A Series Of Events

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by rpmurphy509 posted 12-04-2007 04:51 AM 937 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Not one to participate much in blogs (actually this is my first), I couldn’t help but share this with people
who could at least appreciate some of the complexities of woodworking machines and the trials that
accompany them.

My family and I moved into a new house about 3 months ago. The house has a 3 car garage that is going
to be my new woodworking shop. In anticipation of the move, the day we closed on the property I finally
ordered my long awaited table saw (replacing a very old Craftsman contractors saw) from Grizzly. Expecting that
it would be at least 2 weeks before the saw would be delivered, figured we had plenty of time to get moved
in and at least partially settled before the saw arrived.

The saw arrived 5 days later to a garage/shop that was literally filled front to back with moving boxes.
My wife and I had to do some emergency rearranging just to fit the pallet in there. And there it has sat
for the last two and a half months, still crated and resting on the pallet. Between hurting my back during the move
(nothing serious, just getting older), work and trying to get the house ‘just right’ there hasn’t been time
to work on getting my shop set up. Well last night I’d had enough of waiting and went out to the garage
to set things straight. Unpacking the crate was uneventful, at least until it came time to move the saw
from off the doubled crate to the concrete floor. Struggling to attach it to an appliance dolly it tipped over
and landed with a resounding kabloom on the floor, hitting squarely on the cast iron edge of the table top.
My heart skipped a beat thinking the worst had happened and I had just broken the saws top.

My wife rushed into the garage to see a stricken look on my face, me standing over my poor table saw laying on it’s side next to the pallet. She’s worried about me, and I’m worried about the saw. We get it upright
and immediately look to see what kind of damage I had inflicted on this innocent saw. We look and look
but can’t find even a scratch, chip, dent or anything else amiss with it at all. I’m frankly amazed no damage
has been done to my baby whatsoever. Huge kudo’s to Grizzly for making a me-proof tool.

In elevated spirits my wife and I move the saw to what is hopefully going to be it’s final resting place, dead center of the two-car stall area (o.k., slightly to the left, but hey). Unpacking all of the ancillary packages that came with the saw is more time consuming than I had imagined. Wouldn’t you think they could at least
assemble these things a bit more at the factory? I attach both of the cast iron side extensions, assemble the
extension table with adjustable legs, the front and back rails and the Shop-Fox fence system. Then according
to the instructions, the blade guard and splitter are next on the to-do list.

I locate and identify all of the requisite parts and position myself on the out-feed side of the saw in preparation. Instruction booklet in view, all of the parts within reach I grab item #1 on the list. A threaded rod that will attach to the trunnion through a small cutout in the rear that will allow the guard to tilt with the
blade. Searching for several minutes without finding this elusive threaded hole it is supposed to screw into, I finally dig out my trusty flashlight for better viewing (all the internal parts are painted black, and it’s dark in there). Shining the light in through the little cutout, I can see no obvious place to attach this rod, there
is no place at all to attach, screw-in, glue or otherwise secure this one item. Read and re-read the instructions from front to back and can identify no steps that may have been missed. Opening the motor-mount cover, laying on the cold, hard concrete and shining my trusty torch into the dark, cavernous under-belly of the saw I see what is amiss. The motor mount and trunnions have been completely knocked off there mounts, and are hanging only on the gear rods on the back side…

Lifting the motor and all of that cast iron from below, with one arm, wouldn’t have been doable even if I were 20 years younger and filled with youthful enthusiasm. So I am forced to enlist the help of the only other
person in the world that would completely, and without question, understand that even though this is Sunday night, getting late, and the kids need parental guidance and supervision, this is something that just has to be done now… my wife.

She doesn’t say anything at all as she helps me remove the Shop-Fox fence system, front and rear rails, extension table, and both cast iron extensions wings. She doesn’t say anything as we remove the table-top
mounting bolts, remove the top and set it ever so carefully on one of her antique sewing machine consoles (protected by a generous amount of padding), and she only smiles as she helps me man-handle the motor and trunnions back onto the tracks, both front and rear. She doesn’t even say anything as her hands get slowly covered in grease and some other unidentifiable goo from the innards of the saw.

