For safe, accurate, and clean crosscuts at the tablesaw, there’s no beating a basic shop-built sled.

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For safe, accurate, and clean crosscuts at the tablesaw, there's no beating a basic shop-built sled. Because I make a lot of small boxes with mitered corners, I sought a simple but super-precise way to cut miters on such a sled. One day it occurred to me: Build a mitering attachment around a pair of plastic rafter squares (sometimes called by the brand name Speed Square). They're dead-on accurate.

To build your own jig, simply top the long edges of the squares with a piece of plywood cut with parallel kerfs to accept the thickness of the squares. Add a work stop mounted parallel to the front/back edges of the work support. Secure that assembly to a T-slot in the sled using a kerf-cut length of solid wood, held down with a bolt and threaded knob. Before cutting your first workpiece, run the jig through the tablesaw to cut the lower edge of the jig and its stop.
—Mike Stuart, Prineville, Ore.