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  • Miter slot alternative

    I've been hopelessly looking for the miter slot table accessory. This might be a REALLY silly idea but has anyone thought to use the sides of the main saw table to register a miter slot jig?

  • #2
    Similar ideas have been proposed in the past... but the "gotcha" is that the BT3 blade assembly has no way to be adjusted parallel to the sides of the table top. That's why the SMT and rip fence are aligned to the fixed-position blade. There's a small chance your saw blade could be parallel to one or both sides... but don't assume they'll be parallel. Remember the later Sears versions of the BT3 with a miter slot in the accessory table: that slot was for router use in the accessory table only and using it with the table saw blade was specifically prohibited as there was no way to align it or the saw blade to be parallel to each other.

    You can easily make your own miter slots in pieces of wood and "L" shaped brackets that allow you to clamp the wood to the BT3 rails; this way you can clamp them parallel to the blade. Many folks have done this over the years; there have been multiple methods to clamp them to the rails as well. Using "T" nuts - small flat rectangular metal plates that slip into the BT3 rails and fences with a central threaded hole - is the common way to fasten them. Folks have also used metal miter slots from woodworking suppliers attached to wood supports. There have been numerous pictures of such setups on this site... use the SEARCH to hunt around for "miter slots." Rod Kirby posted some pretty detailed pictures of his extra-long miter slot setup: Rod Kirby's miter slot setup

    You can also attach shop-built assemblies to the aluminum chassis structure of the saw (not to the table top) - notice oversize holes already exist on the left side of the blade. Those were intended for the Ryobi dual miter slot add-on and the holes were oversized so you could align the slots to the blade. The Ryobi dual miter slot add-on has basic slots - not the inverted "T" that can be found on many other tools - so miter gauges and other accessories that have the anti-tip-out ears/wings on the end won't work in these slots. That's another good reason to make your own: you can buy Incra or other branded metal miter slots in the inverted "T" configuration and screw those down to shop-made wood carriers that in turn attach to the saw chassis.

    edit: if you haven't read it already: in the "sticky" section of the "BT3x00 related discussions" is a link to a PDF file by user LCHIEN with tons of info on these saws including some recommendations on preventative maintenance.

    mpc
    Last edited by mpc; 12-21-2020, 04:30 PM.

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    • #3
      Absolutely agree with MPC.
      Check the BT3 FAQ.
      Loring in Katy, TX USA
      If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
      BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

      Comment


      • #4
        I also agree with MPC, but that said, there is a chance that the main table actually does align parallel to the blade. Mine is, and I made a jig to cut Quaker-like bevels for the side panels in our library. The jig used the SMT, but was guided by a strip that ran in the groove created by positioning the SMT next to the main table. With SMT locked in place 3/4-inch spaced from the main table, it created a 'miter' groove that my wood guide (the gray strip on the bottom in the first picture) could slide through. The SMT table could be used to advance the jig with the stock clamped to it, but the glide of the SMT wasn't enough, so the miter-strip enabled further advance of the stock. It worked perfectly for my intended purpose.

        Click image for larger version  Name:	BTPanel02_zpsf62b8219(1).jpg Views:	0 Size:	95.1 KB ID:	841763Click image for larger version  Name:	BTPanel08_zps44ae1d92.jpg Views:	0 Size:	95.6 KB ID:	841765Click image for larger version  Name:	BTPanel06_zpsc2ea72c4.jpg Views:	0 Size:	90.3 KB ID:	841766Click image for larger version  Name:	BTPanel01_zps44c2a47e.jpg Views:	0 Size:	84.6 KB ID:	841764

        CWS
        Last edited by cwsmith; 12-22-2020, 01:18 PM.
        Think it Through Before You Do!

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        • #5
          Clever idea! Very nice jig and good looking panels.

          Comment


          • cwsmith
            cwsmith commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks, CWS

        • #6
          https://www.sawdustzone.org/filedata...4&d=1608657056

          I wish I had thought of a jig like that. Back in 2009 (when I was still in Japan), I made some drawer fronts exactly like those, but I did them on 3/4 thick boards and then sliced them (re-sawed) after. Worked well but your jig would have been better!
          Hank Lee

          Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

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          • #7
            Thanks,

            The challenge was dress up the sides of the library shelves a bit and I thought of simple, Shaker-like raised panels. The question was how was I going to achieve that on my table saw which doesn't rotate over that far. I didn't like the idea of trying to feed the stock vertically through the cut as the fence isn't that high and I'd be standing at a rather awkward angle to guide the feed, with my hands probably on top of the board, above the unguarded blade.

            Giving it some thought, I came up with this jig and built it from scraps. The T-track channels I had from Rockler's kit and it enabled me to provide hold-downs which were especially important for doing the end cuts. As it stands, I could do the feed from standing behind the jig and be at the left side of the saw as I slid the the miter table and jig through most of the cut, while at the same time keeping my fingers well away from that blade. The SMT was a plus as I could lock it's base in place, creating a space for a miter channel and at the same time still have a platform on which to feed the blade.

            The jig as it is, provides only a fixed angle, but I've been thinking that I could in some way have made it adjustable, should I ever have a need to do something like this again.

            Anytime I use the table saw, I approach it with a great amount of caution and having that guard off the saw, for a cut like this makes me even more concerned. Such is often the motivation for such jigs.

            Merry Christmas,

            CWS
            Think it Through Before You Do!

            Comment


            • #8
              I just saw a newly listed twin miter slot table on eBay. Unfortunately the price is about $170 plus $20 shipping. For that amount of money you could instead fabricate a wooden miter slot insert for about $20 or so and use t-slot track inserts. There have been many posts about doing this as well as details on the FAQs on this forum. Then you could use the savings to buy a Forrest blade or other accessories.

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              • #9
                Originally posted by ballard770 View Post
                I just saw a newly listed twin miter slot table on eBay. Unfortunately the price is about $170 plus $20 shipping. For that amount of money you could instead fabricate a wooden miter slot insert for about $20 or so and use t-slot track inserts. There have been many posts about doing this as well as details on the FAQs on this forum. Then you could use the savings to buy a Forrest blade or other accessories.
                I like your thinking. I want a new Camera body I saw the other day for about $800. But I already have two bodies so I won't buy that one and save $800.
                But with the 800 bucks saved, I could buy that new fast zoom lens. Since I saved 800 on the camera the lens is practically free!


                Last edited by LCHIEN; 12-31-2020, 05:10 PM.
                Loring in Katy, TX USA
                If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
                BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

                Comment


                • #10
                  I like your 'reasoning' Loring... it works well for me!


                  Regarding the eBay pricing,

                  You know, someone charging $170 plus shipping for a dual miter slot table sounds absolutely ridiculous. The original Ryobi #BT3KIT was only $100 and it consisted of the following:
                  • 1 set of castors
                  • 1 dust bag
                  • 1 dado throat plate
                  • 2 zero clearance throat plates
                  • 1 miter clamping kit
                  • 1 router mounting kit
                  • 1 miter slot table
                  • All mounting hardware
                  Click image for larger version  Name:	BT3100 Kit.jpg Views:	10 Size:	47.5 KB ID:	841863

                  Personally speaking, anyone could make that dual miter slot table with just a little work, and I don't think having it just made out of wood matters all that much. If anyone is interested, I'll gladly take the dimensions and photo's for them.
                  Last edited by cwsmith; 01-02-2021, 08:36 PM.
                  Think it Through Before You Do!

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                  • nicer20
                    nicer20 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I for one would like to know how to build a dual miter slot table of my own. Thanks in advance.
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