Announcement

Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

how precise do I need my saw?

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • how precise do I need my saw?

    I'm fairly new to woodworking. Have made some projects in the past but was never happy with how tight things went together.
    I just bought the 4511 table saw and spent quite a bit of time setting it up.
    Just wondering, Do I need to get the blade alignment better than .002 inches or will that suffice to square things up?
    Hope this question isn't too dumb.
    Thanks

  • #2
    Re: how precise do I need my saw?

    Not a dumb question at all. If your saw blade is aligned to within .002" you are good to go! I'd be willing to bet that most people's blade to miter slot alignment is off by .005"-.010" or more (not specific to the 4511) and they never notice it. Even worse is the fence to blade alignment which can vary just by how you lock down the fence or how wide or narrow a rip you are setting up to do. Check your fence to blade alignment at 2" and then check it at 30". Chances are it will be off just because of the tolorence of the front rail it rides on. It is better to have the fence aligned slightly bigger (.005"-.010") on the exit side of the blade so that the saw won't bind and give you a burned or poor cut. Good luck with your saw.

    millman

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: how precise do I need my saw?

      I agree that .002 is plenty accurate enough for woodworking purposes. More than likely any attempt to fine tune it even further will not be worth the time it will take to it.
      Teach your kids about taxes..........eat 30 percent of their ice cream.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: how precise do I need my saw?

        With the R4511 make sure you check miter slot parallelism with the blade angle at 45 as well. If it is out more than .010 or so, I would recommend putting in the time to shim the table to correct. Not sure what the factory tolerances are (but they seem to be pretty loose) Fine Woodworking review indicated theirs was out .032. Mine was out .008 (and that was with the shims they had used under the table at the factory).

        Also on the R4511 make sure you do as recommended in checking the fence at several distances. Very important on this saw to check with the fence "straddling" the front rail "joint" and then move over. (If you don't have the two front rail sections aligned very precisely with one another, this will cause a big shift in the fence)

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: how precise do I need my saw?

          0.002" blade alignment is very good and will be difficult to improve upon. A good Zero Clearance Insert (ZCI) is a good idea too...make sure it's flat, very stiff (no flex), and flush with the table top. Lastly, your saw is only as good as the blade you choose....make it a good one.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: how precise do I need my saw?

            Thanks for the info

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: how precise do I need my saw?

              I took your advice and check the alignment at an angle. I couldn't get all the way to 45 with my dial jig but at around 25 degrees my tolerance went from .002 to .022. How does one go about shimming the table?
              Thanks

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                You will need to loosen the bolts beneath the table that attach it to the saw frame and remove or add shims between the frame and table top. (your saw probably has some shims between the table and frame at some of the bolt locations now).

                As the R4511 is left tilt, if you are seeing that the front of the blade is too far right, you will need to add shims under the front bolts (or remove some from the rear). If you are seeing that the rear of the blade is too far right, you'll need to do the opposite (add shims under the rear bolts or remove some from the front).

                Try using thin wooden wedges between the table and frame until you get the table adjusted as needed, then use feeler gauges to determine how thick you need to make your shim stacks. You can buy shim stock and make shims, use beverage cans and cut shims from the material, or use washers of the appropriate thickness.
                Last edited by tomapple; 04-05-2009, 03:37 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                  Thanks guys. I found out I was adjusting it improperly(the real hard way). I followed tomapples advise and got it aligned at 45 too.

                  Why does one have to go to a website to find this? Shouldn't it be in the manual?

                  Now the real hard question. Since the saw is aligned, what do I blame imperfections on my projects now?
                  Last edited by toecat; 04-07-2009, 09:27 PM. Reason: .

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                    If you are using the stock miter gauge and a custom jig mounted to the gauge, you'll find that the gauge fits too sloppy in the miter groove in order to get a more accurate reading than 0.002 to about 0.004.

                    There seems to be just too much play with the stock gauge in my TS3660 at least.

                    bc

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                      YOUR WORKING WITH WOOD!

                      wood will not hold tolerances of thousands it probably will not hold tolerances of hundredths,
                      just a few percent in moisture change will make it swell or shrink,
                      we once had a wood screen door that would move nearly 5/8" of an in width, through out the season,

                      most engine parts are hardly held to .0002 of an inch,

                      even when machining steel or other, the large majority of parts are not with in the tolerances you trying to set that saw up to,
                      I know my old Bridgeport mill is old and worn, but even a new one is not much more precise and I bet If I would go and start to measure I would bet it is not with in .0002 of an inch in many locations. in the table and slides.

                      yes set your saw up carefully, but don't go to super extremes to make it perfect, as wood will not ever know it, just the nature of the machine is such that only a reasonable level of precession can be obtained, it is like using a hand drill to drill with, to precisely locate the hole is only going to be as good as your center punch, mark, and the straightness and squareness of the hole will only be as precise as you can hold the drill, a lot is the same in a table saw, your machine may be perfect, but you still have to guide the product through the blade and against the fence just the process of sliding the wood will make some differences, and if the force is constantly steady and even and the speed of the movement, all will effect the cut,
                      then take in to consideration of the materials one is using that can change as it is cut as stress are released.
                      Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                      attributed to Samuel Johnson
                      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                      PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                        BHD,

                        The previous posts mentioned a reading of .002 (two thousandths of an inch). Yours is mentioning .0002 - two ten thousandths of an inch (or as we in the tool trade say "two tenths"). Big time difference.

