With the purchase of a tablesaw, the shop starts to look like a shop. If you've never used a tablesaw before, don't worry, we have lots of resources to help you get started.

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With the purchase of a tablesaw, the shop starts to look like a shop. If you've never used a tablesaw before, don't worry, we have lots of resources to help you get started. The first step is getting the saw unloaded and assembled. Your best resources here are a strong friend or two for unloading, and the owner's manual for assembly. We have a few tips of our own that make assembly easier, especially if you're working alone. Click here to read more.

We chose a Ridgid (homedepot.com) contractor's saw with a built-in mobile base. This base makes it easy to move the saw out of the way when you need floorspace or reposition it to work with long or wide workpieces. The owner's manual explains the saw's controls and features. In a nutshell, a motor inside the tablesaw cabinet spins a 10" blade that raises above the table, and tilts for bevel cuts. Work is guided past the blade along the rip fence for rip cuts or, for crosscuts and miters, with a miter gauge that slides in slots in the tabletop. Work is NEVER fed past the blade freehand, without something to guide it (the miter gauge, rip fence, or a specially made jig).

IS6 TS COB

To help set up your saw, pick up a pair of drafting triangles.

IS6 drafting triangles

Inexpensive and very accurate, these help you set the blade-tilt and miter-gauge stops at precisely 45° and 90°. Verify the stop settings with the techniques shown in this video.

Using your jigsaw and drill sanding jig, turn a plywood scrap into a pushstick. Use it to move material safely past the tablesaw blade during rip cuts, keeping your fingers out of harm's way.

IS6 pushstick

Because pushsticks get cut up, make several so you always have a fresh one on hand. Find two of our favorite designs in this free article that includes a pre-sawing checklist. With a well-tuned saw, and a supply of pushsticks, you're just about set to make your first cuts on the saw. But first, learn and live these tool safety tips and discover how to defeat kickback.

Then get ready to start rebuilding the bank with Paycheck 11.