Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Tablesaw featherboard substitute

  1. Dec 25, 2015 #1

    Stephen Tashi

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Are there simple devices that can be used on a table saw and applied to the top of the board to hold it against the fence - thus replacing the function of featherboards ?

    When ripping a board on a tablesaw, a featherboard is often used to hold the board against the fence. A limitation on featherboards is that they must be used on the in-feed side of the process because if they were placed against the edge of the board on the out-feed side they would press the two strips of wood that have been cut apart back together and pinch them onto the blade.

    I can visualize a motorized device that presses a spinning wheel against the the top of the board and uses friction to push the board against the fence. That may be simple from the commercial point of view, but from the "home owner" point of view it would useful to have an un-motorized contraption. Do such designs exist?

    When I visualize a un-motorized rubber wheel pressed on the board with its axle is at some angle to the plane of fence, I don't have an intuition about what it would do.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 25, 2015 #2


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

  4. Dec 25, 2015 #3


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    A top mounted feather board only presses the wood downwards, not against the fence.

    Great question. I think it might work. If a car skids with the front wheels locked it can't steer, but if the wheels are allowed to rotate (even if under rotating) the car can be steered to some extent.

    You might end up with marks on the wood?
  5. Dec 25, 2015 #4
    I've used the motorized versions and your intuition is correct. They are at a small angle so that the wheels drive the board into the fence while at the same time push it into the blade.

    I think an non motorized version would do the same. They don't mark up the board as far as I recall, they're made from a fairly soft rubber so that they grip.

    Google table saw power feeder for some examples.
  6. Dec 26, 2015 #5


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Ah. I missed the part about the wheel being angled.
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Similar Discussions: Tablesaw featherboard substitute