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Old 10-02-2019, 10:22 AM
zuren zuren is offline
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Default Dado blades for table saw?



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Any wood workers on the forum?

I have encountered the rather fortunate problem of having too many table saws. I had a very cheap, consumer level saw that has worked okay for the projects I used it on. My neighbor just gave me a contractor/pro level table in excellent condition, so I'm going to ditch the cheap saw. I don't have the space for both. This cheap saw came with what is probably a cheap 6" dado blade set (Craftsman) that looks to be missing some chipper blades, so I'm limited on the width of a dado.

I would like to try my hand at making new cabinet doors and drawers for our kitchen, so I'm debating if I should keep the dado set I have, or if there are better options out there, if I should send this dado set with the cheap saw when I sell it? If I'm truly going to set out making cabinet doors, I'm okay with spending a $100+ for a good dado set.

Thanks!
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Old 10-02-2019, 10:44 AM
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When you sell the old saw, they will not pay more with the dado set included. It doesn't take up a lot of room. You can use the old set to practice with.
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Old 10-02-2019, 10:49 AM
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Get a router and router table?

I think that would do everything a dado cutter would do, and much more.
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Old 10-02-2019, 11:26 AM
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Comparing the results from my stacked dado to a wobbler that someone else had, the wobbler made a cleaner cut.
I won't call myself a wood worker, and maybe it was user error, but that has been my experience.
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Old 10-02-2019, 12:11 PM
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"Never sell or give tools away, buy more tools"


Just kidding.
I do pass down to others my lesser or extra tools to someone getting started when I upgrade a tool. But that is only if I have a second or 3rd set for backup.

Each tool has its own merits.
I have both routers and dado blades. sometimes a dado blade sets up faster for me for a simple project.
Im no woodworker, just a guy with tools...
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Old 10-02-2019, 01:23 PM
gungatim gungatim is offline
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the best dado setup out there used to be the Freud set, and it used to be around a hundred, but it's been a few years since i frequented the woodworking forums so things may have changed.

i've got several dado sets myself, the Freud, a double wobble craftsman, and a couple of no-name stacks.

I use the double wobble the most, because I do a lot of things where all I need is a 1/4" for a drawer bottom or frame and panel stuff, the wobble is fine as the bottom doesn't need to be flat. single wobbles just plain suck.

for good cabinet work the Freud comes out, it's by far the best.

personally don't care for using router bits for that stuff, much easier to get the right width dialed in with a dado setup.

you say you're missing chippers and limited to width, how many do you have? you don't really need that many, shims you do, but you can always run a narrow chisel down the middle of the dado or rabbet if you have a spot the chippers miss.

hope that helps.
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Old 10-02-2019, 01:44 PM
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For cabinet doors i use a moulding cutter and whatever profile blades I want the edges to be. I also recommend Freud heads.
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Old 10-02-2019, 02:57 PM
zuren zuren is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justme11 View Post
Get a router and router table?

I think that would do everything a dado cutter would do, and much more.
I do have a small benchtop router table with router (Skil). It was given to me and only played with it briefly a couple years ago. I remember the table/fence not being that accurate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by solar1 View Post
"Never sell or give tools away, buy more tools"

Just kidding.
I do pass down to others my lesser or extra tools to someone getting started when I upgrade a tool. But that is only if I have a second or 3rd set for backup.

Each tool has its own merits.
I have both routers and dado blades. sometimes a dado blade sets up faster for me for a simple project.
Im no woodworker, just a guy with tools...
I'm mostly the same...just a guy with tools. That said, this is something I'm not using often so having 1 dado blade set kicking around is probably all I need. I could also do dado's with the router, but like you mention, I think being able to do dados on the table saw might be easier for me in many situations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gungatim View Post
the best dado setup out there used to be the Freud set, and it used to be around a hundred, but it's been a few years since i frequented the woodworking forums so things may have changed.

i've got several dado sets myself, the Freud, a double wobble craftsman, and a couple of no-name stacks.

