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Thread: Table Saw Not cutting 90* (HELP!)

  1. #31
    Kenny, glad you found the issues. Like I said, if the insert is not flat, with the table, the cutting force can suck the workpiece down and really mess up that 90* cut. Add the out of flat table and you've got a mess. With a good cabinet saw, you can tweak the table if it's not totally flat and there are aftermarket inserts that are nice and flat. I don't know if tweaking the table on you saw is even possible.
    Move up to a good cabinet saw and you'll be a lot happier, once everything is in adjustment. Let us know what you end up with.

  2. #32
    Buying new equipment can be much more exciting than working on an old machine. And there are certainly more robust and accurate saws made. You may be missing an opportunity to learn about the machinery you are working with if you stop where you’re at, however.

    The first thing I did when I began woodworking in earnest was rebuild a table saw my father had given me. I knew little about this machine, except that the cut quality was poor and it was unsafe. I tore down the saw and put it back together; replaced bearings, had the top machined, installed a new fence, made zero clearance inserts, etc.

    This was a 1970’s Rockwell contractor saw, so it was never going to be the ultimate saw. I did learn how to fine tune this machine to provide accurate parts for woodworking projects, however. When you understand the components of the machine you’re working with, learn what needs to be adjusted and how to measure those adjustments, your woodworking is likely to be safer and more satisfying. Buying new machinery, which will likely require similar tuning, won’t teach us how to operate these machines.

    BTW, it sounds like your present cutting woes are due to blade and fence alignment, and likely blade type. The burning you describe on the back end of a cut is the result of the blade being closer to the fence on the outfeed side of the cut. These components may be out of alignment, the blade may be deflecting in the cut, or the fence may be bowed along its length. There are other components that could be causing this as well; blade choice, blade angle relative to the table, arbor bearings, etc. The point is, as the operator of your saw, you need to understand these factors, as well as have the ability to measure and adjust.

    For example, the insert plate should not even be a factor for a 16” wide, flat piece of plywood. The table, fence and blade are really all that you’re dealing with. Eliminate each factor one by one until you can get accurate parts.

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
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    Thanks for the update Kenny! As I previously mentioned, I suspected that your insert might be giving you the problem. Glad to hear you've got it figured out.
    David

  4. #34
    Eric,
    I'm not giving up on the saw just yet.

    I know part of the problem is that the fence sucks. I knew it was bad but I didn't realize it was this bad until this process.

    I had started making plans to replace the fence as a part of a mobile table/router station build. I was gearing up to do that starting in the next few weeks. I even have a replacement fence its a freaking Biesemeyer I bought from a guy who bought it to replace his fence. He used it for a few weeks and decided he like the one that came with his saw better. He put is back in the box and sold it to me for $100, but the reason it was so cheap was it didn't come with rails. I figure I can make those easily enough with $100 worth of angle iron, rectangle tube, and some engine paint.

    Right now I am waiting on building any of that while I figure out if this saw is the one to use. Some of the more recent responses have pointed to the possibility of a broken trunnion. Me keeping my mouth shut was about holding my options open. I really like this saw, I'm not giving up just yet.

  5. #35

    Replacement Craftsman throat plate

    If his throat plate isn't flat and can't be flattened to his satisfaction, it is pretty easy to make replacement throat plates from 1/4" luan plywood. I used to make them for my table saw. The bonus is you get a zero clearance insert.
    20200522_084350.jpg
    To make the plate stiffer, I glued a strip of scrap to the under side where it clears the blade.
    20200522_084400.jpg20200522_084429.jpg
    A machinist friend made me one from aluminum jig plate with a replaceable insert.
    platetop.jpgplatebottom.jpg

    I have the cad drawing of the aluminum insert if any one is interested, send me a private message with your email address.
    Last edited by Lee Schierer; 05-22-2020 at 9:15 AM.
    Lee Schierer
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  6. #36
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Kenny,

    If you are not yet ready to upgrade your saw, you can have your top milled flat at a machine shop, such as for automotive work, for much less. Be sure to check flatness after unbolting the top to assure that the out-of-flatness is not caused by external forces.

  7. #37
    Wayne,
    I have heard of doing that. But also heard of the top being milled so flat that the miter gauge sticks out of the channel. Do you have any experience with having that done?

