Taper Jig

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Project by CutNRun posted 01-08-2008 12:33 AM 19922 views 26 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Taper Jig
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To do a project recently, I needed to make some tapered legs. I had never attempted tapered legs previously. After a bit of internet research, I learned about various ways to create tapers using a jointer, bandsaw, or tablesaw. My tool of choice is a tablesaw, so I naturally went this route. I reviewed a number of different jigs for creating tapers using the tablesaw, but liked this design from Fine Wood Working the best. It was very simple to make and is just as simple to use. The results are dead accurate and completely repeatable.

The runner for the jig is intentionally undersized to be a bit loose in the miter slot. When you cut your taper, the sled is held firmly toward the saw blade. When you pull the sled back on the return stroke, you pull it back from the blade, providing clearance so that there is no marring of the just cut surface. I added the two wooden handles to the jig to make this easier to accomplish.

The jig can cut either full length tapers or tapers to a set line. You can also cut two sided or four sided tapers equally well. The hold down clamp and wood blocks hold your leg blanks securely in place.

If you subscribe to Fine Wood Working On-Line, the video that I watched and made the sled/jig from can be found at

I believe the sled could also be used to joint the edge of a badly warped board, but haven’t tried this yet.

-- CutNRun - So much wood, so many trails, so little time

9 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4525 days

#1 posted 01-08-2008 01:51 AM

That will work for sure. Good job.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 4533 days

#2 posted 01-08-2008 02:28 AM

That certainly looks a lot safer than the aluminum variety – having the hold down seems like a great idea…

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 4411 days

#3 posted 01-08-2008 03:19 AM

I like simple jigs like this. They always seem to be the most useful. It is so easy to over-engineer something but you have done a great job this jig.

-- Happy woodworking!

View LONGHAIR's profile


94 posts in 4351 days

#4 posted 01-08-2008 03:35 AM

I have never seen it done like that (miter slot). Every time I have needed a tapering jig, it was made for the specific application. But it was made to ride along the rip fence.
As has been said, hold-downs are a great saftey item in this type of jig. The commercial aluminum jigs may work, but they sure aren’t the safest thing.

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 4411 days

#5 posted 01-08-2008 03:58 AM

I started building a taper jig today … now you have me thinking your way is better! Thanks for posting!

-- -- --

View TreeBones's profile


1827 posts in 4560 days

#6 posted 01-08-2008 05:51 PM

Cool tool. Some day I may try this style.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View Jiri Parkman's profile

Jiri Parkman

953 posts in 4349 days

#7 posted 01-09-2008 01:13 PM

Beauty of simplicity.

-- Jiri

View Grumpy's profile


25776 posts in 4388 days

#8 posted 02-13-2008 07:40 AM

Good one Cutnrun.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Chardt's profile


169 posts in 4138 days

#9 posted 08-07-2008 12:51 AM

I’ll need to make one of these for the next project I’m designing. It’s an oak buffet/window seat for our dining room.

-- When my wife ask's what I have to show for my wood working hobby, I just show her the splinters.

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