Anyone Using Board Buddies?

Are any of you guys using Board Buddies on your table saw?
I've always been intrigued by these, because they provide both hold down pressure and fence pressure without impeding forward motion.
Anyone actually have and use these? What's your opinion?
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-MIKE-

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On 10/24/2010 12:04 PM, -MIKE- wrote:

I've often wanted to give them a try.
But, if your table saw/fence combo like mine (Unisaw w/unifence) does not allow the fence to be secured/locked in both front and back (meaning the back of the fence can be lifted up, albeit slightly, during a cut) then they are basically useless for applying sufficient downward force for when I would really need it.
Might want to let that be a prime factor in considering them for your use.
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On 10/24/10 12:28 PM, Swingman wrote:

Karl, I have a Biesemeyer which doesn't clamp on the back of the table and hold-down pressure has never been an issue with it. The clamping mechanism is plenty strong enough to use feather boards, which I do.
I remember being concerned about it when I first got the saw, so I did some tests. It takes quite a bit of pressure to lift up the end of the fence.
I don't know about other fences, but it's not an issue on mine. Thanks for the caution.
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-MIKE- wrote:

------------------------------------ First step in building my boat was to build a mold for the hull.
This involved ripping 2x12x24ft timbers into 1-1/2" x 5/8" x 24 ft strips.
Mounted the Board Buddies on a hunk of red oak clamped to the table of a ShopSmith.
Best guess is that using run out tables and working by myself, probably had more than a mile of cuts and filled a dumpster with saw dust that day. (Also burned out the ShopSmith motor which the got upgrades to a 1-1/2 HP unit)
Board buddies performed as advertised.
Not something I'd want to keep installed on a permanent basis which is why they are provided with mounting tracks.
Later on, installed them on a UniFence using a box structure made from 1/2" ply as a sacrifical fence and mounting surface.
Again they worked as advertised.
I see them as a tool to assist on a ripping job where the set up time is worth it.
Lew
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On 10/24/2010 12:28 PM, Swingman wrote:

Where's Leon in this discussion? Doesn't he use Board Buddies?
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On Sun, 24 Oct 2010 12:04:38 -0500, -MIKE- wrote:

Not that particular brand. I bought a set of these:
<http://woodworker.com/anti-kickback-hold-down-mssu-96974.asp ? search=kickback&searchmode=2>
many years ago and use them all the time. I'm happy with them. The pressure and angle of the wheels can be adjusted, the anti-kickback pawl can be flipped over for use as a holddown only, and they can be reversed (with a bit of work) to work on either side of a fence.
That said, they do occasionally get in the way of a push stick and wont work on narrow stock. But those attributes seem to be common to all the brands.
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On 10/24/10 12:28 PM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

I really like those, especially the lateral adjustment. It doesn't look like it would clamp to my Biesemeyer fence, however, it looks like they could be bolted straight to it.
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On 10/24/2010 12:51 PM, -MIKE- wrote:

I've never used either those or the Board Buddies, but these only appear to apply downward pressure and not "fence-ward" pressure, which I think is the advantage that the Board Buddies have over the WW Supply hold-downs.
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On Sun, 24 Oct 2010 13:33:48 -0500, Steve Turner wrote:

Apparently you missed the "lateral adjustment" comment by Mike and the "angle" comment in my original post. That allows you to angle the wheels as much or as little as you like to provide varying amounts of fenceward pressure. I keep mine at around 15 degrees.
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On 10/24/2010 7:07 PM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

Yes, I suppose so; I was mainly looking at the website and it doesn't mention either of those things. It only claims to have "hold down" and "anti-kickback" features, and not any kind of "draw the stock towards the fence" feature. I don't see how the lateral adjustment capability would have anything to do with that. And I see that there's an angle adjustment but it only appears to have "toe-on/toe-out" capability; there's no way to adjust for "camber" (that I can see), which is the primary method the Board Buddies use to draw the stock towards the fence thus obviating (or minimizing) the need for featherboards. The toe-in/toe-out feature of the WW Supply product is sufficient to achieve this capability?
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On 10/24/10 7:07 PM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

Apparently *I* missed it, too. Do you find that it works enough to keep stock against the fence?
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On Sun, 24 Oct 2010 21:04:34 -0500, -MIKE- wrote:

Seems to. I haven't had any problems. I don't, however, know how its fenceward pressure compares to other brands as I haven't used them.
I just remembered one other minor drawback. The handles used to tighten various parts are pretty flimsy and bend easily. After several years of use, the handles on mine look like modern art :-). But they still work, so I call it minor. And the picture seems to show that they've gotten rid of all but two of them.
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On 10/25/10 10:34 AM, Larry Blanchard wrote:

Thanks. Just to be clear, the angle adjustment on the wheels isn't toed in and out like the BB's, but turned like wheels steering a car?
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On 10/25/2010 11:59 AM, -MIKE- wrote:

When you said "toed in and out", you really meant "cambered":
http://www.ozebiz.com.au/racetech/theory/align.html
It's mainly camber that the Board Buddies use, perhaps with a bit of caster thrown in as well; not sure.
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On 10/25/10 1:13 PM, Steve Turner wrote:

Yep. Thanks... and good illustration.
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On Mon, 25 Oct 2010 11:59:18 -0500, -MIKE- wrote:

Yes. The entire arm that the wheel assembly is mounted on pivots. If you look closely at the big picture on the website you can see the angle markings on the part that mounts to the fence.
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-MIKE- wrote:

I have them mounted on a Biesemeyer type fence on my Jet cabinet saw. They work great and wouldn't be without them. Their design holds the stock against the fence as well as applying downward pressure on the table. Since the wheels only rotate in one direction they offer some anti-kick back protection. I wouldn't count on them to stop a major kick back though.
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