First build! Flat Cutting questions.

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by David Gindler, Oct 14, 2003.

  1. David Gindler

    David Gindler Auditioning

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    I have put together a sub and a center channel. Now it is time for me to try the whole thing. I am planning to build a 281 kit from Adire. Thing is, I don't have a table saw, but I do have a router and router table.

    My question relates to making the flats. I should probably get my router out and answer my own question, but I figure I would check with some of you experienced builders. So the question is: Is it easier to cut flats with a guide and a circular saw or a router? I figure I can clamp on a guide / fence and given that I measure it well and account for the blade kerf, I can cut the panels as needed. MDF is cheap enough, if I make a mistake I can get more.

    I did check into a millworking place in Austin, but they wanted $250.00 to cut everything. I figure, too much, and I want to do it myself.

    and if your wondering, I built my own shop.... Although, now I wish it was bigger!

    Any comments are appreciated. I am in the planning stage and nothing is ordered.

    David
     
  2. Ed O'Neill

    Ed O'Neill Second Unit

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    David,

    I have been in a similar situation when trying to cut pieces out of a 4x8 sheet of plywood. I have found that if you use a clamp on guide or even clamp a level. The key is to go slow and don't ut too much pressure against the fence (guide)/level.

    Good Luck
    Ed
     
  3. Chris Tsutsui

    Chris Tsutsui Screenwriter

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    I've always used a table saw, but a router can work perfect.

    If you have to make multiples of something, it could be easier by first making an accurate MDF template. Once you have crafted the template, just place the template down onto your MDF piece and mark it with pencil. Then use a jig saw and cut around the template trace as close as possible to the line. Then "Screw" the template back on and use the router as a "Trim" tool to shave off the excess thus making the cut piece.

    (Make sure the template gets screwed onto the "inside" part of the panel, and the screw doesn't go through.

    Routers are just easier to use and control when you are using them as a trimming tool and not passing them entirely through MDF.

    So basically, if you have to make 2 panels, make one panel the hard way, and then use it as a template to clone it for the other.
     
  4. Greg_R

    Greg_R Screenwriter

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    I usually rough it out with a circular saw and then cut the final edge with a table saw. You can still get accurate results using a straight edge (~$10 at Home Depot) and 2 decent clamps.
     
  5. Joe Tilley

    Joe Tilley Supporting Actor

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    If you have a Menards in your area they sell guides for use with your table saw. I don't have one myself but a friend dose & it works very good. It's pretty much a big portable fence with two clamps on either end & is adjustable up to a full 100" just perfect for cutting a 4x8 sheet down to size. I measure from the edge of the guide to the outside of the blade & than add that to my cut when setting up the fence, & get perfect cuts every time.
     
  6. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    I take it that you don't have access to a table saw, which would be the preferred method, assuming it were accurate. Between the router and a circular saw and edge guide, I'd go with the latter. Use a square to make sure your saw's sole plate is at 90 degrees from the blade.
     
  7. David Gindler

    David Gindler Auditioning

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    Thanks for the responses. I saw a nice extendable cutting guide at Home Depot which would work out well. I also saw a very nice Rigid table saw...not sure I could get my money out of it though.
     

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