How many people really use their TS wide rip fence?

Like the subject says, I'm wondering how often people really use that wide rip fence on their TS? I mean, I understand its definitely nice to have and all. As my dad used to say, better to have and not need than need and not have. But the same goes for space and mobility in a smaller shop.
The way things are looking right now I'm most likely going to have my saw on some kind of mobile base for the foreseeable future, w/ or w/o a wide table. The stuff I'm looking at building doesn't seem to have a lot of ply or mdf in it (other than jigs, of course!) so ripping a panel in half doesn't seem to happen all that often (yet) that using a CS and some sort of panel guide is much of a hassle.
Is it possible to build a mobile cart incorporating an router table, assembly bench, etc. as part of the right extension? That might at least not waste all that space under that wing.
Ideas, suggestions, comments?
nuk
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nuk wrote:

Honestly not a lot....less then 1 percent of my cuts go above 24 inches. BUT I actually off set my 52" Bies about 10-12 inches to the left because of space limitations in my 24x24 shop so my max rip is only about 40 or so inches Only time I really had a problem was building a large entertainment center..solved that by making a VERY heavy large sled...which now sits behind my workbench waiting and waiting to be needed again...

I am not a fan of having a router table set the same height as the Table Saws top because I have a bad back and using a router at such a low height just is a royal pain..in the back not the a$$ ...
I hate to admit this but I have a 40 x 60+ inch outfeed table on the back of my saw that I use as an assembly table, coffee table, desk, you name it...
Bob Griffiths
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...???
Is there a connection btwn the sled and the offset fence? Not being picky, just making sure I'm not missing something ;)

Good point. Being 6'5", the 'normal' height of benches and the like is a bit on the low side for me. Right now my contractor's saw is at about 38", maybe a bit more, and 40" wouldn't be too much IMHO, high. Not sure if I'd want a router table higher than that or not. Guess that brings up one other negative of cutting sheet goods on a TS for me... gotta horse the darn things an extry half foot or so up to get to cuttin' ;) Always figgered there would be a downside to being tall...

Dunno about you, but it seems like I spend more darn time clearing off the junk that large horizontal surfaces like workbenches, assembly tables, etc. seem to magically accumulate. I've got a hardware kit on order from Rockler's for a detachable/foldable outfeed table so I can stow it up against a wall when not in use... and to discourage too much debris from piling up ;p
Thanks,
nuk
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No connection....just saving space since I can keep the saw closer to the one wall of my shop ...

I am only 6'2"....amd my stand alone Router table is darn close to 43 inches tall tall just a comfortable height for me ..

Not me.... I NEVER have "stuff" laying around either my wood shop in my garages...Everything always neat as a pin....... I LIE !!!!!!
Walk into my one garage and you will notice I no longer even have a work bench in it..walk into the other and TRY to set your coffee cup down... maybe you will find someplace on the floor...MAYBE!!!!
Bob Griffiths
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Bob Griffiths writes:

Fair enough. When we built my workshop, my wife looked it the day the roof was framed out, but not yet covered, and said, "You'll never fill all this space."
I never did find room in the 25x48 shop for my main workbench, which still resides in a storage shed. Maybe when I return, with fewer tools than when I left.
Charlie Self
"The future will be better tomorrow." Dan Quayle
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Hey Bob, you been in MY shop lately? Sounds like the same place.

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I've rarely needed more than the 30" my saw provides. The open area on my right side is filled with an easy on, easy off router table insert I made myself. I've raised my saw's mobile base, as I felt it was too low, which in turn raised the router table.
The real question can only be answered by you. What do YOU plan to make? If you're going to make mostly cabinets, built-ins, entertainment centers, etc... go for a 50-52" fence.
A nice setup might be a good 30" fence with an extra set of long rails. The long rails could be installed when needed and stored when not.
Barry
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Use much of the rip capacity on almost every project in one way or another. Generally for cutting plywood case sides and backs to length and width. The TS and outfeed table/bench takes up most of the middle of the shop.Also use the extension table top for glue ups and other tasks where a flat surface is handy, and the space underneath is used for sled storage.
Despite my small shop, it is handy to have the capacity.
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On the rare occasion that I have to make a long rip cut on a piece of plywood, I use a home made cutting guide and a circular saw with a plywood blade. For MDF I would use a carbide toothed blade.
I took a 12-inch by 4-foot piece of masonite and epoxied a 48-inch metal ruler (from home depot) down the center; then using the ruler as a guide fence, trimmed the masonite with the circular saw.
To make a long, straight, precise cut on a piece of plywood, I either clamp or tack the Masonite guide to the plywood with the trim edge exactly along the line I want to cut. If I haven't changed saws or blades, the cut will be deadly accurate.
It's definitely a lo-tech solution that involves groveling around on the garage floor to set up pieces of 2 x 4 to support the plywood and cut-off.

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nuk wrote:

I also have a small shop - and a 30" Unifence. I use up to 24" rather frequently. Anything larger and I pop off the fence and use a panel-cutting sled. My shop is too small to deal comfortably with large plywood sheets, so I take those out the back door and cut them to rough size on sawhorses with a circular saw - then final cuts to size on the TS.
I built my router table into my 24" TS extension back in my last shop, which was only about 10x12. My shop is a little bigger, now (20x10+). I intend to build a separate router table because the router table and TS seem to be my most frequently used tools - and they are getting in each other's way. If I was still in my smaller shop, I'd manage.
Chris
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My extension table is is supported by diagonal braces that sit on my saw's cabinet base, and the base is in a mobile base. I'll post a picture in abpf later today.
Kim
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One other thing to consider. A 50" fence only takes up 20 more inches than the 30" version.
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than
True, but that means I could not get to the size door of the shop.
I have a 30" and have only twice not had enough capacity but found easy work arounds. I just don't do big stuff so it is not a problem for me. OTOH, if I had the space, I'd have a 52" fence, "just in case". Ed
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If you can fit it in the shop.. do it.. It is very nice to have.. Well worth sacrificing that extra 20" of floor space. I have a 52" and I'd be kicking myself if I didn't get it.. Others have listed the reasons.
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I use my 50" Bies fence on my Unisaw on a regular basis. Wouldn't want to give it up! Narrower fence wouldn't cut it for me. I always wanted a better TS than my Crapsman, and now I have it. Never go back.
dave
nuk wrote:

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The much-maligned Ryobi BT-3000 has exactly this feature. Mounted in the "normal" position, you've got a 24" rip capacity to the right of the blade. It takes about 2 minutes (and no tools) to relocate the rails to the right, and then you've got another 12-18" (I forget exactly) of rip capacity.
There's even an alternate scale on the front rail so you can get accurate distance readings in the alternate configuration.
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Ditto!
wrote:

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