Newbie questions on use of table saw


Hi all just bought a porter cable 10" bench mount table saw and my knowledge of what is possible with one these is very limited. Woodie told me that a table saw is the heart of any shop so i went and got what I thought looked like a good unit but very pricey.
I am no stranger to wood and have done a few major projects [built 2 houses and various sheds verandahs etc] but never done much in the way of precision wood machining.
Can I cut a dado using the standard blade?
The instruction booklet advises against using the rip fence for repetition cutting.
How would I do repetitition cuts without using rthe ip fence?
Any links to resources on the use of tables saws would be appreciated.
thanks scul
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scully wrote:

I'm sure there will be quite a few people here who will say that the benchtop saw isn't necessarily the best option. For the same amount of money you might be able to get a "contractor saw". It will take up more space, but will likely be more useful.

Have you considered searching on google? Try the following link and it will give you quite a few webpages with hints and tips.
http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&c2coff=1&q=how+to+use+table+saw&btnG=Search&meta Chris
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reply to http://groups.google.com/group/rec.woodworking/browse_frm/thread/ebfa8cbb29611f74/bd6768d75f68f1a5#bd6768d75f68f1a5 I don't have a link to your local library, but I wouls suggest you go there or access their card catalog on line and do a search on table saw. You will more than likely find several books and videos. Good luck. djs
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scully wrote:

Yes. Doing a lot of them is very tedious. A sharp chisel or a shoulder plane (or a dado plane) is useful for cleaning up a nibbled dado as a standard blade will tend to leave lots of parrallel grooves.

You can use a halffence clamped to the fence that stops just shy of the blade so that the half fence and the blade never contact the workpece at the same time.
--

FF


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Yes, but it certainly would be tedious and time consuming.

They probably meant with the fence that comes with the saw. Such a statement is not a good sign. You could hold it in place with blocks and clamps (like I do with the fence on my old Craftsman saw).

Jim
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scully wrote:

Yes you can use the standard blade but the dado will be very narrow.
The warning is not to use the fence as a stop when crosscutting. This causes the cutoff to be trapped between the fence and blade. The saw will then throw the cutoff in your face. Exciting but not fun! Fred
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Thats an excellent reason not to do it. I bought the benchtop as I work in a 10'x10' and space is at a premium. It has features found on any contractors saw which in my price range were way to big and heavy and the ones that were ok sizewise were so crap I wouldnt buy em. I bought on size, quality and features, in that order.
Still got to get a router table 14" bandsaw in there.(:{o>
Off to the library in search of books. Google brought up a few snacks but I am after a smogasbord. scul
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Actually you can cut 3/4" wide dados with the single narrow blade about as easily as cutting a 4' wide dado with a standard stacked dado set. It takes more time but it is certainly possible.
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be careful using one. don't use the miter and fence at the same time
(when using the fence as a guide) don't pushforward with the hand on the side of the blade that is farthest from the fence after the blade gets close to cutting through. Lose rigidity and pinch.
don't this
don't that
don't the other
-
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Heck of an arbor you got there.
p.s. I'd use a cross-cut sled for dados.....
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Can you elaborate on this? I am about to purchase my first table saw at the end of this month, and I would prefer not have any wood hitting me in the face.
Thanks.
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Locutus wrote:

