How to Make a Circular Saw Crosscut Jig and Router Guide 2 in 1

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Introduction: How to Make a Circular Saw Crosscut Jig and Router Guide 2 in 1

About: Discover woodworking, concrete, LEDs, home decor and DIY projects you'll love.

This Circular Saw Crosscut Jig will open up a world of possibilities right in your own shop. You will be able to cut at various angles with ease, safely make dados, create half-lap joints, and work with an expanded cut capacity. Although this jig will not fully replace a miter or table saw, it serves many functions that those saws provide. Additionally, with a few easy adjustments, this build can also act as a router jig. This jig is sure to make your circular saw one of the favorite tools in your shop.

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Material

  • (1) 36in 2in C-Channel LINK
  • (1)- 36in Blue T-track LINK
  • (1)- Hold Down clamp LIN K or Best Value get the - Kit LINK
  • (1) - Plywood base (Base)
  • (1)- 1 by 2 select pine (attachment)
  • (1)- 1 by 3 for the riser (can use plywood)

Tools

  • Dewalt Battery Powered Circular Saw - LINK
  • RIDGID- Octane Brushless Reciprocating - LIN K
  • Milwaukee M18 Cordless - LINK
  • Husky Mechanics Tool Set - LINK
  • Impact GOLD #2 Phillips - LINK

Gear

  • Dust Mask: LINK Use promo code DIYCreators to get 15-percent off.
  • Magnetic Wristband LINK

You can see my complete kit list here Link

Step 1: Routing the T-Track

First, make sure you are working with a straight piece of plywood. Then, mark the desired location of the T-Track. I attached a piece of scrap wood to the router guide to help stabilize and control the router. I worked my way up to 3/8th of an inch, by routing 1/8th inch at a time. I cleaned up the end of the track using a chisel and then sanded the whole base. Next, screw the T-Track in place using screws that will not exit through the back.

Step 2: Splitting the C-Channel

To create the saw track, I ripped a 2-inch C-Channel using a reciprocating saw with a metal blade. Although you would like to achieve a nice uniform cut, it does not have to be perfect; the goal is to have two tracks that the saw can ride on. Next, be sure to smooth the sharp edges of the C-Channel by filing and sanding.

Step 3: Recessing the Saw Guide

The tracks will be recessed in the risers. First, I lined the risers together and secured them so that they can be cut simultaneously. Then, I used a hand saw to make the outer cuts, and used a router to remove the section where the tracks would sit. A chisel can be used for this step.

Next, I lined up the riser on the base of the jig to mark where the T-Track screw will sit. I used a chisel to create a channel for the T-Track screw.

Step 4: Attaching the Risers

Again, you want to ensure the T-Track screw is in the T-Track before attaching the risers. Apply wood glue to the bottom of the riser and check for squaring before using clamps to secure. Then, use screws to attach the riser to the base. Repeat the same process on the opposite side with the other riser, assuring that it is square. Allow glue to dry.

Step 5: Adding Threaded Inserts

Place the tracks in the opening on the risers, and place the saw on top of the tracks to ensure the proper spacing. Drill a pilot hole through each end of the tracks and into the risers. You will want to countersink the screw holes so that the heads of the screws do not interfere with the saw. Install the threaded inserts into the holes in the risers. Screw the tracks into place.

Modify this jig for a router by moving one of the tracks to fit your router base. Drill a new hole into the risers, and add threaded inserts.

Step 6: Painting and Assembling

I used black paint to finish the metal tracks and the risers. Be careful not to get any paint inside of the tracks. After the finish of your choice dries, you can attach the tracks with screws.

Step 7: Blade Guard Holder

I used a bracket and formed it to act as a stop. I was able to use one of the existing holes and attach the bracket to the saw using a bolt.

Step 8: Miter Attachment

I cut two pieces of wood, one at 45 degrees and the other at 22.5 degrees and attached them to 2 separate pieces of wood as shown. I will utilize the bolt that is used for the hold down clamp as a pivot point. I clamped the two long pieces of lumber and used a drill press to drills in the same section. Keep in mind that these pieces could be any length that's comfortable for you, just make sure that they extend past the cut area of the saw blade. To ensure accuracy, use a speed square as a reference and use the knob to secure the lumber. Glue the angled piece of wood (as shown) making sure to leave no gaps between the speed square and lumber. Next, cut the excess wood from the bottom of the attachment.

To install these attachments, you will line them onto the T-Track screw, swing them on the track and tighten it down. I recommend that you double check the attachment with a speed square before every use. After ensuring the alignment you can cut down the attachments. When you use this attachment, you can use a clamp or a hold down clamp to hold your subject down.

