Tablesaw Workstation for my JET Contractor Saw

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Project by snhacket01 posted 01-19-2012 12:44 AM 28221 views 73 times favorited 30 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Tablesaw workstation cart (Nov 2011 – Jan 2012)

This is my first post, and consists of my rambling notes over the past few months. Hope I’m correct in putting this all under one note (for this project) and will try to keep a blog (if I can figure out what a blog is!) for the next project…Also, pic is from my iPod – hope to take a picture with a real camara and post also! I’m new to the site and have been woodworking for a couple of years – this project was my first real attempt without plans and had to make some decisions on how to support a contractor saw…

Jan 16. Finishing touches day! Had to sand under one of the bottom shelves to prevent sticking. Applied a couple of coats of wax to everywhere. Drilled into the top to attach the top “wings” to the base. Assembled the rails, and the fence ran smoothly. Attached the handles…FINISHED!!!

Jan 15. More sanding and poly. Did 2 coats on top and bottoms of wings and all parts of the unit itself using a water based spar urethane with no dye. Brushed on poly, sanding in-between coats. Also fixed the “Noddy” stop sign – one of the tabs broke during all the moves. Used a threaded 1/4 rod with a couple of nyloc nuts – good as new!

Jan 14. Cut lots more small pieces of the door skin to finish off the rest of the exposed mdf and ply – got a little anal about finishing off everything! Also routed a quarter round on the top of the left and right of the tablesaw. Did a bunch of sanding to round the corners and trim the exposed door skins. Also filled some of the pin holes and gaps, and sanded. Vacuumed and wiped everything down and started to poly. Mixed 3 part spar poly, 1 part mineral spirit, 1 part tung oil with a little brown mahogany stain for color. Wiped on the poly mix – did the bottom of the wings first, then a couple of coats on the whole unit, flipped the wings over and did a couple of coats on the top and sides of the wings – looks good so far.

Jan 8. Cut pieces to cover the vertical pieces on the sides of the support on the left hand side (inside and outside) and the cabinet on the right. Also cut a single piece for the back. Also cut pieces to cover the 2 by 4s on the base.

Jan 7 bought another 3 sheets of door skins to cover the mdf and the plywood. Started with the horizontal pieces around the tablesaw. Measured and cut 2 separate “C” shaped pieces to fit around the tablesaw – should probably have taken the time to take the tablesaw out, cutout a hole and routed for the rounded corners, but decided that this was too much effort! Spent time cutting the pieces to fit.

Jan 2 notched 2 pieces out of the MDF to allow the dust collector knobs to turn properly at the base of the large outlet. Cut the Maple to frame the tabletops – decided to make the frame the same dept as the tabletop. Wanted to see if I could get a vise on the tabletop, but the free space wasn’t deep enough to fit the 9 inch grotz. Cut a mitre/grove into the tabletops to fit over the aluminum brackets – routed using a large straight bit. Also cut out 5/8 holes in the tabletops to allow the screws in the brackets countersink into the tabletops. After all this adjusting (including planing the maple sides and the left side tabletop support, was happy that the table tops sat flat and butted right up to the the table saw top.

Jan 1 cut the pieces of alum ( 1 1/4 square at 1/8 inch thick) to 27 inches for the left and right sides brackets. Spent the rest of the morning drilling and adjusting the 5/8 inch holes in the alum brackets for the sides. After a few hours of drilling and moving, was happy with the way the brackets rested and the table tops sat on each side.

Dec 30 cut the door skin (oversized)and used contact cement on both sides (2 coats on each face. Let dry for 30 mins and gluded together. Trimed both sides with flush trim bit and test fitted. Right sides looked good (probably needs to be raised by 1/8 on the drawer cabinet. Left side at 12 inches was too narrow – need to recut at 14 or 15 inches (later figured out that it was cut ok since 2 sides of maple would be added!). Also incorrectly cut the aluminum brackets too short (cut at 25 instead of 27 inches)...bought another set at Lowes (another $28)

Dec 29 cut the 3/4 cherry and framed with leftover 3/4 cherry. Cut the cherry pieces for the drawer fronts and glued and nailed to the drawers. Had a lot of problems with the drawer sliders – so much for the cheap online sliders – next time stick to the quality sliders from lowes or HD! Also trimmed and installed the drawer fronts and the spacer under the tablesaw. Also bought a 1/8 inch door skin ($11) to cover the left and right 1 1/2 inch top sides of the tabletop.
Dec 28 had Mark help me turn the table saw upside down, took the legs off and inserted into the base units…and yes, it fitted. Also bolted the tablesaw into the t-nuts to support it.

