Splitter or Riving Knife for Table Saw


#1

HI Everyone, but mostly Steve.

I am looking to purchase a riving knife/splitter for the table saw to prevent kickback. Mike recommended that I look into Lee Shark as an aftermarket option.

I contact them to ask additional questions about mounting their riving knife option and advised that it would be used in a community workshop.

He suggested that we use obtain the splitter option since it requires less training to install properly and has less likelihood of coming into contact with the blade by improper installation.

The flipside of this is that the splitter does not move up and down with the blade. I would probably just get the medium size one as it works the best for most kerfs and stock sizes.

Since it is a community space, I think easier to install and more fool proof is good, but also riving knife is a bit safer for different wood sizes. Thoughts before I buy one?


#2

I don’t have any experience with the Shark Guard although I did look into them a while back when I was looking for a riving knife solution for my old Delta Unisaw. You’re right about the splitter often being too far behind the blade to be really effective and I have heard stories of people hitting their riving knife with the blade with unpleasant results. The solution I settled on was a series of zero-clearance throat plates with wooden splitters glued into the kerf at various distances behind the blade depending on how high the blade will be raised. That seems to work pretty good for me. MicroJig also have a product called MJ Splitter that makes it somewhat easier to make splitters similar to what I described although I think they are a bit pricey for what they are. Having said that, what you’re really paying for is the jig for placing the plastic splitters and I suppose one could 3D print more splitters to make it more cost effective.

I’ve also recently started using a pair of Grr-Ripper push blocks which I believe, when used properly, lessen the chance of putting yourself in a kickback situation. I initially thought that $100 push blocks were a bit excessive until I started using one at Tradeworks and quickly became a convert. They also greatly improve the cut quality on rip cuts, reducing/eliminating burning and tool marks on the cuts.


#3

Thanks Steve,

We still have one of your zero clearance inserts that has one of your wooden splitters. If we made a few more of various distances and made them visible on our french cleat rack, we’d make it easy for people to follow.

I’ve seen those Grr-Ripper blocks but the expense certainly turned me off. Knowing you approve of them gives me a lot of confidence. I’d certainly throw a few bucks of contribution for us to get one.


#4

Thanks for the feed back and the great alternatives. I think the grr ripper has a bit of a learning curve and could be easily damaged or lost.

I was hoping to purchase something that could be put in place to increase safety for novice and experienced alike. The zero clearance plates and splitter option would work I think. I’m assuming most people using the space aren’t changing blades for different kerfs etc. And if damaged could easily be repairs like you said with 3D printed parts.

Sounds like I need to put more thought into this.


#5

The Grr-Ripper does require a bit of education to use properly. I didn’t think much of it until I watched the videos on their website to discover how to use it properly. Once I practiced their techniques I become a convert. Yes, it is possible to cut the jig if you’re not paying attention to the placement of the middle leg but it will take a few accidental cuts before you need to replace it and replacement parts are readily available from local dealers (KMS, Lee Valley) or Amazon.


#6

I’d throw in $20 toward the purchase of pair of GRR-Ripper Push blocks from Lee Valley Tools for VHS.


#7

I, too, am in for $20


#8

Ok sounds like we have a winner. I’ll go pick one up next time I’m at lee valley.

Thanks for the contributions.


#9

LV usually has gift cards for 10% off on Cyber Monday if that helps.


#10

KMS Has the advance push blocks on sale for $100. $20 bucks off
https://www.kmstools.com/microjig-grr-ripper-advanced-3-d-push-block-109947


#11

In for 20 as well


#12

Hey Guys,

To go back to the riving knife/ splitter discussion, I recently modified my delta table saw to install a manual height adjustable riving knife using the plans from shark guard. I wrote Steve an email some time ago about how to do it. It was very easy and I’m really happy with how it works.

Not sure of what the guard or splitter design is for the saw at VHS but I’m guessing something similar could be done! I’m also in the process of testing out the saw stop splitter and guard on my delta too.

Not sure if saw retrofit is an option but I’d be happy to share my experiences if someone’s interested.


#13

Hi Jamie, I already ordered the advanced grr-ripper but I don’t think the two are mutually exclusive. Please do share your experience with the shark as well!


#14

Hi Everyone,

I’ll drop off the grr-ripper either this week or next week at the space. I would encourage everyone to watch the instructional video online or at least the quick start video.

I’m not sure the best way to sync up with the other contributors.


#15

Nice! Thanks for getting this. pm me your email address and I can eTransfer you $20 or I can leave cash in dropbox/your tote.


#16

Same


#17

Is there any way you can attach this to it before putting it out in the wild?


#18

Can do. Good old tape and paper.