Step 9: Test Cuts

As previously stated, this Circular Saw Crosscut Jig will prove to be a valuable addition to your shop. Hope you enjoy the versatility of this simple jig.

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    38 Discussions

    4
    leslielimpid
    leslielimpid

    2 years ago on Step 9

    why not use 2 pieces of 1" angle iron and save the hassle of splitting the C channel?

    1
    diycreators
    diycreators

    Reply 2 years ago

    The C-Channel has a short lip, The lip of the c-channel was perfect. It didn't interfere with the base of the saw or motor. This allowed me to lower the saw all the way a get maximum cut. Angle Iron usually have two even sides. In my case, my saw and motor on the saw would hit the lip that's facing up. So instead of cutting two angle iron, I used a C-channel and one cut.

    0
    andrei.n.dumaguet
    andrei.n.dumaguet

    Reply 1 year ago

    I didn't bother to read through the comments first before posting my tip.

    Anyway, there are angle bars that have unequal legs if you wanted a rail that had sufficient support for the saw's plate without interfering with the motor body/housing.

    0
    TootsNYC
    TootsNYC

    Reply 2 years ago

    I like this a lot, but I'm not sure I have the capability to cut the C-channel, since I have no reciprocating saw (and no need for one). Hmmm.

    0
    MusicalBox
    MusicalBox

    Reply 1 year ago

    If you own a jig saw, I bet this would work fine too. Just use a good blade made to cut metal.

    0
    andrei.n.dumaguet
    andrei.n.dumaguet

    Tip 1 year ago

    Instead of having to cut a C-channel right down the middle, 2 angle bars would serve the same purpose as rails for the saw.

    0
    doormat_1
    doormat_1

    1 year ago

    I don't have a circular saw but thinking of adapting this for a jigsaw, I'm guessing id need to make the rails higher so the blade doesn't go through the bottom board too far and bring them closer to match the soleplate of my jigsaw.

    0
    salmansheikh
    salmansheikh

    1 year ago

    Finally a new video. I was catching up with my YT channels and saw nothing on DIY Creators in a while. Thanks Glenn.

    0
    cordovox
    cordovox

    1 year ago on Step 9

    Great project and very good presentation. Excellent video with a quality voice over.
    Best wishes for your future work.

    0
    MichaelAtOz
    MichaelAtOz

    1 year ago

    The second link after "(1)- Hold Down clamp" is broken.

    0
    Badbackbilly
    Badbackbilly

    1 year ago on Step 9

    An excellent Instructable, I'm about to build a new workshop, I'm looking to make as many tool jig's possible, this due to size of workshop and to use the tools I already have. Adding the router rail is an excellent idea. Thanks again

    0
    MichaelP102
    MichaelP102

    2 years ago

    Fan-freaking-tastic design and instructions!
    I just wish I could get those t-tracks local instead of online order!

    7
    LucasS141
    LucasS141

    2 years ago

    It's a joke, right? He is one of the few who makes such detailed videos at no cost.

    4 dollars is a fairly low cost compared to many others who sell their work.

    I do not need the plans, since I intend to adapt it to my needs, but I will buy them as a sample of support for their great work.

    Thanks Glenn, I am subscribed to all your channels and always waiting for a new video, you are a great craftsman.

    1
    TootsNYC
    TootsNYC

    Reply 2 years ago

    Everything you need is in the video--if you need your hand held so much more, it seems sensible that you'd pay for it.

    The worker is worth his wages--as is the expert!

    1
    mlaiuppa.
    mlaiuppa.

    Reply 2 years ago

    No, it's not. I watched enough of the video to hear there are no measurements given.

    2
    TootsNYC
    TootsNYC

    Reply 2 years ago

    I could make this jig without any exact measurements.
    Being given exact measurements is a level of hand-holding that it's fair to ask you to pay for. If you're not expert enough to figure out your own measurements, then you SHOULD have to pay for our man's expertise.

    0
    TootsNYC
    TootsNYC

    2 years ago

    My plan for October is to make a crosscut circular saw jig so I can use it for the small jobs I do. This seems like a really good option!

    I especially like the face clamp in the T-track!

    Your how-tos are so clear, and you're fun to be around. Thanks for this!

    0
    AirTex
    AirTex

    2 years ago

    This is one of the nicest DIY jigs I've seen. Very well done.

    0
    PaulC80
    PaulC80

    2 years ago

    So simple but so damn useful, quite impressed! Well done!

    Will be making my own.

    Cheers Paul

    0
    diycreators
    diycreators

    Reply 2 years ago

    Totally. Thank you