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  • fence alignment

    on my new 3660 i finally have got to checking alignments. the blade is parallel to the miter slots. i finally have the splitter and blade guard aligned. the fence was out of alignment and i used the method in the manual, but this method is like setting spark plugs with a screwdriver, not accurate, does anyone know of an accurate method of aligning the fence?

  • #2
    Re: fence alignment

    is there anyone with ridgid online in this forum?

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    • #3
      Re: fence alignment

      Been out of pocket for a few days. The easiest way I have found to align the fence (after ensuring the blade is aligned to the miter slot) is to stand a straight 3/4" board on edge in the miter slot, loosen the fence adjustment screws and push the fence up against the board. Hold there while tightening. I tighten the bolts gradually, in a diagonal pattern (kind of like torquing down the head on a car engine).

      Go
      Practicing at practical wood working

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      • #4
        Re: fence alignment

        Originally posted by Gofor View Post
        Been out of pocket for a few days. The easiest way I have found to align the fence (after ensuring the blade is aligned to the miter slot) is to stand a straight 3/4" board on edge in the miter slot, loosen the fence adjustment screws and push the fence up against the board. Hold there while tightening. I tighten the bolts gradually, in a diagonal pattern (kind of like torquing down the head on a car engine).

        Go
        I'm going to try this tomorrow. I haven't actually had any problems with my fence alignment across the width of the saw, so I've never checked it. I think that it's worth my time to try this, so I'll see what I have for 3/4 board around the shop. I'll get some pics and post tomorrow on what I find. Thanks for the procedure, Gofor! And thanks to levon for bringing up the idea.
        I put it all back together better than before. There\'s lots of leftover parts.

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        • #5
          Re: fence alignment

          thank you VASandy for the reply. i ijust remembered today seeing this a year or two ago: you loosen the fence bolts, slide it up against the blade, clamp the fence to the front and rear of the blade, then tighten the bolts down. does this sound like it would work? any reponses would be welcomed!

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          • #6
            Re: fence alignment

            If your blade is already aligned to the miter slot, then yes that would work. Using a longer piece of straight stock against the blade would help, though. That way you can easily if there's any misalignment along the length of the fence. It is suggested that the back of the fence heel out 1/32" or so from the back of the blade. In other words, there should be a 1/32" wider gap at the back of the fence. The purpose is to minimize a piece of wood jamming up between the fence and the blade and spitting back at you.

            As I recall, my fence has this skew in it, but I do need to verify. It's been a while since I checked the alignment...and I don't exactly remember what method I used last time, although I'm sure I used the miter slot instead of the blade. You must insure your blade is aligned to the miter slot before you align the fence to the miter slot. If you get the back of the fence toed-in towards the blade, you can get hurt pretty easy. I don't think anyone wants a piece of wood to fly out of the saw towards them...it would hit you hard and will do lots of damage.
            I put it all back together better than before. There\'s lots of leftover parts.

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            • #7
              Re: fence alignment

              When you say "way off" I'll assume it's really bad. Check that the fence rail is parallel to the table edge. It's not hard to mount a rail incorrectly or to have a warped/bent rail. Do you have a good 3 or 4 foot straight edge?

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              • #8
                Re: fence alignment

                it was off enough that it needed adjustment. im not sure anyonne can ever get the rails adjussted properly, yes i do have a long level for a straightedge.

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                • #9
                  Re: fence alignment

                  Originally posted by levon View Post
                  thank you VASandy for the reply. i ijust remembered today seeing this a year or two ago: you loosen the fence bolts, slide it up against the blade, clamp the fence to the front and rear of the blade, then tighten the bolts down. does this sound like it would work? any reponses would be welcomed!
                  Works in theory, but in practice a thin kerf blade can warp or twist some, causing misalignment. A full kerf blade will do fine if you use spring clamps (not c-clamps as you can still warp out the blade with the pressure). I do not put the kick-out on my fence and have not had a problem. However, it you choose to do that, and are using the board in the slot method or the fence clamped on blade, stick a shim between the board/back of blade and the back of the fence before tightening.

                  If using a full length board, shim the very back to the amount of kickout you want. If using the blade, only use a shim about 1/4 to 1/3 the kickout total.

                  Sandy: 2 short pieces of board (one in the front and one in the back) planed to the same thickness as the slot will also work if you don't have a straight one long enough for the entire miter slot. They only need to be tall enough to anchor the fence to. If they are too tall, any warp or twist will throw off the alignment.

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                  Last edited by Gofor; 08-10-2008, 06:40 PM.
                  Practicing at practical wood working

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                  • #10
                    Re: fence alignment

                    Originally posted by Gofor View Post
                    Sandy: 2 short pieces of board (one in the front and one in the back) planed to the same thickness as the slot will also work if you don't have a straight one long enough for the entire miter slot. They only need to be tall enough to anchor the fence to. If they are too tall, any warp or twist will throw off the alignment.

                    Go
                    Thanks for the tip, Gofor. I didn't get a chance to get into the shop yesterday. Probably won't for a couple days. I think I have some stock that'll work; some 3/4" ply. If the ply turns out to be too thin, I probably have something I can plane to the proper dimensions.
                    I put it all back together better than before. There\'s lots of leftover parts.

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                    • #11
                      Re: fence alignment

                      No sweat. Just clamp to the fence with them stuck down in the slot and press them against whichever edge you referenced the blade from. (Don't forget to shim the back one for any kick out).

                      Go
                      Practicing at practical wood working

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