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  • TS3650 Setup Lessons Learned

    I made sawdust tonight with my new 3650... so very sweet. This saw was amazingly quiet and cut an extremely smooth test cut. I am not using the Ridgid blade but went with a Freud 80 tooth thin kerf unit. This post is not to talk so much about this saw but to provide info for the next person setting up their new 3650 about the little things I found during the assembly that may save them some time... and maybe help Ridgid correct/tweak the assembly manual or tool itself. The packaging and manual was awesome with only the issues I have noted below:

    [img]redface.gif[/img] Once you clean the oil from the table top and the extensions get some good paste wax on them. With in a matter of 3 days I started to get minor surface rust just from the oil from my fingers/hands. This cleaned up with just a little Mothers metal polish.

    There is a decal on the back fence rail, far left side that tells the obvious... "Don't lift from the rails" but it is so thick that the fence hangs up on it. Remove it and don't try moving the saw with the rails.

    Had a slight wobble in the new blade when I spun it by hand. Measured with a dial indicator I had .010" runout just inside the blade teeth. The arbor had a .001" runout. So, I had a slightly bent blade and a slightly out of whack arbor. By rotating the blade in increments of 90 degrees,in relation to the arbor, and some fine tuning, I was able to get the runout to a fairly minor .003" Without a dial indicator this may be a difficult chore but more importantly something to be aware of.

    The assembly manual shows using two C-clamps to help provide vertical alignment of the extensions in relation to the table... that would work only if the extensions were the same exact thickness as the table or thicker... they are actually thinner. The clamps are suppose to lift the extension to make it flush with the top but are approx 1/16th short of doing that. I used a flat washer between the clamp and the extension lip (on the bottom) and that allowed the clamp to lift the extension flush to the table top. Easy fix.

    What is the deal with the metric/standard mix?? They had standard threaded bolts with metric heads?? Metric bolts... standard bolts. Make it either all metric or all standard... felt like I was working on a mid 80's GM car.

    The Herc-u-lift is a pretty simple but effective means of lifting and moving this 300 lb shop centerpiece. The one issue I noticed when putting it together is that the bolts that go through the square tubing are about a size smaller than the hole (not talking about the pivot points here, just the fixed points) and the supplied nut could widen, or pull through, that hole with use... that could cause bad things to happen. I found some flat washers in my shop that fit these bolts and provided additional support to the assembly.

    When assembling the front rail to the top and extensions, the instructions tell you to install 4 bolts... even though there are 5 holes. I have everything all together and guess what... I have an extra nut and bolt. Not sure I want to take the front rail off to add that extra bolt after I have everything dialed in but anyone else should go ahead and include it as well as having Ridgid revise the manual. Rail seems very rigid where the extra bolt would go.

    > Make sure when aligning the back rail that they sit flush, or slightly below, the miter slots. The left side was just a little bit above and caused the miter guide bar to hang up.

    The machining process for the miter gauge T-slots left a raised edge that caused the miter gauge bar to drag and hang up. I took a 6" flat file, at an angle, and removed just enough material to get rid of the ridge and smooth out the slot. Miter gauge slides so very nice now. Care should be taken during this step just to remove enough material to clean it up... not to alter the guide slot shape.

    That is it... little longer than planned but hopefully gets some of the minor things that can slow down the wheels of progress in front of the WW looking at assembling the 3650. If something I listed is not very clear drop me an email and I will try to clarify it. I am still pleased that I bought this saw and it looks like a great product that should last me a while. I have only one cut so far so I can not say too much about the operation of it. I will provide my two cents on that in the future.

    Forgot to mention that the fence tends to drag a little but I found that by using the past wax on the rails that it now moves smoothly.

    [ 09-27-2003, 06:32 PM: Message edited by: RSHugger ]
    \"It is better to be careful 100 times than killed once\"<br />Mark Twain

  • #2
    Great review, which should actually be helpful to others, as well as Ridgid! Thanks for posting it.

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    • #3
      What a nice job on the review!
      Andy B.

      Comment


      • #4
        Excellent review. Thanks for your effort!

        I'm looking forward to reading your performance report once you start using the saw.

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        • #5
          Thanks guys... [img]smile.gif[/img]

          The saw is new... there will be bugs to iron out for Ridgid and if this helps just even a little then I feel that I have done my part.

          Hopefully this will also help the hobbyist to work through the issues before getting bogged down with them and getting frustrated... there are plenty of other things to get frustrated over than assembling this saw.

          What good is knowledge if you can't share it?

          I have found one other item that is bugging me with the saw... have not spent too much time trying to resolve this one yet. The bottom 3-4 inches of the table saw legs flex when you apply a sideways motion to the table. This is the area right below the rolled edge and above the rubber feet. Currently I have the rubber feet extended further than spec and that additional height may be part of the culprit. Bracing between legs may help also... I will let you know what I find out when I get a chance to tinker.
          \"It is better to be careful 100 times than killed once\"<br />Mark Twain

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          • #6
            When I was at HD I noticed the same problem that you mentioned with the legs on the 3650. I applied a twisting force on the table to see how sturdy the legs are and I noticed that they were flexing on the bottom. I did the same test on the RAS next to it (because of a similar leg design to the 3612) and there was no apparent flex. I suspected that they used thinner gage on the 3650, but without a micrometer I could not tell. This could be the problem but surely bracing the legs will correct this.

