Crosscut Sled to Cut 90's & 45 Bevels

After entering the Box Swap knew I had to build a sled that cut near perfect 90's and 45 degree bevels, the sleds in the shop are not cutting true 90's anymore, they have gotten loose.  After all these projects will be under the scrutiny of Woodworkers.  Not your friends that wouldn't know a good glue line if they saw it, just "Oh my that is beautiful".  

The base is 3/4" BB.  Fence furthest away from you is 3/4" Maple plywood which was left over from the Display Case build.  Original push fence was also made of 3/4" Maple plywood (2 Laminated layers) which eventually proved to be a bad choice, even though it was free (sorta).

Got the sled all built and semi adjusted with a triangle on the saw blade.  Made the first 5 cut adjustment square and measured.  But during the cutting of the 5 sides noticed the sides of the 7/16" MDF against the fence seemed to be bowed ever so slightly away from the fence face.  Oh Sh#t, something is wrong.  The screws had split the fence and bowed it.  Knew that there were MDF layers in the Maple plywood and this occurring was deep back in my mind. So back up and rebuild the push fence.  I had real maple hardwood left over from the box build, so 2 layer of 4/4 soft maple were used, squared them up and glued it together, and flattened and squared again.  Voila!!!  Yippee!!!

Went through the 5 cut adjustment steps and got the sled to 0.0007"/" which knew could be better, but..... boxes need to ship on March 11.
So onward with the box build.  Going well so far, however dust in the shop made finishing problematic.  But sanding those extra layers just makes for a thicker overall film.  Went to the shop this morning at 8:15 am and put one coat on all sides and one on the inside before others came in and turned on saws.  So now 3 coats on the outside and 1 inside.

This afternoon I returned to the shop to finish dialing in the sled.  This is troublesome after the sled has been sawn all the way through end to end.  I have done it before and this one I got completed in about an hour and a half.  Like the 5 cut results, 0.0001364"/".  Pretty happy with those numbers.  Although the miters and 90's on the Swap Box are very nice.

daveg, SW Washington & AZ


nice sled dave. after seeing this i expect big things from you 😁

working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

Thanks Pottz. Sled came out well and now better.  Finally made it to the Gamble House end of October 22, very nice tour.

daveg, SW Washington & AZ

Great job G!

My sled was never squared properly, this is more pushing to make mine useful again.

You can lay a wide piece of masonite into the bed of that jig, one for straight cuts, one for your 45s. 
Nice sled!

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

Been looking at a lot of designs for some new sleds. I like it!


Nicely done! And very square as well 😀
A good sled to have in the shop and you fine-tuned it, well done Dave.

Seems like this swap has created a lot of sleds and jigs. I built a new spline jig a few weeks ago. 

Main Street to the Mountains

The sled is pretty small 24" x 15", deep enough to cut a board a tad wider than 12 inches.  The BB and Maple plywood were laying around my garage, the maple wood for the fence was purchased for the box swap and used it all.

daveg, SW Washington & AZ

Sounds like yours is wayhay more accurate than mine.  My Marples square says my cuts are good, my Empire square says they arent.  But then, I dont cut miters on a sled.

No Bees. No Honey. Bees Lives Matter

Nice sled Gdave.  I put T track along the back fence for hold downs and stops.  That is important for repeat cuts for boxes. You probably clamp a block on yours.  If I was to redo mine I would add a removable insert.

I have no clue on the 5 cut method.  Is there a youtube for that?


Petey, lots of videos on the 5 cut. It’s basically just magnifying error to show you if the front of the sled is off. Works very well, and is also frustrating as hell. Has me chasing angles every time I build a sled! At some point you just have to accept what it is. 

Ryan/// ~sigh~ I blew up another bowl. Moke told me "I made the inside bigger than the outside".

Here is a link to William Ng's 5 Cuts to a Perfect Crosscut Sled.  It is the classic that many folks have copied.
T Tract for stops & Masonite are both great ideas.

daveg, SW Washington & AZ

Great sled, I have one for 90s, need to make one for 45s after seeing this one. Good job.  Mike
I just threw one together for a 30* angle yesterday, hexagon boxes. Thanks for the idea Dave.

Main Street to the Mountains

I am building a large sled 22.5" x 40" for the community shop in AZ.  Got the Rockler aluminum runners and searching the internet found what looks to be the best way to secure them to the sled base.

Here is a link that the two embedded links are valid for and not buggy.

Basically you double back tape the Rockler runners to the sled bottom.  There is a drill/tap that you go through the aluminum threaded holes in the Rockler runner bars.  The front has a short drill bit and you go through the plywood base, counter bore the top side to fit the 1/4-20 FH screws.

Got the drill/tap bit and 25 of the FH screws for a bit over $18.

Got the base cut to size, push fence laminated and flattened  & rear fence made already.  Rockler runners in hand, wowie.   Tomorrow is sled day, likely the following day or two when I cuss and dial it in.  We leave AZ May 11 and return to the Great PNW (actually rainy PNW).

The sled will not be dead nuts 90 and someone will use a full kerf blade on it before I return in early November.  I will take some pictures and post them here.  But this one should be able to take the wiggle out and re-square when I return.

daveg, SW Washington & AZ

Nice sled. In the last year or so I have gone through several, but I still need a dedicated 45. I like Bruce's though about setting a fitted piece of laminate to make it a zero clearance 90 as well. I think mine will also be just small parts. You ignited a spark, Now getting back to the shop again, just don't have much tolerance to stand for long, making this now will work, then when I can actually use it, it will be made.

May yours stay square, and cut dead on for ages, probably won't happen, but putting out the wish doesn't hurt.