Bench shavings – 2/25/16

No real update on the router table today. All I did was plug and flush cut the five mortises I needed to fill.

I remembered that there was a picture frame I needed to try and fix, so I attempted that repair just now. It was held together by staples, so I put a tiny amount of glue in the corners, and used a good bit of clamps to bring it all back in line. We’ll see tomorrow how well it all worked.

I’ve had my eye on upgrading my table saw for some time. Don’t get me wrong, I like my saw, but it isn’t the best. I had to add a miter track, there is very little room in front of the blade for sleds and gauges, and can put on a clinic of how to waste a footprint. The outrigger and handles for the fold-up base take up a ton of room. One of the biggest reasons I haven’t seriously considered replacing it to this point is because of the excellent riving knife/guard setup I have from Shark Guard. That, and expense and size.

Well, a saw I had previously dismissed seems to be actually a really good option for me: the Delta 36-725. On the surface it felt cheap, what with the tubular base. However, it’s gotten some really good reviews. More than the troublesome R4512 I previously had my eye on. Doesn’t seem to have the alignment issues that the RIdgid did/does, and a better fence system. While it isn’t any more powerful than what I have now, I don’t typically have the need to cut thick boards. If I do, there’s always the bandsaw with the upgraded blade. It has four more inches ahead of the blade, a cast iron central section, two gauge slots, a built-in mobile solution and it takes up less space at the floor. It is, however, wider at the table height, over a foot. I think though because the floor space is better, I can keep it in the same footprint.

What’s more, with a $40 riving knife from Shark Guard, my guard and pawls will transfer over no sweat. It really does sound like a nice intermediate upgrade, and I wouldn’t be spending a thousand dollars more on a contractor’s Sawstop. If I’m spending that much, I’m getting the cabinet version in a new shop.

Getting rid of a saw with a very compact base solution is a big step. I lose the ability to easily wheel it outside for space, particularly if I need to move things around. It is something that is worth some thinking about for awhile. It would give me the motivation to either widen the ramp to the door or finally build a little deck area, but I won’t guarantee the outcome. There are still things to do like settling on a miter saw solution first, which comes after the router table is done.

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