Basic woodworking skills are necessary to the repertoire of any home handyman. Cutting wood into strips is a simple process that can be done easily with some basic power tools and the proper safety precautions. You can use the strips you saw for repairs or to build a project of your choosing.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Table saw
- Measuring tape
- Safety goggles
Choose the type of wood you'd like to work with. Virtually any sort of wood can be cut into strips easily. When you're at the lumber yard, try to find boards that have as few knots as possible, since knots will contribute to breakage and create wasted strips while sawing. Look down the edges of the boards to be sure that they're straight -- many lumber yards simply don't have the quality control to ensure that all of their boards aren't twisted or bent.
Purchase a decent table saw. If you only intend to use it for cutting strips, you don't need to spend a fortune on a full-featured, high-powered model. Although you can use other saws to cut strips, such as a jigsaw, a table saw will greatly increase the efficiency of the process and ensure that the strips you cut are uniform.
Use a measuring tape to measure the width of the strips you intend to cut. Apply this measurement to the table saw. The table saw will include a guide parallel to the saw blade. The distance from the saw blade to the guide should equal the measurement you took.
Power the saw on to get the blade in motion. Once it's up to full speed, run your board towards the blade. Be absolutely sure to keep your fingers away from the blade. Do this by keeping your fingers at the outside edge of the board as you finish cutting the strip. Measure the first strip you cut to be sure that it fits the desired width, and adjust the guide as necessary.
Consider using a stick to finish pushing the board through the rotating saw blade. This is an added safety precaution that will ensure that your fingers are never close to the blade. Power down the saw immediately after you're finished cutting the wooden strips.
Tips and warnings
- Keep the board pressed firmly against the guide as you move it through the saw blade. This will ensure that the strips you cut are straight and uniform.
- Wear safety goggles when using a table saw. Wood chips can spray up from the board while sawing.
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