MJ Splitter

I just bought an MJ Splitter Pro and am wondering if I should set it up for the “Kerf Keeper” or the more conventional set up. Any thoughts are appreciated.
 

mfisher

Super Moderator
Staff member
I have always used the riveting knife that comes with the tablesaw. Not familiar with the mj splitter other than what I have seen on line.
I do use the gripper from microjig. Really like it for cutting thin strips.
 
I have always used the riveting knife that comes with the tablesaw. Not familiar with the mj splitter other than what I have seen on line.
I do use the gripper from microjig. Really like it for cutting thin strips.
Thanks for the reply. I am using the gripper as well. I am a retired Safety Instructor for the Heavy Equipment Industry and am all about finding and using the safest methods available to get the job done. I want to get into open segment turning and although I love my Kapex sliding miter saw I don’t see me cutting hundreds of small segments with it. I just saw the Seg-Easy sled option on YouTube. That looks promising. Any thoughts?
 

mfisher

Super Moderator
Staff member
Thanks for the reply. I am using the gripper as well. I am a retired Safety Instructor for the Heavy Equipment Industry and am all about finding and using the safest methods available to get the job done. I want to get into open segment turning and although I love my Kapex sliding miter saw I don’t see me cutting hundreds of small segments with it. I just saw the Seg-Easy sled option on YouTube. That looks promising. Any thoughts?

When I first got into segment turning, I bought a Incra miter express. It has worked well over the years. A couple of years ago I switched to the Seg-Easy sled. It is pretty much my go to sled for segment cutting. I have access to a cnc machine so I can make my own wedges. Prior to that I had good luck with a digital angle gauge with a 12-18 inch arm.

I don't do stack cutting. That means depending on the segment per ring, I have to cut a lot of segments. I have not gotten into open segment vessels. Seems with the gap the miter angle is more forgiving than in a closed vessel. Some have done stack cutting for open segments.
 
When I first got into segment turning, I bought a Incra miter express. It has worked well over the years. A couple of years ago I switched to the Seg-Easy sled. It is pretty much my go to sled for segment cutting. I have access to a cnc machine so I can make my own wedges. Prior to that I had good luck with a digital angle gauge with a 12-18 inch arm.

I don't do stack cutting. That means depending on the segment per ring, I have to cut a lot of segments. I have not gotten into open segment vessels. Seems with the gap the miter angle is more forgiving than in a closed vessel. Some have done stack cutting for open segments.
 

mfisher

Super Moderator
Staff member
One last thing. I have never had the splitter / riveting knife come into play when cutting segments.
 
Appreciate it. I ordered the necessary parts to build the Seg-Easy sled for cutting segments. The MJ Splitter will be to cut strips from generation boards or to cut the generation board down the middle. I also will use my 2 grippers to protect my fingers and full face mask just in case. I once had a glue joint fail while cutting strips for an Indian blanket feature ring. It hit the blade and just missed me
Lesson learned! Thanks again
 

GrahamJ46

PRO Member
I have used various MJ products over the years including the gripper (still use) and various MJ splitters. Now I only use the riving knife that came with my SawStop. I have nothing against the MJ splitter (good product) but I haven't really had a need for it since I got my SawStop. I have found that if the fence is in perfect alignment with the blade I get safe, clean cuts every time with just the riving knife.
 
Thank you for your input. I use and like the Gripper as well. I have a Shopsmith but the plate for the saw blade that accepts the riving knife has too much of a gap to safely cut 1/8 th inch strips. I wish they made a zero clearance plate with a notch in the back to accept the factory riving knife but they don’t. Thanks again!
 

Ken Sherwin

PRO Member
I've never had a problem cutting segments that a splitter or riving knife would help with. i have, however, had smaller segments get pushed into the blade when I foolishly let the pile get too big. A When this happens, you hear a "Ping! Whizzzz" as the segment vanishes from sight forever. A solution I've seen but not implemented yet is to put a shop-vac hose near where a segment is cut loose from the stick. Each segment disappears up the hose to be gathered up from the vac tank when that size segment is complete. Thus far, I've just been more careful about keeping the segments pile manageable. This implies some responsibility on my part.
 
The splitter is used when making rip cuts not crosscuts. I bought it so I could could thin strips from a "Generation Board" created in Lamination Pro to make feature rings. If you want to make a Southwest design from a feature ring generation board you will need to rip 1/8th inch strips from that board. So a zero clearance insert plate with a splitter is needed and "Gripper" push blocks. I bought one and used it yesterday. Worked like a charm. I also made a "Seg-Easy Wedgie sled " and bought the Wedgies for making 12,24, and 48 segment rings. I have not used it yet as I am waiting for a miter bar from Shopsmith to attach to it. You can use a zero clearance insert with it as well and double stick tape a tapered ramp to the plate on the cut off side of the blade so as the segment is cut it falls on the ramp and slides away from the blade. Your shop vac idea will work too but I think you will want to capture the segment in the hose before they hit the impeller as it is sucked into the tank. Hitting the impeller will damage it and the segments I believe. I think Lloyd Johnson is working on a workaround that captures the segment in the hose. Up until now I have been using my Kapex sliding miter saw to cut my segments. It is very accurate but it takes a lot of time as you need to stop after each cut to remove the segment. The Seg-Easy Wedgie sled lets you cut accurately and much faster. It is also safer as you never get close the blade and neither do your segments. Thanks for your post. I appreciate it!
 

GrahamJ46

PRO Member
To cut thin strips I use a thin strips jig (see attached photo). If you use it on the table saw it can be wasteful for narrow pieces. So for narrow strips I use it on the bandsaw and then cleanup on the drum sander. If your equipment is well setup you can get down to very thin. If you use it on the bandsaw you can make veneers. I have also used it to make banding.
 

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Thanks, I have that exact jig and use it on my bandsaw as well. However it does not help with a generation board because if you need to split one down the middle you need to have the jagged edge of the board against a rip fence. Using the MJ Splitter with their gripper pads (push block) gives me a smooth cut right off the table saw. Thanks again
 

GrahamJ46

PRO Member
Ok now I understand! I have the MJ Splitter and gripper pads but no longer use the MJ Splitter, just a riving knife. I haven't tried Lam Pro yet but when I do I will remember your input.
 
When you get Lam Pro be sure to go into options and check for the correct saw kerf for the blade you use. The program default is 1/8 inch I believe. I did not realize that and used a 1/16 inch blade which threw every thing off. See attached
 
Sorry
Just realized you were using the table saw - 1/16" is that a 7¼" blade?
No. it is a thin kerf table saw blade. 10 inch diameter. Here is a photo of a generation board I messed up by using a 1/16 inch saw kerf blade when Lam Pro thought I was using a 1/8 inch saw kerf blade. See how they are misaligned? The program takes your saw blades kerf size into account as it designs your feature ring. So you want to give it correct info. I cut it in half again and used what was left to make a design ring on the vessel shown here. So it wasn’t a total loss.
 

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