Reply by Charlie

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Posted on Table saw set up issue with miter slots

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1101 posts in 3566 days

#1 posted 03-25-2012 09:16 PM

I have the 35990G. The difference here is that the miter slots are not milled into the main table, but are split between the main table and wing. So the seam is in the slot. The slots are VERY adjustable.

#1) Don’t just use clamps to pull the wing tight to the table and call it a day.

I did a long write-up on this part of the assembly, but I forget where I did it. :)
The first thing to do is get the wings level with the main table section. Use the blade wrench to adjust the bushings up and down (after loosening the set screws) if you need to make adjustments to level the wing. You need to start with the mounting bolts closest to the miter slot. Loosen the mounting bolts (all of them), adjust the bushings closest to miter slot to get the wing even with the main table. This involves a lot of loosen the mounting bolt/adjust bushing/tighten the mounting bolt. Get it as close as you can. DO NOT mess with the miter slot width until you have the wing level. Once the inner bushings are adjusted, go to the outer bushings (farthest from the miter slot). The bushings only serve to support the wing at the correct height. Mine were off by quite a bit even though the manual says this was all done at the factory. If your wings are level with the table, obviously you can skip that part…. BUT…. FORGET ABOUT the miter slot width until you have the wing bushings adjusted. (See a trend here?)

Miter slot width:
With the wings now level, you can adjust the slots. What worked for me was to take a piece of 3/4 inch plywood (actually 23/32) and set it in the slot. This was a strip of 3/4” plywood about an inch wide. Lay it in the slot so the thickness (not the width) is giving you the slot width. I used that plywood strip and a business card.

You have the bushings all set for the wing height so loosen up all the mounting bolts (again) and stand at the side of the table and give the wing a good tug away from the main table to open up the miter slot. Now it’s WAY too sloppy. So put your “spacer” in the miter slot and push the wing back in rather gently.

TIP: On mine, the “locating pins” wree interfereing with the adjustment of the slot width, so don’t be afraid to loosen the nuts on the bottoms of the 2 locating pins ( a LOT) so the pins are free to move a bit.

With the wing now kissing your spacer, start snugging up the mounting bolts. Do the inner ones first. If the slot is looser at one end, tap the wing in toward the main table with a rubber mallet. Straight hits on the end of the wing. No glancing blows.

These wings don’t draw to the main table like every other table saw you’ve used. There are no draw bolts to bring the wing tight to the table. It doesn’t NEED them. Once you have the slot width adjusted, AND you’ve retightend the mounting bolts, that wing isn’t moving. You don’t NEED to shim between the edge of the main table and the wing. I mean… you could if you WANT to, but it really isn’t necessary.

My guess is that your saw is fine, but this really is a different way to attach the wings. The resulting seamless top is VERY nice, but the procedure to do the wing attachment/adjustment is different from what most folks are used to. When I just pushed mine together I was heartbroken as this was my SECOND new saw…. I had returned the Rigid 4512 due to a factory defect in the height adjustment.

I was a journeyman millwright. Once I figured out the mechanics behind the wing design, my 35990G came out GREAT and has been a pleasure to use. I will tell you the first wing took me over an hour to get right, but that’s because I had to figure everything out. The 2nd one was on, level, miter slot set, in about 15 minutes.

Hope that helps

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