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Powermatic 66 and Biesemeyer 52" Table Saw upgrade complete!!

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Forum topic by amplifiednation posted 08-30-2012 12:23 PM 5262 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


08-30-2012 12:23 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tip question tablesaw modern powermatic 66 vfd remote switching incra fence biesemeyer

Just joined the forum after reading countless posts…I have learned so much I want a chance to give back and share an experience I am having this week upgrading my main table saw to a Powermatic 66.

This saw has a three phase motor, I’ll be using a TECO VFD to get three phase. I’m having 220v being run to the saw’s location on Friday, and that electrician will help me get the VFD wired.

I am a cabinet maker who builds speaker cabinets and guitar amplifier cabinets. I really needed something with a big rip capacity and a saw that would cut accurate. I almost got an expensive Hybrid or a Powermatic contractors saw but I found a good deal on the 66 and really like the vintage vibe.

installed the wings…put them on the wrong sides…i thought those four holes were from a vice or something…maybe they were at one point but i had to reverse the wings once I started putting the fence rails on.
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Three phase motor was not easy to get on by myself…but I did it, heavy and awkward lift.
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All three pullies attached!
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fence rails installed
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The fence popped right on. I had to drill new mounts for the extension table because it wasn’t flush with the table saw…but that was a piece of cake!!
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If anyone can help or has experience setting this saw up..please drop me a line! Hopefully this post is in the right spot! I’ll have progress tomorrow and hopefully have the VFD set up Friday morning.

Thanks,
Taylor

-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com


23 replies so far

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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


#1 posted 08-30-2012 12:34 PM

Here’s a couple questions.

is the Beis fence suppost to some in contact with the back rail? i don’t see that is happening. i don’t have lots of options to move those rails around…so I’m curious if i have it right, or if i have it totally wrong. one would think it should contact the back rail, unless of course I’m missing a piece…i’ll snap some pics.

-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com

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MedicKen

1599 posts in 2127 days


#2 posted 08-30-2012 12:46 PM

The fence will not be in contact with the back rail.

How are you planning on setting up the VFD? Which TECO FM model did you get? What is the motor HP?

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their therapist....medic20447@gmail.com

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huff

2804 posts in 1950 days


#3 posted 08-30-2012 12:51 PM

Taylor, Welcome to lumberjocks! It looks like you found yourself a great saw. I bought my Powermatic 66 about 25 years ago and it’s still going strong. Mine is a 5hp, single phase, w/52” Biesemeyer fence. It’s been the workhorse for my shop and I love it. As far as setting up your saw, just make sure you go over everything to make sure it’s tight and nothing is worn. When you installed the motor, did you put new belts on? I would suggest you do even it the old ones seem fine. Make sure you replace all three at the same time and get the ones that belong. The saw will run quieter and smoother with new (well adjusted) belts. The fence is the one you will need to spend time making sure it is set up accurately. Check the underside of your fence to see how the wear pads are wearing,(there will be one on each side of the lock lever). You should be able to adjust them to make your fence parrelle with the blade.(actually your fence should be about a 1/64” further from the blade when the wood exits when you are ripping). Once you adjust your fence you can zero it out with the blade. Remember when you change blades you may need to zero out your fence again. Once you have the fence set up accurately, if you cut something the wrong size…...........You have to blame yourself! lol I think you will love your saw and Biesemeyer fence. They are smooth, accurate, strong and reliable. ( both the fence and the saw). It’s a great combination. Good luck and keep us posted.

-- John @ http://www.thehuffordfurnituregroup.com

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huff

2804 posts in 1950 days


#4 posted 08-30-2012 12:53 PM

(edit) Taylor, I just saw your second post. The fence will not contact the back rail. It locks totally to the front rail.

-- John @ http://www.thehuffordfurnituregroup.com

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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


#5 posted 08-30-2012 01:09 PM

It’s a 3HP three phase Baldor motor. Looks like a workhorse!

No i didn’t get new belts…I’ll put that on the list. I was mainly trying to get this as set up as possible so when the electrician is here tomorrow I can test it before he leaves.

I got the TECO FM-50 3HP drive that was recommended highly on all the woodworking forums and also by some local builders.

I would like to wire up the remote switch so i can control start and stop from the saw, and leave the VFD on the wall next to the disconnect box. My saw will not be moving from it’s location.

why the big back rail if the fence doesn’t touch it??

How do these fences stay so well aligned with only one point of contact?

-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com

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huff

2804 posts in 1950 days


#6 posted 08-30-2012 01:20 PM

Taylor, The back rail is the same as the front rail as far as size. Biesemeyer also made a large overhead blade guard and dust collector port that attached to the back rail. One thing about the back rail, it makes putting the extension table on the side a lot easier and makes it very strong. I mounted my router in the side table so I can use the fence with my router also. The great thing about the Biesemeyer fence is the simplicity of it. It’s simple, but very strong and accurate. Not unless the fence has been terribly abused, you should have a great set up. BTW. Your 3hp, 3phase, will be a real work horse. It will be all the power you will ever need.

