Cutting Tenons with a Router Table Sled [w/bonus DIY dust collection]

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Blog entry by Greg Guarino posted 06-29-2015 01:42 AM 2647 reads 1 time favorited 1 comment Add to Favorites Watch

I don’t have a table saw, nor do I have the skills or tools to cut tenons with a hand saw. So I came up with this idea:

... a sled that moves the work over a 3/4” router bit. It’s got a movable stop to set the length of the tenon.

It works decently, although I have found that since I need to make several passes, each pass – somehow – ends up the tiniest bit different in depth than the others. The difference is truly tiny, just enough to see the “seam”, but it bugs me. I can fix it by putting a piece of thin (maybe 1/32”) plastic under the work while removing most of the waste, then removing the plastic for the last “clean-up” pass. That leaves a nice smooth surface.

The other thing that bothered me was the dust. I’m basically vaporizing 1/4” x 1.5” x 2” of wood to make each tenon. That adds up. I got out a mini shop vac to clean up after the first piece and it occurred to me that I could quickly jury-rig a dust-collection scheme. [I have no real dust collection]

The sled already had a plexi safety cover; all I needed to do was add a couple of wood “guides” to direct the chips into the vacuum nozzle. Here’s how it worked:

View on YouTube


1 comment so far

View Roger's profile


21030 posts in 3405 days

#1 posted 06-30-2015 08:16 PM

Very good. Works like a charm

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

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