diy track saw jig for circular jig

Making large and small rip cuts doesn’t have to be a difficult or calculated process.  With this inexpensive and easy to make DIY track saw jig, you will be making rip cuts quickly and easily with your circular saw!

diy track saw jigDIY Track Saw Jig for your Circular Saw

Hi! It’s Kristen, from In Her Garage, and today I am going teach you how to make a DIY Track Saw Jig for your circular saw. It’s basically a super simple circular saw cutting guide to make rip cuts much easier for you.  No more accounting for the saw’s base plate width or spending a ton of money on fancy, brand name guides. This will be an easy drop and clamp design that is foolproof! Let’s make it!

Materials:

(I’ve included affiliate links for your convenience. I earn a small percentage from a purchase using these links. There is no additional cost to you. You can read more about affiliate links here.)

Instructions:

1. Measurements for the track saw base panel

Create 2 lines running the length of the hardboard panel and label them “A” and “B” as indicated in the diagram below.

  • “A” measures 6″ from the edge – this measurement is approximately the width of most circular saw baseplates
  • “B” measures 12″ from the edge – this measurement is approximately the width of the entire circular saw and will be the end width of the track saw jig.

2. Cut the excess off of the base panel

Clamp a straight edge (or any straight piece of scrap board) lined up against line “B”. Set your circular saw base plate against the straight board and cut along the length of the hardboard to cut this excess off. You will use the freshly cut edge of the excess in the next step.

3. Creat the track saw cutting guide

Apply wood glue between lines A & B of the track saw base panel (as shown above.) Do not apply the glue too close to line “A” or the glue will squeeze-out in the next step. Collect the excess piece of hardboard you just cut off and align the freshly cut edge up to line “A” of the base panel.

 

Clamp and apply weight over the top of the two panels. Wait approximately 15 minutes for the glue to cure and adhere the two pieces together.

4. Cut the straight edge guide

Position your panel so the 6 inch “A”  section overhangs off the edge of your work surface (this is the edge you used to measure lines “A” and “B” from.)

Rest your circular saw’s base plate against the top glued piece using it as a straight guide.  Make sure your saw blade will avoid your work surface when cutting. Now cut along the length of your panel.

This will create an edge that is exactly the width of the inside base plate to the inside of the saw blade.

5. Cut off the excess from the back of the jig

Flip the jig over and cut off the excess material that extends beyond line “B” shown below.

Do not cut any further into the jig than line “B” because your DIY Track Saw Jig well be too narrow. You will need this extra width to clamp the jig to any material you plan to cut. If your jig is too narrow, the saw’s motor will catch on the clamps.

I’ve created a video to simplify the instructions for you:

Now you have your own DIY Track Saw Jig for your circular saw! How easy was that?

Using the jig is even easier. All you need to do is measure and mark the surface you plan to cut. Then align the edge of the track saw jig with these marks and clamp down.  You’ll have a perfectly straight guide for the circular saw to travel along.  Just be sure to take into account which side of your measurement you want the saw blade to cut on and position the jig accordingly.

 

Great Job!!! Now just store this jig in a place that is easily accessible because you will use it A LOT!!

Helpful tip from the Pretty Handy Girl: Buy a panel of foam insulation from a big box store and cut your plywood on top of it.  The foam panel provides a firm surface for the entire piece of plywood and eliminates any falls, pinches, or board balancing you may need to do.

If you enjoyed this tutorial check out my DIY Toy Chest and 1 Drawer side table.  The DIY Track Saw Jig will come in really handy for making these gorgeous pieces.

About Kristen:

Hi! I’m Kristen, from In Her Garage, and I am a self-taught woodworker and DIY fanatic from Minnesota where I live with my husband and our two daughters. Between being a wife, mom and, registered nurse, I try to make as much time for DIY as possible. My love for building came after our family built our current home in 2015. After we moved in, we needed furniture and instead of spending massive amounts of money to order the pieces we wanted I decided that I would build them myself. I started with a buffet table plan from the fabulous Ana-white and quickly set out to remodel my entire home office.

Since then I have started a side business building furniture for the people in my community. I love hearing my clients talk about the pieces they wish they had whether it be a rustic buffet table, a one drawer side table, or a toy box and then making it a reality for them. While starting my small business it made perfect sense that I would document my building journey so I simultaneously launched the In Her Garage blog and I love sharing my plans, tips and tricks.

Making something beautiful with your own two hands through a little preparation and determination is an amazing feeling and I hope to bring inspiration and know-how to those looking to tackle a big or small project.
I am so glad that you found me here and please feel free to connect with me on PinterestInstagram, Facebook, and Youtube to see what I am working on right now.

