, placing under the MDF this small piece of plywood, in order to avoid any damage on the other side.

Step 26:

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I flipped it over and with a countersink bit I drilled all the holes again, in order to keep the head of every screw under the top of the surface.

Step 27:

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Then aligned and screwed the framework in place.

Step 28:

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I flipped it over again, and put the piece I made before exactly in the center.

Step 29:

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Measured it, marked it, drilled it, countersunk all the holes, put 2 nails to keep it in place and screwed it down.

Step 30:

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I put these two extra pieces to prevent the wood from breaking.

Step 31:

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At this point, I put in place the piece of wood that I made before, marked it and cut the MDF piece.

Step 32:

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You will see later why I did that!

Step 33:

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I used these two 1mm spacers and placed them together with the piece of plywood I cut before into the slot under the table saw, in order to mark the center of the wood and put the nut on it later.

Step 34:

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I measured the thickness of the bolt and I made a 1cm hole but at first I used a smaller drill bit.

Step 35:

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I also measured the nut of the bolt and I opened a hole equal to the width and thickness of it.

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...and now we are ready to install the nut into the wood.

Step 37:

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Then, I placed it into the slot under the table saw and it’s ready!

Step 38:

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Now I measured the length needed and I removed the head of the bolt.

Step 39:

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I screwed the bolt into the plastic handle and then drilled them from one side to the other, to make them one solid piece.

Step 40:

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I put a nail into the hole, bent it with a hammer and then wrapped it with a pvc tape.

Step 41:

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Also, I opened a 10mm hole to the other piece of wood.

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Now it’s time to install the two heavy duty 60cm ball bearing drawer slides, on the two pieces of OSB.

Step 43:

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I clamped a straight piece of wood in order to install the slides correctly.

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I found these hinges in my drawers but for better stability you can use heavy duty stainless steel door hinges.

Step 45:

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Then I installed these two pieces on the side of the table saw surface.

Step 46:

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Aligned them, marked them and screwed them, with precision.

Step 47:

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Also, I screwed these two pieces of the fence together and installed them on the two pieces of OSB with the hinges on, that I built before.

Step 48:

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I placed the bolt with the handle and the piece of wood I drilled before and tightened them together with the other piece with the nut, which is into the slot, under the table saw.

Step 49:

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I aligned it and then installed the fence on it.

Step 50:

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Now, I placed these two bolt safety pins, on each end of the fence, in order to keep it straight and steady, to prevent it from moving.

Step 51:

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Because I didn’t have a drill long enough to make the hole directly, I made the right measurements and opened every hole separately and equal exactly to the diameter of the bolt safety pin, in order to fit in tight.

Step 52:

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…aaaand… Lets go! Remove the handle, bring it to the edge, remove the bolt safety pins and turn it around to cut the long pieces of wood.

Step 53:

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I placed a circular saw under the surface and we are ready to cut!

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...and now the long piece!

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Thanks for reading & I hope you liked it!

Subscribe, to help me make more!


rhughes19 (author)2016-12-27

Great video and excellent graphics - made it much easier to understand - well done

I'm happy that you liked my work, mate!

Thank you very much.

Best wishes!

jimcathers (author)2016-09-05

Your video and graphics production skills are top notch. I found the instructional video to be entertaining actually. Thanks for making it.

Thanks for your kind words, mate! I really appreciate it!

I'm happy that you liked it!

All the Best!

BrandonW86 (author)2016-08-30

I'm blown away by the functional detail of this entire project. I'm very heavily considering replicating this for use with my home-built router table, since it would make things a lot easier.

Thanks for your kind words, mate! I really appreciate it!

I don’t think it is too hard to build it, you only need the right tools & the right PPE! So if you know how to use any of your power tools or other industrial machinery, I’m sure you will do just fine! (Always keep in mind that woodworking is a dangerous activity that demands various safety precautions to be taken)._

Take care!

DylanD581 (author)2016-08-30

This is a very useful table saw mod. I know my table saw is in need of some upgrades. I like that your write up is very detailed!

Thanks a lot, mate! I'm happy that you liked my work!

(Always keep in mind that woodworking is a dangerous activity that demands various safety precautions to be taken)._

Take care!

JoeS105 (author)2016-08-30

Great creativity and ingenuity, absolutely inspiring! As a novice, I really appreciate the detailed instructions and well made video. I was wondering if you could describe a little more on the placement of the saw on how you determined the placement. Thanks!

Elias Stratakos (author)JoeS1052016-09-02

Thanks a lot again for the warm words of encouragement, Joe! I really appreciate it! It’s true that the editing took me a lot and I’m happy that you saw that and liked it!

For the circular saw I opened 4 holes on every corner of it, aligned it and screwed it on the MDF, that's all! Best wishes!

