LumberJocks

My 35 Year Old Table Saw (part one)

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Blog entry by Mage posted 04-15-2017 03:33 PM 960 reads 0 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch


This is my tablesaw… There are many like it but this one is mine. For 35 years, eight major moves (including a very cold stint to Canada) multiple minor moves, being broiled, and frozen, and dropped, this saw has been my partner in woodworking magic. I am now retired, with a dedicated shop and the time and inclination to Pimp… My… Saw!!! I checked to see if there was a Hollywood TV version that would take pity and if I went on the show would do it for free. Alas, no. I was on my own. So, I added a wood out-feed extension, anti-kickback rollers on the wood fence, and soon a whole new fence.

The original fence suffers from the common milady of not lining up front to back 100% of the time. This is because it is a fence on rollers that clamps front and back. Don’t hate, it’s just who they are. I reviewed the many ideas on a whole new fence and eventually arrived at three conclusions. One, they can be very expensive. In some cases costing more than the saw. Two, a bunch of them suffer from the same problems as my 35 year old fence. And three, my good old Sears fence actually works OK. It needs a new not so warped face. Idea one, just replace the face with a new piece of wood. NO! I say! I’m not a creature of the old, I embrace the new. I shall leap boldly into the new century. Extruded aluminum, that’s the ticket. To the web and wondrous same day delivery!!!
https://s3.amazonaws.com/vs-lumberjocks.com/oof36bz.jpg!
The old wood face was 1.5 inch by 2.5 inches of solid pine. Enter a 1.5 inch by 4 inch slab of 80/20 15s T-slot aluminum… My idea was to be able to slide wondrous, magical jigs along the top of the new taller fence face. And as a bonus many outrageously cool jigs would slide into and out of those magical T-slots. Now, note my use of the word slab… One miscalculation… This aluminum weighs in at just a tad shy of three pounds per foot. The new fence assembly weighed in at well over ten pounds, or in Mage’s woodworking terms “Needs ceiling hoist to be moved” This is a work in progress. The “slab” went back and a new 1.5 by 3 inch not so slab is on the way. I will post an update with the new not so slab and keep you apprised. And with this, my first ever to anywhere post, I enter the blognation?
Errrr… blog world? Blogmania? Blogosphere? Whatever it’s called…

-- Wood, Tools, Magic....



24 comments so far

View RichTaylor's profile (online now)

RichTaylor

1151 posts in 283 days


#1 posted 04-15-2017 06:17 PM

Fun post. Ten lbs isn’t a lot for a fence, it’s just a matter of how it is attached and slides. One thing that might help even your new lighter fence is some UHMW tape. Get some at least 20 mils thick and stick it to the bottom of the fence. It’ll make moving it smoother.

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

View firefighterontheside's profile (online now)

firefighterontheside

15589 posts in 1550 days


#2 posted 04-15-2017 08:40 PM

Lol. Welcome Mage! That was a big slab, maybe too tall too. Check out the uni-t fence from peach tree for the unifence. I have it and like it. You could add the piece of phenolic to the face of yours.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View Mage's profile

Mage

10 posts in 110 days


#3 posted 04-16-2017 03:59 PM

Thanks for the advice! Currently I’m not passing judgement on whether or not I need some sort of augmentation to the “slide”. UHMW tape is on the pricey side for a one off use. I was looking at Teflon drawer glides. We shall see if the finished product needs the help. I did look at the Uni-T but the size of the fence side indent does not lend itself to attachment to my Sears fence. The Uni-T has a two inch opening , the current fence is 2 3/4 high with two adjustment nuts sticking out of the top.

-- Wood, Tools, Magic....

View firefighterontheside's profile (online now)

firefighterontheside

15589 posts in 1550 days


#4 posted 04-16-2017 04:06 PM

I know the uni-t wouldn’t work with you sears fence, but I was just thinking the plastic surface would be nice to add to your fence.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View AlanJ44's profile

AlanJ44

174 posts in 980 days


#5 posted 04-16-2017 04:35 PM

Awesome story. I too have the same or similar. Dad bought it mostly for me in 1976 when I was a high school senior and same as you many moves and for a long time the “pass around saw”, that is whoever needed it got it. I did a refurb a couple years back including a new motor and fence. Life was grand until this past Fat Tuesday, got careless and cut the end of my left index finger off!

-- Alan J. Hoover, AL Keeping in mind I believe college football is only a profit center for the school.... Roll Tide!

