Woodworking Tips
Woodworking Tips Index

Jig for Making Useful Shims

A wooden shim is one of those useful items I’m never able to find when I need it. On the other hand, wood scraps are always available, and often in my way, but I never know what to do with them.

It took building an end table with tapered legs to give me an idea about how to have a steady supply of shims and reduce my scrap pile at the same time. I built a shim-cutting jig similar to the taper jig I used to cut the table legs.

woodworking tip: Jig for making useful shims

The jig is designed to ride against the rip fence on my table saw. I hold a piece of scrap wood in the jig, make a cut, then flip the wood over to make the next cut.

For general-purpose shims any stock will work, and I don’t worry about cutting across the end grain. Though for sturdier shims, I use wide cutoffs (2x8s or 2x10s) cut with the grain. I prefer the sturdier ones when hanging a door or window — places where a nail could split an end-grain shim.

woodworking tip: Jig for making useful shims

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