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Dial indicator for setup

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Forum topic by BB1 posted 12-19-2016 06:42 PM 578 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BB1

657 posts in 424 days


12-19-2016 06:42 PM

Working on getting my saw setup and see the need for a dial indicator. Did a quick search on Amazon and saw a woodpecker gauge for 69.99 plus shipping and then an igauging brand for 59.99. Rockler has an option for a master bar and plate for $99. Any suggestions are appreciated. Don’t want to spend more than needed but also want something of quality that will last.


28 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4262 posts in 2069 days


#1 posted 12-19-2016 06:46 PM

I’d consider HF, they are plenty good for this use and a hell of a lot less expensive. That said, mine is a Starrett but it’s from a different time in my life when I needed that level of reliability.

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

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

17704 posts in 2681 days


#2 posted 12-19-2016 07:18 PM

I have two drop indicators from Harbor Freight that I use to set my router bit height, fence distance and table saw height. I checked them for their full range with real accurate gauge blocks and they were right on.
Here is the indicator:
http://www.harborfreight.com/1-inch-travel-machinists-dial-indicator-623.html

They also sell a magnetic base to mount it on so you can vary the angle you set it at, etc.

Here is my project where I mounted the indicator to use on the router:
http://lumberjocks.com/projects/64643

cheers, Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

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unbob

748 posts in 1479 days


#3 posted 12-19-2016 07:30 PM

My favorite, an old Starrett surface gage with a Starrett 196 dial indicator. I use this for most task in the wood shop, table saw, radial saw, jointer, and planer.

View WhyMe's profile

WhyMe

761 posts in 1136 days


#4 posted 12-19-2016 07:49 PM

I have the HF one that Jim linked and also the magnetic base. For what little I use it, it’s good enough.

View brtech's profile

brtech

961 posts in 2498 days


#5 posted 12-19-2016 08:04 PM

Yeah, the HF dial indicator is plenty good enough for wood. You need something to hold it in the miter slot. You can make it or buy it.

Another way to do this is with a caliper. I just got a new HF steel fractional caliper for $10. It’s plenty accurate enough, easy to use and comes with a case. Then you can get this:
https://www.amazon.com/MAG-DRO-Mitre-Slot-Caliper-Base/dp/B004APJ8F4

I think that’s the least expensive way to get an accurate setup.

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BB1

657 posts in 424 days


#6 posted 12-19-2016 08:07 PM

Dumb question…but how do I set the HF gauge using my miter slot. Some of the others I looked at had a bar that rides in the miter slot.

View Matt's profile

Matt

144 posts in 527 days


#7 posted 12-19-2016 08:19 PM

I purchased the A-line-it Deluxe and returned it for the woodpeckers one above. The WoodPeckers one I use infrequently, but I am pleased with the product, the A-line-it deluxe kit in my opinion was very overpriced for what was received. The WP product while expensive (cheaper than the Alineit deluxe which makes is reasonable in my opinion) works well and is almost painfully simple to use. The other item you referenced likely will work just as well.

-- My "projects" always look better with beer goggles.

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brtech

961 posts in 2498 days


#8 posted 12-19-2016 08:21 PM

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brtech

961 posts in 2498 days


#9 posted 12-19-2016 08:23 PM

I have the basic a-line-it, used with an HF DTI. Works great. Peachtree had it on sale when I got it, so it was far cheaper than the Woodpeckers.

View Aj2's profile

Aj2

840 posts in 1373 days


#10 posted 12-19-2016 08:34 PM

I have the woodpeckers saw gauge that rides in the miter slot and the master plate.Its a nice setup highly recommended it.
I can’t believe any would admit shopping at horror freight.I went there one time.and I hate that place it stinks too.

Aj

-- Aj

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WhyMe

761 posts in 1136 days


#11 posted 12-19-2016 08:46 PM



I can t believe any would admit shopping at horror freight.I went there one time.and I hate that place it stinks too.
Aj
- Aj2

I don’t walk around with my nose stuck up in the air so it doesn’t bother me one bit to shop there. But all that Chinese cardboard does stink.

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BB1

657 posts in 424 days


#12 posted 12-19-2016 09:02 PM

For now I’m using what I have at hand until i make a purchase os a gauge…some T track and my caliper. How “close” is considered good? I have a difference of .01 inches with the back farther away from the miter slot

View Carloz's profile

Carloz

388 posts in 167 days


#13 posted 12-19-2016 09:02 PM



Dumb question…but how do I set the HF gauge using my miter slot. Some of the others I looked at had a bar that rides in the miter slot.

- BB1


Clamp it to the miter gauge.

View Carloz's profile

Carloz

388 posts in 167 days


#14 posted 12-19-2016 09:05 PM


I can t believe any would admit shopping at horror freight.I went there one time.and I hate that place it stinks too.
Aj
- Aj2

That is because you put your nose too high.

View brtech's profile

brtech

961 posts in 2498 days


#15 posted 12-19-2016 09:08 PM

As long as the back is farther from the slot than the front, then .01 on the fence is fine. Some people deliberately set the back out a bit so there is no possibility of pinching as the workpiece comes off the blade.

What’s more important is the blade/arbor to the slot. You want it better than .01 if you can get it. On a contractor saw with lousy trunnions, you might not be able to dial it in better than .01.

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