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AlanJ44

174 posts in 980 days


#6 posted 04-16-2017 04:41 PM

Here is another view. I found that fence on ebay one morning for like $65. I scooped it up right away. The motor from Grizzly is half a horse more, replaced the original that failed and the belt is a Harbor Freight item.

-- Alan J. Hoover, AL Keeping in mind I believe college football is only a profit center for the school.... Roll Tide!

View NormG's profile

NormG

5771 posts in 2697 days


#7 posted 04-17-2017 03:30 AM

Wonderful TS stories, except the injury. Love the green TS, reminds me of how the machines were painted green and yellow in metal working shop when i was in high school

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Mage's profile

Mage

10 posts in 110 days


#8 posted 04-17-2017 03:36 PM

Sorry to hear about your finger Alan. Don’t touch moving blades. (There is always some ash-hat with great advice after the fact… I’m that hat.) Your saw looks great. The motor on mine works great, but I have a belt similar to that in your picture. I have not put it on yet. It’s a tossup as to whether it will be going on my TS or the band saw.

The green school shop tools… Yep, that was my first thought also.

-- Wood, Tools, Magic....

View Mage's profile

Mage

10 posts in 110 days


#9 posted 04-17-2017 03:37 PM

Also, nice fence from e-bay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

-- Wood, Tools, Magic....

View RichTaylor's profile (online now)

RichTaylor

1151 posts in 283 days


#10 posted 04-17-2017 08:14 PM

Does anyone remember when Craftsman came up with the genius idea to use a flexible shaft to connect the motor to the blade? The shaft actually attached to the motor, and bent completely around to attach to the side of the saw. A full 180º bend.

I bought one in maybe 1984 or so. It sucked so bad. As soon as it developed any load, that flexible shaft started flexing all over the place, and would develop a vibration so bad it was unusable. I got rid of that thing as soon as I could.

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

View robscastle's profile

robscastle

4027 posts in 1897 days


#11 posted 04-18-2017 08:02 AM

Looks like a fine companion in the woodworking shop.
On a technical point and in no means distracting from the excellent post the saw is actually a contractors saw.
The difference being the location of the motor.
If its outside the frame or cabinet its a contractors saw.
If its inside the frame or cabinet its a Table saw.
Obvious differences in mobility and weight/mass.

Not much difference in performance I might add.
In conclusion just goes to show if a machine is well maintained and looked after it can return many years of service. I have a belt sander some 27 years old and still going strong!! I am hoping it will clock up another 10 years even if I dont!!

-- Regards Robert

View Mage's profile

Mage

10 posts in 110 days


#12 posted 04-19-2017 02:13 PM

Thanks for the info Robert. What’s a bench saw then? Answer: A bench doesn’t saw anything… It’s a bench . Not a saw! Thanks! Thank you very much. I’ll be here all week.

-- Wood, Tools, Magic....

View AlanJ44's profile

AlanJ44

174 posts in 980 days


#13 posted 04-19-2017 03:00 PM



Does anyone remember when Craftsman came up with the genius idea to use a flexible shaft to connect the motor to the blade? The shaft actually attached to the motor, and bent completely around to attach to the side of the saw. A full 180º bend.
- RichTaylor
I do, and so glad I dodged that one. I see them on Craigslist and think “how can that work” and now I know. Not well!

-- Alan J. Hoover, AL Keeping in mind I believe college football is only a profit center for the school.... Roll Tide!

View AlanJ44's profile

AlanJ44

174 posts in 980 days


#14 posted 04-19-2017 03:02 PM



On a technical point and in no means distracting from the excellent post the saw is actually a contractors saw.
The difference being the location of the motor.
If its outside the frame or cabinet its a contractors saw.
If its inside the frame or cabinet its a Table saw.
Obvious differences in mobility and weight/mass.
- robscastle

Cool thanks for the lesson, now where does a “hybrid” fall in this? I see the Grizzly model with hybrid in it.

-- Alan J. Hoover, AL Keeping in mind I believe college football is only a profit center for the school.... Roll Tide!

View AlanJ44's profile

AlanJ44

174 posts in 980 days


#15 posted 04-19-2017 03:04 PM


Love the green TS,
- NormG

Thanks I was attempting to match the Grizzly machines. Looks Christmas with my red tool box stacks!

-- Alan J. Hoover, AL Keeping in mind I believe college football is only a profit center for the school.... Roll Tide!

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