Sears Molding Knives on Table Saw-- anyone try these?

I was at a Sears recently, and Craftsman's selling one of those multiple-molding-knife things where you can use your table saw to do moldings. Anyone try this yet?
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I have it and rather like it. The three cutter one. One time I put the blades in backwards, (triple bead) and it still worked. Well it was in pine afterall. But they sure give off a scarey sound.
John
Brian Siano wrote:

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I have the 3 knife Craftsman head and have cut a number of beaded planks for wainscotting. I like it and have had no problems - even touched up/sharpened the set a couple times (just stone the flat backside). Some folks are skittish with these moulding heads, but I don't see it any more dangerous than a full dado stack.
Also, you'll likely need to make a new insert plate for your tablesaw.
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Owen Lowe and his Fly-by-Night Copper Company
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Ditto... made over 40 cabinet panels (beaded style) using the 3 knife head and it was an easy tool to use and setup - works fine. I did have a burr or two on the threaded holes for the bolt that holds the knives in-place that kept them from seating. A thread chaser cleaned them out and all was well - just something to check.
Bob S.
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Before you buy from sears, you might want to take a look at ebay. Always several for sale, and also a nice Delta set right now.
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Fly-by-Night CC wrote:

That's no problem. I have a zero-clearance plate with changeable strips.
Which reminds me of the next question-- how deep does my tablesaw arbor have to be? I have a Dewalt 744, and I can't use a dado blade thicker than a half an inch at the most.
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Without measuring, 1/2" sounds about right for the thickness of the moulding head body - I'd really doubt it's any thicker than that.
--
Owen Lowe and his Fly-by-Night Copper Company
Offering a shim for the Porter-Cable 557 type 2 fence design.
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They work just fine. I have a historic home and the quarter round was not plain, but more wavey in style. I got a set of the planer blades for the Craftsman cutter that I have, took them to the local sharpening service with a profile of the quarter round in my home and $30 later, I can make all I want.
The thing is that if you make your own cutters or have them made they have to be ground as alike as possible. Two, make sure the set screws(allen) are tight. The LAST thing you want is one of them and a blade flying around your shop.
I also have a "Dust Boy" collector attached directly to my table saw and it gets the chips just fine!
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Regards,
JP
"The measure of a man is what he will do while expecting that he will get nothing in
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They worked out nicely, but only after some tuning. The cut was a bit rough and I found they weren't all the exact same length, nor was the edge very good. Took several hours to grind them exact, then sharpen. I've since used them in a RAS for quite a bit of molding. There are better ones on the market, but they cost more. Gerry
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Been reading this thread and finally got off my butt and went to get my Sears moulding head from my garage/shop. I am not sure just how old this thing really is but the instructions are copyright 1969 by Power Tool Institute, Inc. It is Sears model 9 3217 and is the 7" molding set with three cutters. Believe it or not, it is still in the original case with all of the original packaging and instructions.
To start with, right on the packaging it says "Radial and Table saw molding set". It also says that it fits 5/8" and 3/4" arbors. The actual cutter head itself is drilled for a 3/4 inch arbor and a bushing is supplied to use it on 5/8" arbors. It also came with 8 sets of cutters. According to the back of the packaging, there are (were?) 21 different cutter styles available. On the molding head itself it also says "5200 MAX R.P.M." so that should not be a problem with either type of saw.
It has been a good number of years since I have used it. I had to give up ww for probably 20 years and have only recently (about a year) started again. The only times that I have used the molding set was in my similarly aged DeWalt model 7770 RAS (which I still own and use today). It worked just fine and
As I remember, the molding head worked as advertised. I made some picture frames and a couple of other items with it. I have not used it in my table saw yet (didn't have one then), but have been thinking about it. I think I might use it to make some parts for a bar that I am going to build for my daughter.
I seem to remember that the finished pieces only needed light sanding. I also remember that the cutters themselves could have been better. The are "Kromedge treated" steel and obviously not carbide. One of the cutters developed a slight "defect" on the edge similar to striking a small nail or something, although I am certain that I did not strike any metal. Besides, I think that it would have affected all three of the cutters in the set and not just one of them. I just looked through all of the cutters and can't find the one in question, but I think I sharpened it back up. I have since had more experiece with sharp tools and sharpening them, and I now see that all of the cutters need work.
That's my $.02 and I'm sticking to it (unless I get a better price).
Wayne

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I have a set that I used on my old radial arm saw. The saw is gone, but the molding head is still here. It specifically says - do not use in a table saw. Are there two types of head. If there is a different head for the table saw, will it accept the knoves from the radial arm version?
Len ---------------
Brian Siano wrote:

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wrote:

I'm not the last word on Sears' stuff (nor even the 100th or 1000th), but I only ever saw three molding heads at Sears: the single blade one, a 4 3/4" (approx)-3 blade one, and a 7" (approx)-3 blade one.
I have both of the 3 blade ones. I have long lost the documentation on the 7" one (purchased in the '70s) and there is nothing on the case. I inherited the 4 3/4" one without documentation (my father purchased it in the '60s). However, on the case it says "Converts Your Bench Saw or Radial Saw." It's also labeled as a "Molding Head for Bench/Radial Saw."
I went through my docs and found a Craftsman "Handbook of Circular Saw Blades and Power Tool Accessories" (copyright 1971) in which is described all three heads. In the description for the single blade model it says, "Made especially for the Craftsman Radial Arm Saw, but fits any bench or radial arm saw with a " or 5/8" arbor." There are plenty of references throughout the three pages to use on both bench (table) saws and radial arm saws.
Owning one of each saw, I know that the motor speed is the same (3450 RPM), so functionally there shouldn't be any difference from the standpoint of tool integrity, either for the saw or the molding head.
On the other hand, the RAS is direct drive, wheras my table saw is belt drive, although with equal size pulleys, so its arbor speed is the same as the motor's. Somewhere over the years Sears/Emerson may have changed the pulley combos to give a higher blade speed on the table saw which would drive the arbor at a higher RPM than might be safe for the molding head.
My only other thought is that somehow a liability concern crept in over the years viz a vis the table saw. That strikes me as odd, because a molding head is probably the scariest accessory in the shop in my opinion, and even though I have lots of experience with the RAS and am quite comfortable with it, I think the molding head is potentially more risky on the RAS than on the table saw.
How old is your molding head?
- - LRod
Master Woodbutcher and seasoned termite
Shamelessly whoring my website since 1999
http://www.woodbutcher.net
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