Wood between the blade and fence tends to be lifted by the back of the blade. When ripping, it needs to be firmly controlled to prevent this. This is usually easy, because your hand or pushstick is being used to push the wood through the saw. When crosscutting, you should be using the miter guage to push the wood. As soon as the blade cuts through the piece, the cutoff end is loose. If it vibrates to a place where it touches both the blade and fence, it will wedge itself against the blade and be thrown toward the operator. You will hear a loud BANG, and will then have the opportunity to check for bleeding and look for the now missing cutoff. The actual event is too fast to be seen. Living through this is a good reason to take a break and check your hospitalization coverage. Fred
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Thank you. That makes perfect sense.
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Fred is absolutely right! For crosscuts, design and manufacture a precision crosscut sled. Use oak plywood for the sled itself and solid 3/4" oak for the crosspieces and track inserts. Search the Internet for table saw sled or crosscut sled. You will find extreme value added to even the cheapest table saw(mine included!). It can be used for crosscut, small (24") rips, dado cuts (multiple passes), even moulding small picture frame pieces. Let me know if you don't find a satisfactory design on the net.
Good Luck! Bobby
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I use a crosscut sled all the time. Before I built one I would attached a piece of wood to my mitrer gauge and clamped a stop to it. If I had a 10' x 10' shop I would take my $300.00 used contractor saw and put my rounter in the outfeed table. I would also now have a large work space to use. Without a doubt use a hand router for dadoes as stated from someone above. I would buy used power tools and save your money for quality hand tools which are harder to find used.
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Hello,

I would be lost without mine.

The answer is yes, I have made and used various jigs prior to purchasing a dado blade. With your standard blade you will make several passes at what ever your trying to do.

What good is it if not to guide you?

What I would do is build a cross cut jig and use it if your worried about the fence.

Of coarse these are my opinions and are subject to many other peoples thoughts but hey they work for me I have had nary a problem and still have all my fingers..
Al
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The first thing to do is get a really good pair of heavy riggers goloves and always use gloves when working with wood on a machine.
And see whats happens: http://www.connoraston.com/dotrec /
So I'll take this slowly never never ever wear any gloves when machining. I was lucky not to loose a thumb. I wish someone could have told me this when I first started.
Connor

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scully wrote:

You would be so-o-o-o-o-o-o much better off getting a cheap router and a clamping straight edge for dados.
FoggyTown
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I bought a 10" TS for a home reno. I was gonna sel it after. Not anymore. You're hooked. It is the m/c. It cost me 180 from 300, on sale. It came w/ a stand. It has cast Al construction, and an Al mitre, with non-standard slots. It gets moved around like crazy. It gets spun several times for every cut. Its got an average sized top. It has wings: without wings, big bummer; w/o wings and smal top, bigger bummer. The mitre is not good for much if joints needs to match - say any more than one window, w/ 3 times the stock. The mitre has way to much slop. 3 Hp will cut a 2x4 into little pieces sideways- barely. Came w/ thermal overload, which works when doing so.
The fence is good enough that so far all rips are "fine" to my eye.
Any TS owner has to build a crosscut sled, using strips of wood that ride simultaneously in both mitre slots. I had to quickly modify my TS cast Al top slots w/ a cut-off disk on my "dremel". Then I could do this, as well, and not harm the use of any orig or aftermarket equipment. Now crosscuts are freakin' amazing.
I had to build a mitre sled. Now mitre cuts are freakin' amazing. Like cutting lines layed out on paper w/ a razor.
I'm sure there are issues w/ the angle of the blade, wobble, & o/ things I do not even think of yet.
In order to get out of this in the first place, you'll need a saw sold to the ground, w/ heavy steel std. construction, lots of weight, and quality. Price ain't that bad too.
Right now, theres nothing I wouldn't take on. But I am new, and who knows?
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the table top prob ain't flat. On my router table this causes tool rings where the piece drops, and as the two fence halves are plastic, the piece shifts as it lets go of one. So far do-able, but you have to watch it. Shouldn't have this prob. For 0$ ok i'll do that- until otherwise.
I am building a 25" x 33" 1"x2" frame today for a fuse box panel box cover. The top and bottom is off by 3/16", and side to side is off by 3/16", not all one , but say a 20/80, 60/40 thing, a bad thing, but done w/ studs. This makes a rediculous amount of calculations for a tight fit-and glue-up. I let AutoCAD tell me the 'aligned' dimensions. In order to cut and glue up one wonky 3/16" frame corner the bottom piece has to be cut at an angle of - 89.9304 degrees w/ the ends 21.9038", and 21.8951", not 21.9035" if straight. - mitre sled, using the plywood panel as an angle template
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