Alternatives for fence faces?

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I'd like to replace the horrible UHMW faces on my table saw fence with something better. Any suggestions?
Mark H.
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On Tue, 25 Jan 2005 04:33:02 GMT, "Mark Howell"

the baltic birch ply faced with high pressure laminate on my biesemeyer seems to be ok....
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wrote:

So *thats* what the Biesemeyer faces are made of. I didn't know that. Perhaps I could buy replacements and try to retrofit the slide-on clips that mount these uhmw faces.
Thanks, Mark
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Leftover pieces of that Pergo-like flooring work for me.
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Interesting. I took a look at some that I had in the attic, I don't think they have enough thickness to mount the clips that I have to use for this fence. Maybe if I glue two of them together?
Thanks, Mark
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What kind of problems are you having with the UHMW faces?
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wrote in message

Too much distortion when mounted. They're dead flat off the fence, but when mounted they flex too much. The 4 clips pull the face to the fence, and between the clips the stuff bows outward.
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Mark Howell wrote:

I have the same fence. It sounds like the mortise for the clips in the UHMW were cut a little too deep. Try backing off a bit on the screws holding the clips to the UHMW where the fence is pulled in. It took me a number of tries but I was able to get it to about .002 along it's length. One of the good points is I now can remove and install the faces with a rap with the palm of my hand. Using a mallet is no longer necessary.
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA (Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
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I like hard rock maple, waxed.
Dave

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Mark Howell wrote:

How about MDF covered with a good quality laminate? Stiff, square, cheap, durable, and easily replaced.
UHMW is a particularly bad choice by the manufacturer because as you note later, if tends to flow. Your existing UHMW glued to a base of MDF for stiffness might give you the best of both worlds.
I have a General 650. The sacrificial fences that are attached to the steel fence are really cheapo. (The fence itself is great) I'd like to replace them, but I can't figure out how to get them off, short of using a wrecking bar.
Mark, how do your fences come off?
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You tap the end with a mallet.
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Mark,
Do away with the clips, drill and countersink (for screw size you're using) and drill about 6, 1/8" dia holes down the center of the fence and use some self threading screws to mount the UHMW. If the UHMW is truly flat then just go ahead with the procedures below if you want to use this method. If the UHMW is not flat and the faces parallel, then mill it flat. It will go thru your planer just fine. I used an MDF carrier when I milled my Jet Xacta fence faces flat. I now have less a .001" variance the full length of my fence after doing this.
The trick is in the details - as always. Once you drill the countersinks and the initial 1/8" holes in the UHMW, place it against the fence using some shims along the bottom edge to maintain table clearance evenly. I placed some double back tape on mine then once aligned, pressed it into place to hold it while I marked the holes. Use a exact fitting center punch to accurately mark the holes onto the metal portion of the fence. Remove the UHMW and the tape.
Drill the correct size hole in the fence for whatever self-tapping screws you're using (#8's are good). On the UHMW, elongate each hole evenly, left and right of the center of the 1/8" holes you drilled in the UHMW. When mounting the UHMW, start from the center and work towards the ends alternating tightening each screw left and right of center. The countersinks should be deep and large enough so the screw head is beneath the surface of the UHMW and large enough so the screw can take advantage of the elongated hole if it needs to in order to adjust flat to the fence.
Your metal fence may not be as flat as you think and you may end up with a valley or two along the length. I use the Aligner Jr. to check mine. If you find a low spot, simply loosen to two screws either side and place a paper shim(s) as needed that are about the length of the distance between the two screws and the height of the fence. Slowly tighten down the screws to just snug enough to hold the fence face securely - no need for any wrist breaking torque here. Measure and adjust and shim as needed.
Did mine over two years ago and it's still good today.
Bob S.

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This sounds like a good idea but for the self tapping screws. It has been my experience that when you cram a big screw in little hole you always displace some of the metal toward the item being screwed.
I would drill straight through the fence if there is no mechanism the way, and use a sex bolt and machine screw. If you counter bore the poly for the sex bolt you can make the head flush, or just a little lower than flush.
If there is a conflict with something the fence, you could drill and tap the fence and use a machine screw. This could be done with a flat head machine screw if the poly is countersunk for the screw head.
If you use the flat head screw you need to be careful about how tight you torque the screw. Too tight and you might displace the poly and or suck out the threads in the fence if the wall section is real thin.
--

Roger Shoaf

About the time I had mastered getting the toothpaste back in the tube, then
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Roger,
Good point but this is heavy gauge metal and the screw did very little distorting - if any on mine. Not enough to affect it at any rate. But should it happen, he could also do a small countersink on the back side (Forstner bit) say a 1/16" to cover that possibility. The UHMW is about 1/2" thick (or maybe a bit more) so there's room to play.
Good idea about using machine screws but there is only one open end on the fence and it would be a bit of a trick putting a nut on the end of a stick to reach the machine screws and get them on. Not that it can't be done...just a b*tch doing it is all.
My fence came with self-taping screws holding the sides on. I added extra's, milled the UHMW and then shimmed it as necessary so my fence faces really are within .001" from end to end.
Bob S.

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Mark,

My fence didn't have clips (Xacta 52") just 4 screws and it was about as flat as the rolling hills of Virginia... I can't answer that for you but if the screws that are there will work out spacing wise, then use them. Otherwise you want nearly even spacing on the screws.

You may find that a ball-peen hammer will do more good than trying to use clamps. Just enough force to tap it back flat and that will not distort the rest of the fence.
Bob S.
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paint!

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Mark,
Just looked at the pics you posted. Interesting the way they did that but how in the hell they expect it to be flat for the entire length is beyond me. I would call Jet and tell them about about bad that fence is and ask them to send a replacement - whether it's under warranty or not. That is a design or manufacturing flaw and they probably already have had so many complaints that they have a fix for that. Squeaky wheel gets the grease....
But if you're determined to make this work, then I wouldn't place a screw hole in the area of the clips because you need to countersink it on the face side and there's not eneough thickness for that. So place the first screw nearer the end, about an inch away from the clip. Same for the other end. Place at least 3 or 4 more in between.
Those are self-tapping screws it looks like and that is powder-coated paint, so as you said, those screws will be tough to get out but they will come out.
Before you go to far - measure how far out (pluse and minus) the metal fence is from end to end. If there is a big transition from the high to low spots you will need to either lower the high spots or raise the low spots by shimming or use a fence face material that will not deform and bend as easily as the UHMW.
The suggestion of using Baltic Birch is good but finding it may be a trick and a 5x5 sheet is a bit pricey if you don't have a need for the rest of it. There are other ply's but are they available in your area is the question. Have a cabinet shop around that may sell you some cutoffs?
You could use 3/4" MDF and laminate it with Formica as another idea. It's inexpensive and flat - just be mindful of the dust and don't use your best blade to machine it.
Weather permitting (it's an unheated shop), I'll take a pic or two of mine so you can see exactly what I'm suggesting.
Bob S.
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Mark Howell wrote:

The "clips" are called/made by Mod-Eez in case anyone is wondering/ever wanted to make/use something for themselves on a fence upgrade.
http://www.mod-eez.com
In case anyone was wondering.
UA100
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Unisaw A100 wrote:

The Jet Deluxe Commercial Xacta Fence with the micro adjuster is actually made by HTC. The Mod-Eez clips are close but not quite those used on the HTC fences. The link below shows the clips in item D:
http://www.woodcraft.com/family.aspx?DeptID "78&FamilyIDa61
They're $9.00 for a package of 8 clips. I believe Rockler also sells them.
-- Jack Novak Buffalo, NY - USA (Remove "SPAM" from email address to reply)
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