I use the double wobble the most, because I do a lot of things where all I need is a 1/4" for a drawer bottom or frame and panel stuff, the wobble is fine as the bottom doesn't need to be flat. single wobbles just plain suck.

for good cabinet work the Freud comes out, it's by far the best.

personally don't care for using router bits for that stuff, much easier to get the right width dialed in with a dado setup.

you say you're missing chippers and limited to width, how many do you have? you don't really need that many, shims you do, but you can always run a narrow chisel down the middle of the dado or rabbet if you have a spot the chippers miss.

hope that helps.
There are many options for dado sets now - Freud, Diablo, Oshlun (China)...and many no names. The Diablo set comes in at around $100.

The Craftsman set is a 6" with 3 chippers. Went I searched info on it, it looks like it should have come with 6, and it looks like from the bubble packaging there should be more. Maybe you can't use all of the chippers depending on your arbor so they were just extra? I wouldn't care if a cut needs cleaning.

Quote:
Originally Posted by charliemeyer007 View Post
When you sell the old saw, they will not pay more with the dado set included. It doesn't take up a lot of room. You can use the old set to practice with.
I may keep my set for for practice, but while I do think about prepping in a general sense (and the "2 is 1, 1 is none" mentality), I try to balance that with the idea of having less but nicer, more usable stuff. I figured throwing in the dado set might sweeten the deal for someone to get this out of here. The table saw was about $150 new. I figure I will be lucky to get $50 for it.

Thanks!
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Old 10-05-2019, 10:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuren View Post
I would like to try my hand at making new cabinet doors and drawers for our kitchen, so I'm debating if I should keep the dado set I have, or if there are better options out there, if I should send this dado set with the cheap saw when I sell it? If I'm truly going to set out making cabinet doors, I'm okay with spending a $100+ for a good dado set.

Thanks!
You can buy a set of matched door making router bits in several different profile choices from a place like MLSC all day long for under 50 bucks and the joints will be perfect every time.

Trying to do doors on a table saw is going to be harder to do right, very limited in the choices of door styles you can do, and take a lot longer.

I do second the thought of keeping the 'extra' table saw though. No such thing as too many of those. You may set one up to do a particular task and use the other for 'other' stuff. Swapping blades is a non-issue when you have several table saws set up and ready to use.
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Old 10-06-2019, 01:33 AM
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Keep it.

My cheap set made my beehives (and hives for several others.) just fine.
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Old 10-06-2019, 05:04 AM
small.business.guy.1 small.business.guy.1 is offline
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Freud is as good as there is. Made in Italy. Basically, you have 3 alternatives - Table saw, router table, or shaper with cutters. Have all three. Table saw (making dado cuts) is cheapest. The Freud dado sets are:

Stacked dado cutters (6" & 8"): Freud 6" & 8" stacked dado sets

Not a big fan of the wobble cutters.

The router table option is a good option, but those cheap little Sears router tables are garbage. If you are going to do cabinet doors (rails & stiles) and/or raised panels, router option is better, IMO. Course, my rig is home made, have a Bosch plunge router slung upside down in the router table, and use CMT/Freud 1"2 carbide tip router bits to make my cuts. It's really, seriously pricey. The router bits are where the serious coin is spent.

Shapers are a whole different world. And prices for cutters are in an entirely different world.

Couple of suggestions (mostly from experience):

First, Check out if there are any community/2 years colleges in your area where they offer wood working classes. Worth their weight in gold. That's how I first got started a very long time ago.

Second, Safety first, foremost, & in between.

Third, Good quality tools matter. Just as an example: Good Stuff But Pricey

Note: I can't afford Festool, but I got to say, it is top quality gear.

Fourth: Little things can make your life a whole lot easier:

(a) General #142 plastic dial caliper.
(b) 1/2" inside dia. o-rings (if you are using 1/2" shank router bits and you have to position the router bit into a 1/2" collet router in a fixed mount router table (and you don't have 3 hands), those little o-rings make your life so much easier.
(c) No jewelry or long sleeves when working with machinery.
(d) PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). Minimum N95 mask, face shielding, and HEARING PROTECTION.
(e) Safety: NEVER ever set the blade to be higher than 1/4" above the surface of the wood being cut. It's one thing to make a mistake and cut a 1/4" groove in your hand. It's a whole different thing to have the blade cranked up 3" higher then the wood being cut and make a mistake. That's when you get seriously hurt. Let's not go there today.

