My favorite push-stick EVER

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Project by Thewoodman2000 posted 01-16-2015 03:16 AM 7604 views 42 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So here is the story.
I worked for a Architectural woodworking company that had the best push-sticks (shop made) that I ever used. Whenever I was given the opportunity to work out in the shop (desk jockey i am) and needed to use the table saw for making cuts I was so happy! Sounds funny but it was because how great the push-stick was. One of the most solid, safest (to me) & comfortable push sticks ever!!!

Then they let me go along with about 100+ employees over a year because of how the economy turned. Tuff times that I know many have had the same unfortunate experience. More news on this one in a minute.

I was good friends with the shop foreman and he said I was always welcome to go through the dumpster for scrap wood. There it was one day a used up push-stick just sitting on top of the pile of wooden gold. Its like someone knew I longed for this push-stick. I was like a kid at Christmas with the best gift ever. I held in my hand a used but perfect profiled push-stick. Perfect because I knew I could copy it and make my own to use. Its funny I know I could have asked the foreman and I am sure he would have let me make a pencil copy. But I didn’t want to be that much of a pest I guess.

So here is my project of safety my most favorite push-stick EVER. And because you can never have to many of them I made several as you can see. Good stable safe Baltic Birch was my choice of material. Yes that came from the scrap bin too! Spent some time on the bandsaw rounded over the edges and some final sanding. And there they are the best EVER push-sticks.

This is a lot of typing for push-sticks but that should tell you I think they are the best EVER.

~~~~~~See last photo for the sizing graph of the push-stick.~~~~~~

And then I got the best news EVER (as far as jobs go). I kept in touch with some of the friends I had at the old company that laid me off. I kept tabs on that company and when jobs came up I applied. I was able to go back this last July as a Drafter! It did take a 1 1/2 years of being humbled but I made it. This company has been in Utah for over 100 years and is the best to work for (in my book). The company has been rebuilding and they are to the point we just receive the 401K back and other great benefits.

My family and I have been so blessed to be part of the Fetzer Architectural Woodwork Inc. Family.

-- (the only thing in there she says is....tap on head..........tap..........tap..... saw dust) - James

20 comments so far

View ChipOffTheOldBlock's profile


65 posts in 2905 days

#1 posted 01-16-2015 03:36 AM

Looks like a great push stick. It’s really good to hear that things turned out on the positive side for you with your job. That’s awesome news!

I can’t imagine how tough that experience was but I do know that no one is invincible to the risks of the market swings. Congratulations, and best of luck to you.

-- "Excellence is a thousand things done just a little bit better"

View jdmaher's profile


472 posts in 3746 days

#2 posted 01-16-2015 11:58 AM

Care to share the specific design?

Maybe scan to a pdf?

-- Jim Maher, Illinois

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 3459 days

#3 posted 01-16-2015 02:07 PM

Interesting design—thanks for sharing.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View shipwright's profile (online now)


8734 posts in 3964 days

#4 posted 01-16-2015 02:40 PM

+1 on the “shoe”.
I reserve the word “stick” for the usual variety that I think are unsafe.
I have been using this type for many years, although without the handle, and agree that they are the best. They are also, in concert with a zero clearance insert and the fence,the best thin strip “jig” ever.

Also good to hear you got your working life back on track.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View LJackson's profile


295 posts in 2761 days

#5 posted 01-16-2015 05:16 PM

Huh, I wonder how good this push stick is.

I second the nomination, if it’s so damn good, share a sketch so that we may make our own. Let’s populate the world with safe, happy woodworkers.

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1530 posts in 5292 days

#6 posted 01-16-2015 06:10 PM

So I see the length from the picture with the tape measure, and can re-draw from that.

What thickness ply are you using? It looks like that one in the first picture has taken a bit of damage which is why I’m getting a weird feel on thickness from the picture.

I’ll be cutting a couple of these tomorrow…

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View macdo's profile


29 posts in 3109 days

#7 posted 01-16-2015 06:14 PM

Hi guys, I don’t know if my sight is so bad or the base of the stick is wider than the handle.
I would like to try it…

View Thewoodman2000's profile


822 posts in 3137 days

#8 posted 01-16-2015 06:18 PM

Thank you everyone for taking a look at the best EVER push-stick <or> (I think that is).
Your comments have been great.

The shop has made them out of both 5/8” and 3/4” Baltic Birch. They have also made MDF ones too but I just don’t feel as safe with that as the plywood.

I will do a pencil copy on a 1”x 1’ grid tonight and see if I can get it loaded on here.

Have a great “safe, happy woodworking” day

-- (the only thing in there she says is....tap on head..........tap..........tap..... saw dust) - James

View hoss12992's profile


4180 posts in 3059 days

#9 posted 01-16-2015 06:38 PM

Love these push sticks. The ones I make and use are just about like yours. Been using them for about the past 25 yrs, and in my opinion, there are none better or safer. Congrats on getting your job back.

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View patron's profile


13722 posts in 4508 days

#10 posted 01-16-2015 06:38 PM

i use these quit a bit
and make as many as the scrap ply allows

however i do run them the other way with the face grain
so that last little sliver is not going with the grain
and could double over and break over the blade

with mine it is still part of the body of the rig

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View flotilla's profile


3 posts in 2394 days

#11 posted 01-16-2015 11:40 PM

Yes, looks like a very good push stick. I have been using a similar design for years, and I always feel safe, even when cutting narrow strips. For ultra narrow cuts I have a similar stick made from quarter-inch plywood, and it works fine for times when the clearance between blade and fence is small. My regular stick is 3/4 inch. Thanks for sharing a good thing.

-- John N. in Alabama

View Mean_Dean's profile


7057 posts in 4314 days

#12 posted 01-17-2015 01:11 AM

Well that’s a nice looking push stick! I’ve never liked the straight-style push sticks, and always preferred this or similar styles.

I think it’s great that you’re willing to share the design—someday this design may save a woodworkers fingers, and that will be a great legacy of this post.

-- Dean -- "Don't give up the ship -- fight her 'till she sinks!" Capt James Lawrence USN

View Luddite's profile


250 posts in 2405 days

#13 posted 01-17-2015 01:33 AM

Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to your posting of the pattern. My nine and three quarter fingers thank you in advance.

-- T Loftus -- Just on the edge of common sense

View Thewoodman2000's profile


822 posts in 3137 days

#14 posted 01-17-2015 01:58 AM

I love this community everyone is so great and has the best knowledge!!!

Please see Pic # 6 for the Sizing graph of this style of push-stick.

Keep it safe and have a great night!

-- (the only thing in there she says is....tap on head..........tap..........tap..... saw dust) - James

View jterry's profile


23 posts in 3994 days

#15 posted 01-17-2015 02:10 AM

Great story. Then I saw it was fetzers mill and so, why am I not surprised? They have been around for about 165 years and make some of the best furniture there is. Isn’t it great to work for a great company? congrats.

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