Ridgid Table Saw Motor Upgrade-unbelievable!

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Project by ToddTurner posted 04-09-2010 02:14 AM 24767 views 14 times favorited 31 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I really like my Ridgid tabel saw. I have the accuracy to within .002” but it is severely underpowered :-(
I have the knowledge and resources to help the underpower problem :-)
These saws come with a 1.5hp motor. I got a 3hp, 230vac motor and the power improvement is 5 times what it used to be! I ripped through an 8/4 red oak scrap without issue and hesitation. I was afraid that with this power, burning would be an issue but its quite the opposite. With the power, the blade doesnt slow down so burning doesnt happen. THe power is unbelievable. It doesnt hesitate or bogg down. The cut is way smoother and there are NO splinters or tearout. I ripped this 8/4 oak with a 90 tooth blade. This is capable of smoking up the shop, but no! Went through it like nothing. Slick as snot!
This upgrade isnt something you can do just on whim. I spec’d this motor out for weeks. I had to find what type of motor was the original base, which is a 145t. 3400 rpm. I also had to go to a starter from the original switch. None of this is a big deal if you know how to do this. If you dont, dont try this at home kids, you could get hurt or burn up your new motor or worse, your shop. If i had to pay for this full out, its about a $500 upgrade. With my resources, I’m out about $45! Heck for $600 more i would sell the saw and go for the PM2000. I am rambling now, but only because I am so satisfied with this project! I have a whole new saw!
Once again, this is the result of giving a redneck too much time, money, and resources!

31 comments so far

View MarkwithaK's profile


370 posts in 4259 days

#1 posted 04-09-2010 02:23 AM

When you say “Starter” I’m assuming you are referring to a motor starter?

-- If at first you don't succeed then maybe skydiving isn't for you.

View ToddTurner's profile


144 posts in 4404 days

#2 posted 04-09-2010 02:29 AM

Yes it is a magnetic starter.

View Jeison's profile


968 posts in 4189 days

#3 posted 04-09-2010 02:32 AM

I envy people that can do this kind of stuff for themselves. My electrical engineering abilities begin and end with drawing stick figures. Yup, I’m THAT bad that I have to compare it to a completely irrelevant field.

-- - Jei, Rockford IL - When in doubt, spray it with WD-40 and wrap it with duct tape. The details will attend to themselves.

View PawPawTex's profile


85 posts in 4074 days

#4 posted 04-09-2010 03:13 AM

I’ve got one of the old school Ridgid table saws. It has 2.5 HP. I’ve never had a problem with its power. OK. So maybe I’m gloating. Sorry. P.S. I’m a redneck too so I fully understand where you’re coming from.

View AJJ's profile


75 posts in 4229 days

#5 posted 04-09-2010 03:13 AM

Great upgrade. Where did you get the starter?

-- AJJ, Eugene OR

View PurpLev's profile


8652 posts in 4729 days

#6 posted 04-09-2010 03:22 AM

very cool!

curious though – are you using the original belt and pulleys? isn’t there a risk of the higher torque motor ripping the belt apart? usually the 3HP TS use a much shorter and more rigid belt – from what I’ve seen, most use a 3 belt system to accommodate the higher HP motor.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View docholladay's profile


1287 posts in 4140 days

#7 posted 04-09-2010 03:26 AM

Makes me think of Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor. Ooh! Ooh! More Power! Aaaah!

Of course, Tim would wind up in the emergency room somehow.

-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

View Joanne's profile


186 posts in 4278 days

#8 posted 04-09-2010 03:58 AM

For all of us who have the same saw but not the knowledge, please share the details. I would love to do this!

-- Joanne, New York,

View bigike's profile


4057 posts in 4369 days

#9 posted 04-09-2010 04:06 AM

great work! i want to do this to my saw but i have a unisaw that’s 3hp and want to upgrade to 5hp but the 3hp is good for now. Neat idea though. ;)

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://[email protected]

View stratiA's profile


101 posts in 4457 days

#10 posted 04-09-2010 04:27 AM

I am also interested in this upgrade. Please share details.

-- Strati Alepidis, Burlington, Ma, Member Red Sox nation

View MedicKen's profile


1615 posts in 4543 days

#11 posted 04-09-2010 04:43 AM

I hope you put better bearings in the arbor!! The extra torque with that motor will shred the factory cheap tiawanese bearings. When then do go they will fry the arbor. Its an expensive fix and I hope you arent stnading in front of the saw when it happens

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View mancave's profile


114 posts in 4145 days

#12 posted 04-09-2010 04:48 AM

I am wondering how you got a 3hp motor and starter for $45

View OutPutter's profile


1199 posts in 5071 days

#13 posted 04-09-2010 04:57 AM

I like to think this is for real and safe and doable for $45. Ya’ll don’t spoil it for me OK?

-- Jim

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 4255 days

#14 posted 04-09-2010 05:33 AM

MORE POWER !!!!!!!

WOO-HOO !!!!

Great upgrade. Enjoy :-)

-- -- Neil

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 4351 days

#15 posted 04-09-2010 06:38 AM

Interesting….I have to admit that I too had the Tim “The Toolman” Tayler moment here. I am just curious as to what you did to the motor mounts and arbor assembly to beef it up for the extra RPM’s? $45 bucks…wow…

Last of all…being a safety fanatic….are you going to use a splitter or rive knife on that saw now….that 3hp motor can really kick back like the proverbial mule….I was curious as the pics show the saw without spitter or blade guard?

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

showing 1 through 15 of 31 comments

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