            Comment


            • #7
              I compared the legs on the 3650 to the Delta and Craftsman models (saws) and noticed that the Ridgid one seemed thinner. The others did not flex. I measured a thickness of .075". Anyone with a 3612 or 2424 want to measure their legs... saw legs

              The saw body seems to be the same thickness as the legs. Is this a problems?? Time will tell.

              I am thinking of trying some aluminum angle between the feet, that should help stiffen the lower legs up... the twisting action is the problem so that may not help too much. May need to punch some more holes in the legs and run cross bracing down low Once I figure it out I will post the solution.

              This is one case where newer isn't necessarily better This is a design flaw but not enough for me to take the saw back.
              \"It is better to be careful 100 times than killed once\"<br />Mark Twain

              Comment


              • #8
                Just an observation:

                I encountered the same thing regarding leveling the wings when assembling a 2424 a couple of years ago, and I fixed on the same solution as RSH: a couple of thick washers on the underside of the wings. I posted this to Ridgid (then Jake), whose reaction was: "Jeekers, now that you say it is seems obvious; good fix; we'll put it in future manuals."

                I guess they never did.

                Comment


                • #9
                  The leg metal thickness of the 3612 is the same as the 3650 at .075". However, from the 3650 illustration I see that they have removed from the leg set the side upper bracing struts. These enabled the 3612 leg set to be a complete stand-alone, with the saw housing just sitting on top. There appears to be only the front (black painted with Ridgid logo) and rear struts in place.

                  Perhaps this ommission is the reason for the flexing. My 3612 doesn't flex at all, and it looks to be roughly the same as far as the leg dimensions are concerned.

                  David

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                  • #10
                    I am in the process of assembling my second TS2424. Both have 5 holes for the front rail and the instructions indicate using all 5. Also from the pictures, it does appear the 3650 lacks the table leg support strength found in 2424 and 3612.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The odd part with the table flex is that most of the motion occurs at the lower portion of the legs.

                      Just for grins I looked at the picture of the TS3650 on the website and the leg design is slightly different than what hit the streets Did the Bean counters want to trim some material off?? If you look at a picture of the saw you can see that the rolled edge of the legs extend all of the way to the feet. The rolled edge on my saw stops 3ish inches above the bottom of the leg... where most of the twisting takes place. There is also motion further up but the big culprit is the lower portion. I thought I had seen a larger picture of the saw posted here that may show the legs a little more clearly but ...

                      The plot thickens.

                      [ 09-30-2003, 03:46 PM: Message edited by: RSHugger ]
                      \"It is better to be careful 100 times than killed once\"<br />Mark Twain

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I think that David hit the problem on the head... no upper side support. After I got home from work I pushed the saw around and noticed that on the sides where the legs join the body that is an area of "significant" flexing and motion. Maybe if they had upper support bracing like with the 3612 this would not be an issue. The legs still show twisting motion at the bottom.

                        Does Bob have any insight on the issue?
                        \"It is better to be careful 100 times than killed once\"<br />Mark Twain

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Congratulations, I think you've just located a quite serious design flaw in the new 3650! I've just gone out and attempted to twist or move my 3612. It's fitted with a folding outfeed table that gives added weight, but the whole thing is as solid as a rock! The upper side support struts are really beefy and measure 4" in height. These seem to be missing from the 3650 pics, and could well be the reason that you can twist the entire saw assembly. On the 3612 the base is an entire assembly in its own right, with the saw just sitting on top. The 3650 looks as though the legs have been just attached to the saw and do not form an entire self-supporting assembly.

                          I think Bob needs to review these findings with the design engineers and get back with a solution.

                          David

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                          • #14
                            Thanks for everyones input on the new saw. Regarding the twist on the legstand. I put both saws side by side and in my opinion there really isn't much difference. I didn't acutally pull the engineering drawings but I measured the thickness of both legstands with a digital caliper and they both came in around .910-.915. I don't think the movement discussed is directly related to the absence of upper side stiffeners. It's kind of hard to explain but the TS3612 legs had sharp outside corners allowing the foot levelers to be placed further out. The legs on the TS3650 are rounded causing the foot levelers to be placed sightly in towards the center of the saw. I belive this accounts for the slight amount of movement being discussed. In any case this slight movement does not take place when actually cutting on the saw and will have no effect on the cut. A couple of other things; make sure that all of the eight bolts that attach the cabinet of the saw to the legstand are in place and tight and as was already mentioned keep the leveling feet adjusted as low as practical. As these new tools become more and more widely bought and used I look forward to everyones comments. Your involvement and educated comments are what make this forum so interesting. Thanks!

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                            • #15
                              Bob,

                              I don't want you to think that I disbelieve you. But leg stands whose metal thickness is just shy of 1" would not be giving anyone a twisting problem. I think you'll find with your digital caliper that when you re-measure they come in around .075" [img]tongue.gif[/img]

                              David

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