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Unless you like flirting with danger, you probably don’t want to rip thin strips against your table saw fence. The correct way is to cut the strips on the opposite side of the blade, leaving the meat of the wood between the fence and the blade, but doing it this way you have to recalculate the distance between the blade and the fence after each cut.

Rockler’s thin-rip tablesaw jig makes the job easier — each time you make a new cut the jig remains stationary, defining the thickness of the strip, but the wood and the fence move to butt up against the jig.

The solid phenolic jig clamps into your miter slot and adjusts from 1-3/8″ to 5-11/16″ away from your miter track.  A graduated scale allows you to fine-tune the thickness of the strips, and a single knob locks the jig into the miter track and sets the strip thickness.  A ball bearing guide holds the piece firmly against the fence, yet lets it move freely.

Normally the 5-1/4″ wide by 8″ long jig runs $22, but Rockler is selling it for $17 online only, for an indefinite period of time.  Be aware that you’ll have to either make or buy a zero-clearance blade insert so the thin strips don’t get jammed between the table and the blade.

Thin Rip Jig [Rockler]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]


7 Responses to Rip Thin Pieces Safely On Your Tablesaw

  1. fred says:

    here is a homemade jig that purports to do th same thing:


  2. fred says:

    What I didn’t say – (that auto refresh !) is that if you do this a lot in your shop – you might move to a straight line rip saw. We have an old Oliver machine – but Grizzly and others offer nice ones at modest prices for a commercial shop.

  3. Chris Tolles says:

    I’d like to argue that with a retracting splitter, ripping thin strips against the fence is no more dangerous than other table saw duties. With a sacrificial push stick of appropriate shape, I’ve cut tons of thin strips with no problems nor fear of problems. Perhaps the issue is that many people are using non-retractable splitters? Anyone agree with me here?

    I don’t experience with a great deal of different saws, so perhaps I’m spoiled by the retractable splitter…

    Depending on your tolerances, I also would not trust a jig such as this for absolute repeatability. Great price, though…

  4. johnnyp says:

    How about masking tape, placed on the outside with a mark . Cheap and easy,
    works great for me.

  5. blore40 says:

    Real men don’t need jigs and stuff.

    Really real men have 9 fingers

  6. paganwonder says:

    I’ve not had trouble with ripping thin strips against the fence, my saw is properly adjusted, has a zero clearance insert and I use a sacrificial push block. Also, I pay attention to the stock and listen to my saw. That being said I prefer the shop made jig to the purchased one- much skill to be gained from making your own jigs.

  7. Dean in Des Moines says:

    Or you could just turn your featherboard around.

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