Why can't I cut straight with my jigsaw? Why does my blade cut at an angle. I bet those are one of the most frequently asked questions about jigsaws. In this video, I will show you how to make a crosscut sled that slides onto the base of your jigsaw. Yes! A jigsaw crosscut sled!
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Whether if you're wondering how to cut a 2x4 with a jigsaw, how to make a jigsaw table aka bladerunner, how to make a crosscutting sled for your jigsaw, this woodworking project/ tool hack is for you!
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15 year old, sick with a deadly disease called DIY-itis!
One of the first tools many, if not most woodworkers recommend for beginners, after a cordless drill, is a jigsaw. I used to disagree with that, and say a circular saw is better and suits most peoples' needs more accurately, since a large portion, if not most beginner woodworking projects can be summed up as crosscutting 2X4 lumber and gluing it together - Homemade workbench frames, sawhorses, beds, benches...
Out of the dozens of woodworking projects I've made so far, I can't recall ever needing to resaw a piece of wood in half. Homemade fidget cubes, articulating arm lamps, impossible puzzles, drill presses, and bench vises, all of which I have Instructables on.
Not only are most jigsaws cheaper than circular saws, they are also safer, allow for adjusting the speed of the reciprocating blade, can cut much more materials, and have a shorter learning curve, no pun intended! ;)
With all of that said, if you've ever used a jigsaw to cross cut wood, you know that achieving accurate cuts is not an easy task. It's hard to push the jigsaw in a straight line, and when trimming only a few millimeters off of the edge of a board or any piece of wood, only one side of the jigsaw shoe (aka the base) rests on the piece of wood, and the vibrations make it next to impossible to cut accurately and in a straight line- the jigsaw tilts and jumps, and the shoe also leaves marks on finished wood, etc.
In this video, I will show you how to make a wooden crosscutting sled for your jigsaw/inverted mount, using basic tools you should already have lying around. This jigsaw crosscut sled is what changed my mind, no longer do I look at a jigsaw as an inaccurate tool (!) for making crosscuts through hard or soft solid wood, sheet goods, aluminum, steel, plastic, or any other material.
I placed the thin piece of hardwood plywood on top of the jigsaw, and clamped two of the strips of wood to it, making sure that it wasn't too tight so it could slide back and forth.
I'm not sure what you would do with a tablesaw sled that doesn't have a fence in the front, and I think it's the same here.
I cut another small strip of wood to length, and after making sure it would cut piece of wood that would be pushed into the blade at 90 degrees, I screwed it to the front of the sled. I think it's strong enough even with only two screws through the bottom, we'll see.
This way, I can either hold a piece of wood against the fence, or clamp it to the fence, and then push (slide) it into the blade.
I drilled a hole in the middle of the plywood, as shown in the first picture, and widened it slightly, to make sure I could insert a jigsaw into the hole.
I could have made the slot longer so I would be able to cut wider boards, but I prefer having the sled a bit stiffer. I think this is more than enough for what I do, I find it more convenient to bring the tool to the work on really big pieces of wood, rather than the opposite, anyway.
I then flipped the sled back, so the blade cuts toward the fence, like it's supposed to.
I slid a narrower strip of wood under the jigsaw shoe on both sides, and like the side runners, I clamped them to the point where they were loose enough, but without too much play.
Picture frames? It's not only a crosscut sled! I also found out that by clamping a speed square, I can also use it to cut miters!
If I flip the sled over and clamp it to clock it in place, I can also use the top of the sled as a jigsaw table. Works great as an alternative for a scrollsaw!
I also tried clamping a dowel in my drill and moving it from side to side across the blade while the drill was running. It did resize the dowel, however it did leave a rough edge.
What would you use this crosscut sled for? Do have any ideas for other uses?