DavidC397 (author)2016-08-30

Excellent job Kudos my friend.....

Thanks a lot, mate!

barben (author)2016-08-31

This is a beautiful bit of engineering and craftsmanship. Congratulations on a job well done. Don't know if there is an award for this project but you deserve it for engineering, quality, design and instructional presentation and video.

Elias Stratakos (author)barben2016-09-02

I greatly appreciate your warm words of encouragement, Sir! It's very kind of you. I'm happy that you liked my work, also! Thanks a lot!

Take care & All the best!

UncleEd (author)2016-08-29

It's a great project and I may have one on my list before. However, I have to agree with @3ra1n1ac. that having your fingers that close to the blade of the tablesaw is an awful idea and a terrible example for people who are trying to learn.

Elias Stratakos (author)UncleEd2016-08-31

I'm happy that you liked it! Thanks a lot!

As always saying and I have noted it on my YouTube page: All of my videos are for Entertainment Purposes or a Source of Inspiration.

Always keep in mind that woodworking is a dangerous activity that demands various safety precautions to be taken. Don’t attempt to do the dangerous things I do because you saw me doing it in my videos. Every single project you see me demonstrating, requires a certain level of skill and experience.

So be sure that you have the right PPE equipment and that you know how to use any of your power tools or other industrial machinery before you attempt to do anything on your own.

Take care & All the best!

TeresaM7 (author)UncleEd2016-08-30

I have several of these saved now and am always surprised that there are no safety guards on anything. This just makes me scratch my head. I have two tables now ready for making my own work tables, which I plan to do as soon as the weather permits, but I'd LIKE to have some kind of guards in place before I start using them. I'm a bit paranoid that way!

seumas2. (author)2016-08-30

The idea has merit, but no guard, or splitter, fingers too close to the spinning blade, a spinning blade is like a Great White it bites, remember it's not If but When, use them or lose them

I totally understand what you are saying, but on the other hand, this table saw is actually much more safe than the alternative. No, by no means is it a saw-stop, but it is a very cost effective alternative to even the cheapest contractors portable table saws (~$300), and it allows the user to make cuts which would be incredibly unsafe or even impossible with just a circular saw. So in other words, no it is possibly not as safe as a regular table saw, but it can be safer than trying to make similar cuts with only a circular saw. Not trying to argue at all, but just trying to explain what it is like in his shoes. (I'm in the same boat, I just made a much simpler version, and that was how I justified it). You have an incredibly valid point though!

Modern Rustic Workshop (author)2016-08-27

Looks awesome! How do you mount the table saw? Did you drill holes in the plate of it or another way?

Thanks mate! Yeah, I opened 4 holes on every corner of the circular saw, aligned it and screwed it on the MDF.

Stay tuned because I’m planning to build another patent/mechanism for the inside part of the table saw, with an 3Hp motor so that it can go up and down and turn in whatever angle you wish!

Take care!

Sounds awesome, can't wait to see!

Yonatan24 (author)2016-08-29

Aha! So you did Photoshop (or whatever it is) the sawblade and insert in the thumbnail...

Yeap! I did Photoshop editing for the thumbnail! Because the photo was taken before I put the circular saw under the MDF. I took these parts (Sawblade & Insert) from the SketchUp that I made and… there you go! You catced me!

Best wishes!

3ra1n1ac (author)2016-08-28

Looks good but why didn't you think about making a push stick first? It's harder to build your projects without fingers.

Elias Stratakos (author)3ra1n1ac2016-08-30

Thanks! If you see the video you will see that I’m using a push stick, especially for the short pieces of wood… (3:00, 3:03).

Take care!

tsallgood (author)2016-08-28

Excellent work. Why is this not entered in the Wood and Maker Olympics contests? It would have my vote for both.

Thanks a lot, mate! It's very kind of you! The truth is that I’m out of time now and I haven’t checked it out… Thanks for the support anyway!

All the Best!

trustmefada (author)2016-08-28

This is truly an instructable. Awesome work here, and brave for using that OSB plywood stuff.

Thanks a lot for your kind words! I really appreciate it!

Best wishes!

OmarJ3 (author)2016-08-30

Agree with other posters about watching out for one's fingers - a mishap only needs to happen once. It could be tricky to build a "professional" type guard, so at least use the push sticks. As I already have a made a table using an inverted portable saw, I see the same problem of the table thickness reducing the blade effective travel. It would be worth experimenting to see if the saw foot plate could be mounted "flush" with the table top surface. Of course, it would need to have a "relief" ledge in the table top, and perhaps some re-enforcement below deck. However, the benefit would be the capability to cut deeper, and also vary blade angle. Great visual production and narration.

About This Instructable




Bio: Hello there! Thanks for stopping by! I'm Elias and I'm addicted to Making, Building and Creating any kind of things, producing free DIY ... More »
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