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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a Hitachi C10FL. I used an A-line micrometer and took a measurement using the left miter slot and zeroed it out on the front. When I measured the back, it read -22 (basically, it's reads 78). Is that bad? I was trying to figure out how to adjust my table and wasn't sure. There are four hex type screws that go into the cast iron part of the table saw. Is that what you are supposed to loosen in order to align it? I had asked a person at a store and they recommended just buying an after market laser attachment in order to figure out where the true cut will be. But I'm not sure that if I did that how I would deal with trying to get the table fence to be parallel to that. Any advice would be appreciated.
 

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Bad advise by the big box store employee.

The most critical measurement is the blade and fence being parallel. If the mitre slot is not parallel this will produce a slightly off cut, but if the blade is not parallel to the fence then bad things can happen.

You want to get the blade parallel to the mitre slot, and then get the fence parallel to the blade.

Your manual should have the instructions for adjusting the blade alignment.

Likely the bolts on the trunnion you show in the picture.

In your saw the trunnion is mounted to the table top. You likely need to loosen the 4 screws and then begin the "nudge and fudge" adjustment. Tapping with e.g., rubber mallet. May take several iterations. Nudge, measure, too much. "Fudge" Nudge, measure, too little, "Fudge" etc.
 

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the miter slot is the reference

Align BOTH the blade and the fence to the miter slot and you will be rewarded with perfect rips and crosscuts. Loosen the 3 bolts which will allow the carriage/trunnions to rotate in the desired direction. Remember you are underneath and the movement you are requiring is above on top of the saw. Sorta upside down thinking is required...
You can get it within 2 or 3 thousands with Dave's method. :yes:
 

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using that N and F method, it should be possible to get the blade perfectly aligned to a miter slot. that means that registering the dial gauge against one tooth of the saw blade on the infeed side of the table,and zeroing the dial gauge, will show the same zero when that same blade tooth is rotated to the outfeed side of the table top and the dial gauge is once again registered against that same blade tooth. like this (infeed side of blade, first pic. outfeed side of blade, second pic):
 

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What are you sawing that requires such fine measuring. I just use a steel rule to set the fence saw blade distance if I really want to be exact. If real accuracy is not necessary then my standard tape measure suffices.

George
 

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Hello
I wonder how many who read this alignment procedure are able to or have a Micrometer dial gauge in your garage. However I think many have a 12" Adjustable 90 Degree T square. Also I wonder why always mentioned Miter Slot. (I think it should be clarified about Miter Slot) If it is the slot where the blade comes through the removable plate is what it is called, should be noted. I aligned my blade with the 12" adjustable T square and a set of Auto Spark Plug Gauges. I used the slot where the Saw T is used.(whatever you call that) It seems to be a better surface to align from and looks machined. Placed the T Square in slot, pushed the ruler part to the blade front and rear of saw and noted the spaces with the Gauges. Then realigned etc until I had as good as I could get the blade aligned to the slot. When one measurement of the blade was Zero (tight against the blade) and the other had a gap (measured with the gauge) readjusted again until had as close to Zero gap with the gauges. My idea on how to align the blade is better from the machined slot, and can use shop tools available. I will agree if you want better alignment then go with the Micrometer Gauge.
 

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The tool you are using is called a dial indicator. I am actually an expert at setting up machines and doing shaft alignments among other things. The number you picked up is either a -.022 or a positive .078. 1/16th is .0625, so a measurement of .022 is about 3/64ths or so. It's pretty close. I did mine a couple weeks ago and got it within .003 in like ten minutes.

You need to watch carefully to be sure to note which direction the dial moves. What you really need to check first is runout. What that tells you is just if the blade is true or not. Easily done though. You just zero out the dial on the outermost part of the blade without the contact point hitting the teeth. Then take a sharpie and make a little dot right where you wind up setting the indicator. Once your set slowly rotate the blade a full 360 while monitoring the indicator. If the number jumps all over the place the blade is warped.

To work around this you would just start your reading at the beginning of the saw blade, while firmly holding the indicator base to the fence ( I'm sure there is a better way to do this but come on, it's not a gas turbine ! ) slide the indicator base along the fence until the indicator contact point is to the farthest point of the blade, then rotate the blade so that the little sharpie dot lands smack on the contact point. Document the number and then check over and over until you get the same reading three times in a row. This is called "repeatability".

