Let me say it. I’m scared of table saws. I’ve had two old ones at some point or other, neither with blade guards, and they were the first things to go as soon as I need more room. I don’t even like using a circular saw.
I happened to find Stumpy Nubs book about building your own workshop machines at my local library though and in it he built a table to hold his jigsaw. I thought to myself that it could be useful, and since it has a guard over the blade it should be OK so I set about making one. Most of the timber is from the dismantled scroll saw table so it’s a bit damaged but is fine for workshop use.
I originally planned to have the jigsaw go this way, giving me a longer table for rip cuts but it wouldn’t fit on my bench in use so I changed it around
I attached four short legs to it, just long enough to elevate the jigsaw clear of my workbench but not so high as to make it hard to use
I cut the slot for the jigsaw and mounted it underneath with screws through the existing guide fence holes and a piece of wood over the back to hold it. I also had to cut a section of the back rail out to allow the vent port to go through it
I added a simple adjustable arm with a wingnut and a piece of PVC to go over the blade so it wasn’t all exposed
I ended up having to change the arm configuration as it kept vibrating loose, now it has two bolts and the actual arm has longer screws in it as well as glue. I also made a fence for it so I can do rip cuts.
It’s great in use. The bar at the front is so I can clamp it to my bench, otherwise it vibrates too much. The jigsaw isn’t mounted quite straight to the fence so I need to adjust that but I’ve already used it quite a lot with good results. The blade is a t-shank style so I can easily swap them without effort but the top does lift out if needed.
While I do have a scrollsaw, the heavier jigsaw blades work much better for some jobs. The don’t deflect as much as I’d expect but I may change the guard so there’s support at the back to stop any pressure on the blade moving it.
I’m really happy with this project and it doesn’t take a lot of space either.