On Tue, 11 Mar 2008 16:36:52 -0700, Larry Blanchard
Mine has a cam at the back for adjustment. Getting it tightened down
and still be in the same place, that is where the fun happens. I
think there was one bolt that it just didn't want to slide at and that
made it fun as well. I think it is a runout issue at this point
rather than any alignment problems.
I need to get a shop that is either a) on the ground floor b) in the
house I'm going to die in, before I get a heavier saw than I already
have now. And it will be a while before either of those things
Am thinking about getting the sawstop contractor's saw whenever it
comes out though. I don't need any more power, just a more precise
I just went through about 2 full days getting my Craftsman saw aligned.
At least the blade aligned with the miter slot. No matter what I did
I just couldn't get within about .020". I had to completely disassemble
the saw and do a little filing to slightly elongate the holes that
attach the trunnions to the table top so I could have a little more
I made a set of "PALS" out of an old piece of heavy duty angle iron I
had laying around and put them on the rear of the saw. Seems like I
should have put them on the front because I still couldn't get it to
align within about .010". So I made another set for the front. Bingo.
I just finished that yesterday so I hope that it stays this time.
Now the fence. ugh. Bent and bowed.
I havent bought any lumber from them yet. I only know what they offer.
Any work I have done I used 4s from HD...which can get expensive. I
want to use better wood for the same bd ft price I am paying for
poplar....I do have an older table saw, but like I said I can cut
fairly straight with a circular saw and jig. I know I will need both
eventually, I just dont know which to do first until I get the
"permission" again for another piece of equipment. I plan on making a
panel saw, so cutting long sheets on a table saw wont really be an
issue. I am more concerned about my hardwood needs for faceframes and
glued up panels. My only real experience so far with glue ups is a
couple cutting boards I made from scrap. At the time I had my dads
jointer working(it died and is OLD), but I used a beltsander and
orbital sander for the tops as needed. But I realize for quality work
I am going to need better bigger equipment. I have tried jointing with
my router, but i have a cheap ryobi table at the present(one of my
projects it to build a better router table) and it doest work really
well. I am really anxious to get my girls' blanket chests done, cause
that could be the open to another piece of equipment....hehe. I just
want this purchase to be 'right' incase its a while till I am able to
get the next piece of the puzzle.
I used to have that same Craftsman 8"
saw. It was finicky, the fence was a POS
and working with the saw became a
Read up on past posts in here about what
one should get first in power equipment.
Also read up on articles, shop setting
up books, craftsmen's books, and almost
unanimously they'll advise getting a
decent table saw as one of the very
first pieces of machinery.
Get Kelly Mehler's Table Saw book and
you'll find that the saw is an extremely
I do own both a planer and a jointer. Since I got a decent bandsaw for
resaw and a thickness sander, the planer doesn't see much use.
I don't get tearout on a thickness sander :-).
And a good tablesaw with a good blade can joint edges with a sled. But I
do need the jointer for those really nice looking boards that aren't flat
on either face.
Based on the projects you list, a table saw will serve you best. But
that is because most of the projects you list don't really need flat
boards. Or they are narrow and short boards so you can cut out the
twisted part easy enough. Blanket chest does need reasonably flat
boards but you can likely get away with less than perfectly flat
boards. S2S just means the board is smooth on both sides. It can and
will still be twisted and cupped. Unusable for larger furniture
projects or if you are trying to glue up panels. Or use longer
boards. As I mentioned, you can cut up a twisted and cupped S2S board
so the final short, narrow pieces you use will be fairly flat and OK.
A jointer makes one side of a board, or edge, flat and straight. Then
the planer makes the other side parallel to the side you made flat on
the jointer. Run both sides through the planer and you end up with a
thinner, but most importantly, a flat board with no twist or cupping.
Usable board. A table saw can sometimes put a straight and smooth
enough edge on a board for gluing up. But I'd run it over a jointer
before gluing. Either electrical or human powered jointer. You can
also use a human powered plane to get one side of a board flat enough
to run it through an electrical planer to get both sides flat and
smooth. You don't need the whole side of a board flat for it to work
in an electrical planer. Just flat enough not to rock when pushed
down by the rollers in the elctrical planer. And you can run boards
on edge through the electrical planer after going through a table saw
to get an edge reasonably straight. So an electrical planer will
likely be best for you if you already have a table saw and know how to
use a human powered plane.
"If" you buy rough stock for your materials,
you need a saw,planer,jointer.
"If" you use mostly sheet goods and buy
dressed material, you need a saw and "maybe'
In my opinion, "all" shops need all three
power tools to be effective.
A LOT of folks get by without a jointer
but you have to learn to work around the
wood, which can/could be a pain in the ass.
Almost all of the wood that I have purchased at the big box stores is
supposedly all dimensioned. But in reality, the thickness of their
lumber varies a little. One board may indeed be 3/4" thick, but the
next may be 13/16" thick. This difference makes face frame edges
ragged, and it takes a lot of work to clean up the glue line of edge
glued boards. Lumber that I have purchased from hardwood suppliers is a
little more consistent within species, but 4/4 lumber is more like
13/16" or maybe even 7/8" thick.
Since there are ways to finagle around getting edges straight, I think I
would vote for the thickness planer first, and then convince SWMBO that
the jointer is a companion tool. Gotta get bofum. :-)
I'd go for both, meself... :)
But, it's probably more effective to go the planer route next as there
are relatively easy ways to get the straight edge w/ what you already
have, but finishing to uniform thickness and/or after glue-up is much
simpler w/ a planer.
That then raises the question of the size of panels you're likely to
want to run through -- the only real disadvantage of the 12-13"
portables (for other than real heavy stock of course, for which they're
Start by upgrading your table saw, then buld a sled so that you can
joint the edge of a board using the table saw.
Odds are that you can beg borrow or steal the use of a planer when you
need it by providing a set of new or resharpened knives to the owner.
That frees up space and resources.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.