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Sawstop safety mechanism fired

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Blog entry by Craftsman on the lake posted 05-19-2020 01:00 AM 461 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve had my sawstop professional cabinet saw since 2017. I’ve used it a fair amount.

Yesterday I’m cutting a small piece of PVC, I turn the saw off and quickly walk away with the piece I cut. In the couple of seconds it takes for the blade to spin down the safety mechanism fires. It wasn’t loud, just a snap and the blade was only about a 1/2” above the table. When I couldn’t see it I realized it had fired.

I called Sawstop to ask about it. I’ll be sending the cartridge to them. It could be anything but there just wasn’t any skin or conductor contact from what I cut. It’s possible the blade could have somehow made contact with the cartridge but it’s unlikely as the blade has been running for months without any recent adjustments. It could be the electronics too. But I won’t find out till I hear from them. They put the spent cartridge in diagnostics and it tells them what made it fire.

Till then, I’ve ordered another cartridge and will try to set the saw in bypass mode. If it won’t do it then something is up with something else.

I’ll be back to add to this post when I find out in several days from the company.

That being said….. The saw has been unbelievably great for all this time. I’ve never had a misfire before, it’s the original cartridge, and I’m thinking some weird thing must have happened to make it fire.

On the upside, The blade looks good. They said to have it sharpened and checked out. Off to Rocklers tomorrow. It’s a pretty good blade so I’m glad for that. Hopefully I’ll be able to put it back in.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.



8 comments so far

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Redoak49

4651 posts in 2725 days


#1 posted 05-19-2020 03:49 PM

It will be interesting to hear what they say. I know you can build up a static charge on PVC and wonder if that had something to do with it. I normally cut PVC on my miter saw and will continue to do that.

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socrbent

991 posts in 3006 days


#2 posted 05-19-2020 05:36 PM

I was able to to have Forest recover a Forest WWII blade when I had a fire a couple of years ago.

-- socrbent Ohio

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Craftsman on the lake

3254 posts in 4174 days


#3 posted 05-19-2020 08:20 PM

I sent it out today along with delivering my blade to be looked at / sharpened and got another trigger cartridge.

It might be static build up in the PVC but I had the piece in my hand and I had walked away . I did notice that the blade didn’t bite into the cartridge much since it went off when the blade was half spun down.

I put a new cartridge in today with a spare blade and followed the tech’s directions. I started it in safety mode, then in regular. Seems to be okay. Hopefully it’s a fluke and not anything else to do with the saw’s electronics.

I won’t hear from Sawstop for a week or two But I’ll update when I get a report.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

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Redoak49

4651 posts in 2725 days


#4 posted 05-21-2020 12:10 PM

I found this on another forum and It was in response to a question about static electricity and SawStop. It sounds like a potential cause of your issue.

“It is our policy that static electricity is not a problem for our saws. If an activation occurs due to a static discharge, we will replace the cartridge free of charge. That being said, I would still encourage you to use some static abatement measures if you are going to use PVC ducting for your dust collection. It is easy to at least run a bare copper wire inside the ducting that is connected to a ground source. Dust explosions are not uncommon. The dangers are serious enough that no PVC ducting is allowed in any commercial operation. The few activations that I have evaluated and found to be static related have all been while the customer is cutting plastic sheeting and the discharge has been into the blade. I would not expect that discharge inside your ducting to behave the same way. Let us know if you have any additional questions.”

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Craftsman on the lake

3254 posts in 4174 days


#5 posted 05-21-2020 01:16 PM


I found this on another forum and It was in response to a question about static electricity and SawStop. It sounds like a potential cause of your issue.

“It is our policy that static electricity is not a problem for our saws. If an activation occurs due to a static discharge, we will replace the cartridge free of charge. That being said, I would still encourage you to use some static abatement measures if you are going to use PVC ducting for your dust collection. It is easy to at least run a bare copper wire inside the ducting that is connected to a ground source. Dust explosions are not uncommon. The dangers are serious enough that no PVC ducting is allowed in any commercial operation. The few activations that I have evaluated and found to be static related have all been while the customer is cutting plastic sheeting and the discharge has been into the blade. I would not expect that discharge inside your ducting to behave the same way. Let us know if you have any additional questions.”

- Redoak49

Thanks, that’s very interesting. I was cutting a small piece of PVC but I had the piece in hand and had walked away from the saw. It was spinning down and actually had slowed enough that it did not bite into the cartridge very much. I’ve seen some examples online where an inch of the saw was in the aluminum cartridge.

Even with the analysis done by the Sawstop diagnostics labs I think they can only say that there was electrical contact. I mean that’s what triggers it. They can’t tell me that it was plastic that did it. I sent it back so if there was no reason, it was either a cartridge gone bad or something up with the rest of the electronics, which would be good to know. But, the new cartridge is working well now. But, no more pvc in it for me.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

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Craftsman on the lake

3254 posts in 4174 days


#6 posted 05-31-2020 02:06 AM

Update on this cartridge misfire. Sawstop analysis indicates skin contact. They sent a letter. I called them and said I was three feet away from the saw and it was winding down when it fired as I was walking away. In fact the blade didn’t hardly bite into the mechanism it was going so slowly. They offered to send me a new cartridge when the phone connection was lost. I didn’t call them back. I’ve put in a new cartridge and everything is working fine. I had sent in the old one as it would have told me if I had another electrical (microchip) issue. I guess I don’t and it was some fluke thing with the pvc or whatever. Still love the saw though.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

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Redoak49

4651 posts in 2725 days


#7 posted 05-31-2020 11:05 AM

Thanks for getting back with what SawStop reported and glad you are getting a new cartridge.

I avoid cutting PVC on mine and use the miter saw. For me, there is no reason to tempt fate.

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Craftsman on the lake

3254 posts in 4174 days


#8 posted 05-31-2020 11:50 AM



Thanks for getting back with what SawStop reported and glad you are getting a new cartridge.

I avoid cutting PVC on mine and use the miter saw. For me, there is no reason to tempt fate.

- Redoak49

The tech said PVC shouldn’t have triggered it. I can also always temporarily turn off the safety feature to cut a piece.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

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