Incra TS-LS install
I just finished replacing the fence on my Jet Proshop with an Incra TS-LS.
Notes on the installation:
The manual recommends adjusting your saw before installing the Incra TS-LS. I did this and it’s probably a good thing I did. The blade was out of square by 4 ½ thousandths and slightly off vertically. It’s now perfectly square to the miter slot and dead on at 90 degrees. I had previously installed a PALS kit for ease of blade alignment. I used a Masterplate and A-lineit for the best results.
Installation is pretty straightforward and is aided by the excellent manuals that come with it. All hardware supplied is bagged and marked with the component(s) it applies to. The manuals contain full size drawings of each piece of hardware so if you're unsure if you selected the right item, you can just lay it next to the drawing to be sure.
I ran into several issues during the install. The first was the rail mounting bracket hardware. Incra supplies a selection of bolts to mount the brackets to most saws (their words). Unfortunately the bolts they supply are all standard US bolts. Jet uses metric hardware so a trip to the hardware store was necessary to get metric hardware for the rail brackets.
As I progressed through the install I ran into one other hardware issue. When installing the mounting brackets for the carriage and mounting plate, the assembly instructions call for 3/16 thick nylon washers on each of the four knobs where the mounting attaches to the rails. When I retrieved them from the hardware package I discovered that one of the washers was not the proper size. It was thinner than the other three and the hole in the center for the knob threads to pass though was smaller than the others. A quick call to Incra and they are sending me a replacement. Hopefully it will be sized correctly. Once the carriage and mounting plate were installed it was time to add the fence and positioner. When I inserted it through the mounting, it was a little hesitant to go in. A bit of fiddling and I finally got it to slide in but to my dismay it didn’t slide smoothly. It locked down fine and the micro adjustment was working fine but moving the fence seemed stiffer than I thought it should be. At this point I continued on with the install feeling I would address this issue later. Alignment went pretty well but after everything was setup per the manual I found that the bottom of the fence began to drag on the right cast iron extension wing as I moved it further toward the right. Since I also had the “binding issue” with the postioner, I decided a call to tech support at Incra was in order at this point. I spoke to Mark at tech support and I have to say he was very helpful. I explained the two issues I had and he carefully explained what to look for in both cases. In the case of the binding, he told me that there are two small plastic filler plugs on the top of the carriage (used to fill a couple of assembly/adjustment holes) on the top of the carriage between the two plastic cursor windows and that backing them out slightly (they are threaded) would sometimes relieve binding and also that when inserting the positioner into the carriage there is a ridge on the side toward the locking lever and the positioner must not ride on top of that ridge or binding will also occur. I addressed both of these and I’m pretty sure I had inserted the positioner with it riding on top of the ridge. It now slides VERY smoothly. I also liberally coated all sliding surfaces including the tops of the rails with dry lubricant. In the case of the fence dragging on the wing, he suggested checking the rail mountings for level and if I hadn’t yet installed legs at the end of the rails (I hadn’t) to do so. Using a combination square I checked the rails at several places along their length ( I have 92” rails) and found they were indeed sloping downward toward the far end of the extension table. Installing the legs at the ends of the rails solved that issue and the fence no longer drags on the extension wing after readjusting it. I believe this was in part due to the Jet extension table. With the original fence, it was bolted to the steel rails and had no attachment to the cast iron wing at all and was totally supported by the rails and two legs at the outboard end. I had initially used the extra rail mounting brackets that came with the Incra (they supply six although for most saws only 4 are needed) at the cast iron wing end of the table to attach them to the Incra rails but the weight of the MDF table was and still is, causing the rails to sag. I plan to remove these brackets and build a storage cabinet underneath to better support the table. It will have adjusters on the bottom to level it with the cast iron wing. Even with the Incra legs at the end and the rail brackets at the saw end it still wants to sag some in the area of those brackets.
I spent the better part of 2 days installing the system, mainly trying to pay attention to details. About half of the first day was spent aligning the saw before beginning, removing the old fence and rails and then after that a trip to the hardware store for metric bolts, nuts and washers. Someone not quite as fussy as me could probably install the entire system in a few hours. But I personally tend to pay more attention to small things than really necessary but I think it pays off in the end with a better installation and greater satisfaction with the end result. Besides, I‘m retired and what else do I have but lots of time!
Next month I plan on ordering and installing an Incra router table top to replace the left cast iron wing along with a Jessem lift.