Just a few abstract thoughts.....
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Old 10-06-2019, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justme11 View Post
Get a router and router table?

I think that would do everything a dado cutter would do, and much more.
I have a contractor-grade table saw, but use a homemade router table for shelf slots and cabinet doors. It produces a much cleaner cut and is easier to use than a dado blade. Use carbide bits in the router. Cheap bits do not last very long.

I agree with small.business.guy.1. The cheap router tables are crap. It's easy to make one using a good router.
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Old 10-06-2019, 10:58 AM
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When I bought mine, Forrest was the highest rated unit- made in USA- Iíve been very happy. No one other than a woodworking magazine is going to compare two quality stacked dados, ie Freud and Forrest.

A stacked dado set will lady nearly forever. Not true for a wobble.

But I use router bits more... dado was used mostly to make joints in dimensional lumber. Ie whacking put a 3.5x 1.725 notch in a4x4. Iíd use a SCMS to take end ends out, then make cuts every 1/2 inch. Break with a hammer and use the dado to flat bottom it.
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Old 10-06-2019, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by small.business.guy.1 View Post
(d) PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). Minimum N95 mask, face shielding, and HEARING PROTECTION.

(e) Safety: NEVER ever set the blade to be higher than 1/4" above the surface of the wood being cut. It's one thing to make a mistake and cut a 1/4" groove in your hand. It's a whole different thing to have the blade cranked up 3" higher then the wood being cut and make a mistake. That's when you get seriously hurt. Let's not go there today.

Just a few abstract thoughts.....
Can tell you don't do this for a living...

Otherwise you would know that:

1) Hearing protection screws up being able to hear the radio. (which should be powerful enough to drown out the sound of most tools lest you need a bigger stereo)

2) A face mask means you need a bigger / more powerful dust collector.


3) You completely left out any sort of protection for the dog. Seriously?


4) No homeowner needs to spend 'serious coin' on router bits to do a handful of doors. Cheap matched sets go for under 50 bucks and (depending on the material) will do hundreds of doors before dulling to the point they need to be sent out or tossed.

I get about usually get several hundred boxes per PC bit before they need tossed. A Freud bit won't do that without stopping to degunk it multiple times.


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Old 10-06-2019, 03:05 PM
small.business.guy.1 small.business.guy.1 is offline
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Very nice work.

Had a choice a long time ago - IT / Finance sector or wood working. Took the money and ran. Had bills to pay.

But kept my hands in woodworking to deal with the IT stress. Lots of hand work. Still do. Finish trim and repair work these days keeps me busy - when I want to.

Btw, latest acquisitions were 2 Dozuki hand saws. My primary 40 year old Dozuki just lost some teeth so I had to replace.

My production days are long, long past. But fixing stuff out in the field has it's own sets of challenges.
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Old 10-06-2019, 04:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Rex View Post
Comparing the results from my stacked dado to a wobbler that someone else had, the wobbler made a cleaner cut.
I won't call myself a wood worker, and maybe it was user error, but that has been my experience.


The wobbler cannot make flat bottom dados due to the design, if that isnít a deal breaker then a wobbler is an ok inexpensive choice. Iíve used them but I prefer a good quality stacker.
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Old 10-06-2019, 05:27 PM
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First off, being that you just got the saw, you want to make sure it’s properly tuned/ zeroed.. those instruction’s are in the manual, if you didn’t get the manual then you can find it on the net, usually in pdf for free and print it up.