Rustic Wooden Caddy with a Branch Handle

Spring is right around the corner and I’m itching to cut some fresh flowers to bring inside. I love displaying them in jars placed inside rustic wooden caddies. Making a little caddy or tote out of salvage wood and branches can be an easy beginner DIY project. But, it’s also satisfying for experienced woodworkers looking to use up some old scraps or upcycle an old wooden box. Here’s how to elevate a simple wooden box into something more quirky and special by adding a branch handle.

Materials:

(I’ve included affiliate links for your convenience. I earn a small percentage from a purchase using these links. There is no additional cost to you. You can read more about affiliate links here.)

I happened to be browsing through a yard sale and spotted a sad little box begging for me to buy it and give it a new life:

How could I say no! It was only $3. I couldn’t leave it at the yard sale in its sad burgundy dust-covered state. I brought it home so it could sit in my garage collecting more dust. (This happens more often than I’d like to admit. It’s a sickness I have.)

Using the pry bar and pliers, I pulled off the lid of the box and removed any nails.

Then I had a basic box to work with. You can use this tutorial to create a simple box if you don’t have one.

Instructions:

Cut upper handle supports out of 1×3 or other scraps. Clamp them inside the box.

Pre-drill holes and drive wood screws through the sides of the box and into the vertical supports.

Now it the time to finish the wooden caddy using your choice of paint or stain. (I like to create a rustic look using a relatively dry brush and by letting some of the wood grain show through your brush stokes.)

While the paint is drying, use a hack or coping saw to remove any bumps or burrs from your branch.

Measure the ends of your branch and select the spade bits that are closest in diameter to your branch (you want the holes to be equal to or wider than the branch.)

Drill a hole into each side of the vertical handle supports.

Insert the branch into the side of the caddy. You might have to experiment with which direction to install the branch.

Fill some jars with flowers and set them inside the crate.

Set it out in a prominent spot in your home.

Enjoy your shabby chic crate, caddy, tool box, or whatever you like to call it.

Personally I can’t get enough of this branch handle:

I’m curious, would you have bought that little dusty box too?!

If you liked this tutorial, you’ll love these other easy DIY Projects:

Mini-Picket Fence Caddy

Make a Driftwood Gift Crate | Pretty Handy Girl

Make Your Own Driftwood Crate

DIY-Painted-Pool-Sign

Hey everyone!  Katie again from Addicted 2 DIY.  It’s hard to believe, but it’s been two months now since we finished building our dream pool.  If you’ve ever wondered what you can learn (and save) by contracting your pool out yourself, I’ve got all of the handy details on my blog.  Now that we have our own pool to make fun family memories in, I thought a fun sign would be a great addition.  I designed this sign based off of one we had by our pool when I was a kid.  According to my mom, this one looks way nicer.  She wouldn’t lie to me, right?

To help you make your own sign, I’m also including the free SVG file I created for you to download.  Please use it for personal use only.

Here’s what you’ll need for your own sign:

  •  1×2 plywood project board (2’x4′)
  • 3 – 3/4″ x 3′ square poplar dowels
  • 1 1/2″ brad nails
  • brad nailer
  • wood glue
  • 220 grit sandpaper
  • orbital sander
  • 24″ clamps
  • wood filler
  • paint colors of your choice
  • paint roller and/or paintbrush
  • adhesive vinyl
  • transfer paper
  • electronic cutting machine (I have a Silhouette CAMEO)
  • Welcome to Our OOL SVG file

Start by cutting your plywood down to 12″ x 20″.  If you don’t have the ability to do this, you can always ask the helpful employees at the home improvement store.  Cut the square dowels on a 45 degree angle to frame the plywood.  The inside measurements should be 12″ and 20″.

supplies-for-wood-sign

Frame the plywood with the dowels using wood glue.

add-trim-to-sign

Clamp the edges…

build-wood-sign clamp-trim-to-plywood

…and nail them to the plywood with your brad nailer.

nail-trim-to-plywood

Since the plywood is only 1/2″ thick, you’ll have to be careful not to nail the trim too high.  I had one nail go astray, but I was able to get it out with needle-nose pliers.  It’s nothing a little wood filler can’t fix later on.

remove-nail-from-wood-trim

When your entire piece is assembled, sand it with 220 grit sandpaper to get rid of any rough spots.  Paint the entire sign, front and back, with your base color.  I love using sample size jars of paint for projects like this.

