Olly Writes

Woodwork, writing, walks, DIY and more!

Ripping Through

I awoke this morning to find rain on the ground outside. It looked as though the forecasters were right and, as a consequence, I was concerned that I might not have been able to rip my boards down today. There’s limited space inside my workshop to even use a table saw, let alone to store the Scheppach TKU I’ve had since September. Setting up outside would also allow the (lack of) dust extraction to have the best chance of not leaving my workshop in a mess…

Ripping on the Scheppach TKU

By the time I got dressed and got outside, the rain appeared to have passed. Just in case, I decided to keep my setup close to the garage door, which could at least provide some shelter to the electrical components.

Next step: Planing.

(Yes, the extension table came in handy!)

I ended up with a neat stack of boards sawn approximately 5mm wider than they need to be and each was perfectly straight and with pretty square edges. I was impressed by the 32-tooth ripping blade I used (from Wealden Tools) but I had to take it very carefully with this saw… On no fewer than FIVE occasions, I managed to stall the motor without even trying! There was no binding and the riving knife did its job. I had to reset the trip-switch on my extension lead each and I suspect there may be some kind of electrical fault.

When I first started the saw, I hit the green button and it buzzed but barely moved. This is often an indicator of a ‘worn’ capacitor and, if that’s the case then, I’ll be happy to try and replace it because they are only cheap. I had to spin the blade (using a push-stick) before switching it on so that it had the momentum to run up to full speed. It sounds sweet though; a true induction motor. I don’t plan to keep this saw for too long due to space issues so, I’m also reluctant to throw any large amounts of money at it.

My latest offcuts from a second morning’s work!

I also created a new selection of offcuts to complement the larger ones I produced yesterday! I’ll also point out that the timber I’ve so far is just for the five boards at 400 x 300mm. With that, I still need to cut some more material some time for two smaller boards at 300 x 200mm. Perhaps I’ll wait until I’ve fitted a new capacitor for that one. There is only so much wood that I can work with at one time! 🙂

Sweeping Time!

There was so much sweeping up to do at the end of this ripping session that I decided to give my workshop floor a long overdue clean at the same time, while the saw was sat outside.

At least it smelled nice with all that walnut…

That large mound of dust contains everything that fell beneath the saw. My timber for this job so far is now in-stick, on my workbench until the weekend. It looks like more rain is forecast until Sunday so, I should have some time to get as far as completing the first sequence of glue-ups.


6 responses to “Ripping Through

  1. John 09/04/2013 at 17:10

    Wow you have been busy Olly!

    I’m very jealous of your nice long driveway and what looks to be quite a serviceable little circular saw.

    I’ll hopefully have a bit of time this weekend to figure out how to rip some strips for my router lift off a half sheet of plywood using my bandsaw without completely rearranging the workshop.

    The bandsaw would be fine where it is (albeit swivelled out 90 degrees from the wall) if I hadn’t dumped my lathe (still boxed) and my drill press and base right where I need to stand …

    There’s a car boot sale on Sunday, weather permitting, so I might just indulge my tool aquisition syndrome instead of getting a hernia moving all that around 🙂


    • Olly Parry-Jones 11/04/2013 at 20:20

      Hi John,

      I’ve ordered a new capacitor which I’m hoping will sort the motor issue… I’m not prepared to thrown any more money at it, as I imagine I’d then be looking at buying a new induction motor.

      That does sound like a challenge! Have you tried looking on YouTube to see how others rip thin strips using a hand-held circular saw?

      MORE tools??? Well, I look forward to reading about it all in a few days! 😉

      • John 11/04/2013 at 20:31

        Hi Olly,

        They don’t need to be particularly thin strips – maybe 6 inches or so – I’m just being lazy as I can’t be bothered to drag both my folding workbenches outdoors to use the circular saw!

        I suppose I’ve just about room to rest a 4 foot square of ply on the bench in the workshop, but this would require me to clear the bench and I was wondering whether it might be quicker to use roller stands and the bandsaw.:)


  2. Andy Williamson 12/04/2013 at 22:16

    Hi Olly,
    I’m new to your blogs but it sounds as though you too have limited space in your workshop. But then, can you ever have a large enough workshop? I note that after you ripped your wood you have put it in-stick. How long do you like to leave it in-stick before cutting it to finished size?


    • Olly Parry-Jones 12/04/2013 at 22:46

      Hi Andy,

      Thank you for reading and also for visiting my site. I like the look of yours and will try to keep an eye on your own blog.

      I quite agree that, wherever I could end up in the future, I would almost certainly find myself wanting more space!

      I used to have more floor space, until I started buying machines that I felt I needed… Now, I’m thinking of selling off a couple and going back to a more ‘minimalist’ approach, in certain areas.

      For these cutting boards, I actually planed the timber up earlier today. The sawn boards were purchased as kiln-dried and, as they’re only going to be transformed in to a collection of end-grain blocks, I felt less concerned about reaching a specific moisture content, as the end-grain of any species is so porous.

      If this wood was air-dried though, I might have waited a bit longer. With furniture projects, I prefer to stacked the wood indoors for a few weeks (where practical…) before I even rough cut them in to widths and lengths. Planing would then follow some time after that but, a lot of it, in my opinion, is also dictated by the scale of what you’re looking to make and work with.


      • Andy Williamson 13/04/2013 at 14:06

        Thanks Olly. For years I used to rip and immediately dimension my wood which would sometimes end up cupped or bowed. I found that allowing the wood to “acclimatise” after ripping, even just for a day or two gives me better results when dimensioning the wood. This seems like good practice to me now but it wasn’t something I had thought about, or read about, before. Oh well, you live and learn!


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