New Table Saw...

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Blog entry by JohnL posted 07-30-2010 05:17 PM 1397 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Okay, I just got my first table saw. It’s new to me, but it’s a used saw. Picked up a Craftsman 113.299040 (Manual: for $175. Runs smooth and quiet. Looks clean but used.

I use to work with my Dad in his workshop in the basement a couple decades ago (well, more like a quarter century ago) so woodworking is nothing new, but ‘table saw’ is. Dad has a Craftsman radial arm saw. He got his in the mid-70’s, maybe a couple years before the saw I just bought was made. So, all of my saw experience is with the radial arm saw rather than a table saw. I’ve been paying attention to the trade rags and techniques and such posted online, but there’s no substitution to experience. Hopefully I’ll absorb quickly.

Now I need to clear out my garage and pick my first project, probably something so’s I’ll be able to clear out the garage.


-- I'm looking forward to regretting this.

8 comments so far

View twokidsnosleep's profile


1117 posts in 3658 days

#1 posted 07-30-2010 05:42 PM

Do a little searching on here for some jig/sled designs and make a zero clearance insert to help make the saw more accurate and safe.
I had troubles with my Craftsman TS as the table does not have standard mitre slot dimension.
There is a lot of info on here to absorb.

-- Scott "Some days you are the big dog, some days you are the fire hydrant"

View JohnL's profile


33 posts in 3552 days

#2 posted 07-30-2010 05:46 PM

Thankfully this TS has a standard miter slot. Thanks for the tip on the zero-clearance insert. I’ll do some digging.

-- I'm looking forward to regretting this.

View RonPeters's profile


713 posts in 3564 days

#3 posted 07-30-2010 05:58 PM

I have the same saw. Best thing I ever did to it was to change the pulleys to turned steel ones and added a segmented belt. That takes the vibration out.

The next best thing was to spend $150 on a Delta T2 fence and install that. If you check my blog, there’s a link.

Oh and a Freud 60t blade helps a lot too.

-- “Once more unto the breach, dear friends...” Henry V - Act III, Scene I

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

6898 posts in 3878 days

#4 posted 07-30-2010 08:51 PM

Greetings JohnL,

In referernce to your new (older) tablesaw, I know you’re very proud of it…..I too have an older Sears
contractor saw that I bought in 1984…. I still own that saw, but also I have a Delta X5 cabinet saw that
I use on all my projects, and use the Sears for dados and rabbits. I have them back-to back and they share the same outfeed table. There are a few things you can do to enhance your saws use. As Ron Peters suggested above, do the things for better performance…. I di it a long time ago. But, another thing you can do is build you a saw workstation, with drawers, dust collection, etc. Take a look at my blog ” An upgrade for an old workhorse”.... Go to my home page, pull up my blogs, and it’s in there… It’ll give you some idea as to what you can do with an old Craftsman to get the full benefits from it….PM me with any questions you may have, if you need help…...

-- " There's a better way.....find it"...... Thomas Edison.

View JohnL's profile


33 posts in 3552 days

#5 posted 07-30-2010 09:16 PM

Hi Rick,

The one thing I don’t like about the saw is the stamped steel extensions. They’re not very stable. I really like the workstation you’ve done for your saw. Something to add to my ToDo list.

-- I'm looking forward to regretting this.

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

6898 posts in 3878 days

#6 posted 07-30-2010 09:54 PM

I took those wings off as soon as I got the saw, and made the outfeeds for both sides out of MDF and laminated the tops, plus scrapped the original fence and bought the Delta Sawguide fence system…..made it like a new saw, and this thing is dead-on accurate….They don’t make it anymore, but the T2 fence is great, and will bolt right up to the Craftsman with no problem…........A new fence and a new blade makes a world of difference…...Mine still has the original belt and pulleys on it…...

-- " There's a better way.....find it"...... Thomas Edison.

View Broglea's profile


687 posts in 3774 days

#7 posted 07-31-2010 01:57 AM

John – I have that TS and I use it every day. It was my Dad’s TS that he bought when I was very young. He gave it to me about 10 years ago. I use the stock miter gauge and fence. It would be nice to upgrade them, but to be honest with you the saw cuts fine. I’ve had to learn how to keep it tuned and running smoothly. Keep a good blade in it and it will cut just about anything.

Take the time to read up on maintaining your TS, put what you’ve learned into practice, make a few mistakes along the way and enjoy your new tool. Pretty soon you won’t even consider an upgrade.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

24175 posts in 3789 days

#8 posted 08-01-2010 05:59 AM

If the saw works fine, I would check to see if the balde is truly square with the table when the dial is at 90 degrees. If it is off, mayby you can adjust the dial to match the blade angle. It is good to get to know your saw and it’s accuracy and deficiencies if any. Then check to see that the fence is parallel to the blade. If not adjust the fence to bring it in line with the blade so the work does not pinch between the fence and the blade. Try these and make some cuts with it to get comfortable with it. Remember the 4” RULE. Dont ever get your fingers within 4” of the running blade. I ALWAYS use pusher sticks on the table saw unless I have to handle a big panel and then my fingers are far from the blade. Make some pusher sticks before you make the first cut. I have dozen of them and the ends are cut and nicked but my fingers are fine.

If the blade is dull, get it sharpened and flattened or replace it. A thin kerf blade is recommended for a 2 Hp or less motor. If the blade is sharp but has buildup or pitch on the teeth, clean it with oven cleaner and a brush and it will look brand new.

Good luck and share with us some projects you make with it in the future.

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

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