Taming my Craftsman 10" Radial Arm Saw

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I have a 10" Delta table saw that has a motor about to die.
Recently built a slide table for it that is very precise and smooth.
It will crosscut to 25".
In the meantime, I bought a 10" Craftsman Radial Arm Saw for $40 with a great motor.
The RAS in its normal pull is very squiggly.
However, when locked down to a fixed position, it is quite stable.
The light bulb went on in my head and this is what I did:
I mounted the Delta metal table with its extension and mounted it onto a nice hunk of 3/4" plywood to fit the RAS table and a bit more.
I can quickly pivot the entire Delta table to align it with the RAS blade.
I positioned the RAS at its maximum rip position distance and feed it at the blade lifting end.
Using an angle grinder, I cut a small groove into the table saw top to allow the RAS blade to about 1/4" below the surface .
I can now rip about 25" using the table saw top and it original fence.
I can crosscut using the easy on/easy off slide table.
I now have an upside down sideways ripping crosscutting Radial Arm Table Saw!
It is really neat! I never use it as a RAS.
It can angle both ways, easily adjust the blade height, etc.
Radial arm saws maybe squirrelly as designed, but in a fixed position, they can be very stable.
I still have a slight play in the head when I shake it, but it still cuts very accurately.
Anyone know the tricks in tightening it up?
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Get the owners manuel. However look at the guides in the arm, there should be 4 bearings with some kind of adjustment screw, usualy an allen head screw. Also you should use the RAS on a push not a pull. Climbing cuts will bind, jump and just mess things up. Good lucl Joe

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wrote:

That is not correct for a RAS. Always pull the carriage from its position behind the fence. Yes, it's a climb cut. Yes, that's how it was designed. No, it's not difficult to manage.
--
LRod

Master Woodbutcher and seasoned termite
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That was a really hard concept for me at first.. Totally backwards from a table saw... You sure appreciate it, though, when something binds and the work is forced against the fence and not shot out the front..
mac
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mac davis wrote:

Wasn't tough for me... my first big tool *was* a radial arm saw. I honestly don't see what the big deal is about pulling the blade towards me. It's not like it's going to suddenly jump the track and shoot out past the table and into me. I have one hand to the left side of the blade holding the work piece down and my right hand has the handle of the RAS. If it binds, so what? It's not going to break my arm.

There is that, too. I have a respect for every tool I own but the RAS is no worse than any other as far as safety goes.
--
Mortimer Schnerd, RN
mschnerdatcarolina.rr.com
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"Mortimer Schnerd, RN" <mschnerdatcarolina.rr.com> wrote in message

In my younger day I probably built 100,000 of those Century21, ERA, Red Carpet type real estate posts. I always pushed. I had to cut 3.5 inch dados and they had to be done fast. 7 years of that and the worst I ever did was split my right thumb right down the middle longways. I really don't think it makes any difference which way you cut if you have your jigs and saw set up right.
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On Mon, 31 Mar 2008 16:19:52 -0400, "Mortimer Schnerd, RN" <mschnerdatcarolina.rr.com> wrote:

Being brought up with table saws in my dad's sign shop, the idea of the RAS rotating the blade tips to the rear was hard to get used to...
I know I'm probably the only one to ever do this, but on my first blade change, I but the blade on backwards..

I think it's a lot safer to rip long pieces on than the TS, if you have a good, long table.. Also, the "line of fire" if you get kick back is off to the side of the saw, nowhere near where I'm standing..
mac
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"mac davis" wrote

Nope, you are not the only one to ever do this.
It doesn't cut very well backwards either!
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He forgot the emoticon, obviously. ;-)
Puckdropper
--
You can only do so much with caulk, cardboard, and duct tape.

To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
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Are you saying that it is better to rip feeding stock to the blade coming to you because it cannot kickback?
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Most RAS's have a splitter built into the guard. Let that remind you of which direction to feed stock when ripping.
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LRod wrote:

is a motor controlled cable that only allows the carriage to advance a an adjustable speed. If you don't pull the trigger on the carriage handle, you can't pull the carriage towards you.
Before I got mine to replace my old Wards PowrKraft, my technique was (and still is) to place my left hand on the work piece to the left of the blade and keeping my right arm straight, pull the carriage by rolling my right shoulder back. The old RAS motor was controlled by a trigger on the carriage handle, so you could easily stop the motor without releasing your grip on the carriage handle. The new Craftsman motor switch is on the end of the arm, so the control cut feature makes things safer.
Also, the carriage bearings should be adjusted so there is some resistance in carriage movement and for sure so there is no side to side play in the carriage. This helps to control the carriage if there is a bind.
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wrote:

Actually reading the owner's manuAl will confirm what I wrote in my other response about pulling, no pushing.
--
LRod

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I don't pull or push my RAS. I FIXED it in the locked rip position.
I push material towards the rotating blade like a regular table saw or a table saw with a sled.
Do you understand my setup?
BTW FedEx just delivered the recall package fro Emerson
.
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wrote:

I do. JOE MOHNIKE doesn't.

Sadly, mine isn't included in the recall.
--
LRod

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pure BS
To control a radial arm saw use a blade with about 5 degrees negative hook.
Hook angle can be determined by placing a straight edge across the center of the blade , 0 hook will have the tooth face line up with the straight edge, negative hook will have it pitch back a bit. A rip blade for the TS has about 20 degree positive hook.
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beecrofter wrote:

I've never had any problem with any blade in my RAS. I've certainly never had it "bind, jump, and just mess things up", and I've never done a push cut on it--that seems like asking for trouble. I do keep the carriage bearings adjusted so that I have to apply a little force in either direction to move it. If the carriage is sloppy then you'll have problems and it doesn't matter what kind of blade you're using.
--
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--John
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How do you rip without pushing?
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wrote:

Tablesaw!
Mark
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Thanks a lot.
What is the difference between pulling a RAS towards yourself and the board, and keeping the RAS fixed and sliding the board on a sled away from yourself into the blade?
Wouldn't this be opposite the instructions and warnings?
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