craftsman radial arm saw - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum

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post #1 of 29 Old 04-25-2011, 08:22 AM Thread Starter
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craftsman radial arm saw

hello guys new to this web and just starting out in diy projects well, not just, anyway i bought a used old old craftsman radial arm saw for dirt cheap and with a little cleaning and a new table it's seems to work fine. my dad had a 12 inch radial and thats what i learned to use. it had all the bells and whistlies and accesories you could get. this one from what i can tell might be older and is a 10 inch, 60's vintage., question is aside from the blade gaurd blowing dust in your face, anyone know of inherent problems with this thing or little tricks to keep them accurate. dad is gone now and i can't ask him anymore. thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 29 Old 04-25-2011, 08:36 AM
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I wouldn't use it for ripping.

Make sure you have a neg. hook angle blade.

If you scroll down bottom left, there may be some interesting reading in "similar threads".

Scott
OH, wait a minute ............Yep!.............That's what he said!

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post #3 of 29 Old 04-25-2011, 09:36 AM Thread Starter
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thanks for the threads, helped a bit guys seem to have some issues i'm haveing. now i know why dad yelled at me for useing the table as a work bench.

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post #4 of 29 Old 04-25-2011, 10:36 AM Thread Starter
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the one thing the saw has that i've never seen on my dad's is a jig saw attachment and it still works.
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post #5 of 29 Old 04-25-2011, 10:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by damyankee425 View Post
the one thing the saw has that i've never seen on my dad's is a jig saw attachment and it still works.

I'd like to see a picture of that.

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post #6 of 29 Old 05-01-2011, 08:15 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdntrdr View Post
I wouldn't use it for ripping.

Make sure you have a neg. hook angle blade.

If you scroll down bottom left, there may be some interesting reading in "similar threads".
not sure what that type of blade is, and i did set the level a bit so it tilts back to the wall, this way the blade would travel away from you if it starts to move. dad showed me that trick.

"A man has got to know his limitations" Dirty Harry magum Force; "I haven't found mine yet", me.
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post #7 of 29 Old 05-01-2011, 08:26 AM
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Tilting and blades

Here's some tips on blades selection:
http://lumberjocks.com/knotscott/blog/12395

If your saw base and table tilt back slightly that would probably be OK. If only the table is tilted that wouldn't be so good. To keep the saw at the rear of the table/fence tie a cord to the carriage of the saw, mount a pulley at the rear of the saw or on the wall but above the carriage and attach a weight to the other end of the cord. The weight should be enclosed in a PVC or other tube to prevent snagging on exposed parts behind the saw. Cheap and easy to do. bill

I did a search here for blades:
http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/searc...earchid=556452

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specfic. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo
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post #8 of 29 Old 05-01-2011, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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thanks for the tip, thought about that too, figure on a bungy cord set up. for now i just make sur the arm is locked after each cut. not scared by the saw just a deep respect for what is capable of doing , good and bad.

"A man has got to know his limitations" Dirty Harry magum Force; "I haven't found mine yet", me.

Last edited by damyankee425; 05-01-2011 at 09:14 AM.
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post #9 of 29 Old 05-01-2011, 03:18 PM
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If you have a blade and don't know if it's positive or negative hook, sight, or lay on a ruler from the bore hole to across the face of a tooth. If the face is in line with the hole, it's zero, If it leans forward, it's positive, if it leans back it's negative. Miter saws and RAS's work best with negative.

As for tipping the saw back, I suggest that's not a good idea. I've always had them level, which means the base, and the table. If you are concerned with having the motor retract, be careful on how you accomplish it. You don't want anything overpowering the movement or that produces a sudden course of action. There are retractable mechanisms on the market that (recoil) the motor, but it's a gentle return, and has a very slight resistance when pulling. It's called a cutterhead return. If you are operating the saw over a period of time, hanging weights off a cable, pulley and weights, it can get tiring.

