Can You Use A Dado Blade Without A Throat Plate

If you are here, you probably want to know whether you can use a dado blade without a throat plate. While you can do that, it’s not recommended as it might create a dangerous situation.

Read on to know why.

What Is a Throat plate?

What Is A Throat plate

A throat plate is a piece of metal that fits into the throat of a table saw’s tabletop. It is generally used to ensure that the wood being cut is correctly aligned with the blade and is of safe distance.

It does another important task: preventing chips and dust from coming out of the blade while cutting wood. It’s crucial because chips and dust can damage your eyes and create problems with breathing.

But the dado throat plate differs from the regular table saw throat plates. You know that dado blades are different from regular table saw blades.

So, a regular throat plate won’t be able to accommodate a dado blade and control large woodcuts.

Can You Use A Dado Blade Without A Throat Plate?

It’s possible to use a dado blade without a throat plate. But it’s not safe and recommended for many reasons. We know that dado blades are specially designed to create grooves, slots, and rabbets in wood.

You will still get slots in the wood without a throat plate, but you may have to face nasty unexpected kickbacks. A throat plate will protect you in many ways. It keeps the chipper blades of a dado set in place and does not allow them to move.

On the other hand, a dado blade without a throat plate may end up providing you with uneven cuts with sharp edges. That is because throat plates keep the chipper blades evenly distributed and give you a smooth finish on the wood. So, while it’s possible, you should not take the chance.

How To Use Dado Blade Without A Throat Plate?

Using a throat plate with a dado saw blade set is recommended. But there is an alternative where you do not have to use a throat plate. Instead of a throat plate, you can use a zero-clearance plate with your dado saw blade.

This zero-clearance plate is made of wood and has the same shape and thickness as a regular metal throat plate. So, you will be able to put it on your table saw’s tabletop without any issue. But the difference here is that it does not have any pre-cut slot like a throat plate.

So, you will have to insert the zero-clearance plate after installing your dado blade. Then start your table saw and raise the blade. The dado blade will comfortably cut the wooden plate, making a slot without keeping any extra gap.

Now it will work like a throat plate by preventing chips and dust from flying around.

Advantages & Disadvantages Of Using Throat Plate

In woodworking, you will see some projects that need a throat plate attached to the tabletop. Again, some tasks can be done without using a throat plate. Let’s check out some advantages and disadvantages of using throat plates.


  • Throat plates will reduce the chances of kickbacks while cutting wood, protecting you from severe injuries.
  • It will prevent the chips, dust, and debris from flying around. So, dust collection will become easy.
  • A dado blade will be perfectly aligned with the saw table because of a throat plate. It will provide you with more precise cuts.
  • A throat plate also decreases the vibration of dado blades. So you will be able to use the table saw without any hassle.
  • It will safeguard your safety by keeping your hands away from the dado saw blade.


  • A throat plate can be expensive to purchase and replace.
  • Using and installing it might seem a hassle to many woodworkers.
  • You may find it difficult to maintain and clean the throat plate regularly.
  • A throat plate will create sparks if it somehow touches the saw blade. In that case, it can be a safety issue.

Do Using Dado Without Throat Plate Reduce The Cut Quality?

Using a dado blade without a throat plate can reduce its cut quality. That’s because one of the vital reasons throat plates are used is to get precise and accurate cuts on the wood. Without a throat plate, your wood stocks may not become perfectly aligned with the blade.

Again, a throat plate keeps the chipper blades of a dado set evenly distanced. It also ensures smooth and precise wood cuts. It also prevents sawdust from going into the blade. So, you may not get accurate cuts from your dado blade without a throat plate.


Is the throat plate removable?

A throat plate is a metal piece with a pre-cut slot. It’s a removable part of a table saw with a lock knob and leveling screws. You will be able to remove it when necessary

Is a throat plate the same as a baffle plate?

No, throat plates and baffle plates are two different things. A throat plate on a table saw gives you access to the saw blade and provides more accurate cuts. On the other hand, a baffle plate is used in engines to provide more air into the cylinders

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the throat plate is essential to a table saw, especially for dado saw blades. Your woodworking project might become hampered without it. So, make sure you use a throat plate with dado blades on woodworking projects where necessary.

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