Laser align TS fence?

I have owned a cheap laser levels for some time now but have not found much use for it. Just awhile ago I got the bright idea that it might be a good way to check my table saw fence to blade alignment. I locked the fence down about 4" to the right of the saw blade. With the blade sticking up above the table about 1 1/2" I laid the level on its side and slid it up against the blade and projected a dot on the wall behind the saw. (about 12' away) I marked the dot on the wall and set an inside caliper to the distance between the level and the fence. Then I moved the level so it was against the fence and projected a dot on the wall and marked the second location on the wall. The final step was to compare the distance between the marks on the wall with the caliper setting. (It was the same) Anyone else tried this or used a laser in some other way to check saw alignment? Earl Creel
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That sounds cool Earl.... I guess the $64,000. question is,,,, did it work as well as you would expect? Seems like measuring between 2 light dots with out anything to really touch with the calipers might cause an error. Can you consistently do this over and over with the same results? How smooth are the cuts?

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In rec.woodworking

I had this exact same idea last week and even worked up a spreadsheet to do the math, translating the difference into degrees and increased width of kerf in thousandths of an inch.
In a nutshell, it will work, but get the dots as far away as you can, even 20' or more. It still seemed more trouble and less accurate than a dial indicator.
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What if you just put the level w/ the laser against the fence - then brought it up to the point where the dot hit the kurf of the blade - then spin the blade - if the dot goes off the blade - you know you are out of square - if its on the blade the entire time - you know you are good to go.
just an idea....

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I'd have to go with Robs idea. If you use the wall, it would have to be straight, and square to the table saw; otherwise it would throw any measurements off. Personally, I keep the rear of the fence a hair farther away from the blade than the front.
Ken

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Ken:

Why not have a piece of MDF or melamine clamped to the back of the saw, aim the laser to that? The MDF or melamine should be flat, the back of the saw probably will be square to the blade, and the laser dots will be tightly focused.
Something to test on a deary day in the shop. Oh, BTW, I have been told to make the fence, from front to rear, "dead on" parallel to the blade, why do you think it's the way to go?
MJ Wallace
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Just a little extra clearance from the back teeth.
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