The throat plate comes with a table saw to provide clearance across the saw’s range of slope angles. You can set different angles by adjusting clearance around the saw with the throat plate.
Now the question is, can you use a table saw without a throat plate? If you want to know the answer, let’s read the article.
Can you use a table saw without a throat plate?
Yes, you can use a table saw without a throat plate. But using a table saw without a throat plate is risky. When you need to do large cuts, a throat plate is a must. Otherwise, it would bring different accidents.
But when you are doing non thru cute where the blade is buried in the wood, it is fine to use a table saw without a throat plate.
How to use the table saw without a throat plate?
Yet a throat plate is provided to ensure the operator’s safety. In some scenarios, operators need to work without it. Suppose you are using a stacked dado blade to cut dadoes or rabbets in your table saw. In that scenario, it is a must to remove the throat plate from the saw.
Because the saw blade slot has not had sufficient room to handle the dado blade’s width. But removing the throat plate is unsafe; that is why the best alternative method is to use a zero clearance plate inside the throat. That solves your dado blade accommodation issues.
When you need to replace the throat plate, the best & safe solution is using a zero clearance plate. It is a piece of material designed to be similar to the size, shape & thickness of a throat plate. So that you can easily insert the zero-clearance plate into the throat crucially.
The difference between the throat plate & the zero clearance plate is it has no pre-cutting slot in the plate-like the throat plate. As a result, it helps to accommodate more places for the saw’s blade.
This type of zero clearance blade can be manufactured with wood or plastic. It is better to choose such materials that can easily be cut by your table saw’s blade.
First, install your table saw blade. Then insert a zero clearance plate on the throat. Simply turn on your table saw blade & increase it. When you increase the blade, it will cut the plate to ensure the necessary slot for the blade & remove the gap throughout the blade.
How to get zero clearance plate
Currently, in the market, zero clearance plate is available for all types of table saw models. You can buy a particular zero clearance plate based on your saw’s model. When you need to buy zero clearance plates to cut with a dado blade set, then you can simply buy a few plates for this width.
Or it can be a great solution to build your own zero-clearance plate based on your requirements. You need the below pieces of equipment to build a zero clearance plate:
- Plywood or MDF (similar thickness of your saw’s throat plate)
- Band saw
DIY method to build a zero clearance plate
- First, measure the distance from the peak of taps in the throat of your saw. Depending on your table saw model, it varies from 1/2 inches or less.
- Then choose a plywood or MDF piece with similar thickness to your throat plate. You may choose a slightly thinner thickness than the table saw’s throat plate. But don’t use any thicker piece than the measured distance. Because it will stick out above the table, saw top.
- Now keep the standard throat plate down the plywood or MDF piece to Mark the outline to make a perfect zero-clearance plate. Then cut out the outline edges with your saw.
How to use a table saw with a zero-clearance plate?
When you replace your standard throat plate with a zero-clearance plate, you need to follow some strategies. Otherwise, you will face some troubles.
You should make a hole of 3/4- inch beside the front edge of the zero clearance plate with a drill machine. It helps to remove the plate conveniently when needed. You must make the hole to the side where a table saw blade is cut into the plate.
Then it’s time to install your dado or favorite blade set. Keep the zero-clearance plate into the throat of the table saw. Check whether the zero-clearance plate fits in the throat or not. It should not be fitted extremely tightly that is hard to remove. A comfortable fitting is a great pick. Customize your zero-clearance table to make its fittings accurate.
Now switch on the table saw & gradually increase the blade. As a result, the blade will cut the zero clearance plate with the saw trunnion. You need to keep increasing the blade until it cuts the zero clearance plate. Finally, balance your blade height to make your dadoes or rabbets.
Dado blades set comes with different width blades. So you need different pieces of zero clearance plate to accommodate different pieces of blades. So it will be better to buy a few extra pieces or build multiple pieces of zero clearance plate to meet your needs.
Zero- clearance plate is the must-have accessory to use a table saw without a throat plate. It filled the gap from the throat insert to reduce the tear-out from cutting. It also helps to improve your cut quality & the safest way to use a table saw.
When you are using a wider blade, the throat plate becomes a major issue because it is unable to give sufficient room for the blade. So everyone asks this question, can you use a table saw without a throat plate? We are discussing the best approach of using a table saw without a throat plate.
This method allows the use of various types of wide blades, improves cutting quality & other great benefits are line up your cuts. Zero clearance insert is the best & safest replacement for a throat plate.
As it removes space around the blade, it protects the operator’s legs from unwanted objects falling. If you want a safe method to use a table saw without a throat plate, then follow the above technique.