Table Saw Flatness

  • Advertise with us

« back to Power Tools, Hardware and Accessories forum

Forum topic by ChrisCarr posted 06-09-2012 03:46 PM 2512 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View ChrisCarr's profile


196 posts in 2924 days

06-09-2012 03:46 PM

I am currently in the process of fixing up my old Delta contractors saw.

Well first I noticed the saw was a heavy 1/32nd out of flat across the width (side ways , crossing the miter slots). I took the tube style fence rails off to see if they where bending my top out of flatness. They WERE. But my top still isn’t dead flat.

Across the width its high in the middle, by the blade. It causes one side to be off by the thickness of a playing card. But when you only check the flatness of HALF the width of the table (where your good piece you just ripped will sit) its almost dead flat. If you check the width behind and in-front of the blade opening its much flatter. So its high around where the throat plate goes by a LITTlE LESS than the thickness of one playing card. Is that acceptable? I want to start doing precision work (joinery, ripping, crosscuts).

Any advice or opinions would be great!

(And yes the extension tables are removed, everything is, trunnions, arbor etc. I checking just the table casting on a workbench.)


5 replies so far

View knotscott's profile


8057 posts in 3401 days

#1 posted 06-09-2012 04:40 PM

Chris – The test for flatness is best done by measuring your cut pieces, not the saw surface. Unlike blade alignment, table saw flatness doesn’t usually have much of an effect on cutting, unless the deviation from flatness is substantial or is in a critical location, so I wouldn’t get too worked up over it if the saw is cutting well. It’s easy enough to shim the wings to make the overall surface flatter if you like, but there’s not much else you can do to the rest of top unless you have it reground.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View teejk's profile


1215 posts in 2710 days

#2 posted 06-10-2012 12:36 AM


I think if you are building a space shuttle with a $600 saw I would be concerned.

But you are playing with wood and a “playing card” gap is admirable (in fact I think by goofing with it you’ll only make what you see as a problem worse).

Don’t under estimate the power today’s glues and clamps. And also don’t forget that even a minor flaw will only be known by you.

View ChrisCarr's profile


196 posts in 2924 days

#3 posted 06-10-2012 02:03 AM

I still get square cuts. I am just wondering if it will effect precise joinery? (box joints, dovetails, dados, laps,)

Also I might have arbor run out , but i suspect its flex from a thin kerf blade and the fact i use a 40 tooth on rip cuts

View teejk's profile


1215 posts in 2710 days

#4 posted 06-10-2012 06:51 PM

Chris read my post above! I have an older Delta contractor saw (platinum model whatever that is). Your variances tell me that I should probably tune mine up (other than the fact that everything comes out just fine and dandy).

But a question back…have you figured out how to lubricate the trunnion without a major tear-down to get at it? My saw is starting to get a little balky.

View ChrisCarr's profile


196 posts in 2924 days

#5 posted 06-10-2012 07:34 PM

You can lubricate it if you can feel it with your hand , its very hard to see when its not torn
down. The only thing i can see to wax/lube is the worm gear that raises the blade

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics