About to start setting up my RAS. Quick questions...

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Forum topic by Trey posted 08-05-2015 01:54 AM 965 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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84 posts in 1699 days

08-05-2015 01:54 AM

First off, I haven’t owned one before, so this is new to me!

I’m unsure how to build the table top for it. The angle iron on the sides has adjustment up and down, and I don’t know why or what to do. Do I put a sheet of mdf under and on top? Or am I way off? I haven’t even considered how to build the rest of it yet. I need to get past this part first.

8 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile


6698 posts in 2193 days

#1 posted 08-05-2015 02:10 AM

Just get some 3/4” MDF, and rip into 4 pieces. Front table is bolted to the saw, rear two and fence are left unsecured and adjusted with the rear clamps. Here is a snip from a c-man manual, but they are all basically the same:

It’s not at all critical either… I used my RAS for over a decade with an old piece of plywood as the table and a 2×4 screwed to it as the fence.

Once you get the top on, setup is a bit involved, making sure the table is perpendicular to the blade, verifying angles, etc… consult your manual for the procedure.


-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View Trey's profile


84 posts in 1699 days

#2 posted 08-05-2015 03:28 AM

Awesome. Thank you Brad!

View mountainaxe's profile


141 posts in 2499 days

#3 posted 08-05-2015 11:20 AM

You can download the instruction manual for your DeWalt 925 for free: It will answer almost all of your questions. You might also want to join the “DeWalt” Radial Arm Saw Forum…a great website with a massive amount of info on your RAS:

-- Jeff, "The things I make may be for others, but how I make them is for me."

View rwe2156's profile


2916 posts in 1474 days

#4 posted 08-05-2015 11:28 AM

I’ve found its best to built a long bench maybe 8’ long with about 5’ to the left of the saw (if you’re right handed).
You can find plans for a miter saw station its basically the same thing.
If you need to have it mobile, of course this will not work.

Another thing, the blade on that saw is not really the right one.
A negative hook angle blade works better because it minimizes self feeding.

I know others will disagree, but IMO the RAS is one of the most dangerous machines you can own.
If you’ve never used a RAS, my advice is BE CAREFUL, especially with thin stock.
Learn to do stiff arm cuts and never try to cut warped wood. Use a bandsaw for that.
I like to paint the table red 3” on each side of the blade track meaning “don’t put your hands here”.

Goodluck, you’ve got a good machine there.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4980 posts in 2487 days

#5 posted 08-05-2015 12:59 PM

I have a suggestion: consider building a Mr. Sawdust table for it. These have the advantage of staying perfectly flat over time, though they have to be perfectly flat when built. It’s basically 2 pieces of MDF glued together with some steel bars in it. The bars are 1/8” thick and whatever length you table is (I made mine 16” deep and 36” long for my 925) and glued into grooves cut to fit across the width. I’ve always put the bars slightly deeper into the lower piece, but there’s no need. the steel is epoxied into the table, and the 2 halves glued together with PVA. I’ve built 3 and never had one warp or twist. If you want some good info on a rebuild and tuning routine for that saw, PM me your e mail and I’ll send 2 PDF files written by Roger Hill (a real guru on Dewalt saws) that outlines the steps. Here’s my 925, you can see the table:

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View hairy's profile


2701 posts in 3526 days

#6 posted 08-05-2015 03:18 PM

Here’s mine. I use it often. Mr. Sawdust book is the way to go. It has a replaceable 1/4” top ( you could opt to go thicker), you should not cut into the table itself.

I have it mounted to this:

Those angle iron adjusters are for setting the tabletop to it’s proper position. I made sure that the base I attached the saw to was level, then attached the Mr. Sawdust top to the rails along the side, and used a level to set the table top.

Google your saw. I found several PDF’s on it. Mainly original brochures and instructions. I don’t know how to post them here.

-- My reality check bounced...

View MrRon's profile


4758 posts in 3237 days

#7 posted 08-05-2015 07:14 PM

The angles are there to adjust the top so it is parallel to the direction of travel and perpendicular to the blade at 90°. The fence is set just ahead of the blade. A 2×4 placed against the fence (2” face vertical), should not contact the blade when the blade is set for a normal cut. The blade should cut into the top not more than 1/8”. A sacrificial 1/4” thick piece of hardboard attached to the top will allow for replacement later when it gets all chewed up. Although RAS’s are thought to be more dangerous than table saws, they are no more dangerous than any other tool in the shop. Get to know your saw and learn to respect what it can do, and you will find it to be the ideal tool. Crosscutting and miter cuts are straight forward. Only rip cuts can pose some risk, but if the saw is set up correctly with the blade perfectly parallel to the fence and the anti-kickback pawls adjusted properly, rip cuts can be done just as safely as with any other saw; just make sure all parts of the saw are securely locked down that they may not move during cutting.

View JoeinGa's profile


7736 posts in 2001 days

#8 posted 08-05-2015 10:22 PM

Everyone else gave you the info for setting it up.
For a base, I just built a basic box with a door. Bolted the RAS right to the top. Added casters and I made the top shelf a slider to make it easier to get at stuff.

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

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