Three hours later, and a fully assembled table saw, with all of the extras carefully, and lovingly set just-so, tweaked and aligned as perfectly as I can possibly get them, I come back into the house a tired, bruised, greasy and a little bloody (sharp parts and a little too much gusto re-assembling), my wife is waiting for me with a hug and a kiss.

All in all it took almost six hours from crated to assembled saw. Every minute of the process more than worth it. I walk away from the experience a bit more impressed with Grizzly’s quality of workmanship and a better understanding of what all makes my saw what it is. It also doesn’t hurt to know how to disassemble this thing down to its smallest parts for future reference.

Now I just have to wait for the electrician to run that pesky 240 volt circuit out to the garage. Perhaps another mini-story in the near future?

Good night all!

-- Still learning everything

9 comments so far

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4066 days

#1 posted 12-04-2007 05:28 AM

I’m glad things worked out on the table saw. I really enjoyed the read.

I think you will enjoy the LJ community and the generous spirit of sharing.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View Betsy's profile


3391 posts in 3862 days

#2 posted 12-04-2007 05:39 AM

Sounds like fun to me! You’re going to like the saw when you get it running. Look forward to your projects. And kudos to your understanding and helpful wife.

-- "Our past judges our present." JFK - 1962; American Heritage Magazine

View cajunpen's profile


14575 posts in 4032 days

#3 posted 12-04-2007 11:44 AM

Well that is a great first blog and you have absolutely married a keeper. Sounds like the perfect wife for a woodworker. We will take your word for the saw, this time, but we have a saying here at LumberJocks – if there aren’t any pictures – it never happened. :-)).

I agree with you about the Grizzly products though, they are well made.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 3906 days

#4 posted 12-04-2007 12:25 PM

You’re a better man than I Gunga Din … I do believe that when the saw fell I would have been reduced to tears followed by a long session of self-loathing. Your self-control and determination are an inspiration to one and all. At this point, there’s little more to say than Happy Sawing.

-- Working at Woodworking

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4127 days

#5 posted 12-04-2007 12:43 PM

excellent blog!!!
and your wife…............ aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaw

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View rpmurphy509's profile


288 posts in 3821 days

#6 posted 12-04-2007 02:20 PM

I think the shock was too much on my body and mind for it to produce the required tears
at the time. Then finding no ‘obvious’ damage stopped the floodgates before they could
start flowing. There were however many choice, and louder than I realized expletives let loose.
Upon further reflection, I believe it was the vocalization rather than the thunder of the saw
falling that attracted the Mrs. to the scene.

The electrician (a licensed buddy of mine) is supposed to come over this weekend
to hook it all up for me.

-- Still learning everything

View sarge's profile


58 posts in 3835 days

#7 posted 12-04-2007 03:58 PM

RP welcome to the site. I know that fear of thinking you broke something before you get to use it. I’m glad things worked out for you. Thank God for the wife. I know i’m always calling mine out for what we call a “consult”.
Where in Kansas are you? I’m in OP, just off Metcalf.
I look forward to see your first project posted.


View SPalm's profile


5317 posts in 3848 days

#8 posted 12-04-2007 04:39 PM

What a wonderful story. It is so refreshing to hear about relationships that work and get along. I would never survive without mine, but I am jealous about that saw.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View rpmurphy509's profile


288 posts in 3821 days

#9 posted 12-04-2007 05:10 PM

I’m in Leavenworth. Retired from the Army and decided to call it home.

The saw I’ve been waiting many years to get. Couldn’t really before now
since we were always moving from post to post. Wife got the house she
has always wanted, and I got some dedicated space for my shop. It’ll be
a while yet before it’s set up and equipped just the way I’ve envisioned it.

I have so many ‘first’ projects lined up now it is a bit
overwhelming where to begin. Between the honey-do
list and the list in my mind that is.

Thanks for the warm welcome all, I look forward to contributing
something to the community, and learning as much as I can from so
many great projects, blogs and threads here.

-- Still learning everything

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics