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Thread: Riving Knife

  1. #1

    Riving Knife

    Can anyone direct me toward an aftermarket source of riving knifes? I own a 36-812 Delta Unisaw. TIA

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Gatineau, Québec
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    83
    Richard:

    I have seen many posts taking about SharkGuard; you will find details at http://www.thesharkguard.com/. They have products that fit many makes and models; you will want to validate whether yours is on the list.

    I do not have any business interests in that company; I am just relaying information.

    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Jacques Gagnon View Post
    Richard:

    I have seen many posts taking about SharkGuard; you will find details at http://www.thesharkguard.com/. They have products that fit many makes and models; you will want to validate whether yours is on the list.

    I do not have any business interests in that company; I am just relaying information.

    Good luck.
    I do appreciate this.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Central WI
    Posts
    4,597
    Lee at Sharkguard will also make knives specific to your drawings if needed in various thicknesses. It is nice to have at least two, one the thickness of your regular kerf plates and one for thin kerf. Sometimes a rip blade will have a thicker plate and you want to match the knife closely to the plate. Dave

  5. #5
    We first have to look at the differences between a "riving knife" and a "splitter".

    A riving knife is a device that sits behind the blade to prevent the wood from closing on the blade AND it rises and falls, as well as tilts, with the blade. It maintains its position just below the top of the blade so that it almost never has to be removed, even if not making a through cut.

    A splitter is a device that sits behind the blade to prevent the wood from closing on the blade BUT it does not rise and fall, nor tilt, with the blade. Because it is often higher than the top of the blade, it cannot be used for non-through cuts where it would be higher than the top of the blade.

    Because of the limitations of a splitter, it often gets removed and may not be put back as assiduously as it should.

    Unfortunately, most older table saws cannot be retrofitted to a true riving knife. You can only use a splitter on them.

    Mike
    Last edited by Mike Henderson; 01-16-2018 at 2:00 PM.
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Chagrin Falls, OH
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    4,377
    The Shark Guard ARK is a “manual riving knife”, probably the closest aftermarket one you’ll find. There’s a guys over on OWWM who has a very cool shop made true riving knife, not sure if he’ll get into production or not.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Day View Post
    The Shark Guard ARK is a “manual riving knife”, probably the closest aftermarket one you’ll find. There’s a guys over on OWWM who has a very cool shop made true riving knife, not sure if he’ll get into production or not.
    I'd call that a manually adjusted splitter.

    Mike

    [That reminds me of a conversation I had quite a few years ago. I was big into running and had run a number of marathons. A woman showed me a picture of herself in running clothes and said, "That's me after my first marathon." I looked at her and she did not look like a long distance runner, so I asked her, "Was that a 26 mile marathon?" She replied, "No, that was a three mile marathon."

    She wanted the recognition for running a "marathon" without doing the training to actually run one.

    Same thing here. They want to call their product a "riving knife" without it actually being a riving knife.]
    Last edited by Mike Henderson; 01-16-2018 at 1:42 PM.
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    We first have to look at the differences between a "riving knife" and a "splitter".

    A riving knife is a device that sits behind the blade to prevent the wood from closing on the blade AND it rises and falls, as well as tilts, with the blade. It maintains its position just below the top of the blade so that it almost never has to be removed, even if not making a through cut.

    A splitter is a device that sits behind the blade to prevent the wood from closing on the blade BUT it does not rise and fall, nor tilt, with the blade. Because it is often higher than the top of the blade, it cannot be used for non-through cuts where it would be higher than the top of the blade.

    Because of the limitations of splitter, it often gets removed and may not be put back as assiduously as it should.

    Unfortunately, most older table saws cannot be retrofitted to a true riving knife. You can only use a splitter on them.

