Zero Clearance Inserts

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Project by Mikhail posted 10-14-2013 10:56 AM 2362 views 4 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here are some zero clearance inserts I made with my son for a table saw we are rebuilding. The materials are from some maple flooring from next door.

My first attempt at creating a pattern was too loose (based on metal insert) so I did a crayon rubbing of the actual opening and used that. This generated a much nicer fitting insert. I added wooden riving knives later.

Wow, that maple is dry and just keeps sucking up the wax.

My son is very proud of the nice bit of figure in his insert.

8 comments so far

View JT23325's profile


168 posts in 3059 days

#1 posted 10-14-2013 01:57 PM

You can never have enough of them. I make mine out of 1/2” MDF and coat them with bowling alley wax which reduces friction to near zero.

-- Jeff, Ability will never catch up with the demand for it. - Malcolm Forbes

View Ken90712's profile


17910 posts in 4100 days

#2 posted 10-14-2013 03:01 PM

Awesome, great time in the shop as well from the looks of that smile….

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View jroot's profile


295 posts in 2134 days

#3 posted 10-14-2013 03:11 PM

What a great posting. I was contemplating how I could improve my insert. You have given me the solution. Big thanks for that.

-- jroot

View maplerock's profile


529 posts in 2712 days

#4 posted 10-14-2013 08:14 PM

Very nice Mikhail. When you say you can’t have enough, what do you mean? The three pictured all look identical. Why the same one? I can see having a dado ZCI or 45 degree ZCI too. What different ones do you make?

-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

View NiteWalker's profile


2741 posts in 3488 days

#5 posted 10-14-2013 08:26 PM

Nice job. I made mine out of 1/2” mdf and coated them with dewaxed shellac then wax.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Mikhail's profile


48 posts in 2603 days

#6 posted 10-14-2013 10:38 PM

Thanks folks. My son constantly bugs me ‘when are we going to build something?’ I like including him in everything in the shop, and so far that approach has paid off.

I am just getting started again after being distracted by work for the last 10 years, so I have some catching up to do. Right now my focus is on getting the shop functional again.

I used Caruba wax that I had left over from a turning project. Same as the table saw I am refurbishing.

Maplerock: I didn’t say that…that was JT23335.

One of them is NOW a dado insert and later one might be used for 45 degrees. Or I may make more…I have a have about 8 cu ft of maple flooring to use up so these are hardly the last.

View Jofa's profile


272 posts in 2750 days

#7 posted 10-15-2013 01:37 AM

You’ve encouraged me to finally take on this project. I’ve needed to do this for a while now.

The insert on my old Craftsman 101.02161 is bowing a little in the middle. Probably from being 60 years old and pretty thin metal.

Nice work!

-- Thank you Lord for the passion and ability to make things from your creation.

View Campzeke's profile


66 posts in 2845 days

#8 posted 10-20-2013 12:15 PM

I love the fact your son is in the shop with you. It is time well spent and time you both will cherish later on. I am sure you both will turn out many more favorite projects. Keep up the good work. Oh, by the way. Nice inserts!

-- Campzeke, Tampa, FL

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