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  • R4511 Fence Alignment

    let me start by saying that when the fence is locked down, it's rock solid, and perfectly parallel to the blade.

    my problem is getting precise positioning with it. here goes:

    when I move the fence around the table, it moves smoothly. I then position it at distance 'X' from the blade, but when I lock it down, it moves ever so slightly to the left. enough to throw the measurement off.

    I tried playing around with the UHMW alignment set screws to tighten the grip of the fence to the rail but with no success, even if it's tight (and hard to move around the table) once I lock it - it still shifts to the left, as if the locking mechanism skews the fence to the left while locking.

    has anyone else experienced this? any solution to this? or am I looking at getting a replacement from HD?

    kinda sucks, other than that , everything else is great, but without a precise fence... thats only 50% left to work with.

  • #2
    Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

    I just went out and checked my fence. Mine works fine. When you lock it down, it stays at the location I had it at. It slides easily on the rails and locks down tight. I don't know what else you can do besides play with the adjustments and see if it helps. Good luck.

    It is a very nice saw.

    Red
    Red

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

      thanks Red

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

        Mine also moves smoothly, locks down tight and stays true to the mark. I am still getting used to be able to have this level of accuracy.

        Big G

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

          Thanks Big G, mine moves smoothly, locks tight, but unfortunately does NOT stay true to the mark.

          I hope I can get this resolved quickly.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

            This is not an unusual characteristic for the t-square types. Try putting very slight pressure on the handle without locking it down, and give it a little bump. I think it's second nature for me to do that.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

              Originally posted by hewood View Post
              This is not an unusual characteristic for the t-square types. Try putting very slight pressure on the handle without locking it down, and give it a little bump. I think it's second nature for me to do that.
              I set the fence and then pump the handle slightly. If it's not on the mark I move it slightly to put it where I want it. I mean wiggle the handle up and down, it sort of centers it where it's going to be when you lock it down. It takes a few adjustment sessions to get the screws right. I installed longer screws and had to run a 5/16-18 tap into the holes but not all the way. I wanted the set screws to be tight, not loose. Maybe they tuned the set screws on mm rod or something. The new grade 5 set screws wouldn't even start into the holes?

              If the screws are adjusted just right you will be VERY close to the mark. You also won't be able to move the fence unless the handle is ALL the way up! That way the fence is very close the the inside of the rail when you move it, thus not as much deflection caused by pushing the fence. I put my hand under the handle when I move the fence and lift up a bit, it glides smooth as silk and ends up VERY close, I mean feeler gauge close.

              Sounds like heywood and I are on the same page here.

              Buck

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                hewood and Buck B, thanks for the response. that's where I was prior to posting - my set screws were long enough to be able to get the fence real tight against the rails (even to the point it wouldn't glide anymore) but still once the handle goes down, it'll skew the fence at least 1/16 I'd say...

                I stopped by rockler yesterday and checked both the PM2000 fence and the Jet Proshop fence - neither of those have this issue, the fence glides smoothly, and when locked all the way down doesn't affect the fence positioning.

                I was hoping this fence would be somewhat closer to other fences on the market, as mine skews way too much, for the mean time I'll try not locking it all the way down, but lightly bump it to 'keep it in place' while not moving it too far off the mark.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                  Hi PurpLev,

                  Thanks for the manual copy you sent me a few weeks back. I ended up buying the R4511 last week on sale at HD. I just finished assembling it and have had a chance to play with the fence. It's much better than I would have guessed based on the comments I've read online. It doesn't seem like there should be many possible sources for the problem you're describing (fence going slightly out of alignment when clamped). Possible causes I can think of include:

                  1. The anti-lift tail hook on the back end of the fence is touching the rear rail when it gets clamped. This hook should never touch the rail.

                  2. The rear surface of your front rail is not perfectly flat.

                  3. The pressure exerted by the tension clip against the front of the front rail is not symmetrically distributed between the two support spacers pressing against the back of the front rail. This could be secondary to:

                  a) The tension clip is not parallel to the T bracket and/or
                  b) The cam clamping surface (that presses on the tension clip) is not parallel to the T bracket. This could only occur if the cam clamp were defective or the cam clamp holding bracket is not welded onto the fence parallel to the T bracket.

                  It would be interesting to see if a replacement fence eliminates your problem. I really love my saw so far. Now I just need to tune it up and cut some real wood. Again, thanks for your help before.

                  Dave
                  Attached Files

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                    Thanks Dave for your input, and time.

                    I suspect my problem to be an unusual defect. I believe it's sourced at the cam clamping surface, and it's being not perfectly perpendicular to the fence.

                    I'm going to take it to a service shop, and see what they find. other than that I love this saw... works great, and produces great cuts, the work surface is large and smooth to work on... just need to get this fence issue figured out, and dialed in.