IMO, a bungee cord would be too much of a reaction to be a safe method. If you use a cord, or facsimile, and a small weight, using a double pulley on the wall and a single pulley on the motor, would make the instantaneous response more gradual. Run the cable from a fixed point (where the pulley is mounted on the cutterhead), back to the wall, through one side of the pulley. Then run it back through the single pulley on the cutterhead. Then back through the second pulley on the wall and feed down the wall with a small weight. Allow enough space for the weight to move freely.

I wouldn't lock the arm each time. No real need to do that if the saw is level. Without any recoil device, a level saw should remain right where you leave it on the track. So, returning the motor to the rear should be sufficient.

What to check for regular maintenance? Well, IMO, the RAS is one of the most complex machines you will likely have in your shop. It has raising and lowering capabilities, different parts rotate, roll, pivot, and bevel. There are different restraining devices, such as cammed levers, knobs, bolts, etc. There are plenty of parts to check for wear, movement or movement when tightened. Rolling parts that can be checked for smoothness, and lateral deviation.

Check the cutterhead for side to side play. Check the angle of bevel if it stays true. Check for a parallel blade travel to the table top. Many things to check with all the fittings, and movable connections.








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post #10 of 29 Old 05-01-2011, 05:26 PM Thread Starter
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well the bungy thing was a idea that left my mind as fast as it came in. heh,. the table is as level as it can be , alot of things to check yes agreed, being that this is an old model older than me, i don't know what abuse it had befor i came to me and i'm still not trusting the scales on the arm or saw motor. useing ruler and square and 45 to check straghtness and angles befor i make a cut. alough it seems the function well for my skill level.i know there's alot it can do,from watching my dad use his, but he's not around to show me, so places like this with people like you guys are a great help.

"A man has got to know his limitations" Dirty Harry magum Force; "I haven't found mine yet", me.
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post #11 of 29 Old 05-03-2011, 04:30 PM
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Another RAS set up

Hey Damyankee, I'm new to the forum as well so Hi! I've been going through something similar as I was given a vintage 1969 Craftsman 10" RAS by my father in law. The person who bought it never used it and neither did he so it's "new" as these things go. I'll try to post some pictures but so far I've refurbished the legs from an older saw and attached them, and now recreated the original table (warped) with 3/4 MDF. I'm still in the process of alignment - in the cracks of time between kids and work. There are complete set-up instructions in the manual. You may find the manual for yours here or at least one close enough:

http://powertool.manualsonline.com/e...al%2BArm%2BSaw

I also found this YouTube video helpful:

I'm amazed at how versitile this tool is. Since I didn't have a good table I needed to create one and the first operation my saw was as a drill press of all things. I added a Jacob's chuck to the accessory shaft and used a forstner drill bit for the bolt counter-sink in the table top. Just need to square things up and we're off.

I appreciate all the helpful comments. Thanks all for sharing your experience.
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post #12 of 29 Old 05-03-2011, 06:14 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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ATTENTION RAS Owners!

Be sure to check your model and serial numbers on this site at the bottom of the text. You may be entitled as in FREE, to a NEW TABLE and BLADE GUARD. It's worth checking out. I have done it twice on Craigs List RAS purchases......unbelievable, but true. bill
http://www.radialarmsawrecall.com/

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post #13 of 29 Old 05-03-2011, 11:15 PM
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Thanks Woodnthings, I've been watching the forums (lurking) and seen the info. My RAS is too old for the new table and blade guard and I felt I could get much more use out of it than $100 worth. They do have owners manuals and will happily email you the PDF if you ask. However, I did need a stand and considered buying or building something. Then I found an old, partly functional Craftsman RAS with stand on Craig's List cheap. Picked that up, completely disassembled the stand, cleaned, de-rusted, and gave it a couple coats of black Rustoleum and new bolts. Looks like new! Got the $100 for materials and Jacobs chuck. Pretty good deal.
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post #14 of 29 Old 05-03-2011, 11:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shop Dad
Thanks Woodnthings, I've been watching the forums (lurking) and seen the info. My RAS is too old for the new table and blade guard and I felt I could get much more use out of it than $100 worth. They do have owners manuals and will happily email you the PDF if you ask. However, I did need a stand and considered buying or building something. Then I found an old, partly functional Craftsman RAS with stand on Craig's List cheap. Picked that up, completely disassembled the stand, cleaned, de-rusted, and gave it a couple coats of black Rustoleum and new bolts. Looks like new! Got the $100 for materials and Jacobs chuck. Pretty good deal.
Hey Dad, you still have any parts left from the machine you scavenged? I'm looking for a second set of track / rails.

