Cross Cut Sled w/ Finger Joint Jig Insert

Cross Cut Sled w/ Finger Joint Jig Insert

My old crosscut sled and finger joint jig were garbage. Since space is precious, I decided to make a new sled that combined both functions. I'm a little gun shy to go all out with a t track system and all the bells and whistles since (in my experience) sled jigs are basically consumables (you have to remake them from time to time).

This is your basic cross cut sled, you can find a million tutorials on how to make one, but I cut out a tiny recess in the back fence that can receive a tiny finger joint cartridge that slips in, converting the cross cut sled to a finger joint jig.

In the past, I've found that making a really accurate & simple finger joint jig is pretty difficult, especially since I do standard kerf width fingers (no dado stack, I like the look and strength of all the little finger joints, etc). Getting things lined up PERFECTLY at that small scale is tough. This cartridge idea solves some of that, since you can loosen the eye bolt, nudge the cartridge left or right as needed, and secure it back down.

Making the cross cut sled safe while being able to access the slot for the finger joint cartridge as well posed another challenge. Here is where I channeled my inner Matthias Wandel. I made the safety block in the back able to pivot out of the way to expose the slot for the finger joint module but held it in place with a thin strip of hard maple acting as a spring latch. The safety block has a little slot to store the finger joint jig module.

I made the slot wide enough so that if, eventually I do get a dado stack and want to do bigger finger joints, I'll be able to fashion a wider finger joint template and still be able to chuck it into the slot.

The 5 Cut Method:

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