                        To each his own on tool set up. But personally, I set up all of my tools as accurately as I can. Why not? Doesn't take that much longer to get a blade parallel within .002. Maybe ten minutes at the outside and it's not like this is something you have to do every time you use the machine. And it eliminates one possible place for an inacuracy to creep into your work.

                        Yep, we can't control the wood. But, we can control our tools.
                        Last edited by tomapple; 04-09-2009, 08:26 AM. Reason: can't spell this morning

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                          Originally posted by toecat View Post
                          ... Since the saw is aligned, what do I blame imperfections on my projects now?
                          The wood, the lumber store, the weather. Don't fret, there's always something. The best thing to blame them on is the tools you don't have yet but "need". .

                          Go
                          Practicing at practical wood working

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: how precise do I need my saw?

                            for the sake of correction I got one to many "0" in there and meant to say .002 thousands, not ten thousands, (the only time I have used ten thousands is measuring valve stems, that I remember),

                            sorry for the clumsy fingers,

                            I am not saying one should not try to make the machine accurate, but to strive for accuracy that one will never see in reality is not really practical either, and all I am trying to say on a table saw if your in the hundredths, you doing well, one will never be able to detect the difference in practice,
                            What do you use to set the fence?
                            A tape measure is the norm, not a caliper.
                            To repeat the setting on the fence in the same place twice is not easy, if not in practice impossible. yes one can can come very close but to reset it to a few 100th's is doing good, and that is if your really diligent.
                            Last edited by BHD; 04-10-2009, 12:10 AM.
                            Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
                            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                            "The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
                            attributed to Samuel Johnson
                            ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
                            PUBLIC NOTICE: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil...plus the current state of the economy............the light at the end of the tunnel, has been turned off.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Cancel blade wobble with arbor flange runnout

                              One of the best things I did for my contractor saw was to cancel the blade wobble with the arbor flange runnout. Before I did this I measured a wobble in the blade of up to .008" and would sometimes see the blade swirl in the cut. After I canceled out the blade wobble I got it down to around .002 to .003 per blade and the cuts were actually shiny.

                              My arbor flange has about .001 runnout. Not too bad. Actually, I beleive a little runnout is good. Otherwise, you can't cancel out the blade runnout without modifying the arbor.

                              Step 1
                              I marked the high point with a sharpee so I could see it with a blade on it. Then I marked all of my blades on the face side that faced the arbor. The markings were numbered where the vibration relief cuts were, so each blade had around 4 - 6 markings.

                              Step 2
                              Put blade on the arbor. Align mark 1 to the mark on the arbor flange. Hand tightened the nut. Mount a dial indicator to the table top to measure the runnout of the blade. The dial indicator plunger contacted the blade as far out on the blade without interfering with the vibration reliefs when rotating the blade. Align the 1st blade mark with the dial indicator plunger. Zero the dial indicator. The dial indicator should not be moved or adjusted for the rest of the process. On a piece of paper create a table (rows and columns) to record the measurements. The number of rows and columns is equal to the number of positions. The columns represent the number of positions as well. The rows represent the alignment of the number on the blade with the mark on the arbor flange. The first row/col value is 0.000".

                              Step 3
                              Rotate the blade and align position 2 of blade with the dial indicator plunger. Write the dial indicator measurement in the next column of the table.

                              Step 4
                              Repeat step 3 until all positions are measured and recorded for that blade position alignment with the mark on the arbor flange.

                              Step 5
                              Loosen the arbor flange nut. Rotate the blade on the arbor flange until the next mark on the blade aligns with the mark on the arbor flange nut. Hand tighten the arbor flange nut.

                              Step 6
                              Align position 1 on the blade with the dial indicator plunger. Record the measurement on the table created in step 1.

                              Step 7
                              Repeat step 3-6 until all blade position alignments with the arbor flange are complete.

                              Step 8
                              Mark down the maximum runnout value for each row to the right of the row. Find the row with the lowest value. Your ideal blade alignment with your arbor flange should be right around there. Mark the position on the blade for quick alignment when swithcing blades or go to step 9 to improve the alignment. The next step is not really necessary, but it helps a little bit.

                              Step 9
                              Looking at the maximum runout for the values on the rows above and below the ideal blade alignment position. Note the difference in maximum runnout values between those rows and the ideal position. The one with lower amount indicates the the true ideal position is between those two points. Interpolation should be able to tell you approximately what percent between those positions would be best. Once you figure it out, loose the nut and rotate the blade to align the blade with the arbor flange. Tighten and retest. This should be you ideal positions for glass smooth cuts (considering all other things are calibrated properly). Mark the position on the blade for quick alignment when swithcing blades.


                              I have taken some pretty bad blades that used to product burned cuts and used this calibration process and got very good glass like cuts. If the blade is dull, I get glass cut except for freyed edges because of tearing.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X