I'm going to go nuts - Dado Blade Frustration

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Forum topic by Bagtown posted 12-24-2011 02:06 AM 4677 views 0 times favorited 32 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1739 posts in 3725 days

12-24-2011 02:06 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question tablesaw

Hi All,

So I have a problem with my dado blade. It’s an 8” stacked Freud set.

I’ve used it before, as a matter of fact I was using it just a few days ago with no issues at all.

I set it up last night with all three chippers installed and noticed a deeper groove in the bottom of my cuts. Upon further investigation I discovered the chipper on the left end of the stack was cutting deeper than the rest of the stack. It was cutting perfectly just a few days ago. I used my height gauge and discovered that chipper was not on centre and was cutting higher on one end. At this time of year I still have a few presents to finish, so I figured I take that chipper out and just take two passe to get my width right. So. . . I took it apart, removed the left most chipper and reassembled with two chippers installed. And guess what? I got the narrower cut expected, but I still had the groove in the bottom of the cut in the same place! AAUUUGGHHH!!!! I don’t have time for this kind of nonsense this time of year. I have things to finish in the next 24 hours. What am I missing? Like I said it cut beautifully a couple of days ago. I’ve made sure no chipper teeth are in contact with each other or with either of the blades. This thing has worked flawlessly up until now. It’s not dull. It hasn’t been recently sharpened. It’s a 12 year old Craftsman table saw. I know I’ve read about people having problems with dado blades and Craftsman saws but it’s never been an issue.
I feel like I’m missing something obvious.

Please help, this elf has things to finish soon.



-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

32 replies so far

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3169 days

#1 posted 12-24-2011 02:19 AM

I actually have NO idea, but … long shot … is the arbor on your TS clean ??

If the arbor holes in your stack are oversized at all, one chipper could get stuck on a piece of sawdust/wood that’s stuck ON your arbor shaft.


-- -- Neil

View Bagtown's profile


1739 posts in 3725 days

#2 posted 12-24-2011 02:22 AM

Hey Neil,

I thought the same thing, everything is clean, clean, clean.

Weird, yes.


-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3169 days

#3 posted 12-24-2011 02:25 AM

Have you definitely used the exact same chippers, recently, or … just the dado stack … maybe at similar thickness ?

It MAY be worth checking the chippers—caliper/equivalent, to verify exact diameters are ALL the same ??

[still scratching head]

-- -- Neil

View ShaneA's profile


6928 posts in 2593 days

#4 posted 12-24-2011 02:26 AM

Have you tried to compare the chippers diameters or length, seems like the only way to get uneven bottoms is if one chipper is larger? But I could be wrong, since it worked before…strange.

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3064 days

#5 posted 12-24-2011 02:28 AM

Do ytou use shims between the blades/chippers? If so, make sure that they’re not slipping into the threads on the arbor and causing the stack to be a bit off kilter. I had a somewhat similar problem a few years ago and it disappeared when I went to magnetic shims instead of the steel ones.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View Bagtown's profile


1739 posts in 3725 days

#6 posted 12-24-2011 02:36 AM

Neil – Yep, same chippers. I know cause I used all of them

Shane – That makes sense except I changed out the chipper causing the problem and still had the problem with a different chipper in that location.

Sawkerf – There’s no shims in the stack at all.

-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3169 days

#7 posted 12-24-2011 02:52 AM

Get out of the house.

It’s possessed.

-- -- Neil

View thebigvise's profile


191 posts in 2896 days

#8 posted 12-24-2011 02:59 AM

I have similar thoughts to those already expressed. In addition, I am impressed that you are using dadoes on December 23 and you plan to have the project ready to give away on Christmas. You are much faster than I am!

-- Paul, Clinton, NC

View ChuckV's profile


3118 posts in 3522 days

#9 posted 12-24-2011 03:05 AM

I am just making wild guesses here, because this sounds so bizarre.

Are you sure that you removed the chipper that was cutting too deep? Is there any chance that you rotated the piece of wood before examining it and put the blame on the wrong chipper? When you reassembled the stack, are sure that you did not mistakenly put the suspect chipper back on?

Good luck.

-- “Big man, pig man, ha ha, charade you are.” ― R. Waters

View Radu's profile


330 posts in 3038 days

#10 posted 12-24-2011 03:11 AM

I noticed inconsistencies in the flatness of my dado cuts too. I think I figured out why. The chippers and the right side blade are sitting on the threaded section of the arbor, and there is a gap between them and the arbor. If they are off center then you’ll get the not so flat bottom of the dado groove. It might be an issue with my saw only but you might check on yours too.

View Bagtown's profile


1739 posts in 3725 days

#11 posted 12-24-2011 03:15 AM

Neil – You could be right.

Paul – That’s the magic of oil finishes. :)

Chuck – You made me think. I went back down to the shop and had a look. Nope I took the suspect out of the stack.

methinks it’s after 9 o’clock here, and I could use a drink. I can see the bar from here. Turning off the shoplights for tonight. This is a setback for sure, but the dawn awaits and a whole nother day of pre-christmas nuttiness. I have to make a giant pot of chowder for all the folks coming over tomorrow evening for Christmas Eve festivities, and somehow still get these things made.

yep, I can see the bar from here, and the margaritaville blender is waving at me.

night all and thanks for the help.


-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View ScottN's profile


261 posts in 2675 days

#12 posted 12-24-2011 03:45 AM

I switched from dadoe blades to routed dadoes and will never look back.

-- New Auburn,WI

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 3739 days

#13 posted 12-24-2011 03:48 AM

Since no one else has asked: You didn’t have the chippers on backwards, did you? Not that I’ve ever done that.

View Bagtown's profile


1739 posts in 3725 days

#14 posted 12-24-2011 03:48 AM

OK, So my last post was made before I saw Radu’s post. So I just went down and had a close look at the arbor. . . cr1 you are on the right track.
I have no idea how I have avoided this in the past. Just lucky?

I had a closer look at the arbor.
What fool designer undercuts the end of a thread on a tablesaw arbor? There’s about .008” undercut at the end of the threads. I don’t understand how I’ve avoided this in the past.

So because I don’t have time to turn a new arbor I’m going to try (in the morning) to put a couple of shims on the left side of the arbor to space my stack more to the right away from the undercut.

Thank you all for the assistance, I’ll report back and let you know how I make out.

Now then, on to the bar for a drink to calm my rage at the designer of this thing. Time to start filling the piggy bank too save for a cabinet saw.

Night all, and Merry Christmas.


-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3169 days

#15 posted 12-24-2011 04:02 AM

Good one, CR1 !!

I had thought about s high spot, but NOT about a low spot !

I wouldn’t move, but I WOULD still drink :-)

-- -- Neil

showing 1 through 15 of 32 replies

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