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Thread: Precision Fritz and Franz Jig

  1. #1

    Precision Fritz and Franz Jig

    If you own a sliding tablesaw, you are probably familiar with the Fritz and Franz jig. It excels at making precise cuts even on very small pieces and most importantly it keeps your hands well away for the spinning blade. My current Fritz and Franz jig is one that I designed over a year ago and it has been working great for me. Ive posted about it on Instagram and thought I would show everyone here as well.

    When I was designing my jig, I had the following goals:

    (1) I wanted a way to reset the jig so it always has a zero clearance reference on the left side of the blade regardless of the width of the blade.

    (2) I wanted adjustable flip-stops with no measurable deflection

    (3) I wanted a way to easily calibrate the stops to make precise cuts.

    Heres the jig that I came up that meets each of my goals.

    F&F.jpg

    To provide a zero clearance on the left side of the blade, I attached movable faces to both halves of the jig. If I use different width blades or the face gets worn over time, I can loosen the 3 machine screws and nudge the face slightly to the right and make a fresh cut. The zero reference makes it easy to align the cut so that it splits a knife line.

    20211209_205747.jpg

    Both faces are covered with hockey tape to provide extra grip for the workpiece. I often use sandpaper for better grip but decided against that for the faces since the sandpaper may dull the saw blade.


    I made the flip stops from aluminum which machines easily with woodworking tools. The pivoting arm is 3/8 thick and is secured with a bolt and nylon washers to avoid deflection. I made a stop for both sides of the jig and they each ride in a T-track.



    20211209_205555.jpg

    20211209_205603.jpg


    To precisely set the position of each stop, I fastened a measuring tape to both halves of the jig and attached a piece of acrylic with a scribe line to the stop. I calibrate the jig with a 1-2-3 block against the saw blade as shown below.



    stopBlock1.jpg

    stopBlock2.jpg

    Once calibrated, if I want to make a parallel cut, I set both stops to the same value. For a tapered cut, I set the stops as needed. I can get cuts that are accurate to less than 1/128.
    Feel free to message me if you want more information on making the jig or if you are interested in me making one for you.

    Thanks for looking,
    David
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
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    Very nice, David. I threw a quickie together when I first got my slider this summer, but it has several short comings, as I expected it would. I like the idea of the adjustable zero clearance piece. I'll probably work on a new one sometime over this winter. Thanks for the write up and photos, there's good info in there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
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    I have been using an F&F jig from the very first time that we saw it on this forum and built two, the first is two bits of MDF with rails under it for the table slot and no handle and the second using short Inra fences and I have never used that one at all. I cut a short piece off the main rip fence which never gets used either and put that short piece on the rip fence head and use it for a measured bump stop which has a DRO on it. The beauty of the slider is you can work the opposite of a cabinet saw and cut to your dimension on the right side of the blade. I do like the moving fence face and I will pinch that idea as I use different kerf blades and it will be handy for that.
    Chris

    Everything I like is either illegal, immoral or fattening

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    Bucks County, PA
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    890
    I follow you on IG, David, so I've already seen your Fritz and Franz over there. But the bigger pictures here on the Creek really show it in all its glory (and precision). Very nice work!

    My current F&F jig is based on Incra track (the stuff with the teeth; not just their t-track), but doesn't have an adjustable zero clearance setup. It's also designed around how far the splitter-mounted guard on my K3 extends to the left of the blade. However I literally just received and started installing an overhead guard, so a redesign of the F&F might be in order after that's fully setup in order to accommodate the size differences. My new design will have to have an adjustable zero clearance fence, and your jig gives me some ideas.
    And there was trouble, taking place...

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Starr View Post
    Very nice, David. I threw a quickie together when I first got my slider this summer, but it has several short comings, as I expected it would. I like the idea of the adjustable zero clearance piece. I'll probably work on a new one sometime over this winter. Thanks for the write up and photos, there's good info in there.
    Thanks Lisa. Let me know if you need any additional photos when you are working on your new jig.

