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Table Saw Rehab

December 18, 2010

A couple of weeks ago I bought a used Sears Craftsman table saw. I have to admit that I rushed into it and paid more than I should have and got a saw of lesser quality than I would have liked to have. Maybe I should have just purchased a new one. So I'm fixing up this saw.

The motor bearings were on the way out. I could hear one of them sing a little when the saw ran. I was able to buy new ones for $6.39 delivered off eBay, so I didn't have to spend a lot of money.

Next I had to pull the bearings off. One of them was right at the end of the motor shaft so it was no problem to use my flywheel puller and get that one off. The other bearing however was further down the shaft and tucked partly inside the fan. So my flywheel puller wouldn't reach and the puller tongs wouldn't fit inside the fan.

So I cobbled together my own puller. It took some dinking around to get it to work, but it did finally get the bearing off.

Putting the new ones on was easy. I found a piece of copper pipe just the right diameter so that I could drive the bearings on the inner race. They went on relatively easily.

Using the flywheel puller - Easy! You can see the rest of the motor in the background.

My home made puller. The block on the end is a drill vise I made in a shop class I took at IBM back in about 1979. I don't think I've ever really used it for anything productive until now. Photo taken with my trusty Olympus D460 (almost an antique as digital cameras go).

Here's a shot of the "Marx" bearing puller taken with my new Vivitar DVR 960. The camera really is poor when it come to just taking snapshots. This shot does show how the puller had to fit down inside the fan though.

So the motor is back together and I've been cutting wood this afternoon. The first project (the project that incented me to finally get a table saw) is ripping a bunch of strips to laminate a tiller for my boat.

I also had to straighten the rip fence. It was bowed away from the saw blade roughly in the center - actually right at the saw blade. I suppose a piece of wood got bound up and getting it out bent the rip fence. So to straighten it, I put 1/2 inch blocks of oak (left over flooring) into the miter guide groove at each end of the rip fence. I put the rip fence up against those blocks and used a another piece of oak as a drift and whacked it with my hand sledge. One hit and it was right where it was supposed to be. The good news is that it is straightened out. The bad news is that it bent back all too easily. If its that soft, it will bend again. So I need to put a piece of oak or ash on it to reinforce it and to provide a completely straight surface.

I also need to get a blade guard. Ripping these narrow pieces without one is no fun.

I also need to get a new 10 inch carbide blade. I tried the ones that came with the saw and they burned the wood too bad. I put on the 9" off my radial arm saw and it cut pretty good. I've been using that blade for years; I'm sure its not any too sharp, so I think a new blade will make a big difference.

I will also put a board between the saw and the stand with a vacuum hose port. Hopefully that will help contain some of the sawdust.

December 28, 2010

I did get a new blade and put a piece of plywood between the saw and the stand, so that work is done. I'm not sure the plywood really controls the sawdust all that much. The new blade really made a difference though.

Plan to make a picture frame for my "Christ As My Pilot" picture next.

December 29, 2010

I did all the cuts for the picture frame and glued it up today. The 45 degree cuts came out perfect and I just set the angle on the bevel guide without checking it the square. I never could have come close to this with the radial arm saw I have.

At right is the saw with the shop vac hooked up. I think if I add a cover on the back most of the saw dust will be contained. The saw dust on the floor in the photo is mostly from the cutting I did before I connected the shop vac (you do have to remember to hook it up and to turn it on).