Homemade Table Saw Cabinet Extension


The table saw is the workhorse in any woodworking shop. With the proper accessories and adjustments it will cut straight every time. Typical table saws have a short table top and no support for the out-feed material. The table saw design seems to require that users have an assistant when working with large sheet goods. Most woodworkers are alone in the shop, so they need to rig up some way to support large sheet goods. Adding accessory tables can make the task of cutting large sheet goods by yourself far easier and safer.

Build the Cabinet

The first thing to do is determine the cabinet size. Measure the height of the top of the table saw to the floor, this will be the total height. Subtract the height of wheels if cabinet will be mobile. Also subtract the thickness of the cabinet's table top. To determine the width of the cabinet, measure the width of the tablesaw, including the tablesaws wings. Build the cabinet to the standard cabinetry 24-inch depth. The design you use should include drawers and enclosed shelves.

Building the Table Top

Build a torsion box 2 inches thick by at least 24 inches deep, while the width of the extension table top will be determined by the width of the cabinet. The torsion box is a frame made up from MDF, (medium density fiberboard), strips at 16 inches on center. Its built just like a wall in your house, and then sandwiched between two pieces of MDF and glued and nailed together. This makes a very solid and flat table top. Use two layers of the tabletop material for stability, (3/4-inch MDF works great for this), and to keep the top from sagging over time. Remember to route in the miter slots in the top so that your miter gauge and jigs for your tablesaw will work.

Considerations for the Extension Table

There are several things you may want to think about for your extension table. First, you may wish to build the top with a 1- to 2-inch overhang for a clamping surface, that way it can also be used as a mobile work surface. Another consideration is to add a router and router plate so you can use the extension table as a router workstation also. Keep this in mind when you design the cabinet so that the router will not interfere with the miter slots or cabinet.

Keywords: table saw, exension table, router plate

About this Author

Jim Wildman served in the United States Marine Corps as a Communication Chief for 10 years. After his tour of duty in Desert Storm he attended Oklahoma State University receiving his Bachelor of Architecture. He worked as an architect for 10 years before starting his own design/build company. He began writing in 2009 for Demand Studios and published on eHow.

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