for Cold Climate Housing and much more

Line-up and Adjustments

Many times the problems of getting clean accurate cuts from a table saw come from a lack of line-up or adjustment of the saw itself. 

There is only one thing on a table saw that cannot be adjusted -- so we must start there.

The most common error is assuming that the blade is the basis of lining up the fence for a clean cut, where in fact the motor mount itself first needs to be lined up to the table. 

There is a special little bit of geometry that comes into play here.  When we line anything up to the blade we have about 6 to 8 inches of blade to get things like the fence parallel to it.  If we work really hard lining the blade up to the table itself, to the miter slot, then if we line the fence up to the miter slot things suddenly get easier.  Blade to Miter Slot - work really hard over an 8 inch spread.  Fence to Miter Slot  - we can be rather casual over a 24 inch spread and get that fence quite precisely lined up to the blade -- simply because we have 3 times the spread to work with.  1/32 inch of error over 24 inches is only 1/96 inch error over that 8" blade!  Not to mention that the first adjustment will be a dynamic not a static adjustment so that the simple tape measure adjustment for the fence line-up becomes a dynamic adjustment automatically -- adjusting the fence to the cut in the wood despite any wobble in the blade.

Check out the video on line-up for the details.  We will do the difficult first and permanent line-up with a tuning fork -- and the constantly adjusted fence line-up with a simple tape measurer -- but the two working to the same level of precision when the blade hits the wood.

The videos in this section listed on the left of your screen are worth checking out to be sure you are not fighting the wrong battle.


Learning Curve 94

Add A Comment


Viewing from newest to oldest – Reverse

Be The First To Add A Comment

I encourage you to help develop the topic of this page by sharing your advice/comments/wisdom/personal experience/etc on this specific subject through the form below. Although I have developed most of this site with the encyclopedic concept of research and verification of information—I cannot vouch for anything contained in the comments below, but I may pick up, develop and include ideas put forward here into the primary entries. Please sign your name so we know who to give credit to. Your picture will show up next to your comment, here and elsewhere, if you sign up with Gravatar - jon

Please note that comments now need to be approved before appearing on the site to combat spam problems.
Sorry for the delay!