How to Calibrate a Table Saw Fence


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Bruce Kieffer is a professional furniture maker who always wants his tools to be as accurate as possible. In this clip, he demonstrates his woodworking technique for calibrating his table saw fence so you can make dead-on cuts every time. A WoodWorker Guild of America (WWGOA) original video.

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10 Responses to “How to Calibrate a Table Saw Fence”
  1. Gordon Patnude

    I watched the entire video and was really impressed with the technique. Cutting his ripped piece into 5 segments multiplies any error by a factor of 5, which will make it more obvious on the tape when the total width is measured. IMHO, however, he reset the vernier incorrectly, moving it to the outside of the line on the tape which he will have to include each time he sets the fence for any new cut. This may introduce errors when setting measurements other than the major fractions on the tape. Personally, I want the vernier line smack on top of the mark on the tape. Your dominant eye will always reign supreme when reading the vernier, and no other correction will be necessary.

    Not promoting the product, but my Incra TS III system is pretty dang accurate and consistent to 1/32″ with a lot less fussing around, although I do routinely calibrate it before beginning a new project.


    Just curious why hid didn’t remove his gards and run the fence up against the blade and then set “0” on the scale. Each time you change a blade this zero calibration should be done. That’s how I do it and it seems pretty accurate.

    • WWGOA Team

      Thank you for your comment.
      We think that could work, as long as you have a delicate touch and make sure you’re “kissing” the blade, and not distorting its position at all.

  3. Martin Camp

    I think your Video Editor goofed…
    1. You set your fence to 2″.
    2. You cut your strip.
    3. You chopped and measured the 5 pieces, and they came out to exactly perfect at 10″.
    4. So WHY did you have to move the marker at all after that?

      • Martin Camp

        Sorry sir you are wrong. He says here @ 0:45… “…. I’m going to set my fence; the indicator, right on 2 inches…”. And then shows that being done.

        • Craig Pyne

          Martin, at 1:55 he says he will move the indicator to exactly 2″. I think the method of setting the blade and indicator is good, but the execution of the video leaves questions and error.

          • Martin Camp

            Yes indeed, and that was the reason for my original post…. to correct the video – to eliminate the confusion presented. Cheers!

  4. Craig Pyne

    Although I understand this technique, and that he adjusted the marker to set over the 2″ mark on his ruler. It would be nice to see what do, if when measuring the 5 pieces of wood, it doesn’t come out to exactly 10″? How do you proceed to set the fence correctly?

    • Martin Camp

      Yep I was wondering the same thing… just trial-and-error maybe?

      If so what is the point of the video? Actually, I was wondering if he was going to address tweaking the fence if it isn’t parallel to the blade, or maybe that ‘controversial’ topic of leaving the blade a tad “un-parallel” in the back.


Tags: bruce kieffer, Free Videos, table saw fence calibration, woodworkers guild of america