  8. #38
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    Kenny,
    If you have the top resurfaced (milled or ground) they should and most probably will not remove any more material than necessary to make the surface flat. Worst case is that you can always have the bar on your miter gauge milled down by the same amount so that it does not "stick out" of the miter slot.
    David

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Michiana
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    I'll second Lee's suggestion of making your own throat plates. I make mine from some scrap oak I had in the stash. Just trace your existing plate, cut the shape out, and sand to fit. I planed mine to the exact thickness required, but you can go thinner and install little jack screws to adjust height. Just use dog point set screws. Another one in one end can be used to adjust length for a tight fit. It's so easy that I've made several to have dedicated zero clearance inserts for different blades, box joint cutters, and dados. They're reversible too, so you can have two sizes on one insert.
    Sharp solves all manner of problems.

  10. #40
    @Rob Luter, for the dog point screws, did you just tap the threads directly into the oak? Do you have a product for the jack screws you have used in the past that you suggest? I'll admit I prefer to have something adjustable like that. (I think. I haven't used a zero clearance throat plate before.)

  11. #41
    @Robert, Lee, Derek, and John

    I am embarrassed to type this, but the truth is I had no idea that lever was a tilt lock. I tilt was always a little firmer to move than I would expect, not so much it was concerning, just a bit more than the height adjuster. I have a feeling that as I have been moving the table saw in and out of the garage to use on the driveway I knocked that loose to the point that it was no longer holding. When I tighten the tilt lock it makes a big difference.

    That being said, its STILL not what I would expect from a decently tuned table saw.

    I didn't get to do much with it over the weekend as we are re-doing my daughters room. She is turning 11 soon, and for her birthday she wanted to room changed over from the little girls room to her "big girl/pre-teen/teen" room. We've lived here for ten years and we haven't decorated her room since we moved in, so my wife and I decided to go for it. Whoever painted last time sure didn't know what they were doing, took the whole 3 day weekend to move things out of her room, prep, and paint.

    Hopefully I get some time to flip the saw over and look at the trunions soon. Are there any specific areas I should be looking at closely?

  12. #42
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Schierer View Post
    Let's start with the basics!

    Have you aligned the saw blade to the miter slot with your dial indicator mounted on a block of wood attached to your miter gauge?

    Have you aligned the fence with the same miter slot and checked it for repeatability?
    This. If you aren't cutting square to the blade, you will have an angled cut

  13. #43
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Indianapolis
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    291
    I have had a similar problem recently same saw, but the professional model with the base for dust extraction. I had the top off twice....Very tight trying to get it back to 90 to cut square. I discovered, I think that putting the angle iron back on the front and back had flexed the table a little cause it to be out of square with the blade.

    I loosened the bolts holding the table to the base, and then loosed the bolts holding the front and back angle iron on the table. With the top loose on the base, I tightened one bolt on the angle iron and checked square. I did this after each bolt. It stayed square to the blade. after tightening all the angle iron bolts, I think tightened the base bolts to the top, but not over tight and it stayed square. I assume I had added some flex tot he angle iron causing the table to go out of square with the blade?

    it was still hard to turn the blade to 90, but it would go and it did stay square. Not sure this will work for you, but it worked for me.
    Brian

  14. #44
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenny Southerland View Post
    @Rob Luter, for the dog point screws, did you just tap the threads directly into the oak? Do you have a product for the jack screws you have used in the past that you suggest? I'll admit I prefer to have something adjustable like that. (I think. I haven't used a zero clearance throat plate before.)
    Just drill the holes a bit smaller than the major diameter of the threads and let the screws form the threads when you run them in. You don’t need to worry about holding power so much as they’re just jack screws. I checked my insert and it uses cup point, not dog point screws. See photo below. Any hardware store will have these. I think mine are #4 size.

    Snip20200526_1.jpg

    Edit.....

    Here's a couple shots of three of my inserts. One is a Leecraft Phenolic insert and the other two are shop made. The Leecraft has the jack screws as well as a screw in the end to assure a tight fit. Only one of my shop made inserts has one, and neither has any jack screws. I planed them to be an exact match thickness wise. Doing that also allows you to make them reversible. You can see one of mine does double duty as a 1/2" dado and a 3/8* box joint insert.


    IMG_0573.jpg

    IMG_0574.jpg
    Last edited by Rob Luter; 05-27-2020 at 4:29 AM.
    Sharp solves all manner of problems.

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