sliding sled

I have a craftsman table top 10 inch table saw. I want to make a sled for it, but the miter tracks have a little edge over the top of them. How would you attach the runners on the bottom of the sled so they slide in the existing track? Patt
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Hello Patt, I'm confused about your description; By "little edge over the top of them" does it look like an inverted "T"? If so, just machine the runner to be the width and depth of the straight portion of the slot and attach this to your sled base. No need to engage the "T" portion. If however there is something unique about your Craftsman TS then I'm not knowlegeable about this feature. My 20 year old Craftsman did not have t-slots.
Marc
Patt wrote:

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What I think he means is rather than a true t-slot, it's mostly open but there are tabs that stick out in a couple places. You would need to make a T shaped runner. Or get rid of the tabs.
-Leuf
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Hi Patt: I have the same configuration on my Skil table saw. The Skil has two (2) sets of these on the miter slots. I have been considering doing just what Marc suggested. I have looked at several sources for the same slide that the miter uses, to no avail? Look fwd to the solution also!
Bill

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"Patt" wrote:
> I have a craftsman table top 10 inch table saw. I want to make a sled for > it, but the miter tracks have a little edge over the top of them. How > would > you attach the runners on the bottom of the sled so they slide in the > existing track?
Will a 3/4"w x 3/8"dp piece of wood or metal fit in the miter slot?
(If the saw is metric, slot may vary a small amount).
If so, sled construction is very straight forward.
Lew
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I have the skil (a real piece of crap).
The slot is totally non-standard in size and I believe the crapsman is the same. The placement of the tabs means that you can only get a good cut on something a couple inches across. With the tabs (the person that thought of them should be locked up somewhere) if you push past one of the tabs your miter tends to move by an 16th of an inch making square cuts impossible. I've found no source for a decent miter or adapter that would fit into the slot. However, even if one was found the design of the tabs would make it just an inacurate.
I used my dremel to cut out the tabs so I could make a sled using plywood runners.
One of these days I'm going to take a 12 pound sledge to the saw and replace it with a decent worksite saw. The reason for distroying it is I believe that this saw is not a safe tool and I would not want to be responsible for someone getting injured.
Lew Hodgett wrote:

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Tim
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consistent in size for the length of it. If it fit in the first edges that it encountered, it didn't fit the second edges that it came to. My advice is to throw that table saw or give it to a "friend" and buy a quality one.
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Patt wrote:

Hi Patt,
I stole this info off of Woodbutcher.net... Excellent info on there about Craftsman saws... The existing tracks should be .750" wide (rigid's are this also) which are different than just about every other saw on the market apparently.
If they're not consistant for the entire length that might be a problem that requires a bit of effort to correct.
How old is your saw?
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Patt wrote:

* Read the whole thing before you try it. I'll assuming anyone who uses this procedure has the skill and experience to not hurt themselves, and those who don't won't use this procedure!
The dimensions, materials, etc... in the following procedure are not all that important. I've had best results with 3/4" plywood for the sled floor, whatever 8/4" hardwood is handy for the front fence, and birch, ash, maple, or the oaks, for runners. The front fence can be almost anything, including 2x or pallet wood.
If a miter gage works nicely in the slots, either the narrower or the wider section of the slot has to have parallel sides. Determine which of the two your miter gage slides against, that's the edges we'll reference.
Depending on the reference, we'll simply mill some hardwood runners to slide smoothly between the narrow dimension, slightly thinner than the thickness as the depth of the slot. Otherwise, you'd mill them to fit the wide section of the slot, removing material from the top side to clear the overhang. The material can be easily removed using a barely raised blade and your rip fence, a router table, jointer (rabbeting shelf), or hand plane. The goal is to rabbet the edges to create an inverted "t" section that only touches the wide parts.
Be advised that the BOTTOM of the slots may not be cleanly finished, dragging the test strips and preventing smooth sliding. This is of no consequence, and we'll deal with it later.
Before continuing, apply a heavy coat of silicone-free paste wax, Boeshield, or Top Coat, to the table saw top and the inside of the miter slots. Lower the blade below the table.
Once you have made strips the proper width and about 1/16" thinner than the depth of the slot, place some consistently 1/8" or so thick material (plastic, wood, laminate, whatever...) in the slots as shims. Lay the runners into the slots, on the shims. Apply yellow glue to the top of the runners. Place the "floor" of your sled on the runners and weight it down. Go do something else for a few hours.
After the glue sets, drill and countersink for some wood screws, or drive brads through the floor into the runners to reinforce the floor / runner joint. Lift the sled off the table and remove the shims. Your runners will no longer touch the bottom of the slots, eliminating the issues associated with rough slot bottoms.
Raise the saw blade about 1 1/2". Start the saw and slide the sled onto the table so that the blade starts to cut the floor. When the blade is approximately 1/2 way across the floor, STOP. While firmly holding the sled, shut off the saw and lower the blade below the table.
Using the blade kerf as a reference, and an ACCURATE square (drafting triangles are cheap and accurate enough), carefully attach the front fence (closest to the operator), made from a thick hardwood plank, jointed on at least one edge and face to 90 degrees. An easy way to do this is to install ONE screw at each end, about 2" in from the end, from underneath the floor at this time. Glue and screw (from underneath) a rear fence (the side AWAY from the operator). No precision is required here, as this fence is never used to reference anything.
Raise the blade about an inch and slide the sled forward so that the cut goes into the front fence. Check the 90 degree-ness to the kerf. If it's still perfect, insert screws from the bottom, down the length of the fence. Leave screwless space on both sides of the kerf for possible dado use. If the kerf isn't 90 degrees to the fence, clamp the fence to the floor at one end, remove that screw, and carefully tap the fence into alignment. Reinstall the screw in a NEW hole.
Mark EVERYWHERE the blade may pop through the front fence (nearest the operator) with paint, marker, tape, etc... Don't ever push the sled with body parts in that area. Wax the runners and bottom of the sled.
Optional: Add a plastic strip over the blade kerf.
Need pictures? One source: <(Amazon.com product link shortened)>
Enjoy and admire your new workhorse tool. Make as many different sizes as will enhance your work! <G> If it dosen't work as expected, take a few moments to figure out why, and fix it.
This process almost takes longer to type than to do, so I hope lots of folks try it!
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Patt wrote:

I know the little tabs you're talking about. If I got stuck with a saw like that, first thing I'd do is grind those sumbitches off. Luckily, the benchtop saw I have is a Delta Shopmaster, and it doesn't have the tabs.
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b5/boorite/crosscut_double.jpg
But instead of putting the runners in the miter slots, I've thought about an extra-wide sled where the runners would hug the sides of the table. As long as the table is square, this eliminates all the fuss and problems of fitting runners in those non-standard miter slots. I've made a sled like that for a miniature saw.
http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b5/boorite/DCFN0079.jpg
Note that on the right runner, there's a piece of hardboard that hooks under the table and holds the sled on even when it's overbalanced off the back or front.
This is basically the same principle as a technique I've used for cutting large panels: Clamp a straight board to the underside of the workpiece and use it to reference the side of the table as you run it through the saw. I don't see why a sled couldn't work the same way.
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As one of the other posters that has a similar problem with a Skil saw, you cut those "lil sumbitches" off and you no longer have a usable miter gage ( too sloppy). My final solution for as long as the saw lasts is to order another miter gage from the dealer (Sears,Skil,etc) and remove the miter gage from the runner and use the runner to build your sled. The miter gage is cheap ( in every respect) and the problem is resolved! Plus your original miter gage is still usable. Bill

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Bill Hall wrote:

You mean it was ever usable in the first place?
Are you talking about the tabs in the miter slot? I don't see how grinding those off would cause any more side play in the miter gage.
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Patt wrote:

Can you make a sled where the runners index off the edge of the table instead of the miter slots? Hopefully the edges are close to parallel.
--
Jack Novak
Buffalo, NY - USA
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Nova wrote:

I think that would work on a saw with really crappy slots.
If the edges aren't parallel, one could always attach steel or wooden edges and shim them parallel with the blade.
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