Re-Designed Push Stick Workshop Projects
I use and have used for years one type of push stick, and it has served me very well. What I like about it is that it gives me complete control over the stock as I push it through the saw and better, more reliable control makes for a much safer cut.
Recently I thought it would be interesting to try to improve upon the simple design of my original push stick, and went into detail on that in this video.
While not a complete success, it definitely had potential and I went back to the drawing board to refine the shape and geometry to see if I could make it as good as my original. I can now say with certainty, that this design is every bit as good as the old one:
I made this from 1/2″ plywood, but 3/4″ would be as good or better. ONLY plywood, though – do not make this push stick from solid wood, as it may break suddenly alone the grain.
The long front will hold the stock down firmly, while the longer handle keeps your fingers farther from the blade.
The key is the way the stick is gripped, with the rounded part of the handle cupped into the palm of your hand, and your fingers wrapped around the inner curve. This allows you to exert down force with your fingers, rather than your arm and gives very good control. It also keeps your wrist straight, which is the strongest, most comfortable position:
There is more about the grip in the video at the bottom of this page.
I made a two page temple that is free to download. Just right click on each image and select: “Save image as” to get the full size copy. You can then save these and print them with your printer set to “full size, no scaling” on regular printer paper (8.5 x 11):
I’ll say it again that this push stick, like my original, must be made from plywood, and not solid wood.
Here’s the video of the improved push stick. Skip ahead to 4:22 to only here about the new design: