Setting up right tilt cabinet saw with ext. table on left side?

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Forum topic by Mainiac Matt posted 06-14-2012 08:32 PM 1782 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Mainiac Matt

8546 posts in 2525 days

06-14-2012 08:32 PM

Topic tags/keywords: right tilt table saw

Any body ever seen a right tilt TS set up in true “mirror image” fashion with the extension table set up on the left hand side?

I’m familiar with the pros and cons of right tilt vs. left tilt. And if I had my druthers, I’d pick left tilt, because that’s what I’m familiar with (I’ve never used a right tilt TS).

BUT….. I’m about to score a once in a life time deal on an older 3 HP 10” Jet TS (that is in need of some modest TLC and clean up) that will let me upgrade from my trusty Sears contractor saw.

But the saw is right tilt.

Since this is the only way I’m going to be able to get into a cab. saw in the foreseeable future…. I’m ready to learn to use a right tilt saw….. and running it with the fence on the left full time seems like it might be a good way to go.

After inspecting the saw today, it looks like swapping sides on the extension table hardware will be a no brainer, and since I’m going to have to make a new top for the ext. table anyways…. I figured I might as well swap sides.

Also, with the way my shop is laid out, it would be very convenient to ditch my router table and install the plate into the extension table off the left side of the saw. Not so on the right.

Inquiring minds want to know.

-- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

12 replies so far

View PurpLev's profile


8547 posts in 3845 days

#1 posted 06-14-2012 08:45 PM

would bea cool idea- all you do really is swap the placements of everything – I see it potentially being an issue if you also work on a different TS and have to keep swapping your method of work with each and reversing it, but if this is the only one you are using, might not be that big of an issue.

another thing to consider is that this is only critical when doing beveled cuts – for majority of cuts (straight) it doesn’t really matter which way the blade (NOT) tilts.

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

View cabmaker's profile


1740 posts in 3006 days

#2 posted 06-14-2012 09:10 PM

Doesnt sound like a good idea to me. That doesnt mean that its not . Why not just use it as is ? I here a lot of recomendation on the seemingly favored left tilt but that is some hype started on these type forums I guess. Fear of getting trapped between blade and fence, yeah I know, LOL. Mine happens to be right tilt but I have used both. Doesnt make much differance to me. In fact for running bevels on sheet goods I prefer a rt for beveling, and yes the fence to the right. There are exceptions however to that statement. Just go for it and enjoy it !

View Scot's profile


344 posts in 3593 days

#3 posted 06-14-2012 09:26 PM

Right off hand I can’t think of a reason not to give it a try. You can always switch it back if it doesn’t work out.

-- If the old masters had power tools, they would have used them. So get off your damn High Horse.

View oluf's profile


260 posts in 3236 days

#4 posted 06-14-2012 11:12 PM

Are you left handed?

-- Nils, So. Central MI. Wood is honest.Take the effort to understand what it has to tell you before you try to change it.

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Mainiac Matt

8546 posts in 2525 days

#5 posted 06-15-2012 12:19 AM

I’m a righty

-- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3774 days

#6 posted 06-15-2012 06:04 PM

All this stuff about right hand and left hand tilt has to do with cutting angels. I would say that 98% of the time when using a table table saw your cutting at 90 degrees ,most of the other times when you are cutting angles your using a miter gauge or a sled. The main concern people have is the wedge of wood you cutting when cutting on a angle getting caught between the fence and blade and having get thrown back at you, there’s a easy fix for this ,move your fence to the other side of the blade this is the way it has been done for decades before they had left tilt. I would not be concerned about the tilt and would not go to the trouble of trying to switch the side table. If you are really concerned about the left tilt or the side table I would hold off buying a saw until you can find a bargain on that saw rather then trying to convert this one.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

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Fred Hargis

5171 posts in 2690 days

#7 posted 06-15-2012 06:15 PM

A southpaw friend of mine spent some time looking at my Unisaw/Unifence to see if he could do that. We couldn’t find anything that wouldn’t just switch over, would have had to drill a few holes for fence rail, but mostly it looked like an easy swap.

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

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Mainiac Matt

8546 posts in 2525 days

#8 posted 06-15-2012 07:13 PM

thanks for the feedback….

I should have been more clear…. my real motive isn’t to facilitate cutting bevels with a right tilt saw…..

Rather, it’s making the saw fit in my 22’ x 20’ shop and being able to put a router table in the table.

If the extension table is on the right side (as they usually come) I’m kind of stuck with a post at the end of the table, which would get in the way of using a router table there.

If I switch it over to the left side, I’ve got space to walk around all both sides and the end of it.

I just loaded the saw into the back of my truck and I am phsyched!!!! I’ve waited 13 years to get one.

-- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 3845 days

#9 posted 06-15-2012 07:32 PM

I think it’s a little easier for right handed people to manage
a rip to the right of the blade while standing clear behind
in case of kickback. Ripping to the left should be no
problem but you may find your stance and balance a
little awkward at first. You’ll get used to it quick I reckon.

You may find yourself standing to the left of the fence,
which doesn’t seem like a bad thing, rather than on the
off-cut side.

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Mainiac Matt

8546 posts in 2525 days

#10 posted 06-15-2012 07:44 PM

though I have feather boards…. I rarely set them up when ripping….

On my current saw, I feed with my right hand (or a push stick in my right hand) and use my left hand to keep the piece against the fence, which leaves me standing right in the danger zone of course.

For whatever reason…. (dumb luck? proper care? fear?) I’ve never had a kick back. But maybe ripping with the fence on the left would push me to use the feather boards more often and make for safer work practice.

Or as Jim described… I can switch the fence to the right side for ripping and only have to use it on the left side for panels…. which I should cut on a sled anyways.

I think I’m going to give it a try….

This saw was set up with Jet’s version of the Biesemeyer fence (it has both “Jet” and “Biesemeyer” printed on it), so swapping sides should be quick and easy.

-- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

View StumpyNubs's profile


7681 posts in 2997 days

#11 posted 06-15-2012 08:14 PM

I say go for it. It will feel a little awkward at first being backward, but you’ll get used to it fast.

Post some photos when you get it!

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

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Mainiac Matt

8546 posts in 2525 days

#12 posted 06-16-2012 01:16 AM

I brought the saw home today and a detailed inspection revealed that by drilling some holes in the bracket on the back side for mounting the rectangular fence tube, I can swap the front and back brackets and swap the ext. table to the left side…..

So that’s my tentative plan.

-- I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam

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