Table Saw Basics – How to Cut Large Pieces

Table Saw Basics – How to Cut Large Pieces

My preference is to cut full sheets with them set on saw horses and use a circular saw, especially for thicker material. But if I have the space clear and lower my expectations on the quality of the cut, I will do it on the table saw. The important parts are knowing how to hold it as you feed it through and what to watch – the fence – to make sure it stays in contact with it.

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50 Comments

  1. Mr Warlock on April 13, 2022 at 6:03 pm

    My garden is on a weird slope and when it rains (which it does a lot) it turns into a muddy swamp, so I currently have nowhere I can cut large sheets, and have to either buy smaller sheets, or get them a sheet at a time and pre-cut at the big hardware store, which always works out more expensive. My neighbour has offered me an old semi knackered shed, its walls are in a reasonable state, but it needs a new roof and floor, so the plan is while building a new floor to make it way bigger than I need, to create a flat, decked area in front of the shed, with a retractable cover, just for cutting larger sheets, and once repaired i’ll use the old shed as a wood store, as my two little home workshop areas have zero space as it is, that way I can get larger sheets delivered, store them and cut them at my leisure 🙂



  2. Ken E on April 13, 2022 at 6:04 pm

    I use the roller stands and they make a huge difference. But nothing beats the track saw except a giant table in a huge shop and a $2000 table saw lol



  3. Michael Buchanan on April 13, 2022 at 6:04 pm

    I might be a super noob for only having 6 months of woodworking under my belt but it feels nice knowing this is exactly how I deal with full sheets lol. Taking wins when I can get em.



  4. Larry Canady on April 13, 2022 at 6:05 pm

    I felt like girly girl before watching this video, because I always ask the associate at Home Depot to cut my sheet of MDF in half. I always hated cutting my sheet on the table saw. It just feel so awkward.



  5. Pere Rabbit on April 13, 2022 at 6:06 pm

    I also prefer to pre cut with a skill saw and guide. But remember, the clean cut is on the bottom so good side down.



  6. patrick guerette on April 13, 2022 at 6:06 pm

    Track saws are the way to go when breaking down sheet goods. Even a cheap one (Kreg) will do the job. No more out feed tables, wrestling a sheet of 3/4 ply, or making sure you have space in your shop.



  7. squareswing on April 13, 2022 at 6:07 pm

    Need to ask Santa for some roller stands.



  8. dakotamax2 on April 13, 2022 at 6:08 pm

    I always break down full sheets on sawhorses.



  9. Richard Trepanier on April 13, 2022 at 6:11 pm

    When I buy full sheets, I lay them in the bed of my pickup and then I slide it directly from my bed of the truck to my table saw easy to handle no issues.



  10. Greg's Garage on April 13, 2022 at 6:16 pm

    I’m like you… Full sheets almost never make their way into the shop. I cut them as they’re coming off the truck. Just takes up too much room in the shop. Good tips John.



  11. Garrett Lamb on April 13, 2022 at 6:18 pm

    After that lecture about not stopping halfway through to reposition stuff…..



  12. Marcus Pullan on April 13, 2022 at 6:19 pm

    I really like how you explain things in a simple manner. Thanks, very much



  13. Kortland lfskdjflaskjdf on April 13, 2022 at 6:21 pm

    What saw is it?



  14. tec4ever on April 13, 2022 at 6:23 pm

    Me too! I love this type of videos, it’s the only training I can get to learn how to safely and properly use my table saw. Thanks!



  15. Alan Call on April 13, 2022 at 6:23 pm

    The way I do it I let the big Box store rip it



  16. Van Shank Guitars on April 13, 2022 at 6:26 pm

    That’s exactly my approach. Plus I always have even more crap behind. 😉



  17. I Enjoy Creating Videos on April 13, 2022 at 6:26 pm

    Great tips John! Thanks for sharing them with us!💖👍👌😎JP



  18. Shofar So Good on April 13, 2022 at 6:26 pm

    Anyone ever done a 8x8ft table with miter slots at four and eight ft for feather boards and an external switch? That be crazy and big but pretty nice?



  19. Ro on April 13, 2022 at 6:27 pm

    I love a foot on and off switch in line when doing this task, makes it a breeze 🤌



  20. MARDAK WORKSHOP on April 13, 2022 at 6:29 pm

    👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻



  21. Lilo Ukulele on April 13, 2022 at 6:30 pm

    sliding table saw…



  22. John Heisz - I Build It on April 13, 2022 at 6:31 pm

    My preference is to cut full sheets with them set on saw horses and use a circular saw, especially for thicker material. But if I have the space clear and lower my expectations on the quality of the cut, I will do it on the table saw. The important parts are knowing how to hold it as you feed it through and what to watch – the fence – to make sure it stays in contact with it.



