Table Saw Jointer





Introduction: Table Saw Jointer

About: My name is Troy. I'm a Mechatronics graduate studying Mechanical Engineering. I like to make things and spend time outdoors (especially SCUBA diving). I am a Community Manager for Instructables.

My shop is a single car garage that shares it's space with the car. As you can imagine, space and money are the bottleneck of what tools I acquire. Since a costly jointer takes up a lot of space and isn't needed very often, substitutions need to be made. This simple sled can be made in less than an hour from scraps and doesn't take up much space at all.

Step 1: Tools and Materials


  • Table Saw
  • Drill
  • Screwdriver


Step 2: Cut Sled and Runner

Cut your sled to size. Mine measures 10 inches wide and 44 inches long. This isn't anything magical other than it was the rough starting size if my scrap MDF. Cut the runner the same length as your sled and the same width as the slots in your table saw.

Drill clearance holes along the runner about every 6 inches. Place a couple pieces of two sided tape along the runner. This will precisely hold the runner in place while you attach it to the bottom of the sled in the next step.

Step 3: Attach Runner

Place a few washers in the bottom of the tracks in your table saw. This will raise the runner above the top of the table saw. Lower the blade and move the fence to 0. Place the sled against the fence and press firmly on the double sided tape on the runner. Carefully remove the sled and runner from the table saw. Tighten the screws into the sled. This is the same process I used for my sled for segmented bowls.

Step 4: Cut Zero Clearance

Turn your saw on and cut the edge of your sled straight.

Step 5: Attach Toggle Clamps

Based on the thickness of wood you will be jointing on this sled, you may need to raise your toggle clamps. I attached another scrap piece of MDF to raise the toggle clamps.

Step 6: Clamp and Cut

All that is left to do is clamp down the lumber you want to joint and run it through your table saw. You should now have a perfectly jointed board without a jointer.

Do you have any shop tricks like this? Any jigs or sleds that help you save time, space, or money? Let me know in the comments!



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    11 Discussions


    8 months ago

    Thanks for sharing! I like the use of the miter slots instead of the rip fence as a guide. Having just replaced my rip fence, I appreciate that not everyone can easily get their fence nice and parallel to the blade.

    1 reply

    Because I trained as a precision machinist I have various 123 blocks, parallels, etc so I use them in combination to get blade and fence parallel. Probably overkill setting to 0.001" but I find it quick and easy

    This will work even on a cheap 'contractor' type saw. Even if blade can't be set exactly 90 degrees, (I haven't 'got inside' my HF saw yet) flip board and angles will match perfectly. Makes glue up slightly more difficult but I already figured out clamping boards flat.

    1 reply

    Oh, forgot to mention, the blade that came with saw is actually very good, I've taken a 3/16" cut down side of 'pallet wood' boards an gotten a 1/16" 'veneer' with a smooth surface finish, better than some planers or joiners as multi tooth blade taking a tiny cut doesn't set up same type of vibration compared to knives on a 3" circle


    8 months ago

    ​how is this a jointer? Isn't this just a table saw sled?

    2 replies

    Correct, it is a table saw sled. But since it doesn't utilize a fence, you can 'joint' or make a straight line cut in an otherwise wavy or warped board.

    Im sitting here thinking the same thing, this blokes a fake!!! :) cheers for clearing it up for the dumber (myself and only myself) among us.

    I had to do a double-take when I saw the top picture of your sled, I thought someone had taken a picture of mine and posted this. After looking twice I realized it was not the one I built close to 15yrs. ago! I guess great minds think alike! There were two differences between yours and mine, #1- I made the fence on sled adjustable at nominal lumber widths, I did this with wood anchors and thumb screws. #2 My sled used the fence of the saw to keep the sled square to the saw blade, my sled because it was adjustable always ran short of the blade, so the piece being jointed overhung the sled on the blade side, this allowed me to make very slight adjustments on how much I was taking off the work piece with the saw fence. I know that was a mouth full, and I wish I had a picture, but it worked great for me until I got a joiner. I also almost tried to patient the idea, but a great idea and works great if you don`t have a joiner!!

    Nice. I'll keep this in mind

    Nice! One doesn't often see jigs that completely self-align as they are assembled. This sure beats screwing the work to a carrier board and trying to run that along a fence.

    nice and handy