Dec 27 figured out that I could take the 3 base units and move them back 3/4 inch, and move the drawer unit forward almost an inch to allow the tablesaw to fit. Took the units apart and moved as described above. Also moved the pine pieces by 1 inch to allow the wheels to swivel freely. Also bought a sheet of 3/4 mdf and cut and glued up 2 pieces at 27 by 48 for the right side of the table to make a 1 1/2 inch thick sheet.

Dec 26 Dec 24 glued up 3 1/2 pieces of mdf for the 12 inch left side of the table…still trying to figure out what to do with the base units to get the tablesaw to fit.

Dec 19 test fitted the tablesaw…didn’t realize that the table on the saw was so off-center. Figured I’d have to rebuild the base units as the table wouldn’t drop into the base with hole…bummer

Dec 18 cut up 3/4 cherry leftover ply and framed with sapelle for the 9 1/2 inch drawers and the space under where the tablesaw will go. Also rough cut a 3/4 cherry for the drawer fronts.

Dec 12 installed the drawer slides on the 6 drawers. Put 1/4 spacer under the pieces on the cabinet. Used a measurement of 7/16 on the pieces on the drawers. Drawers seemed tight on the e 9 1/2 inch side drawers. Time will tell if the drawers will be to stiff to pull easily. Also bought drawer pulls from Lowes $2.77 each.

Dec 11 glued and nailed the 6 drawers. Waiting for the sliders to come, so couldn’t install the drawers – and still thinking about the table-top. Latest thought is to take Bill Mik’s advice and make a tortion box. Advantage is that I could make it any thickness I wanted.

Dec 10 cut the bases for the 6 cabinets out of 1/2 inch mdf cut all the rabbets in the base and had to adjust (correct) the rabbets in the fronts, backs and sides to make the bases fit snugly.

Dec 4 cut the sides, backs and fronts for the shelves. 4 in the high unit. And 2 for the smaller side units. Made the drawers 1 inch less wide than the unit to allow for sliders. Cut the rabbets in the sides, back and front. Incorrectly cut the rabbets for the base – will fix next weekend.

Dec 3 measured the top of the mobile base to the bottom of the tabletop. Made the chest of drawers part of the unit. Glued and screwed the unit, and screwed it to the base and side unit.

Nov 25 attached side boxes and tablesaw base to the mobile base. Used 2 3inch strips of double 3/4 mdf as base of tablesaw base to help hold down tablesaw base. Drilled holes from tablesaw box through the side boxes. Attached the t-nuts to the side boxes. Also bought 1 1/2 inch bolts to eventually bolt the tablesaw through the base to the side boxes.

home depot hardboard 3/16 13.48

Nov 24 drilled holes in side of box and tablesaw base. Also used the jigsaw to cut out a 4 by 3 inch hole in the tablesaw base (to be able to attach the bolts to the t-nuts later.

Nov 23. Decided to make the “hole” in the box a little wider to make sure the tablesaw would fit in. Used the dado blade to shave another 1/32 off all round the rabet. Had Mark help me flip the tablesaw upside down. Took the legs off and test fitted the box. Fitted well side to side but needed 1/4 insert at back…now fits perfect.

Nov 20th. Decided to make 2 12” side boxes out of MDF to provide support on each side of the tablesaw box. Made each box 23 1/2 inches deep to match the tablesaw box. Haven’t decided on shelves (stationary vs pullout yet). But will probably finish with *9 plywood to match the assembly table.

Nov 19th decided to use a double layer of 3/4 MDF as the base for the tablesaw. Cut the 4 sides after measuring everything and formed into a box with no top. Also cut a “groove” 3 9/16 deep by 3/4 wide (basically 1 sheet of MDG wide) so that the cabinet would sit into the box.

Nov 13th cut the pine into 4” width pieces. Cut the various pieces, glued and screwed into a frame, and then screwed into the mdf base. Attached the casters onto the base.

Nov 12th Decided to use a plan from ( with pics from as the base plan – but knew I’d have to do a bunch of figuring out by myself since this was a contractor saw and didn’t have a flat solid base…Should be fun measuring!!!. Started by building the mobile base. Bought a sheet of 3/4 mdf ($30) 4 4”casters from woodcraft ($50) a bunch of screws ($20) and 2 1×10x8 pine ($23). Cut the mdf to 25 1/2 by 70 5/8. Marked and drilled holes for the casters. Also ran a 1/8 round-over on all sides of the base (top and bottom)

Nov 7th ordered 50inch rails for the tablesaw ($270 inc freight). Also bought a bunch of mdf ($30 per sheet) and plywood ($27 per sheet) and a sheet of formica ($48). Not sure what I’ll be using yet.