    David

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Parks View Post
    I have been using an F&F jig from the very first time that we saw it on this forum and built two, the first is two bits of MDF with rails under it for the table slot and no handle and the second using short Inra fences and I have never used that one at all. I cut a short piece off the main rip fence which never gets used either and put that short piece on the rip fence head and use it for a measured bump stop which has a DRO on it. The beauty of the slider is you can work the opposite of a cabinet saw and cut to your dimension on the right side of the blade. I do like the moving fence face and I will pinch that idea as I use different kerf blades and it will be handy for that.
    The moving faces really add to the precision of the jig and should not be too hard to add to an existing jig.

    David

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Wurster View Post
    I follow you on IG, David, so I've already seen your Fritz and Franz over there. But the bigger pictures here on the Creek really show it in all its glory (and precision). Very nice work!

    My current F&F jig is based on Incra track (the stuff with the teeth; not just their t-track), but doesn't have an adjustable zero clearance setup. It's also designed around how far the splitter-mounted guard on my K3 extends to the left of the blade. However I literally just received and started installing an overhead guard, so a redesign of the F&F might be in order after that's fully setup in order to accommodate the size differences. My new design will have to have an adjustable zero clearance fence, and your jig gives me some ideas.
    Thanks Steve. For those interested, I'm @BedrosianWoodworks on Instagram.

    David

  8. #8
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    Toronto Ontario
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    Once again I have Fritz und Franz envy, thanks a lot😉

    Looks good, regards, Rod

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Bedrosian View Post
    The moving faces really add to the precision of the jig and should not be too hard to add to an existing jig.

    David
    The problem with that is I can't see how it helps to have a measurement system on the F&F jig if the rip fence is used as a stop and my rip fence has a Wixey on it with a fine adjuster on the rip head. The second reason for not having the full length rip fence on the saw is I don't have to walk around the damned overhang all the time as I rarely use the rip fence, maybe a few times a year. I spent a fair bit of money building the F&F jig and it was money down the drain for the way I work. I guess I see the F&F jig as a clamp and nothing more and I did not realise that until I tried to use the Incra version I built and found it was a a two step process for setting and the rip fence bump stop is only a one step process and way less trouble.
    Last edited by Chris Parks; 04-24-2022 at 2:11 AM.
    Chris

    Everything I like is either illegal, immoral or fattening

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Parks View Post
    The problem with that is I can't see how it helps to have a measurement system on the F&F jig if the rip fence is used as a stop and my rip fence has a Wixey on it with a fine adjuster on the rip head. The second reason for not having the full length rip fence on the saw is I don't have to walk around the damned overhang all the time as I rarely use the rip fence, maybe a few times a year. I spent a fair bit of money building the F&F jig and it was money down the drain for the way I work. I guess I see the F&F jig as a clamp and nothing more and I did not realise that until I tried to use the Incra version I built and found it was a a two step process for setting and the rip fence bump stop is only a one step process and way less trouble.
    I use the rip fence/bump stop mainly for repetitive parallel rips. I use stop blocks on the F&F for tapers, for one-offs when I don't want to walk around the end of the carriage to set the rip fence, and when I want to cut a piece too narrow to butt against the rip fence and hold in the jig at the same time. I may use the F&F for the last piece of those repetitive rips or I may use the rip fence with a push stick. I also use the rip fence conventionally for pieces longer than the carriage.

    I don't think I will bother making adjustable faces. They make it easier to set up a cut to a line on the stock, but I usually work off the stops or when straightlining can get close enough eyeballing against the slightly worn jig ends. My blades are all the same kerf width so the zero point for the stops is constant. For backing up a cut I use a fresh sacrificial piece anyway.

    I first made a simple clamping F&F jig like yours for straightlining rough edges and using with the rip fence. When I made an "improved" version with scales and stops I found I used it much more. I probably have $60 invested in t-track, clamp bolts and knobs, flat measuring tape and a pair of hinges. Different strokes.
    Last edited by Kevin Jenness; 04-24-2022 at 10:15 AM.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Helensburgh, Australia
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    Everyone has their own individual take on our approach to working but I think most of us tend to over complicate things and be to clever for our own good. When I started out using the F&F jig it was a simple clamping measurement made in Germany to facilitate ripping and cutting on a slider and this forum grabbed the idea and ran with it. Another thing I discovered after I made mine is that there is a minimum distance between the two blocks built in by using the flip stops and that did not appeal to me at all. I hope others join in and add their ideas on these points.
    Chris

    Everything I like is either illegal, immoral or fattening

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