November 15, 2021

What is the most common cut made using the table saw?

The most common cut

The most common cut you can make with a table saw is the rip cut. Ripping is cutting wood to width and by working parallel to the wood’s grain.  A table saw cuts larger boards into smaller pieces, making the material easier to work with. Run the board directly against the rip fence and never freehand because the saw tool is dangerous. It helps to have a top-of-the-range portable table saw.

As you keep your hand away from the saw machine, make use of the fence and miter gauge. The chances of twisting the board and jamming your saw are low. Since most items require rip cuts, the table saw is a popular saw tool for cutting wood. 

Not only is the rip cut the common cut made using your table saw, but it is the first cut you make when making an item. A rip cut cuts hardwoods with the grain. Start by making some practice cuts with workable pieces of stock so that you become familiar with the speed you push the wood and the pressure needed to keep it snug against the fence.

Rip cuts are dangerous, and that is why you should use push sticks and make sure you install a riving knife. That prevents kickbacks. Use eye protection and hearing protection since table tools make a lot of noise in the workspace. 

The speed and accuracy of the table saw have a higher chance of being successful. Master the rip cut using the above techniques. 


  1. Safety precautions come first. Put on eye and ear protection. Do not put on baggy clothes since they hook the saw machine, and you get hurt. 
  2. Adjust the blade up to 1/8 to 1/4-inch higher than the thickness of the wood for precision.
  3. Measure using a tape measure the distance from the saw blade to the fence, and adjust the width of the saw fence to the size you need to rip. That means the adjustments are not universal. 
  4. Hold the piece of wood against the fence with minimal pressure. 
  5. Put your thumb and hand behind the piece of wood to keep it sturdy. Keep them between the fence and saw blade for safety reasons. Exposing them to the saw blade is dangerous. 
  6. Set the wood firmly against the table saw and the side fence to prevent kickback.
  7. Lower the blade guard and turn on the table saw.
  8. Push the board through the blade slowly at a steady rate. Keep the board flush with the fence.
  9. Use a push stick to push the rest of the board through. That is when you are close to the end of the board. Do not use your hands no matter how close the board is to the blade. Keep at least 6 inches between your hand and the saw blade if you are not sure.
  10. Turn off the saw.

What cuts can be made with a table saw?

A cross-cut

Adjust the blade to 1/8 to 1/4-inch higher than the thickness of the wood and set the miter gauge into its slot. The miter gauge has to be on the left of your saw blade. Square the miter to the saw blade and place a 45-degree drafting triangle along the saw blade. 

Make adjustments on the blade until both sides of the triangle are at a 90-degree angle. At this point, you no longer need the drafting triangle. Hold your board against the miter gauge fence edge and allow it to sit at a 90-degree angle from the blade. Push the board slowly through the blade as you keep your right hand on the miter gauge handle and a firm grip on the board with your left hand. 

A miter cut

A table saw is so versatile that it makes miter cuts. However, you need a variety of accessories purchased to be used with a table saw, and these include a miter gauge to simplify the process of making angle cuts. 

Make sure you understand that while so that you will be able to execute such complex cuts. Cutting miter cuts with a miter saw requires advanced carpentry knowledge and skill, which is a disadvantage to beginners, although they can learn first. Attempting miter cuts when you are new increases the risk of injury.

Beveled cuts

Table saws change the blade angle. By doing so, it allows for bevel cuts. Tilt the saw blade to the required angle, and double-check its accuracy with an angle measure. Before you power on your saw, you should be ready to feed your material for rips or crosscuts at a consistent angle.

To cut a bevel cut, you need to make your fence if the table saw does not have it. Set up the rip fence alongside the wood to be cut, either by clamping or with heavy-duty double-sided tape. Position your work so that the cut-off portion falls away from the wood.

A rabbet

When cutting rubbers with a table saw, install a dado blade on a table saw. Take a board of a specific width. Adjust the fence so that the board does not touch the tooth when the rip fence is locked in place. Set the hairline on the scale, and you can trust your scale rather than measuring between the blade and the rip fence every time you rip aboard. 

You need a high-quality dado set. It takes a little time to install the dado blades. Use this method if we have several workpieces to cut. To do this successfully, first, attach a 3⁄4 ” wooden face to your table saw fence. By doing so, you can cut into the wooden face and fine-tune the width of the rabbet with quick fence adjustments.

A dado cut.

Installing a dado blade on your table saw gives you dado cuts. Use a table insert that fits the dado cut for the installation. Set your rip fence the actual distance from the blade. Now you can make your first pass to create your dado. 

Just like when ripping, use push sticks to move your board through the table saw. Move the rip fence at about 1/4 inch from the first cut and continue with your second pass through the table saw until you have the desired width of the dado cut.

What type of cut should you typically not perform with the table saw?

You cannot cut through a pipe on a table saw. A pipe is curved, and a table saw surface is flat and smooth to allow the wood to travel across it easily. Pushing a pipe into a table saw causes you to slip and bring serious harm to the user.

 A standard pipe is rigid and requires a PVC pipe and tube cutters as hacksaws, power miter saws, and scissor-type cutters. Ratchet-style cutters are affordable, flexible, and easy to use. With a hacksaw, slowly draw the blade back and forth, and make sure that the cut is straight.

What are Feather Boards used for?

  1. A feather board ensures your safety when using a table saw, and it allows you to apply pressure against a workpiece. 
  2. It keeps the board flat against a machine table or fence.
  3. Featherboards also work for edge jointing and making molding on router tables.
David D. Hughes

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