R4512 Fence Upgrade

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Forum topic by ADHDan posted 05-15-2013 07:23 PM 5297 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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800 posts in 2313 days

05-15-2013 07:23 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I know that others have posted questions about upgrading the R4512 fence and I have tried to review those threads, so I apologize if this has been covered and I overlooked it. My question is: what is the best option for upgrading the R4512 fence with minimal modification?

I’m not 100% confident in my ability to accurately drill, tap, or otherwise make major changes to the base unit, so I’m trying to figure out what third-party fence is most compatible with this saw. Stated differently, assuming no third-party fence is out-of-the-box compatible, which fence requires the simplest modifications/minimizes the margin of human error in installation?


-- Dan in Minneapolis, woodworking since 11/11.

6 replies so far

View Craftsman70's profile


244 posts in 2329 days

#1 posted 05-15-2013 07:31 PM

I think the Vega would be the easiest to install. Best price seems to be Amazon.

View Tedstor's profile


1678 posts in 2837 days

#2 posted 05-15-2013 07:44 PM

I too immediately thought of the Vega. But I stumbled upon this review regarding the vega/4512 combo. Looks like there are no easy options. Keep in mind that installing a fence isn’t akin to building a spacecraft. If you make a 1/16” mistake installing the rails, the fence is adjustable, and can make up the difference (within reason). Anyway, her’s the review (no affiliation BTW):
Oh- and this reviewer really went all out. Its easier than it sounds.See the last sentence.

I installed this fence system on my Ridgid R4512 table saw. The stock fence that came with my saw was useless to me do to the deflection and inability of the fence to lock square to the table regardless of adjustments. I opted to get a this fence system instead of a new saw.
I anticipated a fair amount of work to get this fence installed on my table saw and was not disappointed. I needed to drill 2 new holes in the cast iron of my table to be configured per the directions, which indicate that the holes need to be spaced from 8-9 inches from the blade on either side and that they are centered 1 3/16” from the top. My problem was that the holes were not down far enough. One of my stock holes was at the 8 inch mark so I needed to veer from the ideal hole spacing to an alternate. I adjusted my spacing to 16 inches apart using a 3/8 inch bit drill bit. This modification also requires that you either drill the round front rail tube to match what will be your 0 indicator for the attached tape ruler or remove the tape and reapply it to the adjusted 0 point. I opted to remove the tape ruler and adjust. If you want to drill new holes in the round bar you will need a 17/64 drill bit and a 5/16-18 tap. The rear rail is square tubing and needs 7/16 clearance from the top of the table. The holes on your table saw are recommended to be centered at 1 3/16 inches from the table top and 8 inches from the blade on either side. I found that my 1 1/16 inch from the top holes to be adequate. One of my holes was 8 inches from the blade but the other was 11 inches from the blade so I opted to drill a hole through the supplied rear tube to match my existing hole. After installing the front and rear rail supports I installed the fence and head per the directions and aligned the fence to a miter slot. I have a dial indicator and used it ensure the alignment was accurate to a couple thousands. The standard install requires that you install a bracket on the back of the fence because the fence lifts as you lock the cam in the front. I tested the fences operation and noticed that the fence, once locked, had a deflection of approximately 0.01 to 0.015 inches when moderate pressure was applied. I found this very disappointing. I also noticed that the fine adjustment did not work per the directions. Learning from others I discovered that the main locking cam could be removed and reversed to allow the fence to lock on the up stroke instead of the down stroke. So I removed the cam and reversed it. This operation is very easy with a 3/16 steel rod and a hammer. The result was that the fence no longer jumped in the back when locking the fence and did not need the rear fence bracket. The fine adjustment knob now worked and I had about 0.005 inch deflection with moderate pressure to the rear of the fence. I verified this on several locations along the fence and the results were consistent. I’m not sure why the deflection was lessened but I’m glad it was. I then constructed a table extension per the directions and installed it on my saw. I am now happy with this fence system. One final note, the configuration of your saw might also require a 11/32 drill bit and 3/8-24 tap if your saw does not allow access for a nut for the fence rail installs. Most of the reviews for this fence were for 1980 Craftsman saws that required no modification. My install was time consuming but the design is robust enough to allow for considerable tolerances making a custom install much easier.

View toolie's profile


2148 posts in 2833 days

#3 posted 05-15-2013 09:04 PM

i’d suggest the delta t2:

if you can find one, an advantage is not having to drill any holes in round parts. all the t2 components are either square or flat. and it’s a really sturdy, accurate fence.

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View mikema's profile


180 posts in 2790 days

#4 posted 05-15-2013 09:15 PM

+1 On the Delta T2. I drilled in to my TS. With a jig for alignment, it was not that big of deal to drill into it. Just go slow, and keep oil on the bit.

-- Mike ---- Visit my woodworking blog:

View jack4002's profile


11 posts in 3790 days

#5 posted 05-20-2013 04:28 AM

I am also considering the 4512 if i can find a used one. Bad fence seems to be a big sticking point. You may want to look at Woodpecker’s LS System. I had a 50” on a General table saw and i can tell you it was dead on after i got it set up. I had it for 2 years and i never made any adjustments to it. Nice thing was no drilling on the saw table. Rails are attached via L brackets so no additional holes were needed. It’s a bit pricey but in my case i felt it was worth it. Took the old fence off, bolted on the new one, calibrated it and went to cutting. Total time as near as i can remember 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

View knotscott's profile


8151 posts in 3580 days

#6 posted 05-20-2013 09:10 AM

I’d hazard a guess that any of the fences from an older Ridgid contractor saws (2424, 3612, 3650), and possibly those from the former TTI/Ryobi made Craftsman saws (315.######) would be a direct bolt-on without drilling. If not, the Vega is generally one of the easier aftermarket fences to install.

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

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