How to rip long boards on a table saw

Are you looking to rip longboards on your table saw but aren’t sure how to do it safely? In this blog post, we will show you how to rip longboards on a table saw without any mishaps. We will also provide some tips for ensuring that your boards are ripped evenly. So, whether you’re a seasoned carpenter or just starting out, keep reading for the best way to rip longboards on a table saw!

How to rip long boards on a table saw step by step

Here are some steps to rip longboards on a table saw step by step, so you can safely do it yourself or with your crew!

Step 1: Determine the correct blade for the job

The first step to ripping long boards on a table saw is determining which blade will work best for you (if there’s not already one on there). Before deciding, make sure to check what the board thickness is. This will help ensure that you choose the right blade size. You want to make sure that the blade isn’t too big or too small; otherwise, it may come off of the wheels and cause injuries. Furthermore, if it’s too small, it may not cut all of the ways through and leave behind edges that aren’t completely cut. Here are some guidelines when choosing blades:

10-22″ – 24 tooth

18-24″ – 30 tooth

24-30″ – 40 tooth

If you’re unsure about what size blades to use, look for ones with teeth sizes somewhere in the middle. These will generally do the job while taking care of most boards. The higher the number of teeth, the smoother and slower your cuts will be. The lower the number of teeth, the rougher and faster your cuts will be; this allows you to take off more material at once!

So, for example, if you are trying to rip softer woods (such as pine or cedar), then it would be best to choose a blade with fewer teeth so that there is less chance of it being blown around by sawdust. On the other hand, if you’re using harder woods, then a blade with more teeth would be best to ensure faster and cleaner cuts.

Step 2: Making the cut

Now that you have determined what size of blade will work best for your job, it’s time to make the cut. The first thing to do is make sure the fence is parallel with the miter slot on your table saw.

Then, place your board up against it on top of its edge. While holding the board in place, pull down slightly on one end until there is enough resistance from gravity or friction so that it doesn’t move while cutting (if using a clamp or vice). If making multiple passes, start by finding where you need to stop and marking that spot with a pencil.

Next, line the blade up with your cut by looking straight down from above. Make sure that you are wearing a pair of safety glasses, as well as any other required personal protective equipment.

After you have lined up correctly, slowly turn on the saw and bring it all of the ways through the board before turning it off again. For multiple cuts, make sure to prop up one end of the board against something sturdy (such as another board) so that the wood doesn’t move while cutting; this will ensure an even cut.

If making multiple passes or rough cuts (which is suggested for softer woods), then repeat steps two and three until you’ve made all of your desired cuts. To ensure an even cut across pieces, don’t forget your clamps or vice (to hold the board in place) and pencil (to mark where you need to stop)!

Step 3: Sanding after cutting

The final step to ripping boards on a table saw is sanding! The best way to ensure that your boards are nice and smooth without any rough edges is by using an orbital sander.

Just remember, the higher the number of grits you use (i.e. 60-grit), the smoother and finer it will make your wood after going over it once with each grit size. If you’re looking for a rougher finish, then start with a lower number of grits (i.e. 40-grit). After going over each side about two or three times, your boards will be ready to go!


Q: What are the dangers of ripping longboards on a table saw?

A: There are many dangers involved when cutting longboards. If you don’t use the right size blades or let them get away from you in any way, it can become quite hazardous. The wood may start to kick back and hit you in the face which could damage your eyes. Also, if flying pieces happen to hit you in other parts of your body then that may injure you as well. Be sure to read all manufacturer’s instructions for safety precautions before beginning this project.

Q: Which blade will work best for me?

A: It depends on what type of wood product you’re cutting (i.e., hardwood versus softwood), how thick the board is, and how many passes you’re going to need to make. The best way to determine what kind of blade is necessary for your job is by consulting the manufacturer’s instructions. Also, the higher the number of teeth a blade has, the slower and smoother it will cut which may be a good idea for softwoods such as pine or cedar. However, if you’re using harder woods then a blade with fewer teeth may work best for you.

Q: I’m having trouble holding the board in place when cutting it?

A: If your board isn’t staying in place while cutting or tends to move around a lot, there are a few things you can do in order to fix this issue. For one, hold down the board using clamps or vice grips in order to ensure that it doesn’t move when cutting. Another option would be to prop up one side of the board on something sturdy (such as another piece of wood) so that it doesn’t slip.  Also, make sure that the board is pressed firmly against the rip fence. If all else fails, then you can try to decrease blade speed or change out your existing blades (i.e., if it has a lot of teeth such as 40-teeth).


I hope now you now feel more confident about how to rip longboards on a table saw. As always, be sure to utilize safety equipment as needed.