    Mike
    Thank you for the explanation. This differences between a riving knife and a splitter were known to me. It is probable that the length of the throat on my Unisaw may not be long enough to retrofit a riving blade which you mentioned. What I have is one of the early 800 series models when such things as a left tilting arbor and reachable cut off switches were not part of the engineering plan. I may simply ditch this tablesaw - it's paid for itself hundreds of times over and purchase a Grizzly 1023 RL. How ironic that one of these machines costs about the same as what I paid for my Delta Unisaw in 1990 - $1,500. If you factor in inflation the model I purchased today would cost @2,700.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Camas, Wa
    Posts
    3,376
    I sold my Uni and bought a G1023RL partially for the riving knife. I couldn't be happier. That being said, Lee and Sharkguard are great to do business with.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Cary Falk View Post
    I sold my Uni and bought a G1023RL partially for the riving knife. I couldn't be happier. That being said, Lee and Sharkguard are great to do business with.
    I'll wait to hear from Sharkguard but I'm am more and more leaning your way. I might be able to get $500 for my saw on Craigslist. I retrofitted it with an Biesemeyer Fence. That might be a plus.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Carner View Post
    I'll wait to hear from Sharkguard but I'm am more and more leaning your way. I might be able to get $500 for my saw on Craigslist. I retrofitted it with an Biesemeyer Fence. That might be a plus.
    Unless your area is different, you should be able to get more than $500 for your saw. I think yours is a 3HP 240V unit. If it's a 120V with a much smaller motor (less than 2HP) you'd get less, maybe $500.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    Unless your area is different, you should be able to get more than $500 for your saw. I think yours is a 3HP 240V unit. If it's a 120V with a much smaller motor (less than 2HP) you'd get less, maybe $500.

    Mike

    Your right. Mine is the 3HP 240V unit. I'll do some searching on Craigslist. I've seen some pretty ratty looking beat up Unisaws on EBay. Mine has been used all these years in a 'one off' small shop. Very little sheet goods or production type runs.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Richard Carner View Post
    Your right. Mine is the 3HP 240V unit. I'll do some searching on Craigslist. I've seen some pretty ratty looking beat up Unisaws on EBay. Mine has been used all these years in a 'one off' small shop. Very little sheet goods or production type runs.
    In this area, a 3HP 240V unit with a Biesemeyer fence would go for about $1,000, plus or minus. Others can chime in for their area.

    The major defect of older cabinet saws is the lack of a true riving knife. Many buyers prefer a saw with a riving knife for safety. But there's usually someone who will buy it.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    I'd call that a manually adjusted splitter.



    Same thing here. They want to call their product a "riving knife" without it actually being a riving knife.]

    Hi guys.
    I would like to clarify a few things.

    The description between a riving knife and splitter was mostly accurate. The splitter tilts with a blade too. All OEM guards of the past were splitter type guards and those did tilt with the blade. That is if they were ever installed. Throat plate splitter attachments cannot tilt with the blade.

    Splitters can also leave a large gap between the blade and the splitter especially at lower blade heights.
    This is the area that makes the riving knife much more desirable and effective. It stays close to the blade. That plus the fact that it rarely needs to be removed means that it is on the saw longer and probably when you need it the most. There are very few cuts that cannot be done with a riving knife in place.

    Our ARK knife is much more than just a splitter.

    It has more in common with a riving knife than it does a splitter. It stays close to the blade and in fact rarely needs to be removed. You can even install and use a dado blade without needing to remove the ARK knife.
    The only big difference between the ARK knife and a true riving knife on newer saws is the manual adjustment of it.
    Much more than a simple splitter.
    Check out some of our videos to see how our products function on various saws.
    I did answer your email earlier too, Richard. Let me know if I can help further, Guys.
    Thanks.
    Last edited by Lee Styron; 01-16-2018 at 7:06 PM.
    Lee

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Chagrin Falls, OH
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    4,377
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Henderson View Post
    I'd call that a manually adjusted splitter.

    Same thing here. They want to call their product a "riving knife" without it actually being a riving knife.]
    I have to disagree Mike. It tilts with the blade like a riving knife. it is close to the blade like a riving knife, unlike a splitter.

    You’re saying the only reason you wouldn’t call it a riving knife is because it is adjusted manually? A “manual riving knife” sounds perfectly accurate. Their standard shark guard is clearly a splitter, the ARK is not.

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