  23. Luther Blissett on April 13, 2022 at 6:31 pm

    Old guy at my local lumberyard cut’s 4×8 stock down by himself. I’ve asked if he wanted help before but, he say’s doing it by himself is safer. You can almost hear his bones creak when he lugs a full sheet of 3/4 MDF onto the saw table. I can and have cut down full sheets plenty of times alone but, usually get the yard to cut them down because they won’t fit inside my 2d Jeep Wrangler. If I need a lot of full sheets I just have them deliver and cut them myself. It’s really not that hard with an out feed table.



  24. Bill coley on April 13, 2022 at 6:31 pm

    Those cabinets take up a huge amount of space in your shop. No telling how many square feet.



  25. Some Guy in China on April 13, 2022 at 6:32 pm

    Thanks for this. About to make my first large plywood cut. Good on ya John, very useful!



  26. Rocco Conte on April 13, 2022 at 6:32 pm

    You must have gotten that sheet with the staple at Home Depot.



  27. All My Hobbies on April 13, 2022 at 6:33 pm

    that’s how I do it. in my family to not use the table saw would be a cop out but then again my father lost a finger to the table saw and so did his father so maybe i should learn to be a chicken and use the skill saw. haha



  28. Crumbo Crumbo on April 13, 2022 at 6:33 pm

    Sheet goods are way to expensive right now. I just paid $30 for a 24×48 birch ply. All future projects with ply are on hold for a while.



  29. Jim McLean on April 13, 2022 at 6:34 pm

    I try to figure out a
    good size to pre-cut the sheet and have it ripped at the lumber store. Even if they charge for the cuts, it’s a lot easier than throwing your back out !



  30. BAM BAM on April 13, 2022 at 6:34 pm

    I dig the shirt



  31. George Qualls on April 13, 2022 at 6:36 pm

    I did it this way before I knew anything. Now I have the big box store cut it down for me.



  32. Remote Viewing Patriot on April 13, 2022 at 6:38 pm

    Very informative. Thank you.



  33. Jorge González on April 13, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    I did the same cut for the first time a couple of weeks ago on a sheet of OSB using my small dewalt jobsite saw. Now I’m positive that I’ll be using my circular saw next time I have to do one of these. Not worth it for me.



  34. Terry Steelman on April 13, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    I guess safety was thrown out of the window?



  35. Boots on April 13, 2022 at 6:39 pm

    Someone on YT made a nifty attachment to some generic track saw track that made it as simple as drawing your line, placing the track on the line and cutting with a circ saw. Or a couple clamps on a nice straight piece of steel/al. Way to easy to get kickback on the ts for most of us without large infeed.



  36. Logan Pirie on April 13, 2022 at 6:40 pm

    Sweet T-shirt John! 🤘🏻



  37. Mark Peacock on April 13, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    Over 1Million YIPPEE!!!!!!! John, well done my friend keep up the great works from 🇬🇧 uk 👌🏼



  38. timber_beast on April 13, 2022 at 6:41 pm

    I like to measure a little fat and then re-cut the smaller work piece to the line using the factory edge against the fence.



  39. Darn it! on April 13, 2022 at 6:44 pm

    Well now I’m wondering why I ever thought I wanted to rip full sheets on a table saw. What was I thinking? I’ll just keep using that old aluminum bleacher bench as a circular saw fence.



  40. Travis Christian on April 13, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    Great vid



  41. Ibrahim Aldossri on April 13, 2022 at 6:50 pm

    HI……. Is not good Aida to cut full shit of plywood on table saw it’s happened one time to me so i am lucky because the blade broken…… Thanks for the information



  42. Moreno Marelli on April 13, 2022 at 6:50 pm

    Van Halen shirt…. you are mi idol✌️👍🏻for Wood passion and Music!! Thx a lot for videos, Great Talent! Amazing channel!,,,



  43. Chris Morris on April 13, 2022 at 6:51 pm

    Interesting video. Thanks for this. I don’t have a table saw, but intend to get one next year, so this is invaluable.

    As a side note, I keep expecting an outro, but there isn’t one. Always throws me 😁



  44. Bob D on April 13, 2022 at 6:51 pm

    Skillfully done, John.
    But there’s so little room for error, it scares me.



  45. Liquid Len on April 13, 2022 at 6:53 pm

    I tried to cut an 8 x 4 sheet of 18mm MDF on a table saw once before, never again, I did not feel safe doing it that way so I’ve stuck with sawhorses and a circ saw ever since, much safer for me.



  46. Darrell Verrett on April 13, 2022 at 6:54 pm

    I never knew your shop wasn’t that big. What’s your size of the shop? I see how much you do out of yours and wondering for my future shop. Thanks bud!!



  47. Harry King on April 13, 2022 at 6:55 pm

    Am I the only one who gets excited when John posts a new video. Always spot on with everything. True enjoyment to watch a genius at work. So informative. Thanks big guy.



  48. George Qualls on April 13, 2022 at 6:56 pm

    Now show us how you crosscut that 2 x 8 board.



  49. Brian Scott on April 13, 2022 at 6:56 pm

    I only do it with helper



  50. Lizard on April 13, 2022 at 6:57 pm

    i was cutting plywood today and my instructor got me to use a 2 by 4 as a guard