Replaceable Fence Faces
It’s hard to improve on the performance of a
T-square fence, but I think I’ve done it. I got frustrated
with clamping on an additional subfence every time I
wanted to make a rabbet with a dado set (where part of
the blade is actually housed in the fence), so I made a
new set of fence faces with interchangeable inserts.
One insert has a cutout for rabbeting; the other is
plain for ripping. When the arc in the rabbeting insert
becomes too large, I just install a new insert.
To maintain the usefulness of the fence’s scale and
cursor, I removed the original 1/2-in.-thick faces and
replaced them. I made the new faces from 1/2-in.
MDF and mitered the ends at 45 degrees. The original
faces were glued to the fence; I attached the new faces
with self-tapping hex-head screws. The inserts don’t
need to be screwed because they slide firmly in place.
This story originally appeared in American Woodworker September 2006, issue #123.