A Better Way to Cut Battens

One way to make battens is to rip them with a skill saw. This works quickly and will produce a nice set of battens out of a 2x4, but a lot of wood will be lost due to the blades kerf. 

A better way to rip battens is to use a blade with a a narrower kerf, as this will reduce the amount of wood that is turned into saw dust which translates into more wood that gets turned into battens.

To do this, I used a bandsaw setup with a very thin blade with a rip fence. My bandsaw doesn't have a built in rip fence, but this is easily managed by clamping a block of wood to the table at a measured distance from the blade. I chose to rip these battens to 4mm in thickness, yielding many more battens than I could have gotten with a skillsaw.

The distance to the blade is the most important point to measure, as it will determine the width of the batten. The second block was just to help me keep oriented as I was pulling the board after it had been cut on the other side of the bandsaw.

In the end, I was able to get a lot more battens out of an already used 2x4 with the bandsaw. The thicknesses were much more consistent and the waste was minimal. This resulted in more battens and less saw dust!