Doing it this way will not tell you anything about the blade being parallel with the miter slot though. But if you hook the indicator base to the miter gauge you should get the same results using the method described above. That is assuming that there is no slop in the fit between the slot and the miter gauge. I guess the best thing to do would be to align the blade to the slot and then the fence to the blade. I haven't had time to look into aligning the blade so i have no advice on that but as far as the fence, ideally the fence rail would be an exact 90 degrees from the blade. Odds are its not. My fence system has two adjusting screws about 18" apart on the piece that rides the rail. It took about 5 shots and i got it within .003. This could be done mathematically but it's not necessary and it would be more effort than its worth to explain. However, if anybody would like me to explain just ask and I'll do the best I can. While I'm talking about this i would like to mention that i picked up a magnetic base and indicator at harbor freight for under 50 bucks. In my field we use nothing but starret tools and it would cost about ten times that ! Figured I'd throw that in there. Good luck ........
 

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Chapstick hit on a really important point. Any slop between your miter slot and the bar in your miter gauge will contribute to error. You will never get accuracy if you have slop. Find out what yours is and fix it before you adjust your table. You may find that you are already as accurate as you need to be once you don't have any slop creating error.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the advice. I did the 'dot on the blade' method and got it from -22 down to just about 0 from the front to the back of the blade. If it's not spot on, it's really close. There is a little warpage on the blade, but isn't every blade a little warped? I made a cut with it and measured.... the front and the back were the same.

Here's another question though. I think my splitter is thicker than 1/8 and the blades I use are 1/8. Should the splitter be in line with the left side or the right side... or just get a new splitter?

My next battle is a new fence because I took a reading from the front and when I went to the back the micrometer stopped touching it (pretty bad).
 

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your splitter must be thinner than the "kerf"

The kerf is what is important, not the blade because the teeth project to the side slightly. A thin kerf blade may need a special splitter, mine did not, but it's real close.


You may be able to fix the fence with adjustments rather than replacing it. A manual may show how if it's not obvious. Any photos would be useful.
 

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What are you sawing that requires such fine measuring. I just use a steel rule to set the fence saw blade distance if I really want to be exact. If real accuracy is not necessary then my standard tape measure suffices.George
Hello
I wonder how many who read this alignment procedure are able to or have a Micrometer dial gauge in your garage.
+1. :yes: It's necessary if you think it is. Your saw would have to demonstrate some severe indications that something is outta whack. Seems like overkill for a hobbyist that uses a saw infrequently. Some make it sound like woodworking is being pumped out of the shop 6 days a week, every week.

For all the pumping out of woodwork 6 days a week (sometimes 7), I never found the need for dial indicators, run out gauges or any fancy measuring devices. I've had several table saws, and using simple in shop measuring tools, I get clean cut edges, an 1/8" kerf cut for a full kerf blade, and parallel repetitive cuts.






.
 

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That indicator has about an inch of travel. If that's not enough to take a parallel measurement from the blade to the fence there is something very wrong ! You should preload it and then move the arrow on the dial so that it reads zero. If your out more than .500 on 8 inches you'd be shooting boards out the back of the saw every time you used it. There must be adjustment screws on the fence to align it to the blade. As far as tolerances, there must be a standard somewhere on the web. I just set it as close as possible. You got an indicator so why not set it accurately ? Besides, being able to perform such tasks makes you a more well rounded tradesman.
 

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I've had good results using a piece of oak 3/4" stock with a brass screw in one end. I clamp it loosely in my miter gauge and move the brass screw against a tooth and clamp it tight. I rotate the blade and move the miter gauge forward until the screw is adjacent to the tooth. I make adjustments until the screw head is against the tooth both front and rear.
Then I do the same with the fence. Biesemeyer recommends a slight toe out of the fence which works for me but a toe in can cause the blade to bind in the workpiece.
 

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In the manual.
What manual are you referring to? An excerpt from the Biesemeyer assembly and installation, manual...Page 11, paragraph 4...