-- John @ http://www.thehuffordfurnituregroup.com

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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


#7 posted 08-30-2012 10:01 PM

Ok, so i’m ready for power!!

Here’s before my saw upgrade, my Jet JTS-10. This saw served me WELL and cut lots and lots of wood!!

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And here is the Powermatic, all set up waiting for power!!
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I still have some tweaking to do! But at least I got the fence lined up with the miter slot and it slides across the whole table smoothly.

i am hearing the seperations in the table when i slide the saw over, is that normal? should it really be flawless? I can get in and shim the table but i’ll have to unscrew the fence rails from the sides.

also, the arbor nut seems like it’s rusted on, this saw hasn’t been used in 6 years. whats the best way to get that loose? penetrating oil??

cleaned it up real nice with some natural degreaser…looks awesome, no new paint required!!

-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com

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felkadelic

193 posts in 1205 days


#8 posted 08-30-2012 10:38 PM

Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe the holes in the cast iron top were most likely a means of mounting a power feeder in the saw’s past life.

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huff

2804 posts in 1950 days


#9 posted 08-30-2012 10:55 PM

felkadelic, I believe you’re probably right. Taylor, your saw looks awesome. I would try some penetrating oil and let it soak or a day or two.

-- John @ http://www.thehuffordfurnituregroup.com

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Jerry

2197 posts in 2212 days


#10 posted 08-31-2012 12:15 AM

Great saw Taylor. I love to see people get good saws like the pm66 for good deals. I am sure you will be happy with your saw. I have an old pm66 I plan on working on and getting into service as soon as I can. Mine is 3 hp 3 pha

-- Jerry Nettrour, San Antonio, www.topqualitycabinets.net

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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


#11 posted 08-31-2012 12:36 AM

Thanks! Yeah it is a huge upgrade, I can’t wait to see it working tomorrow..hopefully the motor runs! The condition of the saw is fantastic, I cleaned it up with degreaser today and it really looks good. I might repaint the fence rails but I didn’t want to chance using a bad paint and having the fence motion get gummed up.

So 220 and VFD tomorrow morning, electrian is coming to do it (trading him for cabinet work) and then once I get this arbor loose I can get back to work!

My shop is shut down right now!

Do you guys replace the arbor nut or grease the threads? I do frequent blade changes to dado for joinery

-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com

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Gshepherd

1472 posts in 867 days


#12 posted 08-31-2012 12:45 AM

This will be a killer saw…. I also have a PM66 newer model and the 4 holes are also for a Power Feeder. I have never greased the arbor nut nor never had to…. I did put a blade stabilizer on it and got another fence for it and a bunch of throat plates for various dados…. Did you replace the belts and check for alignment?

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


#13 posted 09-01-2012 01:14 PM

Ok, we have liftoff!!

I’m extremely happy with the way this all came together. I would advise any new purchasers of the Powermatic 66 to get a buddy to help them put this together. That was wayy too much work for me to do by myself.

Anyway, I’m glad I did it because when the electrician came yesterday he got everything set up and tested! And he did a great job hiding the wires and locating the disconnect and VFD.

I was going to do the wiring myself but I needed some other work done in the house so I managed to trade some cabinet work for all the wiring work.

He moved the 220V 30A dryer power to the disconnect box and connected it to a fused disconnect that connects to the VFD, then the VFD is connected directly to the motor. We had to switch the contacts to get the forward motion consistant with the VFD settings, but that took about 45 seconds.

So now I’m stuck setting up the remote switch. I have the orginal switch to the powermatic, painted green, that I want to use.

Stop is normally closed and on is normall open. That is what I need right? The electrician said i needed two normall open switches, which I don’t think is correct. I think he was looking at the schem and saw that forward and reverse needed open switches….please let me know your experiences!!

And thank you for all of the help and the good reads! I hope my thread can help someone set this wonderful saw up in their shop!!

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-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com

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amplifiednation

22 posts in 764 days


#14 posted 09-01-2012 01:14 PM

another thing…why don’t my photoshop pictures display full size? they are all cut off!!!

-- Taylor Cox www.amplifiednation.com

View Lee Barker's profile

Lee Barker

2169 posts in 1516 days


#15 posted 09-01-2012 03:21 PM

Hi Taylor—

This thread has been fun to read. Your enthusiasm matches perfectly the quality of saw which you now have.

The friction pads on the fence—two at the lever end and one at the other—are actually just plastic laminate samples, contact cemented on. So if they’re looking thin, a fix is easy.

If your fence is clunking as it crosses the joints in the table, they should be realigned. Just loosening the bolts a little a careful tapping should do it. If you leave a lip there, it will destroy the friction pad.

My one complaint with that Biesmeyer is that the allen set screws which control the angle of the fence are coarse threads. I would prefer they were fine, but they do work ok.

At the risk of hijacking your delightful progress thread, I’m asking fence owners how snugly they have set the lock. I know it is possible to distort the front of the front rail if you are set too tight. Too loose and the fence can creep, obviously.

Kindly,

Lee

-- "...in his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

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