I need a table saw for cutting a thin plastic sign board related to a small business I'm involved with. But since I also do some wood working I plan to use whatever I get for hobbyist use.
I only have two concerns about the 3650. One concern is dust collection. The sign board I'll be cutting has a 4 mm thick layer of polystrene in the middle which creates a nasty dust. I don't need the power of a full cabinet saw, but I do need good to excellent dust collection. Are there any mods I can make to the TS3650 to improve its dust collection?
A second concern is the rip capacity. Has anyone slid the rails on their TS3650 to the right to increase capacity? If so, how much rip capacity can I expect when I shift the rails? The nearest Home Depot is two hours away and I neglected to figure this out when I was last there.
My other option is the Craftsman 22124 but I'd have to buy a whole new rail system and I feel that for $950 I'd rather fork over some more cash and just go with a full cabinet saw. Great saw, but it's at an awkward price point.
I'm hoping with a bit of creativity I can make the TS3650 have 48" rip capacity and sufficient dust collection.
Thanks for any input.
Sorry, can't help ya with the rail issue. The standard DC port attaches to a shop ac pretty nicely and given the confines of the nicely build shroud around the blade it does a very good job. I was thinking of adding a 4" port to the underside but couldn't see the upside give the effectiveness of the shop vac. I'm a pretty casual user, unlike yourself but I can't see heavy use making much of a difference. I am far from the last word on this!!
I've had good luck by shaping a piece of cardboard to fill the square opening underneath the body of the saw. This virtually eliminates all of the dust under the saw itself. I did the same to fill the small gap that is present on one side of the saw blade shroud. These can cause interference when tilting the blade, but they are easily removed. A zero clearance throat plate helps to keep the dust down as well.
The first thing I did after I purchased my TS3650 was to go looking to see if Ridgid made a 4 inch dust collection pick-up to replace the 2 1/2 inch hook-up that it shipped with as the default option. The 2 1/2 inch hook-up suggested it was sized for use with a shop vacuum.
Now a shop vacuum is a relativity inexpensive, portable, and compact option for table saw dust collection. If no other option is available, the shop vacuum is better then a broom. However, at its best, a shop vacuum is capable of only pulling between 175 to 200 CFM. Factor in a dirty filter and the real CFM drops.
Most likely you are getting a little more then 125 CFM through a 2 1/2 inch hose off a shop vacuum.
To effectively collect the fine particulates in the dust produced by a table saw you'll need to be in the neighborhood of 350 to 500 CFM. The only way to, cost effectively, obtain this type of CFM is using either 4 inch or 5 inch pick-up hose.
Being unable to locate a 4 inch dust collection pick-up from Ridgid, I made my own using 1/4 inch plywood.
As I recall, my modified dust pick-up had to extend down about 2 1/4 inches and it had to be angled at 45 degrees to accommodate the tilting arbor.
Let me know if you want to see pictures or a shop drawing.
Hi Chris - I know this is a Rigdig board, but have you considered the GI 50-220CL M1? It's a hybrid with 50" rails stock for < $900, and appears to offer what your looking for.
I am considering that General. I can pick one up in Minnesota, about a ten hour drive, for $850 with the 50" rails.
I need to be there next week anyways, so it's strongly under consideration.
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