How Woodworkers Tame Tearout
Zero-clearance trick applies to almost every tool in the shop
Synopsis: There are ways to deal with the splintered edges and pockmarked surfaces caused when an inorganic substance (blade or bit) cuts into an organic substance (wood). This problem, which probably has plagued woodworkers since the first person tried to make something smooth and beautiful out of a tree, is known as tearout. Learn how to use a zero-clearance insert, sacrificial fence, or back-up board to minimize tearout when cutting wood, and explore other strategies for dealing with tearout on a hand- or machine-planed surface.
Wood is an amazing material, widely available in all sorts of colors, with beautiful grain patterns. it cuts easily with small machines and tools— products that are accessible to the home craftsman—and its strength to-weight ratio rivals high-tech materials. But it is organic, and therefore comes with some strings attached.
One is movement, and there is no stopping it. The other is tearout. a…