My first projects #1: My tools suck

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Blog entry by DanBman posted 09-20-2018 02:46 PM 716 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of My first projects series Part 2: Making my tools usable »

Ok, most of my tools were free to me so as far as cost vs gain…. Thanks to the renter that left all his tools behind. The tools are worth the price I paid, maybe. He said he wanted to make furniture to sell but I’ve decided he was full of it.
I have a decent planer, 12 inch wide by 6 inch height, and an electric hand planer that he purchased as well as various power tools. Those are decent but this table saw… Chicago Electric, low grade, piece of junk. The fence is barely usable and everything is so poorly constructed that I have to check it every time I use it. Good practice anyway I guess.
I bought my own compound miter saw (doesn’t slide) but it’s a nice saw. I’ve had it a few years with no issues.

With that said, I cleared an area in my garage and made a quick table that brings the table saw to the height of my miter saw surface. I cut legs off a plastic book shelf to use as a feed table for either. I cut a 14 foot 2×4 down to 5 pieces… 1.5×3 @33.5 inches just to test my saws. These will eventually be pieces I need anyway. I was planning to do more but I quit early….
Time to buy goggles and masks and make some jigs and a fence for the table saw.

4 comments so far

View GoingUp's profile


47 posts in 1019 days

#1 posted 09-20-2018 06:29 PM

Is your table saw one of those cheap plastic bench top ones? If so, I’m sure others will come along and tell you the same thing, but for the price of an upgraded fence, you could buy a used contractor table saw with decent fence depending on your area. Also, I’m not sure there are fence upgrades for that saw. The cheapest fence that gets recommended is a Delta T2/3, for about $200 to $230. Im not sure it would fit a bench top saw. I wouldn’t invest in jigs, time or money in your current saw.

View DanBman's profile


5 posts in 662 days

#2 posted 09-21-2018 01:21 AM

It’s a metal top but the fence is plastic and aluminum. When it locks down, it mishapes as the aluminum pulls away from the plastic ends. I’m thinking of building a fence and jigs and a zero clearance sled until I buy a new saw.

View Kaleb the Swede's profile

Kaleb the Swede

1925 posts in 2741 days

#3 posted 09-21-2018 03:51 PM

Have a look at this. You could take the guts of that saw, or a circular saw and have a great saw. Just a thought.

-- Just trying to build something beautiful

View NormG's profile


6506 posts in 3776 days

#4 posted 09-22-2018 02:15 AM

Patience is work the wait

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

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