Six Essential Parts to Consider in Table Saws

Since table saws are probably the most used woodworking power tool, you should be familiar with the various options and parts when you decide to buy your table saw. Table saws can vary from a compact bench model to a cabinet version with all the bells and whistles. The bench model or portable contractor model is probably all the home woodworker would need. The following features are available in most table saws; you just need to decide which are necessary for you.

Table Saws

1. Fence
The fence is the guide you used to slide the wood through the saw. A good quality fence will consistently produce accurate cuts. The fence should be parallel to the blade. The adjustments should move easily and remain fixed to provide a secure, accurate guide. Better quality fences can be added later if the one you bought is not as good as you would like.

2. Blade Tilt
To cut angles, table saws have an adjustment to tilt the blade. The blade can be tilted one direction only, so you will need to know if you prefer a tilt to the right or left. A right-tilt blade is more common, but if you do a great deal of angle cuts a left-tilt blade is safer since it directs the debris away from the user.

3. Miter gauge
A T-shaped accessory that fits into slots on t he table top, the miter gauge helps guide the wood as it passes the saw. To test the miter gauge, wiggle it when it is in the slot. It should not move, but if it does you do not want that particular table saw. This is an accessory than can be upgraded later on if necessary.

4. Motor
The power of the motor will determine how easily it will make the cut. Most smaller table saws have a 1 1/2 to 2 horsepower motor, which is fine for most non-professional applications. To maximize the power of these smaller motors, you can push the wood through more slowly and use a sharp blade appropriate for you material. Bigger versions of table saws will have 3 to 5 horsepower, but these will cost a great deal and are probably more than the average woodworker will need. They are usually suited for professional, large quantity cutting.

5. Blade
The majority of bench and contractor table saws use a 10-inch blade; however, the really expensive models may have 12-inch blades. The type of blade is really the most important factor. There are different kinds of blades for different cuts as well as different materials. A good starter set of blades would be a combination blade and a stack dado blade. As you find out what type of cutting you will be doing and what materials you will be working with, you will be able to add the appropriate blades to your set.

6. Tabletop
The flat surface of the table saw is the key to accurate cuts. The tabletop should be as flat as possible; otherwise, none of the cuts it produces will be accurate. Although table saws from well-known manufacturers are usually good about having quality tabletops, you should still check it. You also need to consider the extensions that will enhance the size of the tabletop. The table itself will most likely be made of cast iron, cast aluminum, or brushed aluminum, but the extensions can be made of various materials that will affect the weight of the table saw as well as the price and the accuracy of the cuts. The extensions should not give with pressure or vibration. Again, extensions can be upgraded if you have to start with a more basic model.

The table saw is an essential addition to any wood shop. Consider all of your options compared to your cutting needs in order to choose the right table saw for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *