Box Joint Table Saw Jig (without using miter slots)

  • Advertise with us
Project by Eddie posted 02-18-2013 04:44 PM 3704 views 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Box Joint Table Saw Jig (without using miter slots)
Box Joint Table Saw Jig (without using miter slots) No picture No picture No picture No picture No picture
Zoom Pictures

I am new to woodworking and wanted to make a couple boxes (toy chests for my daughter)

I bought a table saw off of CL and am one of those lucky guys to have the tabbed proprietary craftsman miter slots…
The saw did not come with a miter gauge so I was unable to use that for the easy box joint jig I’ve seen on here.

Also, I was unable to use the miter slots as runners for the jig because of those darn tabs.

Here was my solution:
I used some scrap that I had around the shop to build the jig and waxed the bottom for less friction.
The sled used the outer edges of the saw as a guide and the front face can be removed and a new piece added to accomodate different size box joints.

12 comments so far

View bake's profile


385 posts in 3974 days

#1 posted 02-18-2013 05:07 PM

Good solution, your joints look good.
I had the same saw and struggled with the miter track issue until I took an angle grinder and ground off the tabs.
Then I made hardwood runners for everything. It worked great.
The bigger issue for me was zero clearance inserts. I found using a sled took care of most of those issues as well.

-- I love the smell of Home Depot in the morning, it smells like.......carpentry. Bake, Bar Lazy U Woodworks, Lehi,UT.

View 1yeldud1's profile


301 posts in 3339 days

#2 posted 02-18-2013 06:16 PM

did you run this setup with out a guard around the blade / – I hope not

View Eddie's profile


212 posts in 2248 days

#3 posted 02-18-2013 06:25 PM

hypothetically….lets say that I did :/ What are the reasons to be opposed to running it like that? honest question as I am new to woodworking.

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

588 posts in 2788 days

#4 posted 02-18-2013 07:35 PM

My table saw had those awful tabs on the miter slots…. once. I spent a half hour with an angle grinder on mine and enough of that.

Love the jig.

View 1yeldud1's profile


301 posts in 3339 days

#5 posted 02-18-2013 10:45 PM

Not very safe – could cause a major injury is something would fall into that hole – block of wood, tool, hand, ect. Just my opinion.

View Eddie's profile


212 posts in 2248 days

#6 posted 02-18-2013 10:50 PM

Thanks, I have been looking for a dado insert for this saw but it seems to have the lesser common insert shape.
Even so, the dado insert would have to allow for various widths correct? So there would still be spaces?

My other thought was that by making the bottom of my sled so wide it covers the cutting side of the blade as the jig passed over…i know its not the best way but it provides atleast some covering while in use.

View Bill_N's profile


235 posts in 2576 days

#7 posted 02-18-2013 10:56 PM

I have that same saw
I finally cut the tabs off and made runners out of wood for a sled

-- I have the Saw Dust Fever

View CrossGrain (Josh)'s profile

CrossGrain (Josh)

64 posts in 3315 days

#8 posted 02-19-2013 04:36 PM

I also have a tablesaw with those tabs. I made hardwood runners for a sled and just used a straight router bit to take off the top corners of the runners to accomodate the tabs.

Your solution is just as good and those box joints look great!

-- Josh, Virginia ,

View choppertoo's profile


301 posts in 3610 days

#9 posted 02-22-2013 09:16 PM

Nice solution. I love seeing the creative LJ minds at work. I also like CrossGrain (josh) solution as a work around for those tabs.

That open throat though is dangerous. Use the throat plate that came with the saw as a pattern to creat a new, dedicated throat plate. That way you will be much safer in your shop and have a zero clearance throat plate to boot.

-- The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that our aim is too low and we reach it.. Michelangelo

View Joe's profile


80 posts in 2239 days

#10 posted 02-23-2013 12:40 PM

A zero clearance throat plate will also help prevent tear-out in addition to being safer. I agree with choppertoo & just make yourself one if you don’t have one.

Keep up the good work and keep posting. I like your projects.

-- It's better to have a tool and not need it than to need a tool and not have it.

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2408 days

#11 posted 02-23-2013 02:05 PM

I make different zero clearance inserts for different widths of dado.

1yeldud1 said “did you run this setup with out a guard around the blade”
I don’t see how you can cut box joints with a blade guard. Please enlighten me.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View fredj's profile


186 posts in 2115 days

#12 posted 07-28-2013 11:30 PM

Good work, however you need to have a throat plate (insert around the blades) in that saw table saw top, sled or not. Extremely unsafe ! If you can make that jig and those cuts you can make a throat plat to fit your saw. Make an insert, lower the blades, place the fence over the insert, but just clear of the blade, turn the saw on and raise the blade. If you don’t have fingers, or eyes, it’s really hard to do anything. I’ve seen too much blood on table saws. Keep up the good work, but be careful.

-- Fredj

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics