Table saw upgrades thread

  • Maker Monday this week involved a bit of tool repair in the wood shop. Seems the angle control vibrated unscrewed on the Rockwell Table Saw. So we bolted that back on (saw cuts better when the blade can’t flop in the breeze!) I still need to find or fabricate a fine-thread nut to hold the handwheel. It works by holding the wheel in place, but it is not what you’d call convenient.

    @kile and I were talking about setting the angle of the blade with a digital inclinometer for more repeatable beveled cuts. I think I have one of these in my packed boxes of tools somewhere: but I got to thinking about it, and you really don’t care about the angle of the blade relative to the earth. What matters is the angle relative to the table. I think I need to either consider using an optical encoder to track the position of the tilting carriage relative to the table, or maybe two sensitive accelerometers, one on the carriage, and another on the table. You’d subtract one from the other to get the blade angle, and route the reading to a remote display.

    Do we still have a couple of printers with the long strip type encoders that were in parts in the bin? Major down-side of an accelerometer based solution, is that they drift with temperature and voltage. Using the difference between two might cancel out the drift, but I’m not confident. On the other hand, we’d need to exclude dust to make an optical encoder feasible.

  • Classroom

    @pierre, or it may be simpler to use adjustable feet to level the table saw (never a bad thing to have a level saw). Then the angle from the earth and the table would be in agreement.

  • Member

    @kile if I recall correctly the floor in the woodshop is not level

  • Maybe some nice guide blocks at 15, 30, 45, 60, 90 degrees would be better.

  • Classroom

    @Chainmaildave, the idea with adjustable feet is that they can be independently adjusted to level a horizontal plane with respect to a non level surface. This would have to be done whenever the saw was moved, so maybe some marks on the floor?

  • @pierre “level” is relative. Those digital gauges have a zero on them. So you zero while flat on the table and measure the angle relative to that. It doesn’t matter if the table top is actually level or not.

  • I think Scorpion has a spare digital gauge we can donate to the space. We also keep a pretty good stock of fine thread nuts around. Let me know what size you need and I’ll check.


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