painting-wood-sign

Cut your message out on an electronic cutting machine.  Weed out the vinyl design and cover it with transfer tape.

vinyl-for-wood-sign

Peel the backing off of the vinyl and carefully center it over the plywood face.  Smooth it with a scraping tool (or credit card.) Carefully peel off the transfer paper.

put-vinyl-on-wood-signGrab your second paint color and stencil the design with a paint brush or roller.  You can mask off the frame of the sign with painter’s tape or paper to protect it from any paint mishaps.  I opted to go slow and carefully paint inside the frame.

paint-for-wood-sign

Once your design is completely stenciled, carefully peel the vinyl off of the face of the sign.

stencil-swimming-pool-sign

You can leave your sign as it, or distress it a bit.  Whatever you like!  I love distressing things, but I decided that I really liked a cleaner look for this sign.

sign-for-pool

swimming-pool-sign

I’m so happy with how it turned out!  I’m no graphic designer, so I spent several hours coming up with a design that was just right, but it was well worth it.  My kids think it’s hilarious!  Let’s just hope everyone that comes and visits us will follow the rules!  I’m thinking it will look great somewhere near our grotto/water slide.  Once we get that area landscaped, I’ll give it a more permanent location.  Now that this sign is done, I kind of want to make another one for the waterfall that says “Mt. Wannahockaloogie” from Finding Nemo.  We have a “Nemo” mosaic inside the grotto, so it would tie in perfectly.  I may be the only one that gets it, but that’s okay.

Katies-sign

~learn more about Katie~

 

Pin for later!

DIY Pool Sign | Pretty Handy Girl

edited-0510

Hey everyone!  If you remember, last month, I shared with you how I updated my boys’ desk in our den with a wood plank desktop.  The den is just about ready for the big reveal and now I’m just working on adding little details.  This includes these fun personalized bulletin boards I made for each of my boys.  I was searching for desk organization ideas one day and saw these personalized pinboards on Pottery Barn Kids.  I knew they would be perfect for my boys and that I could knock them off pretty easily.  I made two of these pinboards, but my supply list will be for one pinboard.

Materials:

  • 12″ x 12″ wrapped canvas (mine was 3/4″ thick)
  • 12″ adhesive backed cork sheet
  • Adhesive vinyl
  • Transfer paper
  • Die-cutting machine
  • Acrylic aint
  • 2 – 1″ foam paintbrushes
  • 1″ x 2″ x 6′ pine board
  • Wood stain
  • Sander w/ 220 grit sandpaper
  • Miter saw
  • Brad nailer
  • 1″ Brad nails
  • 24″ Bar clamps
  • Hot glue gun

Instructions:

Start by designing your stencil.  To make it look just like the PB Kids version, use the Varsity font.  (FYI, the letters are all capitalized, but when you use the shift key or CAPS lock, it will add the outline.)

Knockoff Personalized Pinboard

Cut your design out on the 12 x 12″ sheet of vinyl and weed the negative pieces out.  Remember that this is a stencil, so make sure to weed out the correct parts of your design.  Place your transfer paper over the design and use a scraping tool or a credit card to get out any air bubbles.

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Peel the backing off of your vinyl and very carefully center it onto your cork sheet.  Use the scraping tool or credit card again to firmly adhere the vinyl to the cork sheet.  Carefully peel the transfer paper off. Stencil your design using the acrylic paint and foam brush. Read more

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

It’s hard to stay organized when you are a DIY blogger, Mom, wife, cook, cleaner, taxi driver, and a student (taking evening classes for the general contractor exam.) I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve dropped a few balls in this massive juggling act. But, I strive to improve and part of that effort involved hanging a Family Organization Center Door next to the refrigerator.  Did you know there was such a thing? Ha, me either until I saw this half window door at our local Habitat ReStore.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

A vision of a place to plan meals, keep track of chores and keep reminders became clear in my head when I first saw it. Want to see how I took this old door and turned it into a family organization center? Hang around for a few minutes to find out.

Materials:
(contains some affiliate links)

Optional:

Instructions:

After finding a door for your organization center, you may need to trim down the sides to fit your space. I had to trim an inch off each side of my door to fit on the side of our refrigerator cabinet. Use a circular saw to trim the door. Using a Kreg Rip Cut will help keep the saw straight.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

For extra stability, you may want to add a caster on the bottom of the door (opposite the hinge side). This is not necessary, but will add extra support.

Family Organization Door | Pretty Handy Girl

Cut scraps of coax cable to fit into the tops of the windows. Read more