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Thread: Fritz & Franz jig vs parallel positioner?

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
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    Phoenix AZ Area
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    2,503
    I used the "parallel positioner" a lot, and I do find that I use the bars with different settings for tapered cuts more than I expected to. I see the F&F as more of a cutoff jig and the parallel guide bars for precision ripping. If I need a quick rip that's cabinet saw tolerance I use the rip fence on the my Felder saw. If I want precision and the cut quality you get when stock is clamped to the slide I use the parallel bars from Brian Lamb. Since I got air clamps I don't use the F&F jig. I don't think I've used it for over 5 years. Not even sure where it is in the shop.

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
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    auckland, NZ
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    Just wanted to say especial thanks to Jim. You always write in such a concise and simple manner that is invaluable for a layman like me.

  3. #33
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    Oct 2007
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    1,696
    This has turned into a great thread; lots of good info here.

  4. #34
    Jim,
    What blade tooth count are you using? I have been using 48 atb and the cut is pretty darn good but not sure I would get a no glue line glue up with it maybe on softwoods (haven't experimented yet) I have actually found my 36 tooth is the best all around blade.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    Quite simply because for any slider larger than a short stroke, you cannot stand in the position that you would want to be to rip boards along the fence like you would with a cabinet saw. The support structure for the wagon gets in your way. The secondary reason is that doing both sides on the slider wagon creates an edge that's nearly pristine with no minor deviations like you will get when your hands are used to push a board along a fence. I pretty much never edge joint anything at this point...I flatten and thickness first and then rip using the slider wagon. As was already noted...it's just a different technique.

    Editing my post to add a photo to illustrate what I describe about the physical nature of the tool...if you look carefully, you can see that the body of the saw under the slider wagon extends about a foot and a half back from the fence rail location so you cannot stand where one would stand when ripping with a cabinet saw...it's physically impossible. And mine is only an 8'6" slider. Many folks have 10' sliders which extend back farther. I've gotten used to "new ways" pretty well since I bought this tool And I don't work with sheet stock all that much, honestly. I process a lot of solid stock.


  5. #35
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    MA
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    2,000
    This is an interesting thread, and it is on my list to try a parallel guide. I was going to make it out of an incra positioning fence.

    Where I am skeptical, is the need on longer pieces to register both front and back of a board. Personally I do not usually work to 'exact' values so incrementing two guides seems like an extra step I would not like (plus anytime two things need positioned precisely there is room for error between them).

    But for ... say 1ft to 3ft long pieces, of which is a common size range, a single guide should be good enough to register for repeatable cuts. Again if absolute increments are used they should come out the same. I wonder how often I will end up simply letting the waste be on the right of the blade, and using the fence to set repeatable cuts at the desired width without moving the guide (it will depend on the width of the desired piece, but I can imagine doing this again because I dont often care about absolute values and just want reproducible values)

    I am not at the stage where I can imagine never using the saw rip fence, I still do that.

    Note I have a short stroke slider. (MM CU300). Note I am a hobbiest, and do not do 'real' woodworking. Note I do not have cash oozing out my ears. Which are all considerations when it comes to practical limits on how I work.

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark e Kessler View Post
    Jim,
    What blade tooth count are you using? I have been using 48 atb and the cut is pretty darn good but not sure I would get a no glue line glue up with it maybe on softwoods (haven't experimented yet) I have actually found my 36 tooth is the best all around blade.
    I'm using the 12" Forrest WW-II 48T at this point...they replaced the same in 10" and 40T. While there are a lot of blade choices that are certainly worthy, I've stuck with the WW-II because I'm happy with the performance, both new and after re-sharpening and because they are all "precisely" .125" thick. I still have the 20T 10" ripping blade for when that is appropriate, although it's not helpful if I have something really thick to break down...for that, I stick with the 12" 48T and just cut slower.

    Relative to "glue line" cuts...if the blade is sharp, the FLAT material is clamped down on the wagon and the feed rate is steady, the surface is pretty darn nice. As sharpness degrades, so does the cut quality, but still less than if I was hand-feeding the material along a fence.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  7. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Carl Beckett View Post
    This is an interesting thread, and it is on my list to try a parallel guide. I was going to make it out of an incra positioning fence.

    Where I am skeptical, is the need on longer pieces to register both front and back of a board. Personally I do not usually work to 'exact' values so incrementing two guides seems like an extra step I would not like (plus anytime two things need positioned precisely there is room for error between them).
    I just did a kitchen remodel and was cutting toe kicks, 3 7/8" at one end, 4 1/8" at the other on a 6 foot long stretch. Also I cut tapered legs using two units set to create a 3/4" taper over 24", by just setting the two fences 24" apart and setting one stop 3/4" back from the other.

    Getting them set accurately to each other, I made a couple of videos on youtube showing how I set up and do that.

    First one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4xcjWUX4QqM

    Second one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4BB5IonNvM
    Brian Lamb
    Lamb Tool Works, Custom tools for woodworkers
    Equipment: Felder KF700 and AD741, Milltronics CNC Mill, Universal Laser X-600

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Upland CA
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    Thanks for the videos Brian. Very helpful.
    Rick Potter

    DIY journeyman,
    FWW wannabe.
    AKA Village Idiot.

  9. #39
    Have you experienced any issues with the wood moving around in the FF jig?
    Howard Dean

    "Love the hand that fate deals you and play it as your own, for what could be more fitting." Marcus Aurelius

  10. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by Howard Dean View Post
    Have you experienced any issues with the wood moving around in the FF jig?
    Howard, just chiming in. The only F&F jig I have personally used is the one we sell, which is a rebadged Ruwi unit. The jaws are lined with this elastomeric-type edgebanding. Grips the wood really well. If I were DIY-ing my own, I would probably bond some some neoprene or possibly fine-grit sandpaper on the inside of the jaws. Hope this helps.

    Erik
    Ex-SCM and Felder rep

  11. #41
    Many thanks. This is helpful. Iím many months still from receiving the K3 79x48 I ordered the other day, so am taking the opportunity to do some research on what jigs to build. I see that some people are FF devotees (for both small and rip cuts), some prefer a parallel fence, and some use both. Iím looking for simple and repeatable accuracy with as little fiddling as possible.
    Howard Dean

    "Love the hand that fate deals you and play it as your own, for what could be more fitting." Marcus Aurelius

  12. #42
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
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    I use both a Fritz and Franz Jig and a pair of Parallel Positioners that I made. They both are tools I wouldn't want to be without. The F & F excels at small to medium crosscuts and rip cuts. On the other hand, if I set the pair of the Parallel Positions, I can rip easily and accurately with no thought to the "step" between the wagon and the saw table. I think they both have their place.

  13. #43
    Many thanks Lisa. What did you use to make the parallel positioners?

  14. #44
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
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    Waterford, PA
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    Howard, mine are made of aluminum with a couple of 3d printed pieces. I posted photos of them here on sawmill creek. You should be able to locate the post.

  15. #45
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    Howard my "super expensive" (not!) F&F uses peel and stick sandpaper. No slippage when used properly.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

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