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How to Tune Up Your Table Saw

Woodworkers are experts in handling small table saws. The most useful equipment in your stable, this tool is used in every woodworking project to give that perfect shape and desired design. Because these tools are used so frequently, they require more maintenance to keep working in the perfect condition. If not kept in proper working condition, they will not only ruin your projects but also turn hazardous to your health. 

Don’t worry. We have a simple and easy to follow guide to tune up your tools. Read on. 
Check if the saw needs a tune up

Before you start this process, check if the tool actually needs it. If you start noticing burn marks on the wood or you find misalignment right at the end of the stroke, you need this procedure. If the blade also produces a ringing noise, then you need to tune it up as soon as possible. 

Check the blade
Though a routine tune up doesn’t require the change the blade, your priority should be checking if the blade is getting old and worked out. To do this, notice how the blade stops when you turn the saw off. A worn-out blade will slow down normally but create a slightly wobble towards the end. If it does, then forget about aligning it further and replace it with a new one. 

If the wobble is absent, you should check whether the blade is sharp, flat, and clean. Alignment is essential for making the right cuts on the stock. You can check this with the help of the miter slots. Raise the blade as high you can and then pick one carbide tooth to the blade. Then rotate it until the carbide is level. Check it with the blade closest to the front. Once done, measure the carbide to one miter slot. You should note down the distance between the two as well. Keep rotating until the carbide is at the table level on the backside. Check the distance again. If it matches, your wheel is aligned. If not, check the user manual for adjusting the motor. 

Fence alignment
This one is relatively easy. The fence should be properly aligned, or the saw will kick back and create very hazardous situations. Take a straight-edge as long as the fence and stand it in the miter slot. Keep sliding the fence until it becomes firmly placed against the straight-edge. Look for any gaps between the two. If you find them, simply move the fence closer and ensure that there are no gaps whatsoever. 

Check for squares
The blade and fence have been aligned, but you also need to check if the blade is square to the table. The arbor-angle of the saw should stop at 0-degree. Take a small framing square or a layout square and see if the blade stands 90 degrees to the table. If you don’t find the alignment, check the user’s manual, and readjust the 0-degree stop on the saw. Repeat this until you achieve the perfect 90-degree angle. 

Throat plate checkup
Once the square has been achieved, lower the blade, and use a straight-edge that stands perpendicular to the miter slot. Make sure the alignment is perfect. Now push it against the throat plate, so it moves across this region. The plate should be at the table level or slightly below it. It should not protrude upwards. If it does, check for sawdust buildup and remove it.

Use screws on the plate to readjust it. 
Finally, align the splitter with the blade with the help of a straight edge. Also look around the tool to find any accumulated sawdust and remove it. In the end, check the miter gauge and ensure that it slides easily. Check all locking mechanisms and use the tool on a spare stock once. If it still shows problems, repeat this process as necessary.



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