30 comments so far

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 5046 days

#1 posted 01-19-2012 12:51 AM

That’s a great setup you have there

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

8659 posts in 4843 days

#2 posted 01-19-2012 12:54 AM

Sure is a nice setup! I guess they are right when they say a picture is worth a 1000 words!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View DaddyT's profile


267 posts in 5000 days

#3 posted 01-19-2012 12:58 AM

Really nice!! Welcome to LJ’s

-- Jimi _ Measure twice, cut [email protected]#%#[email protected]!!!......measure twice, cut....

View MasterSergeant's profile


1441 posts in 4178 days

#4 posted 01-19-2012 01:06 AM

excellent work, just one comment. More pictures!

-- Kelly, woodworker under construction

View TheDane's profile


6059 posts in 5153 days

#5 posted 01-19-2012 01:09 AM

Looks great … nice work!

I have been thinking about something similar … I’m just wondering how it can be designed to allow for access to the guts of the saw (e.g. belt changes, trunion alignment, etc.). How did you address these issues?


-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Brandon's profile


4382 posts in 4441 days

#6 posted 01-19-2012 01:34 AM

Welcome to the site. That’s a sweet workstation! My only suggestion is to put the time-stamped notes in chronological order from the top to the bottom. I had to scroll to the bottom and then read upwards to get the feel for the story.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View buffalosean's profile


174 posts in 4877 days

#7 posted 01-19-2012 01:41 AM

looks good. its gonna look better with a nice layer of saw dust on it.

-- There are many ways to skin a cat...... but, the butter knife is not recommended

View snhacket01's profile


6 posts in 3881 days

#8 posted 01-19-2012 02:27 AM

Thanks for the positive comments…

In case anyone comments on the “I didn’t have plans…” comment I made in the text, the inspiration for this came from a project that phil619 posted and the plans in WOOD magazine (which I found because phil619) mentioned it. My issue was trying to figure out how to do this project with a contractor saw, and to get it to line us with the outfeed table/bench which I built using the woodwhisper site (thanks Marc!)

Brandon W – Good point! My notes were cut-and-pasted from my blackberry where I keep notes on my builds. Now that I have this site, will post in the way you mentioned.

TheDane – The back is open for access…will post more pics at the weekend to show the back. My feeling is that I have the same access as before, but will post and show what I mean.

Main purpose was to turn the 30n inch rails and the “stamped” wings into something more useful that could cut up to 53 inch pieces safely…

View a1Jim's profile


118333 posts in 5067 days

#9 posted 01-19-2012 02:54 AM

Wow is that a great set up nice work.


View Wood Studios's profile

Wood Studios

129 posts in 3822 days

#10 posted 01-19-2012 03:07 AM

Very nice setup…looks so nice I might be afraid to use it out of fear I would scratch it. Kidding aside, I am sure you will be very satisfied with the setup when you need to cut large sheets of plywood which is always a challenge.

-- I read it but I wasn't listening!!

View RetiredCoastie's profile


999 posts in 4673 days

#11 posted 01-19-2012 04:11 AM

That’s a great looking saw setup! Nice work.

-- Proud Supporter of Homes For Our Troops

View rdjack21's profile


268 posts in 4417 days

#12 posted 01-19-2012 06:54 AM

Really nice I’ve been thinking of doing something similar myself.

-- --- Richard Jackson

View dougw181's profile


12 posts in 4007 days

#13 posted 01-19-2012 07:37 AM

Nice set up, would you please post more pictures.

View 559dustdesigns's profile


633 posts in 4658 days

#14 posted 01-19-2012 10:32 AM

Nice job.
If this is the first project you have to share, than I cant wait to see whats next.
Keep it coming, I enjoy seeing really thought out work stations.
I’d really like to see more pictures to go with your long write up of this progect.
Also, a really late “welcome to lumberjocks” to you.

-- Aaron - central California "If you haven't got the time to do it right, when will you find the time to do it over?"

View Helgi 's profile


51 posts in 3816 days

#15 posted 01-19-2012 11:17 AM

this is something I would like to have in my garage. good job here.

showing 1 through 15 of 30 comments

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