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Old 03-31-2011, 09:30 AM   #1
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


Hey everyone,
I'm new to the board, and new to woodworking in general. I plan on making some bookshelves to use as a room divider, and I have a question regarding dado cuts. I will be using 3/4" Birch and MDF, and I was wondering if I could make the dado's before I cut the sheets down to sections. Will cutting across the dado create a ton of chip out? Anyone have any experience trying this technique? Thank you.

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Old 03-31-2011, 01:23 PM   #2
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


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Originally Posted by thekillabeejc View Post
Hey everyone,
I'm new to the board, and new to woodworking in general. I plan on making some bookshelves to use as a room divider, and I have a question regarding dado cuts. I will be using 3/4" Birch and MDF, and I was wondering if I could make the dado's before I cut the sheets down to sections. Will cutting across the dado create a ton of chip out? Anyone have any experience trying this technique? Thank you.
As long as you have the job planned out, there's no reason not to dado the whole panel. Just realize you need to maintain constant support on this sheet or it could possibly snap where the dadoded out wood was removed.
To eliminate chip out, use a router with a spiral bit and a jig.
Ron

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Old 03-31-2011, 03:35 PM   #3
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


Like Ron said, make sure you plan it out 100% first. Cutting across the dados will not cause a lot of tear out unless you are using a a dull blade. Personally, I like to cut all my parts to size and then worry about dados, mortises, slots, etc.
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Old 04-01-2011, 07:15 PM   #4
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


I'm working on a project like this right now. I cut everything to size first, and then cut the grooves with a router and a jig. Make sure everything is tightened on the router, or you'll find the bit going right thru the material!
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Old 04-01-2011, 08:05 PM   #5
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


I like to cut the dados first --the rip the sheet----However,my table saw is huge---

Ron is right about handling a sheet with dados cut---you can crack the thing without adequate support.
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Old 04-03-2011, 05:52 PM   #6
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


Thank you everyone for your input. I plan on laying the plywood on a sheet of foam insulation board and making the dados then ripping the sections down to size with a circular saw. I was originally going to try and make the dados with the circular saw and chisel, but now I'm thinking I might invest in a cheap router. Would a 8.5 Amp/1.5 HP Router be powerful enough to make the dados?
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Old 04-03-2011, 06:24 PM   #7
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Making dado cuts before cutting sections?


That's a lot of material to remove and your are cutting on both sides of the bit at the same time. I imagine a 1/5 HP router would be taxed pretty hard.

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