Best material for RAS table

I'm thinking of replacing the table on my DeWalt 1501 Radial Arm Saw as I am in the process of restoring it to its former glory.
The current table is MDF (and has been since '92) but the saw sits in a garage which is prone to damp (hence the refurbishment!).
I'm not sure what to use for this since it needs to be immune to warping etc. and am considering plywood. Would this be a good choice or should I stick to MDF or even HD chipboard (which I believe the original one was)?
TIA
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ian James wrote:

Ian...
My RAS came from the factory with a 3-piece MDF top that I've replaced with a 3/4" (18mm ?) plywood main surface and two oak boards (plus an oak strip for the fence).
I extended the table width to four feet and have been watching closely for any sign of sagging. It's still flat after nearly two years of use.
A suggestion: take careful measurements and file away a drawing of the original top - you may want to refer to it again one day.
--
Morris Dovey
DeSoto, Iowa USA
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ian James wrote:

good 5 ply would probably work. Seal the edges and flat surfaces with several coats of your favorite sealer.     mahalo,     jo4hn
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Any concerns with humidity with any of these materials, or are we OK once it's sealed?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Dave Hinz wrote:

for the bed. I applied several coats of some sealer, the name of which escapes me, on both sides and edges, with light sanding between coats. I've had stuff spilled on it, balls bouncing on it, even some guy passed out on it. I took it apart 5 years ago, resanded, and put a couple coats of poly on it. That thing is still flat today.
It has never lived outside, so the range of humidity doesn't vary that much inside a So Cal house. But with all the abuse...
    mahalo,     jo4hn
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Ian,
Splurge on a copy of the Mr. Sawdust Book "How To Master The Radial Saw" by Walley Kunkel. He shows how to make a very stable table for the RAS. It's the best book available for the RAS. It's a steel reinforced table.
See: http://mrsawdust.com /
--
Rumpty

Radial Arm Saw Forum: http://forums.delphiforums.com/woodbutcher/start
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
(snip)

(snip)
Hi James I have and older Sears RAS that I refurbished about 3 years ago. For the table I used MDF and sealed all 6 edges about 4 times with a GOOD sealer and a light sanding between coats. I then used a 1/4 sheet of Oak Plywood on the table top and attched it with small wood screws around the edges, be sure you don't get any screws in the blade path. After it was attched, I applide about 4 coats of Gloss Coat Polyethylene with light sanding between coats. Finely I hand rubed two coats of Johnson Wax. Now the table not only looks good but the 1/4 plywood keeps me from cutting into the MDF and is easy to swapout when it needs it.
The Old Goat
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I second this method, Still have the original top on mine after 20 some years. They did this in the carpenters' shop where I worked. Thought it was a good idea then. Still do.
--
Chipper Wood

useours, yours won't work
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thu, 24 Jun 2004 15:25:06 +0000, Ian James wrote:

I use 1" MDF, but no matter what you use, you should attach a 1/4" sacrificial top to the front table and _never_ kerf the sub table. This also allows you to adjust for miter cuts and from crosscut to rip cut and back without raising or lowering the arm if you make the standard kerfs in the sacrificial top.
-Doug
--
"If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples
then you and I will still each have one apple.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

All comments noted. I guess I'll have to see what I can get that's flat. However, since the MDF one has lasted for 12 years then I guess it will come down to cost!
Thanks
Ian
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.