4.

The fence (C) Fig. 26, must be adjusted so it is parallel
to the miter gage slot. Slide the fence until the bottom
edge is in line with the edge of the miter gage slot as
shown and push down on locking handle (B). Check
to see if the fence (C) is aligned with the miter slot the
entire length of the table. If an adjustment is needed,
lift fence (C) off the guide as shown in Fig. 27. Slightly
tighten or loosen adjusting screws (J) or (K), using
a 3/16” Allen wrench (N), not included. Replace the
fence on the guide tube and check again. Repeat this
adjustment until you are certain the fence is parallel
to the miter gage slot.
NOTE: Very little movement of the adjusting screws is
necessary to adjust the fence.







.
 

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What manual are you referring to? An excerpt from the Biesemeyer assembly and installation, manual...Page 11, paragraph 4...

4.

The fence (C) Fig. 26, must be adjusted so it is parallel
to the miter gage slot. Slide the fence until the bottom
edge is in line with the edge of the miter gage slot as
shown and push down on locking handle (B). Check
to see if the fence (C) is aligned with the miter slot the
entire length of the table. If an adjustment is needed,
lift fence (C) off the guide as shown in Fig. 27. Slightly
tighten or loosen adjusting screws (J) or (K), using
a 3/16” Allen wrench (N), not included. Replace the
fence on the guide tube and check again. Repeat this
adjustment until you are certain the fence is parallel
to the miter gage slot.
NOTE: Very little movement of the adjusting screws is
necessary to adjust the fence.







.




My apologies. Your quote from the manual is correct. I know I didn't dream it so I'll keep looking until I find where I read it and let you know. But for now I stand here humbly corrected:huh:
 

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depending on the type of saw ....

There are two different approaches to align the blade to the slot:
On a contractor saw, like the old Grizzly, Craftsman and Rigid and others the trunnions/saw carriage assembly must be loosened from under the table, usually 4 or 6 bolts. Then you rotate the entire saw assembly, not the table, until the blade becomes parallel to the miter slot. The table is fastened to the saw base and does not come into play on these saws.

Measuring from the slot can be done many different ways:
1. with a dial indicator on the miter gauge, not my preference because of the possibilty of slop between the miter gauge bar and the slot. Better miter gauges have a setscrew in a small slot which snugs up the bar in the slot.
2. a snug fitting sliding bar wood or metal, in the miter slot with the micrometer attached,



3. a tri-square used alone,

4. a tri-square with a feeler gauge as mentioned,
5. A stick with an adjustable screw on the end mounted to a snug fitting bar in the miter slot and possibly others I have forgotten.
6.A steel rule measuring from the edge of the slot to the blade is probably the least accurate, but some folks with good eyesight and allowing for parallax, can make it work.

A cabinet saw has the trunnion/saw carriage mounted to the cabinet base,so you align the blade by loosening the table and rotating the table until the miter slot aligns parallel with the blade.....

The miter slot is the reference standard, not the fence which can be skewed off at any angle NOT parallel to the slot. Once the blade is correctly aligned, then proceed to align the fence. You can set the fence away from the blade at the rear a few thou, .002, 1/64th or so, but I don't and haven't found the need for that. Some folks like to do that and that's their choice.


There are now flat steel plates that replace the blade for this procedure and are precision ground for accuracy. A sanding plate from years back is also a good reference rather than the blade IF ground flat. They are expensive, and would be seldom used in a household shop.
http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=6039
The plate is available separately I see... about $64.00

Here's some examples: http://images.search.yahoo.com/sear...=ytff1-tyc-inbox&va=saw+blade+alignment+plate


Hope I covered everything..... I donno?:blink:
 

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Whether you have 3 thousands of an inch one way or another at the far end of your fence is in all probability going to make very little difference. That is the thickness of a sheet of letterhead paper, a speck of sawdust or a paint chip under the slide will throw it off that much or more anytime it is moved.

If the material the fence is made from is that accurate they would be using it to build metal working lathes and milling machines where accuracy is critical, this is woodworking, even the Besy manual shows a tape measure and ruler to align it, put your dial gauge away, it will only confuse things where close enough is good enough.
 
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