|Forum topic by aaroncgi||posted 02-11-2013 08:47 AM||3408 views||2 times favorited||2 replies|
02-11-2013 08:47 AM
I thought it was about time to post some pictures of the table saw I’ve been talking of for some time, now that I’ve gotten it setup and am becoming familiar with using it.
Before the photos, a little background about myself. I have been an very amateur woodworker for about 23 years, primarily using small handheld power tools like drills, routers, jigsaws, and sanders. I have been an amateur loudspeaker builder for that entire time, though my designs focus on uniqueness and ease of contruction, rather than attempting to emulate the look of what you can buy in the store. About 10 years ago, when I got my first and current house, I moved up to some bigger tools such as a circular saw, drill press, and sliding compound miter saw. That got me into some bigger projects such as deck building, various pieces of furniture like TV stands, computer desk, bed frame, replacing all the mouldings/trim in our house, etc. But still, I was pretty much limited to building with dimensional lumber sizes. If I needed a panel of plywood for a project, I’d have Lowes/HD cut it to the sizes I needed, or use the circular saw to cut it down later. I even ripped some pieces with the circular saw. I don’t recommend it, but it can be done. :) But eventually, you run into projects for which anything other than a table saw just won’t cut it. I’d always been a bit scared of the table saw because the one my Dad and everyone else had used no blade guard or safety features whatsoever, and they were typically quite loud.
So about a year ago, my awesome wife realized that it was time for me to take the next step in my woodworking abilities, and decided to buy me a table saw as a combination birthday/Christmas present. This was about six months before my birthday. I scoured craigslist constantly in hopes of finding that one great deal, but never came across anything exceptional. After gobs of reasearch, it seemed like the Ridgid R4512 was going to be the best value and fit for me. So we began saving all our cashback from two credit cards for the next nine months, ending up with $325 in gift cards. Finally, in December of last year, we marched in to Home Depot to pickup my Christmas present, along with the 20% Harbor Freight coupon. They wouldn’t take the 20%, but countered with 10% off, which we accepted. After the 10% and all our gift cards were applied it came down to $196 after tax.
I have already spent more than the cost of the saw on accessories, including: CMT ITK Plus combination blade, Freud Diablo 24T ripping blade, two GRR-200 GRR-Rippers, a Leecraft zero clearance throat plate, a dial indicator, a Kreg featherboard, and about $80 in materials to build a rolling outfeed table. I hope to buy a dado blade set soon.
I have ripped quite a few boards, from 3/4” up to 1.5” thick, and can see how many things this will allow me to do that I never could before. This is primarily why I got the table saw, after all – since my miter saw will easily crosscut anything up to 12”. I’ve also cut some large sheets of plywood, far more easily, cleanly, and quickly than would ever be done by my Skil circular saw. I’m looking forward to making various jigs for other cool projects. After getting all the extensions and rails aligned, I was happy to find that the blade didn’t need any adjustments at all – it was parallel to the miter slots within 4/1000”.
Since ripping long boards will be one of the primary uses of the saw, I knew an outfeed table would be a necessity, so that was my first project after getting the saw operational – which itself is another long story, waiting almost a month for a replacement part from Ridgid before I could even turn the saw upright. After mulling over the options, I decided to go with a rolling outfeed table which can fit over the saw, since space is at a premium in my garage, and a large rolling table can come in very handy. I got the idea from a project on this site: http://lumberjocks.com/projects/31507 . Mine is not quite complete, so won’t just yet post it as a project.
Anyhow, here are a few pictures of my new baby!