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Homemade tablesaw fence

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Forum topic by willy3486 posted 01-12-2011 09:27 PM 8586 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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willy3486

77 posts in 2114 days


01-12-2011 09:27 PM

This is a question pertaining to homemade tablesaw fences. I am wanting to make a homemade tablesaw fence for mine. I have a 70s? model I think of the powermatic 66 tablesaw. Its a great saw except for the fence on it. It has the old round tubes for rails that the fence slides on. I can tighten it down and many times the fence moves as I am sawing. Anyway I have been looking at Rockler and they have some aluminum multitrack pieces for jigs. I was wondering if anyone had made one using this. Or if you have one you made I would love to see it. I am a hobbyist type woodworker and paying 200-1000 for a fence is way over budget. Anyway I am doing more woodworking lately and was wondering is anyone new a simple homemade fence setup that worked?


19 replies so far

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8476 posts in 2365 days


#1 posted 01-12-2011 09:35 PM

I have seen some folks making homemade fences using 8020 aluminum extrusions and linear bearings. honestly, for materials and time to build it I am not sure it’ll cost you any less than the $200 you mentioned.

you can look into getting the Delta T2 fence or the Shopfox fence which are both a lighter-duty version of the Biesmier fence they are sub 200 as far as I remember.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Loren's profile

Loren

7806 posts in 2364 days


#2 posted 01-12-2011 09:38 PM

Compared to paying list, making your own fence might make sense
if the project interests you. I’ve seen used fences for sale from
time to time for under $150 – look on Ebay and check the different
brands.

Furthermore, I’ve seen a lot of used contractors saws sold for under
$200 with nice Biesemeyer-style fences on them. People sell them
cheap because they take up a lot of space. I’d buy one of those saws,
switch the fences, and resell it.

I saw a design for a wood Biesemeyer copy and it looked solid. I think
it was in Fine Woodworking. Also there are numerous designs around
that require welding, which you may not want to get into.

Some guys are building stuff with 80-20 extrusions, which look good
but don’t save you much money on such projects.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View Viktor's profile

Viktor

448 posts in 2135 days


#3 posted 01-12-2011 10:07 PM

Here is an example
http://lumberjocks.com/Hutch/blog/2740
ebay is a great source for 8020 components

View Gregn's profile

Gregn

1642 posts in 1700 days


#4 posted 01-12-2011 10:13 PM

This what your looking for?
http://www.twistedknotwoodshop.com/tsquarefence.pdf

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View willy3486's profile

willy3486

77 posts in 2114 days


#5 posted 01-14-2011 05:15 AM

I will study those. I would like to make it as simple but accurite as I can. Do you remember which issue in fine woodworking it was in Loren? If not ,no big problem. I don’t mind welding some but to mill and stuff I don’t have that capabillity. I was thinking of a design that may use “L” shaped angle iron for the rails. I saw one that a guy made from a book . One of the woodworking magazines made a small book they sold that had it in it. I think it was sold in the 90s . Anyway it was one of the fences but it was made out of all wood. It looked really nice and used the “L” angle iron for the rails. I would love to see plans similar to that. I have the ability to do that. I can weld up some but I am limited to a 220 Lincoln arc welder and a CH 110 arc welder. No milling or precise tools to cut parts out of metal. I do have a small bench metalworking lathe but its for aluminum and soft metals. I am setting up my shop to do woodworking more and in no hurry at the present. I hope to redo the tablesaw and redo the cart I have it on. I hope to extend the table out and make it wider. Thanks for hte ideas out there.

View brianinpa's profile

brianinpa

1810 posts in 2439 days


#6 posted 01-14-2011 05:22 AM

There are designs and step by step instructions for a wooden Biesemeyer in a book titled “Shop Tested Woodworking Tools You Can Make.” Made mine a few years ago and have had no complaints with it since I built it.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View willy3486's profile

willy3486

77 posts in 2114 days


#7 posted 01-14-2011 05:51 AM

Hey brianinpa. I looked at your profile and I think your tablesaw is the one set up I saw years ago. It was on a personal site and had a lot of good stuff on it. I was wondering if that was your site and do you still have it online? IT was a good site I had bookmarked but I lost it. It had a lot of good ideas on it. Thanks.

View Lochlainn1066's profile

Lochlainn1066

138 posts in 1494 days


#8 posted 01-14-2011 09:46 AM

I built my own table saw fence. My saw (bought at auction) came with 2 fences, neither of which fit it.

There are plans for Biesemeyer style fences out there. If you are handy with a welder and can get steel stock, they can be cheap to put together.

I don’t particularly like mine, not because it doesn’t work (it works perfectly well) but because of some design shortcuts I made to use steel I already had. If I get the free time (and money) I’m going to do it over.

If you have a 27” table, I still have the Shop Fox Classic fence that came with my saw, minus rails, which are still available through Grizzly. I’d sell it.

-- Nate, thegaragestudio.etsy.com

View brianinpa's profile

brianinpa

1810 posts in 2439 days


#9 posted 01-14-2011 02:34 PM

Wasn’t my site, but I know which one you are writing about.

-- Brian, Lebanon PA, If you aren’t having fun doing it, find something else to do.

View cutmantom's profile

cutmantom

293 posts in 1751 days


#10 posted 01-14-2011 03:30 PM

could the existing fence be worked on the fix the problem

View mpounders's profile

mpounders

742 posts in 1612 days


#11 posted 01-14-2011 05:25 PM

Here is a link to mine . I used angle iron and squared block for the front rail and turned the angle iron upside down for the rear rail. The fence itself is just a large T-square that uses a cross dowel and threaded screw to push a lever that clamps it to the front rail. The back rail has a toggle clamp to lock it down after the front is locked. I built in some adjusting screws in the T-square so that I could make it perfectly parallel to the blade, but I haven’t had to change it in 20 years. I added a T track to the top of the fence and use some anti-kickback wheels. Oh , I stuck a ruled tape on the front also. It is very accurate, always square, and adjusts smoothly with one finger.

-- Mike P., Arkansas, http://mikepounders.weebly.com

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2698 posts in 2003 days


#12 posted 01-14-2011 06:03 PM

Before you spend money and time you might try to adjust the fence you have. There should be a screw on the outfeed side that can be tightened for more tension. I have used that fence in production for years, although I do have a Biesmeyer now. It should lock down tight unless something is broken. I will have to look at my old fence to see. I’m not where the saw is right now.

I agree it’s not the best fence in the world, but I’m not sure you can build anything better as cheap as you want.

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View TheDane's profile

TheDane

3929 posts in 2380 days


#13 posted 01-14-2011 06:59 PM

I would sure second Kent’s advice on this … there are a lot of those saws with that same fence still in use in production operations all over the world. Adjusting or repairing what you have could be a lot less of a hassle than building your own.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Loren's profile

Loren

7806 posts in 2364 days


#14 posted 01-14-2011 07:06 PM

willy3486”Do you remember which issue in fine woodworking it was in Loren? If not ,no big problem.”

_ Of course not, but I think it may be in one of the Fine Woodworking
compiliations on jigs or machine modifications. I’ll have a look. It did
use an angle-iron for the rail I think. The author made the point that
while the wooden fence may not be up to production-shop standards,
for his use it was reliable and accurate enough.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View lilredweldingrod's profile

lilredweldingrod

2495 posts in 1823 days


#15 posted 01-14-2011 07:40 PM

For a bout $150 you can get a Delta T-2 fence. Cheaper and faster than trying to make one. I love mine. Check out Amazon.

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