When I installed the support with bearings to keep the jigsaw blade vertical on my homemade jigsaw table, I didn’t worry about not having room behind the blade to make straight cuts with the jigsaw. I wasn’t planning on making that kind of rip and/or long straight cuts with this saw anyway. But since many of you ask me about how I make straight long cuts with the jigsaw table having that support behind the blade, I wanted to try moving the blade support to the side.
One of the advantages of the bearings support that I made is that it is very easy to take away and put back on. So I unscrewed it, presented it laterally against the back of the jigsaw blade, and marked on the jigsaw table top the position where I have to put it.
I put the base of the support as far away from the jigsaw blade as I could, so that I had room on the side to screw in the small bearings. And if you look at the picture, the separation between the base of the support and the cutting blade is the maximum width that I will be able to cut. And while it doesn’t seem like much it sure is enough for most cuts.
As the bearing support protrudes laterally a lot, I put a thick wooden block just below the position where the support with the bearings will go, so this block serves as a platform for the support with the bearings that guide the jigsaw cutting blade. I put it underneath the tabletop, and screwed it to the table frame and to the tabletop.
In the video you can watch how later I had to unscrew it to move the tabletop of the jigsaw table, as I needed the table top to overhang in the front to clamp an improvised fence.
On top of the wooden block I screwed a piece of plywood to have a platform with the surface level with the table top of the jigsaw table. I will put the support with the bearings on that platform.
And since I couldn’t find the other identical bearings that I know I have somewhere in my messy woodworking shop, I unscrewed the bearings from the front of the support. I measured the clearance I need between the center of the bearings, drilled a couple of pilot holes and screwed the bearings into the side of the support in a suitable position so that they can guide the jigsaw blade correctly.
Although as you can watch in the video, I had to remove one of the bearings and reposition it, as I had put them too close together and they didn’t leave enough room for the thickness of the jigsaw blade.
I placed the support with the bearings laterally, with the cutting blade between the bearings and its backside resting against the plywood. I adjusted its position so that the cutting blade is perfectly vertical, …
and screwed the support to the base I made next to the jigsaw table top.
And with a wood strip held in place with clamps as a fence, I could try to make straight cuts and rip cuts on the jigsaw table. Straight cuts in plywood are easy to make.
But rip cutting straight, lengthwise, in the grain direction, in solid wood such as pine … that’s is another matter. Making these straight rip cuts is difficult for this jigsaw. And the cut surface, although straight, looks horrible. Some of you have told me that perhaps, in order to make straight rip cuts with the jigsaw table, I should look for a blade suitable for these cuts, so I will have to search.
Don’t miss how to make this jigsaw table.