Also I didn't has a stand or table for my 12" RAS so I build it. Here's mine...

~tom
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post #15 of 29 Old 05-04-2011, 03:30 PM
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Hey Tom, Yes I still have the base, column and arm. Can the track/rails be removed? Happy to get them to you.
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post #16 of 29 Old 05-04-2011, 04:59 PM
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Quote:
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Hey Tom, Yes I still have the base, column and arm. Can the track/rails be removed? Happy to get them to you.
Yes, they can be removed. I noticed you live in jersey though. Let me take another look at my project and see if I'll be able to do what I'm thinking about...

Thanks! I'll get back to you on it!
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post #17 of 29 Old 06-16-2011, 05:29 PM
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Pix

Finally got around to taking some pictures of my "renewed" saw. Added a Dewalt blade and got her all tuned up. Only a couple small projects so far but she purrs like a kitten.



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post #18 of 29 Old 06-22-2011, 09:04 AM Thread Starter
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hey shop dad, that looks great like brand new. good job very good job. my dad had one just like it but set up on a table he built. that's the one he taught me on, he had all the bells and whistles to go withit too. used every thing he bought. mine is slightly older i think or a lower grade model. the recall info i found said my saw was too old and parts were discontinued. my table keeps looseing square to the blade, have to adjust constantly. is this common.whats the best material to use for a cutting table on these things.I have no garage or basement so it's out in a 20x20 shed. no climate control like a heated garage or basement. any rec would be welcome. the saw is on my profile if you want to gander.

"A man has got to know his limitations" Dirty Harry magum Force; "I haven't found mine yet", me.

Last edited by damyankee425; 06-22-2011 at 09:06 AM. Reason: spelling, key board keeps moveing lol
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post #19 of 29 Old 06-22-2011, 10:56 AM
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RAS Table

Thanks for the comments!

A solid table/bench would definitely be more sturdy. I needed something movable and now end up storing my shop-vac underneath. As for the top, I still have the original but it was too warped/water damaged to use. I did use it as a template and have kept it so I could eventually create a Sketch-up model of it to share. It's 1" particle board which I couldn't find around here for any reasonable cost so I went with 3/4 MDF. My garage is not heated either and we have humidity swings so I've wondered about sealing it with something to make it last a bit longer but haven't really looked into it yet. I can take some photos of the original this weekend and grab some dimensions to post.

Since this is relatively new to me I don't have that much RAS experience but I don't think it should be losing square that frequently. You could examine the area that is slipping and see if parts can be replaced.

Another option you might consider is "selling" it back for the $100 recall and locating a newer one on CL. I did something like this, picking up the stand for mine and returning the older RAS that sat on top of it. This helped fund the restoration of mine (rust removal, paint, bolts, wheels, blade). I have found a wide range of offerings on CL in age, condition and features. Worth keeping an eye out!
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post #20 of 29 Old 06-22-2011, 11:20 AM
where's my table saw?
 
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Some suggestions

Use 3/4" particle board, shellac both sides to seal it. Any deviation will not be an issue, but do not cut deeply into the top or it will weaken it. I just use Bondo in the old kerf when it gets a little ragged an then cut a new kerf and sand it smooth... good as new.
The table square to the blade issue is one of head adjustment rather than table moving, if I hear you correctly. Make sure the head and arm seat firmly in the detents by gently rocking them after they seat and them lock them down gently but not like a vise.
Nice work on the restore Shop Dad! bill

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