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notching 6x6 posts

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  • notching 6x6 posts

    I have a job coming up that will require me to place notches in 6 x6 posts to fit a 2x12. In the past I have always just done the multiple kerfs with a circular saw, then cleaned up the cuts with a chisel. Seeing the thread about the chain saw cutter made me wonder if something like that could be used and get a good result.

    Have about 16 of them to cut and I have to wonder if there is a better way. Anyone using a router and jig to do this work or at least clean up the cuts.

  • #2
    Re: notching 6x6 posts

    Beezo, I'd stick to making 1-1/2" deep kerfs with the circular saw and then use the circular saw at capacity to make a starting kerf to be followed by a handsaw.
    Gary

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    • #3
      Re: notching 6x6 posts

      i would think it depended on the quality needed .plus the material being used . the last one's i did i also just kerfed then cleaned up with a large chisel .

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      • #4
        Re: notching 6x6 posts

        Material used will be pressure treated posts and joists. I prefer that it look as nice as possible when finished. And they usually do look fine. I am a bit more concerned about the amount of time it takes to cut all those kerfs and clean up the cuts. When you figure out all the times the saw has to pass back and forth for a 2x12 it just seems like there might be a better way.

        So far it seems like the old method seems the best.

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        • #5
          Re: notching 6x6 posts

          Beezo do you have anybody helping you part-time/full-time on your projects? Something like this I would put one or two guys on depending on what needs to get done. It's not a big time killer to knock them out with one guy kerfing with the circular saw and the other sawing with the hand saw.

          I don't know, I guess I'm use to grunting things out. Chainsaws are not in my inventory but man power is.
          Gary

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          • #6
            Re: notching 6x6 posts

            Gary, that is not a bad idea and I do have some help. However it is not just about cheap labor to do the job. I was more asking if there is a better way that someone else thinks they are using.

            As far as notching posts, I just looked at a deck that had double 2x10 for the outside joists. I look at that and have to wonder about it weakening the 6x6 posts too much. That leaves like 2 1/2 inch of meat left in the post. I do not really remember ever cutting that much out of a post before so wondering if you other guys are cutting that much out of posts?

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            • #7
              Re: notching 6x6 posts

              Understood, I'm sure everybody has their best method and for their own reasons.

              I think you would need a large capacity circular saw 16" to speed things up.

              As for cutting into posts to rest dbl 2x lumber I don't really see a problem with 6x6 posts, and there's always steel if it's needed.
              Gary

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              • #8
                Re: notching 6x6 posts

                You can make a very simple jig and hog out the notches with a router. Won't be any faster but will be perfectly clean and dead accurate.
                You can also use a recip if you have a steady hand, or an inline saw. Or, if you have the right hand saw, you can probably cut just the bottom kerf with a circ and make the long cut by hand just as fast as any other way.

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                • #9
                  Re: notching 6x6 posts

                  looks like the old method is still what I am going to be doing. Kerf and clean it up. I think my helper will be doing some of the clean up work with a recip saw while I go and kerf another one.

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                  • #10
                    Re: notching 6x6 posts

                    Beez:
                    Why not take 6 or 8 of them at a time, lay them on a table or saw horses and level up the top surface so all of them are in the same plane on the top. Maybe you need a few shims to do this, btwn. each post and the table. Line up the top ends of the posts, and clamp them all together. Do your layout and saw away. Break out the junk with a hammer, make a simple sled for your plunge router which will span the gap and clean up the bottom of all the notches at once.
                    Dick Hackbarth, PE
                    RWH&AI, Consulting Engineers

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                    • #11
                      Re: notching 6x6 posts

                      Originally posted by Dick Hackbarth View Post
                      Beez:
                      Why not take 6 or 8 of them at a time, lay them on a table or saw horses and level up the top surface so all of them are in the same plane on the top. Maybe you need a few shims to do this, btwn. each post and the table. Line up the top ends of the posts, and clamp them all together. Do your layout and saw away. Break out the junk with a hammer, make a simple sled for your plunge router which will span the gap and clean up the bottom of all the notches at once.

                      I agree.......

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                      • #12
                        Re: notching 6x6 posts

                        Hey, for deck framing..I would keep it quick and simple and just do 'em one at a time with a skilsaw, then clean with a chisel. 16 willl take no time at all. Put on the ear muffs and rock out. IMO doing 8 or 9 at a time will be slower and more work because you'll have to spend bunch of time fiddling with the posts to line things up. You still have to make the cuts no matter what.

                        A router would be clean, agreed, but it would take forever to remove that much material, not to mention making the jig.

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                        • #13
                          Re: notching 6x6 posts

                          I cannot imagine lining them all up and doing them all at once. partly because I know this job and already know that the existing concrete deck that we are setting them on has several dips and that it falls off on one end of the concrete.

                          So I figure just about everyone is going to be a different height even if only by 1/4 or 1/2 inch. Plus some of them are going to have to have a notch cut in them for a beam to run one direction and another notch to run another direction.

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                          • #14
                            Re: notching 6x6 posts

                            i had only 4 to do .6x6 .notched 4" . I did them in place off a small scalfold . made several cuts ,like 1" or so apart .rough redwood post .they cleaned up fast and easy .i would only make more cuts if they was a not or bad wood grain present .i used a 10" saw with a guide .

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