Quick-and-easy height gauge
Set the cutting depth of tablesaw blades easily using this adjustable gauge. To ensure accuracy, we outfitted it with a steel rule. See Source below for the parts.
Start by cutting the body to size from 3/4" maple, as shown on Drawing 1. Plow a 13/32"-deep groove, sized to fit your rule, in one face of the body, where shown.
Next, set your dado blade to 1/4" and cut the combined rabbet and groove in the body for the sliding bar. To do this, place the gauge body on edge (ungrooved face against the fence). Cut the rabbet/groove in three passes, with the last one at 15/8", where shown on Drawing 1a. Drill and countersink the screw hole. Then, sand and finish the body.
Use a coping saw or scrollsaw to shape the 1/4" acrylic sliding bar to the dimensions shown. Create the adjustment slot by drilling a pair of 5/16" holes where shown and cutting out the material between them. Smooth the edges of the slot and the outer edges of the bar using a fine file. Buff the outer edges if you want to make them supersmooth. Now, scribe a cursor line on the back face, where shown.
Attach the steel rule in the groove using double-faced tape. Place the bottom end of the rule 1/4" from the bottom of the body. Then, install the sliding bar.
To use the gauge, set the cursor line to the desired height. Hold the sliding bar in its groove while adjusting the gauge to keep the bar square with the base. Place the body on the tablesaw top beside the blade, as shown in the photo, then raise the blade to set the height.
Hardware. Stainless steel rule no. 06K20.06 $2.40; 11/2" four-arm plastic knob (1/4-20 threads) no. 00M55.30 $2.20. Lee Valley; 800-871-8158, leevalley.com.
If you like this project, please check out more than 1,000 shop-proven paper and downloadable woodworking project plans in the WOOD Store.