Usually you just need a carpenter’s square and wrenches to tune it.. make sure the blade is zeroed, 90 to the table top and parallel to the miter slot, after making sure the miter slide is 90 degrees with a carpenters square I run the blade fully up, lay one leg against the miter face and slide it over to where its just touching the blade between the teeth, that gets you in the ball park, if you want to be more precise you can use a dial indicator clamped to the miter slide, mark a tooth with a marker, rotate the blade forward to just before it disappears below the table, zero the indicator on that tooth then rotate the marked tooth back to just above table top running the miter slide forward and checking that same tooth, make adjustment’s accordingly.. and don’t forget to tune your rip fence, that should be parallel to the miter slots and 90 to the table, there should be adjustment screws on the backside, the better quality rip fence will have both front and back adjustment. And check for any side to side play with your miter slide, you can get after market miter slides that have adjustments to remove any slop. and something to be aware of, if there isn’t a lock down on your table saw’s angle screw then you want to periodically check it, sometimes the vibrations will back it off towards 0.

myself, I’d get a new set of carbide dado blades, it’ll be a complete set with all blades, chippers, spacers and instructions, you can use calipers or micrometers to set thickness.. you can also get a set of zero tolerance throat plates, or make them yourself. You can find blank wooden throat plate’s that you cut to blade width.. those you just put on with the blade below table, turn the saw on and bring the blade up cutting the slot in the process.

Price wise, that’s up to you, depending on how much you plan to use them.. as long as they’re carbide you can go middle of the road and get good, clean cuts on a lot of projects.. that pretty much goes for any type of blade or bit/cutter.. just check the cutting edge/edges for damage before each use..

router table? For about $150 or less, depending, not including what you spend on the router itself.. you can make a high quality table that’s more accurate than what you’d get at lowes or home depot for the same price.. plus you can incorporate removable extension tables for larger pieces into the design.. I use a 2 ľ horse Dewalt that came with both a plunge and solid base along with ľ and Ĺ inch collets.. it also has a speed control, helps to dial in speeds for the different sizes of bits/ cutters I’m using. I picked up a set of raised panel cutters from Harbor Freight for one project for under $50 and have used it on quite a few projects since..

for shallow cuts like a ľ inch square recess cut I usually use my table saw with rip fence, flipping the board on edge for the second cut or a single cut, depending with the router table with a wooden pusher block to reduce break out, doing the end grain first then the side’s. Wider cuts I use the dado blade’s, either on the table saw for length cut’s or the radial arm saw for cross grain cut’s (half laps, tenons, etc). If your using your table saw for cross grain dado cuts, you can use a piece of wood clamped to your rip fence as a hard stop, butt the work piece up to it and use the miter slide to run the work piece OFF the hard stop and across the blade. It makes repetitive cuts more accurate and easier. never use the miter slide and fence together for any cuts, you could end up getting kick back, damaging the blade, work piece and yourself.. not good...

and as always, use scrap pieces the same dimensions as your work pieces for first cut’s, it’s worth the effort to take the time to dial it in.

as far as your ‘old saw’ and dado set, you can sell them or set them up for some of the more repetitive cuts, those are a couple of options.. you know the work space you have available, we don’t.. lol
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Old 10-07-2019, 03:57 PM
zuren zuren is offline
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Thanks for the continued responses.

So I did sell the old tablesaw. As mentioned above, my shop space is tight, I didn't have room for 2 saws. The good news is I got more than I expected...I posted it for $100 with the dado blades and I sold it in 4 hrs.!
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Old 10-07-2019, 09:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuren View Post
Thanks for the continued responses.

So I did sell the old tablesaw. As mentioned above, my shop space is tight, I didn't have room for 2 saws. The good news is I got more than I expected...I posted it for $100 with the dado blades and I sold it in 4 hrs.!
Sounds like you still gave someone a great deal.
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Old 11-19-2019, 05:44 PM
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I’ve been a carpenter for 30 years. I seldom use a dado blade.
If You’re wanting to build cabinet doors with raised panels, you will need a shaper. Router and table will not cut it. You can probably do a few, but eventually you will burn the motor up.
I use a router table set up for the frames, shaper for the panels.
For cutting plywood sheets i use a track saw.
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