Tablesaw Safety

Dave Richards

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2,793
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SE Minnesota
While I was out tuning up my tabelsaw I thought I'd take some photos of a safety feature I added some years ago. Hopefully someone will find this useful.

As we all know it's a good idea to disconnect the power when doing things like changing blades. Instead of getting to the outlet and unplugging the saw which is a pain, I added a service disconnect box on the saw where it is easy to reach.


I wired a single receptacle to the back of it and plugged the saw into that.


The box is designed for 240V service but my saw is 120V. I wired both the hot and neutral through the disconnect so only the ground goes through from the saw. Although I don't have to worry about it in my shop, I figured if I ever sell the saw to someone who happens to have reverse polarity outlets, this will still provide protection. (I've seen several shops with reversed wiring around here. :rolleyes: )

This isn't a permanent modification to the saw so it's also easily removed if I needed to do that.

 

Dave Richards

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2,793
Location
SE Minnesota
Thanks Ken. It's pretty easy and, at least for me, encourages me to practice at least one safety thing. Still no guard over the blade, though. :D

FWIW, once in awhile I do ground integrity testing on my machines. It doesn't happen very often but over the years I've found the need to improve the ground connection on couple of machines. This is a hold-over from my biomed days.
 

Dave Richards

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2,793
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SE Minnesota
Thanks Vaughn. It's still kind of low on my saw because I didn't want to make any real modifications to the saw but it could fairly easily be mounted closer to the power switch to make for even less bending.

I don't know why but the floor has gotten lower and harder to reach than it once was. And when I fall down, it's a much longer climb back up. :lol:
 

Ken King

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103
Location
Bridgton, Maine
What saw is that, Dave?

If I could do anything to improve the safety of my saw I think it would be adding a riving knife. If I still worked with machine tools I would have made one by now. I did move the power for the saw to a drop at the right rear corner so it's easy to unplug, and I added a paddle switch, anything else is going to be bigger work I fear.
 

Dave Richards

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2,793
Location
SE Minnesota
Ken, it's a Jet contractor saw. I don't have a power drop in my shop and the tablesaw is kind of in the middle so I have to run a cord from a wall.

I wish I had a proper riving knife. I do have a splitter mounted in a throat plate. You can't see it in the pictures because I was switching to the cross cut blade and then my sled would go on top.
 

Vaughn McMillan

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ABQ NM
What saw is that, Dave?

If I could do anything to improve the safety of my saw I think it would be adding a riving knife. If I still worked with machine tools I would have made one by now. I did move the power for the saw to a drop at the right rear corner so it's easy to unplug, and I added a paddle switch, anything else is going to be bigger work I fear.
Ken, I have the Microjig splitter on my Ridgid contractor saw. It has worked great for me. I use various Freud thin kerf blades (which I also highly recommend), so I have the yellow splitter set specifically for thin kerf blades.


And Dave, I recognize those Incra rails on your saw. I love my Incra fence setup. :thumb:
 

Ken King

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103
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Bridgton, Maine
I think I'm just going to have to get the microjig setup. It does concern me that there's nothing back there, not even a splitter, and the saw certainly has enough power now (5hp) so I won't be stalling the motor, making me a tad concerned about the possibility of a kick back.
 

Dave Richards

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2,793
Location
SE Minnesota
Vaughn, I like my Incra fence, too, except for the space it takes up when I shift the fence all the way to the right. I see guys with the right end of their say pushed up against a wall and I wish I could do that.

I did add a tray between the rails off the right wing that is extremely handy. It's nothing more than a piece of 1/4 in. ply cut so it slides into the channels on the inside of the rail. I added a couple of of scrap about 3/4 x 1 as stiffeners and to keep stuff in the tray. Very useful and again, not a permanent mod.

Ken, definitely do something for a splitter if you can't add a riving knife. Mine is a thin piece of maple in a shop made zero clearance plate.
 

Vaughn McMillan

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ABQ NM
Dave, I'm with you on the space the fence takes up when the fence is all the way to the right. The way I have my rails set up, I can only move the fence about 20" - 21" to the right of the blade, but I can slide it all the way down to the other end to use on my router table extension. This pic is before I had remounted the power switch for the saw.

New Incra Jig Setup 1- 700.jpg

I eventually added a couple of adjustable braces to help support the extension. I also eventually swapped out the PC 690 router for a Hitachi M12V.

Ridgid TS Braces 09 - 800.jpg
 
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