Cut in guide for straight edges/clamps/bevel saw

Some projects have curves ideal for Maslow but may also contain critical straight cuts better suited for a circular saw and straight edge.
It is always a hassle to figure in the offset from blade to circular saw edge when placing straight edge.
It is also a hassle to clamp down a straight edge at any weird angle in the middle of a piece of plywood.

I was thinking that a solution to both would be to use maslow to cut an offset reference slot big enough to fit a clamp through in the waste area.

Example use case: Project has curved sections left and right that need to be joined by a sloped beveled 6 foot straight cut in the middle of the sheet. Maslow cuts everything except leaves the straight edge uncut. Instead, in the waste material, maslow cuts 2 3" x 5" rounded rectangles with a long edge of the rectangle parallel to the cut line but offset by the width of circular saw edge to blade distance. Another rectangle is placed just in front of the cut to provide a place for the blade to drop in.

After maslow is finished, move the sled out of the way,
leave workpiece on maslow,
allign the straight edge with the edge of the cut in rectangular guide,
clamp straightedge in place,
make the cut right on maslow as if it were a panel saw.

Short saw cut sections like this could be left as tabs holding the project in the panel until manually removed by hand saw, to prevent the piece shifting and falling during routing.

It should be possible to create a macro to perform this layout automatically. It only needs a parameter for saw offset, beginning point of cut, end point of cut, and select which side of the cut line to place the guides.

Does anyone know how to do this in Autocad or Mastercam? I used to know in NX but don’t have it any more.


I love the idea, but i would just cut 2 holes, insert dowels into them, and put my guiderail against them.


That sure sounds simpler, but I’m not sure it actually is.
Placing rectangles parallel to a line is simpler than placing tangents of circles parallel to a line.
Dowels are an extra item on either the BOM or tool list which may not be on hand and cause delays.
Dowels do not solve the clamping problem thus will sometimes require 3 hands.
Dowels between the cut line and straight edge may interfere with saw. Pushing saw tends to push straight edge off dowels.
If dowels are are placed on far side of straight edge, requires greater waste area.

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To draw them in cad is really not hard, how depends on which program, but you draw a line on the place where you want to cut, then move the line for the offset that you need, and just add 2 tangent circles. If you don’t knwo how to, i’m sure there is a youtube video for that somewhere.
I would put the dowels behind the guide rail. That way they don’t get in the way of anything.

Dowels are one of the things a woodworker should always have some in stock off. And i have a makita plunge saw with a pretty good anti-slip bottom, i don’t even clamp it down most of the time.

Also i said “i would” not “you should” :wink:

@slomobile I’m trowing a snowball at you! I like your enthusiasm. Sometimes over thinking a problem takes longer then knocking it out. The best workflow is the one that works for you. Whoever you is.

I appreciate your efforts, just remember what works for one person doesn’t work for all.

When I was in college I was a software designer. I used the idea of my mom for the foundation of interface design. If I put mom in front of it would she be able to use it.

I’m just pointing out you have great intentions, if you put a diffrent spin on it.

IE - here are 6 step to improve you work flow


Instead of saying - I decided you are best off working like I think, this is what you want to do.

I hope you get this is constructive and playful. You are free to flip me a bird if it doesn’t come off correctly.

Thank you

Thank you. Hope you don’t mind me treating this forum like my little idea notebook. A fragment of an idea pops in my head and I work it out while I write the post. They can’t all be good, but the process keeps the gears turning.
Thats something I learned from working with FIRST teams, document your thought process, even if it doesn’t go anywhere, make your notes available to the team.


Yes!! This is what the forums are for! All the improvements we’ve made so far have come from a couple of other attempts that didn’t quite work, but we learned something that showed us what was possible :+1: :+1: