Popular Woodworking 2005-04 № 147, страница 22

Popular Woodworking 2005-04 № 147, страница 22

Tricks of the Trade

continued from page 18

Shop-made Magnetic Featherboard

Being safety conscious at the table saw, I have always used a featherboard to keep stock firmly against the fence to help prevent kickback. For narrower work, I often use a small featherboard that rides in the miter-gauge slot. When ripping wide boards that cover the miter-gauge slot, I've used to clamp a large featherboard to the saw's extension wing. But the clamping was often such a hassle that I just didn't bother to use the device, although that made

High-friction pad



Magnet cup (with slot cut)

Recess in board (with removal access slot)

me nervous. What I needed was something that was quick and easy enough to position that I would never hesitate to use it.

To solve the problem, I got out my stash of 3/4"-diameter rare earth magnets, cups and high-friction pads I got from Lee Valley (800871-8158 or leevalley.com) a while back. I drilled four shallow holes for the magnet cups: two near the fingers and two centered along the length of the board. I sawed a slot partially through each cup and chiseled small slots in the board adjacent to each hole so the magnets could be pried out with an awl for other uses if necessary. I screwed the cups into their holes, inserted the magnets, then applied the high-friction pads, which prevent the featherboard from sliding or twisting.

It holds firmly and, because it's long enough to extend over the edge of the wing, it can be released by pulling up on the end. To position it, place the fingers against the workpiece, then tap the opposite end just enough to make the fingers flex a bit. For a more secure grip yet, you could use 1"-diameter magnets but beware - they are powerful!

Carole B. Valentine Onley, Virginia

Magnets hold featherboard in place without clamps

Access slots in featherboard help allow for easy removal of magnets

Cleaning Glue Brushes

In addition to the disposable solder flux brushes that I use to apply glue, I also have a collection of artists' brushes of various sizes and shapes to better suit particular applications. Although I make sure to clean these after each use, they still tend to get stiff over time. When this happens, I've found that the best method for cleaning and softening hardened white and yellow glue from the bristles is to boil them in some shallow water on the stove, swishing the bristles against the bottom of the pan. If the bristles are particularly stiff, adding a bit of vinegar will help soften the residual glue.

Peter Black Los Angeles, California

Soft Metal for Jigs

A while ago, I was working on the table saw using a specialized sled that I cobbled together with steel dry wall screws. Unfortunately, when attaching the exit guard block for the sled, I used too long of a screw, and part of it ended up in the blade's path when I made the first cut. I was glad to be wearing safety glasses as I felt a bit of hot metal hit me in the face. Happily, no real harm was done and the blade wasn't damaged too badly. All the same, I've learned since then to use brass or aluminum screws on any part of a jig that may encounter a blade or other cutter in use.

Albert Teller Las Cruces, New Mexico

Closing Down the Throat

I often need to cut small parts or trim away slivers of wood using the table saw, scroll-saw or band saw. Unfortunately, it's all too easy to lose a tiny part that falls into the saw's throat-plate opening. And thin off-cuts can j am between the opening and the blade, creating an unsafe situation. I have found that the best and easiest way to prevent this is to seal off the throat opening with wide cellophane tape. Just cut an opening in it to accommodate the blade. Small parts will lie on the tape until you decide to clear them off.

David Bartle Scottsburg, Indiana continued on page 22


Popular Woodworking April 2005

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