Turning Archive 2007

Table saw sleds

keith tompkins
>I just wanted to make a few comments on table saw sleds, especially after reading about Bill Hale's accident. Bill, I hope the thumb recovers quickly, but it would certainly be much better if the accident could have been prevented. This may help someone in the future. There are two main reasons for using a sled instead of miter guages or other methods. First, the sled is very stable, and in most cases,a sled is much safer than other methods.

All pieces cut on a sled should be secured to the sled...either with commercially availabe clamping devices or home-built clamps. That way, even small pieces can be run through the blade without being held in place with your hands. With the piece being cut clamped in place, you push the entire sled through the cut, with your hands nowhere near the cutting path of the saw. Running pieces through the saw with unclamped pieces in the sled is not a good practice, and forfeits the safety aspect of a sled. Hope this helps.

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