As most people with shops have found out, there is a big difference between a power tool and a powerful tool. Some tools are better. Even powerful power tools are not all-powerful, though, and they have their limits. This is why, in a frustrated series of back and forth and back and forths between our houses and the building supply, half of our projects turn into shopping sprees.
Every edge and angle seems to require a special tool that no other ‘special’ tool you’ve purchased before can quite accomplish. Soon you have no space for all your tools, some of which you don’t even remember what to call. There are probably even one or two that you don’t remember you have.
Thinking Outside Of The Box
Spending time with guys who work a lot with tools is usually an experience that is simultaneously inspiring and humiliating. Many’s the time I have watched a tool in the hands of a master be used for something so wildly out of the ordinary, that it seems to me more than just unconventional handling… it’s a stroke of genius.
In the video down below, you can check out a simple bit of table saw magic I first witnessed several years back. Although I have years of practice and thousands of cuts behind me, I still struggle occasionally with the legs of my furniture not ending up as level as I needed them to, and it’s a painstaking process to level them out without taking too much off the legs… it’s necessary, but the time spent doing it feels like time wasted.
Now You Try!
The real magic about this trick is that anyone can do it. You don’t have to hold your tool in a scary way—the only thing you have to hold is the furniture, whose legs are sitting flat on the surface of the table. Having worked this one myself, I do have a few pieces of advice to offer, though:
- Don’t try to bite too much wood with the blade at once. Especially if your wood is soft, this will yank the leg out of your hands, sending it flying across the room! At the very least, you’ll end up with splinters running up the leg. The grain is probably running parallel to the leg, too, meaning those splinters could be deep scars you can’t sand out. Moral of the story? Go slow.
- The side-to-side motion he uses in the video is paramount to the success of this trick. You’re using the long edge of the blade, not the width, to cut.
- Of course, SAFETY FIRST. Wear eye protection, and whatever you do, do not handle the leg anywhere near the blade. If you can help it, don’t grab the leg you’re cutting at all.
Your Woodworking Expert,