                    Glad I could help with the manual.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                      I had trouble with my fence being bowed. I called ridgid. They said to take it back to the store I bought it from. I explained I didn't want to take the whole saw back as weighed 500 lbs. She said to take the fence. I did and home depot opened a new saw and gave me the fence from it. Some guy was right behind me asking if he could be the saw at discount(they said yes) which probably made so he could go buy a nice aftermarket fence.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                        Purp,
                        You my new friend, are not alone.
                        I have the very same problem and have tried everything.
                        (I'M on my 2nd 4511 fence)
                        IMHO they could have used better quality metal in the rails,
                        and the locking handle is not well executed either.
                        (Just take a look at the way the forced are distributed)
                        Study the mechanics and you will see flexing at the welds.
                        I work in the aircraft industry, and my best friend is
                        a well known Designer/Engineer.
                        He bought this saw for me as a birthday gift.
                        It sort of puzzled him also.
                        I took him to Woodcraft and we checked the Jet/Powermatic stuff.
                        His words were, these saws (mainly the JET Hybrid) are not better any then the Ridgid ,but the Rails and Fence are far better made.
                        We are now making our own fence which borrows from the Industrial SC,
                        (very smart design)
                        also replacing the rails with 11 gauge metal that WILL NOT FLEX.
                        I also weighed the Delta T2 option and its also FAR BETTER product.
                        I chose DIY cause I want more capability then T2 can provide.

                        The 4511 is a great machine at a great price but I might of went with something else had I been able to see it first, maybe the SC next model up with real Rails/Fence...

                        I hope Ridgid fixes these issues especially since the 3650 and TS2400 were so well thought out and executed.

                        I also own the Ridgid TS2400 and the fence on that is EXCELLENT,
                        hands down a killer saw in its class.

                        Hope I didn't offend ,sorry for the long post ..

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                          Originally posted by PurpLev View Post
                          let me start by saying that when the fence is locked down, it's rock solid, and perfectly parallel to the blade.

                          my problem is getting precise positioning with it. here goes:

                          when I move the fence around the table, it moves smoothly. I then position it at distance 'X' from the blade, but when I lock it down, it moves ever so slightly to the left. enough to throw the measurement off.

                          I tried playing around with the UHMW alignment set screws to tighten the grip of the fence to the rail but with no success, even if it's tight (and hard to move around the table) once I lock it - it still shifts to the left, as if the locking mechanism skews the fence to the left while locking.

                          has anyone else experienced this? any solution to this? or am I looking at getting a replacement from HD?

                          kinda sucks, other than that , everything else is great, but without a precise fence... thats only 50% left to work with.
                          Your problem is the right screw is against the rail before the left one. I had the same problem and in fact had to get new longer screws to adjust things correctly. When you push the locking lever down the T has to tighten/ snug up to the rail with equal pressure on both screws. If one screw presses fist the fence shifts the other direction. Get the screws to press at the same time and your problem is over. Pull the T against the rail and adjust it straigt then tighten the screws equally which closes the distance for the cam action. It should take a bit of force to get a good lock.

                          Buck

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                            Thanks 5deavana8, I had a feeling I'm not the only one - and I was hoping to be able to fix this myself and not have to go through a 2nd problematic fence (and a 3rd... 4th....etc)

                            BuckB Thanks for the suggestion - I'll try that as this thing as minor as it may be at times - can be rather major when you need to really dial in precision cuts, and it's driving me nuts. other than that it's such a sweet saw... kind of an Achilles Heel....

                            BuckB - here's a question for you: aren't the 2 screws supposed to align the fence to the blade? so if you tighten them both equally - that might throw the fence out of parallel won't it?
                            Last edited by PurpLev; 06-15-2009, 04:44 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: R4511 Fence Alignment

                              Originally posted by PurpLev View Post
                              Thanks 5deavana8, I had a feeling I'm not the only one - and I was hoping to be able to fix this myself and not have to go through a 2nd problematic fence (and a 3rd... 4th....etc)

                              BuckB Thanks for the suggestion - I'll try that as this thing as minor as it may be at times - can be rather major when you need to really dial in precision cuts, and it's driving me nuts. other than that it's such a sweet saw... kind of an Achilles Heel....

                              BuckB - here's a question for you: aren't the 2 screws supposed to align the fence to the blade? so if you tighten them both equally - that might throw the fence out of parallel won't it?
                              I did it like this:
                              1: Lined up the fence with the miter slot.
                              2: Adjusted the screws so they both came in contact with the rail at the same time While the fence was still parallel to the slot.

                              At that point the fence locked down with very little ( not noticeable) lateral movement. I will admit some times I shake the handle up and down a tiny bit. I allways check to see that the fence is square to the blade before making a precision cut. I will get an Incra 1000HD at some point.

                              Buck

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