Table Saw Fence Micro Ajustor

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Project by canadianwoodtick posted 12-16-2010 07:01 PM 10295 views 11 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made this jig from some baltic birch, a small clamp and three rare earth magnets. I used epoxy to set the clamp and magnets. It works great but I am going to add three more magnets for better holding. I used it this morning to remove one thousand of an inch from a board, thanks GREG.

12 comments so far

View jusfine's profile


2422 posts in 4001 days

#1 posted 12-16-2010 09:48 PM

Maybe I am missing the point of the jig, but it appears to me your clamp is at the full extension, so how does it work? Is the clamp used to adjust the length past the end of the jig?

Maybe I need another coffee to understand it…


-- Randy "You are judged as much by the questions you ask as the answers you give..."

View AaronK's profile


1512 posts in 4540 days

#2 posted 12-16-2010 10:20 PM

doesn’t really matter which way it is set as long as you set the fence coarse adjustment to the right side….

View Don's profile


517 posts in 4148 days

#3 posted 12-16-2010 11:17 PM

Why would you ever need to cut to an accuracy of 1/1000 of an inch? I never cut to more than an accuarcy of 1/64 and I can adjust my table saw fence that much with a simple finger tap. 1/1000 is more than wood can expand and contract in a days time due to temperature and humidity fluctuations so it seems comletely pointless to me to try and cut wood to that level of accuracy.

-- Don - I wood work if I could. Redmond WA.

View cabmaker's profile


1745 posts in 3884 days

#4 posted 12-16-2010 11:22 PM

Very inovative but I hope that 1000 th is not back on there by nightfall. Enjoy JB

View AaronK's profile


1512 posts in 4540 days

#5 posted 12-17-2010 12:52 AM

i’m not one to talk, since my TS is a benchtop that on good days gets within 1/100”. But I would love to have one of these. It’s such an easy tool to make, and it takes the frustration out of adjusting the fence. I get by with tapping, but i’d like something a little more gradual. This is also great for router fences, btw.

the “micro” in the title is a little bit of a misnomer, since the thread of the screw is quite coarse, but i think you guys are reading a little too much into it.

that said, although the wood can move that much overnight, I wouldn’t want a 1/1000th difference in thickness between two adjacent boards – you can easily feel that much of a difference!

View Woodstock's profile


264 posts in 4363 days

#6 posted 12-17-2010 06:54 AM

This may seem excessive for the “eyeball plus/minus a thumb width – close enough for government work” crowd, but it’s actually a really good idea.

For example, yesterday I needed to cut 12 ultra thin 20”x 0.040” x 1.25” (+-.003) red oak strips to inlay in a geometric pattern for an upcoming 12” lathe platter. 12 curves @ 30 degrees offset around the center blank means lots of overlapping strips and lots of crescent shaped cuts in the blank.

Keeping the strips to the same keirf-width of the band-saw blade means the difference between tight continuous intersecting joints and offset sloppy joints throughout the blank, as well as keeping a 12” round exactly 12” round when I get done placing the inlays.

Fine tuning setup jigs like this help take the guess work out of an already tough project.

(Snicker) I’ve been tempted in the past to sacrifice a cheap micrometer movement to do the same thing but I’d probable would end up destroy the ultra fine threads in the screw. Got to find something in between.

I did read somewhere recently (LJ??) that a 1/4” x 20 TPI machine screw will give something like 50 thou per full turn. Just add a wing nut & a wrench to lock it down.

OK. Off to turn on the heater in the shop for some experimenting….

Just for the record: My tapping finger isn’t NIST calibrated or certified. Wish it was though.


-- I'm not old. Just "well seasoned".

View tworedballs's profile


36 posts in 3965 days

#7 posted 12-17-2010 03:55 PM

I like the concept, but wouldn’t a hand plane (or even some sandpaper?) do the job in one pass or so? I guess I’m on the side of the fence with the ‘finger tap’ crowd, as there are too many variables to take into account (in my shop, anyways) for 1/1000th to matter. For example, making sure your mitre guage is cutting at exactly 45 degrees, or that your TS blade height for a dado is exactly 3/8, or whatever the measurement is, especeially considering the movement you’ll get with relative humidity in your shop from day to day or the swelling that occurs once glue is introduced to the equation.

Just my $.02

View AaronK's profile


1512 posts in 4540 days

#8 posted 12-17-2010 04:09 PM

guys: if the pitch on that thread is even as fine as 20/inch, then to move it 1/1000” you’d need to be able to accurately turn it 1/50th of a revolution. it’s not literally micro as in 1/1000” resolution. With a finger tap sometimes it’s hard to tell how much it’s moved. This is somewhere in between that and a dial indicator. With this, you see how much it’s moved and you’re sure of it, but you don’t know absolutely how much.

I could see this being really useful when doing something like a half lap where you’re using the fence as a stop. you’ve marked out both ends of the joint and want to mill out the space in between. This makes it so that you can do it quickly, easily, and accurately.

View AaronK's profile


1512 posts in 4540 days

#9 posted 12-17-2010 05:15 PM


View canadianwoodtick's profile


38 posts in 4013 days

#10 posted 12-17-2010 05:53 PM

Thank you for all your comments. You are all correct.
I made this jig because I was tired of tapping the fence back and forth. When I am making a dado at the end of a 3/4” baltic birch board it is less than 3/4”. I install a sacrificial board on my table saw fence and install 3/4” dado in the saw. I cut the sacrificial fence into the dado about 1/8”, then back it off. The baltic birch plywood board that I am using is usually 1/32” less than 3/4”. I take a scrap of 3/4 material, run it through the dado, turning my homemade jig each time until the desired dado size is reached.
I should not have called it a micro jig. I should have designed a jig like this with a dial indicator, then I could have called it a micro jig.
Hope I have inspired you to design your own.
Thank you GREG

View Dusty56's profile


11863 posts in 4764 days

#11 posted 01-08-2011 02:26 AM

I’ve seen items like this before , but this is the first time I’ve seen so many negative comments on the subject.
This item would certainly work better than the factory “fine tuner” that came on my tablesaw fence. I always end up doing the “tap” method of adjustment instead of wasting a bunch of time fiddling with the “fine tuner” on my fence.
I think that you need to explain how it works to “jusfine”, with emphasis on the magnets and the screw clamp. Maybe if you had posted a picture of the clamp with half the threads showing , he might see that it is adjustable.
When you moved your fence that 1000th of an inch , did it move exactly that much on the far end as well and did it hold the measurement after locking down your fence ? What did you use to measure(set) your fence to remove that fraction of an inch ?
Here’s a link to Brian’s site that is most useful and informative : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View gyrene1's profile


7 posts in 3720 days

#12 posted 02-28-2011 12:36 PM

Hey man, good job, it works for you.

-- Whoever dies with most toys (tools) wins

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