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aligning my miter saw fence/stop

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Forum topic by mzimmers posted 09-07-2011 02:29 AM 7112 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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mzimmers

168 posts in 3375 days


09-07-2011 02:29 AM

Topic tags/keywords: miter saw fence adjustment

Hi, all -

I’ve got an issue right now that’s driving me nuts. I cannot for the life of me properly adjust the fence (or what the manufacturer calls the “stop” for my miter saw.

The saw is a Bosch 4212L. Here’s a pic of the part in question (p/n 26):

It’s held down to the saw by 4 bolts. When the bolts are loose, there’s probably 1/8” or so of “wiggle room.”

I use my combo square to get the stop 90° from the blade on one side, and when I measure the other side, it’s off by a few degrees. I have checked this many times with the same results.

I’ve removed the stop from the table and held a 4’ level against it; it seems perfect.

I am at my wit’s end. It’s as though the blade isn’t flat, but is thinner towards the center. I am definitely NOT hitting the blade teeth when I measure. I’m also pretty sure the blade isn’t moving or distorting while I measure.

I really don’t know what to do at this point. Is it possible that my square is bad? I have only one, and I don’t have anything to compare it against. But, I find it hard to believe that it would be this “wrong.”

Anyway, thanks for reading. I welcome any suggestions. I can’t/won’t use the saw anymore until I get this rectified.

-- M. Zimmers


12 replies so far

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8523 posts in 3108 days


#1 posted 09-07-2011 02:41 AM

You can check your square for square for starters. Set it against a block of jointed wood and Mark a line at 90 theen flip the square the other way Mark another line. If both lines are parallel then your square is square.

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

View 1yeldud1's profile

1yeldud1

301 posts in 2502 days


#2 posted 09-07-2011 02:51 AM

I have a ridgid compuond mitre saw that I have the same problem with. I did just what you did and I could NOT get it adjusted “perfect”. I found (Item 26 on your illustration) to NOT be flat when laying a straignt edge across the length of the surface – about .030 to .040 out of flat. This coupled with the way the compound arm comes forward during the cut (blade torq) – I finally just gave up and made a sled for my table saw thus banishing the compound mitre saw to things like cutting off studs and sawing trim for around windows. IMHO I am nor pleased with the mitre saw when it comes to small percision work.

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1yeldud1

301 posts in 2502 days


#3 posted 09-07-2011 02:51 AM

I have a ridgid compuond mitre saw that I have the same problem with. I did just what you did and I could NOT get it adjusted “perfect”. I found (Item 26 on your illustration) to NOT be flat when laying a straignt edge across the length of the surface – about .030 to .040 out of flat. This coupled with the way the compound arm comes forward during the cut (blade torq) – I finally just gave up and made a sled for my table saw thus banishing the compound mitre saw to things like cutting off studs and sawing trim for around windows. IMHO I am nor pleased with the mitre saw when it comes to small percision work.

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Mickey Cassiba

312 posts in 2491 days


#4 posted 09-07-2011 02:54 AM

Check to see the fence is actually straight. A lot of units I worked on had a bowed fence. Yours sounds like a candidate.

-- One of these hammers oughta fix that...

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mzimmers

168 posts in 3375 days


#5 posted 09-07-2011 03:22 AM

Thanks for the replies, guys. I just double-checked the fence, and it’s as good as gold.
I did make an interesting discovery while checking the square, though…it appears that my blade is positioned slightly out of bevel. (I didn’t mention above that this is a compound miter saw.) This in itself is a bit frustrating, as I spent some time yesterday trying to get the bevel right. I guess I didn’t do such a good job of it after all.

Part of the challenge in measuring the bevel is that my square is too big to fit under the guard when the blade is in the down position. I guess I need a couple of smaller squares. Any recommendations?

-- M. Zimmers

View William's profile

William

9906 posts in 2302 days


#6 posted 09-07-2011 03:52 AM

I wish I could help you on this. I have had over the years about five different miter saws from cheap to expensive. Eventually I always wind up have angle and bevel issues with them. I have never found a surefire solution to getting them set and keeping them set. It just always seems that it’s something else “off” on them.
I recently bought an Osborne miter gauge my table saw. Since I got it, my current miter saw is under a work bench collecting dust. The gauge cost about what an el-cheapo miter saw costs ($99) and it eliminated one tool from taking up shop real estate.

-- http://wddsrfinewoodworks.blogspot.com/

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mzimmers

168 posts in 3375 days


#7 posted 09-07-2011 04:05 AM

Well, this is somewhat disturbing news. I didn’t expect this thing to be like a Powermatic table saw, but I did expect to be able to make square cuts with it.

I dunno…I do not have room for a full-size table saw, but perhaps I should consider ditching this saw and getting a smaller table saw. The only snag to that is, I have a bit of an investment in 12” blades. No easy solution, I guess.

-- M. Zimmers

View Sawkerf's profile

Sawkerf

1730 posts in 2528 days


#8 posted 09-07-2011 04:14 AM

I just went thru the process with my Makita LS1013 and here’s what I did.

Lay the fence (part #26) face down on a surface you know to be flat (I used my TS table) and check that it’s in full contact over it’s entire length. If it is, great. If it isn’t, a little gentle persuasion will be needed.

Install the fence loosely and set your saw for a 90* cut.

Use a framing square that you know is square to move the fence so a blade tooth contacts the square along the full travel of the saw.

When you get full travel contact, tighten the bolts. You should be good to go.

-- Adversity doesn't build character...................it reveals it.

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mzimmers

168 posts in 3375 days


#9 posted 09-07-2011 04:29 AM

Hi, Sawkerf -

At this point, I’m 99.9% sure the fence is good. At the least, I know it’s not the major factor in what’s going on here.

I’m not sure I understand what you’re doing with the square; are you rotating the saw blade while it’s in position? And, why would I want to use the saw teeth as the criteria for squaring the fence?

-- M. Zimmers

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Sawkerf

1730 posts in 2528 days


#10 posted 09-07-2011 05:47 AM

By locking the saw with the 0* indent, you’re setting up the fence to be square with the sawblade as it runs thru it’s travel.

I don’t rotate the blade, but make sure that a tooth is in contact with the square thru its full travel. If it doesn’t stay in contact, I move the square and fence and try again. Once I have contact thru full travel, the fence is square with the blade and can be tightened.

You can do the same thing with a board. Mark a line sqare with a good edge; hold it to the fence while you move the saw in and out and watch the blade tooth on the line. If it moves away, rotate the board and fence and try again. When the blade stays on the line thru full travel, the fence is square with the saw.

-- Adversity doesn't build character...................it reveals it.

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mzimmers

168 posts in 3375 days


#11 posted 09-09-2011 02:18 AM

Hey, guys –

After fooling with the saw for awhile yesterday, I got the bevel aligned, which allowed me to properly align the fence. It’s not perfect, but I think it’s as good as I can expect it to be. Thanks for the help.

This effort took a little more time because I had to replace an adjustment bolt that went “tink” while I was tightening it down. (I really wasn’t applying excessive pressure.) This isn’t the first part to go “tink” on this saw. While I really like the saw in general, I wish that Bosch used better hardware in their manufacture of these things.

Anyway, thanks again for the suggestions; I’m satisfied with the saw’s calibration now.

-- M. Zimmers

View patron's profile

patron

13534 posts in 2801 days


#12 posted 09-09-2011 02:42 AM

i check all my saws
and miter gauges
with a parallel board

cross cut it
and just flip one board over
(not end for end)
you will see if they come together or not
and how far off
by the angle created between them
if it is out of square

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

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