Next, I had to come up with a new insert for the table. The saw came with a plywood table over the existing cast iron table, so there was no insert. I tried to buy an insert, but they do not seem to be made any longer for this saw. I had a piece of cutting board lying around the shop that I failed in making a TS insert in the past. I got out a circle cutter (the fly style cutter type) and cut out the shape on my drill press fairly easily. I then set up my router to cut off material to produce a 1/8 in thick lip. I also tried other materials: pine and plywood. Both were not strong enough to have such a thin lip. Here is pic of the final product and I am quite happy with it.
Next it was time to get rid of the pine blade guard on the left side of the band saw. The old one was effective, but just really ugly too me. The new one is made of hard board separated by a piece of 3/4 ply. This should look nice and even like metal once I paint it to match the saw. I wonder what color the saw was originally? I see no evidence of any color other than the ugly and cheap looking silver I found it painted.
My next change was to improve on, rather add, some sort of dust collection to the beast. The tires were covered in caked on dust after cutting just a few boards, so I cut up a plastic brush to attach to the body in the lower wheel housing.
After a few days and two trials, I also was able to develop a custom shroud right below the table to collect the dust before it enters the lower wheel housing. So far, so good. I will update the blog if I find that improvements are necessary. I just used a few small pieces of 1/4 in luan for the sides and some 3/4 ply for the bottom. The unit is held in place with a metal L-bracket attached to the stud that holds the wheel covers on and it is keeping it right where I want it. The hose fitting is screwed to the thick ply and puts the 4 in hose right where the blade is exposed below the table. The blade basically passes through a slit below the lower bearing and forces most of the dust towards the hose. Hopefully the pictures fill in the details.
My final improvement was to add a Kreg fence that I got on sale at Peachtree Woodworking during their Labor Day sale. I paid about $90 for it, and it was tough to pay that much rather than make my own, but I am happy with the decision. The fence is made for a 14 in BS, but by drilling a new hole in the rail, I was able to use the existing holes on the table. Sorry for the rotated pics! No matter how I turn them on my iPad, they still post in the wrong orientation.
-- Andy (Father, Math Teacher, Coach, and occasionally... Woodworker) "You must build this Tabernacle and its furnishings exactly according to the pattern I will show you." Exodus 25:9