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aftermarket TS fences, buying new power toos

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  • aftermarket TS fences, buying new power toos

    Hi all, I want to start woodworking again after a long layoff from it.(about 15 yrs.) Im going to have to replace almost all of the stationary power tools except for the ts. But I will have to get a new fence for the ole Craftsman 10 inch, made in the early 1950's.I did have a biesmeyer 50 or 52 inch fence, and it was a great fence, but alittle expensive. I've been reading a bit about some other fences that look pretty good but I've never seen or used any of them. My ? is, what do you guys use and what do you think about some of the other aftermarket fences that are available now? Also, I went HD last night to look at surface planers. The Ridgid 13 inch looks good and well built. The price was also a nice plus. Im going to have to buy a drill press, band saw, jointer and lathe as well. Any recommendations? or thoughts on the tools? Thanks for your input in advance.

  • #2
    Hi Jim - I've owned two Biesemeyer fences and think they're excellent....precise, easy, rugged, and fairly expensive...fortunately both came with the saw!

    I've also owned and used the Vega for about 6 weeks. It's also an excellent fence and costs less. I don't think it quite equals the Biese but it's a fence I could be happy with. The microadjustment works well. It's ~ $230 with free delivery at Amazon the last time I looked....if they still have the $50 off a purchase of $250, you could get the 50" for $210. Grizzly has the Shop Fox Alumarip Classic that comes with their contractor saws for ~ $200. It's a decent Biese copy...steel rails with a steel t-fence, but offers aluminum clad faces w/t-slots instead of the smooth laminate faces of the Biese.

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    • #3
      I was looking at the accusquare M1050 fence system at Mule. Does anybody have any first hand knowledge about this fence? They are $245.00. Ten"lt. and 50"rt. All aluminum, t-slots both sides and top of fence. Looks like it might be a good replacement fence.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Jimwalnutnut:
        I was looking at the accusquare M1050 fence system at Mule. Does anybody have any first hand knowledge about this fence? They are $245.00. Ten"lt. and 50"rt. All aluminum, t-slots both sides and top of fence. Looks like it might be a good replacement fence.
        My best friend had one as a replacement for his stock '80's Craftsman fence. It was a big improvement. He's since gotten a new saw with a Biese and he thinks there's no comparison, and I agree. The Mule is lighter material and deflects more than the others and is not as rugged. The better aluminum fences use a center mount design for support...Incra/Jointech. Some use the t-square design which can deflect more with aluminum...that design is stronger using steel. Some aluminum fences use the front/rear locking design which can skew when locked down...there are fewer aftermarket fences using this design. They all have some pros and cons.

        Wood Mag did a fence comparison about 15 months ago. The Mule did not do as well as the others, and noted the deflection in the review. They picked Biese as #1 and Vega as best value. But there are certainly happy owners of the Mule out there. It does offer some accessories that the others don't. What features do you like about the Mule? If the t-slots are an attractive feature, I think I'd go with the SF fence...it's basically a steel Biese type fence with t-slotted faces...~ $230 delivered.


        http://www.grizzly.com/products/item...emnumber=H5742

        [ 12-23-2005, 07:37 AM: Message edited by: hewood ]

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        • #5
          Hi Jim - I know the Ridgid planer and jointer are solid machines that I'd grab if the price was right. For planers, Dewalt has a couple worth considering, and so does Delta...the Makita gets high marks too. The Ridgid jointer looks good if you can accommodate the wide base.

          Not as sure about the DP and BS...depends on price I guess. I've read mixed reviews on them. I believe it's the lathe that gets frequent negative comments, but am not positive.

          I've been using a Beisemyer fence for about a year now and am thoroughly happy and impressed with it. A true "set it and forget it" accessory. It'll be right every time, will hold it's settings and should last a very long time. It's simple, elegant, and strong.

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          • #6
            Thanks Hewood, thats just the kind of info I was looking for. I looked at the SF fence on the Grizzly site and I gree with you. That does look like the better deal. What I care about in a fence is dependability. Will it lock a stay there,w/o deflection, Does it glide smoothly across the table. I guess what I want is Biesemeyer with a lower price lol! Thanks again for the link and info.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Jimwalnutnut:
              Thanks Hewood, thats just the kind of info I was looking for. I looked at the SF fence on the Grizzly site and I gree with you. That does look like the better deal. What I care about in a fence is dependability. Will it lock a stay there,w/o deflection, Does it glide smoothly across the table. I guess what I want is Biesemeyer with a lower price lol! Thanks again for the link and info.
              You're welcome. Yes the Biese will stay put...no question. It will glide if you wax the rails and get it adjusted correctly. It has very low deflection, depending on proper adjustment, especially if you test it near or just in front of the blade where most of the pressure from ripping occurs....if you yank on the tail end with alot of pressure that far exceeds what normal ripping causes, it may deflect a small fraction. Keep in mind that the deflection at the tail, is less than half what it'll be at the blade where it matters, so it's essentially a non-issue for Biese owners. No fence is perfect, but the Biese style has very few weaknesses and even those should never cause you a concern. I've heard nothing but praise from owners of the SF fence. It's also used on the Bridgewood contractor saws, Canwood, King Canada, Woodtek and others. Sounds like it should suit your needs nicely and make for a fine fence.

              [ 12-23-2005, 03:50 PM: Message edited by: hewood ]

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