In Woodworking projects, you will often see design plans that ask for several rabbets and dadoes. These designs have been continuing like for a long time. Earlier, Woodworkers used to cut them with the help of a specially designed plane or with a chisel.
Today however, thanks to the advent of power tools, the above mentioned methods have become obsolete. The new power tools have given to new methods of cutting rabbets and dadoes like:-
- radial-arm saws
- with a dado blade on table saw
Dado blades are sold in market in two distinct styles:-
- stacked dado blades
- wobble dado blades
Out of the two, the stacked dado blades win more votes from seasoned Woodworkers.
There are several reasons for which stacked dado blades are preferred over wobble dado blades. To start with, stacked dado set comes with two saw blades and numerous chippers that can be fit along with the two blades at the saw’s arbor. Number of chippers installed between the outer and the inner saw blades determines how wide a dado the saw will cut. If you insert more chippers, you will get a wider cut.
Unlike stacked dado set, a wobble dado set has a single blade. The blade has a collar that allows it to be set up at various angles. The angle determines the width of the cut. The angle is set steep, the cut will be wide.
How to setup stacked dado set
The instruction manual that will come with you set will tell you are the configurations that you can have and how wide cuts the saw will make. Most of the kits contain:-
- 4x 1/8-inch kerf chippers
- 1x 1/16-inch chipper
Each of the inner and outer blades also has a 1/8-inch kerf. Since a cut cannot be without using inner and outer blade, the minimum cut that you can achieve with the most basic stacked dado set will be of 1/4-inches.
How to safely use stacked dado sets
- Ensure that your saw’s arbor is long enough to adjust blades before you fit stacked dado set on it
- Ensure that the arbor nut has the space to full thread on the arbor
- Buy a dado throat plate, or make one out of plywood when using stacked dado blades on a table saw
- Never operate a table saw with its throat plate remove
- Never try to use either stacked dado or wobble dado with a circular saw
- Both the dado kits must be used either with table saws or with radial arm
Other accessories to increase the performance
If you are going to be cutting rabbets and dadoes in plywood, buy a dado kit that comes with spacers. Spacers look like thin washer and do the job of adding more space between the blades and chippers. This way you will achieve widths between 15/32-inches and 23/32-inches.