Delta 36-725 Table Saw Alignment Issues - Need Advice

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Forum topic by dlandes14 posted 04-05-2018 02:52 PM 2364 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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6 posts in 853 days

04-05-2018 02:52 PM

Hey everyone, I am brand new to the site but I have already learned a lot by reading through these forums and I really appreciate how supportive this community seems to be. That being said, I am having some issues with my Delta 36-725 table saw and I’m concerned it may defective altogether but thought I’d reach out to you all and see if you had any advice before I just chalk it up as a loss and return it. I have sent the following information to Delta via email and have yet to hear back from their technical support staff. I plan on calling on the phone if I don’t hear soon. So here it goes, sorry so long winded but I thought the more info you all had, maybe the better you could assist me. This is essentially the email I sent to Delta…

I recently bought the above saw in January of this year from my local Lowes store. I started working on it soon after I bought it but due to time constraints and the cold weather (assembling in garage) I had to put it down for a while. Recently I was able to get started working on it again and I have run into a few issues that I was hoping someone could maybe help me with.

1. I noticed that one of the support wing bolt holes on the left side was not tapped and would not accept the provided bolt that came with the saw. This was not a huge deal, I simply went and bought a longer 1/4” bolt, flat washer and lock washer and this seemed to work just fine. This was not something worth returning the saw for in my mind.

2. The saw blade came about .012 out of alignment to the RIGHT sided miter slot and it was in a direction that would have caused safety issues with kick back therefore I felt I should try to remedy this. I used a dial indicator jig I made using the provided miter gauge, taking care to ensure that I was applying the same pressure to make sure the miter gauge was touching the same side of the miter slot for each measurement of the blade and fence. I also drew marks on the blade/fence to ensure I was measuring from the same spot each time. I found PDF instructions in a woodworking forum (THANKS LUMBERJOCKS!!!!) on how to align the blade. I was able to achieve the following measurements:

Using the RIGHT sided miter slot with the fence to the RIGHT of the blade, I was able to get the fence essentially dead on parallel with the miter slot. Again, using the RIGHT miter slot I was able to get the blade to about .003 -.004 to the miter slot with the rear of the blade being slightly AWAY from the RIGHT miter slot.

Now, after moving the fence to the left side of the blade and using the LEFT miter slot I was able to get the following measurements: The blade was .005 toward the LEFT miter slot at the back of the blade (makes sense, since the blade was pointing away from the RIGHT miter slot, but why isn’t it an exact reciprocal change?). The fence was also about .005 away from the LEFT miter slot in the back. I have 2 questions regarding these measurements on the left side of the table: 1) Since the blade and fence are off by about .005 in the same direction, does this essentially mean that the fence, miter slot, and blade are parallel on the left side? 2) Assuming the miter slots were milled correctly parallel from the factory, why would my fence be dead parallel to the RIGHT miter slot but be off by .005 from the LEFT miter slot? So, what I wanted to know regarding these measurement was are they acceptable? And do I need to try to adjust the blade or fence anymore with these measurements I have given.

3. I can not seem to get the blade 90 degrees to the table on both the left and right side. Using 4 different squares I have, I am able to get the blade to 90 degrees on one side of the blade, but the other side will be out of square by a bit. I have included pictures of this to demonstrate. What would be causing this? Surely it cannot be my squares since I used 4 of them which showed the same error. I feel it must be an issue with the cast iron top which brings me to my next point….

4. The cast iron top does not seem to be flat. I have included pictures which demonstrate that the cast iron top seems to be bowed/warped in both directions (parallel to the blade and perpendicular to the blade) when laying a straight edge across the table. I don’t know if this is how it is supposed to be but I worry that it could affect the quality and accuracy of my cuts especially being bowed perpendicular to the blade. I feel this is also likely why I cannot get the blade 90 degrees on both sides which is certainly inconvenient. Is this normal, or is this a faulty cast iron top. Surely it is nothing I did to the top as I have only run about 10 small boards through it and nothing ever sits on the table top. It has basically been sitting for the past 2 months in my garage.

Phew! Lot of info I know. I realize this saw isn’t a professional grade cabinet saw but the $600 I spent on it is certainly a lot for me and I just want it to be as precise as possible. I feel like blade/fence measurements I got with my dial indicator are OK based on what I’ve read on here and other sites, certainly wish I could get it dead perfect, but what bothers me more are the issues with the cast iron top and the fact I can’t get the blade 90 to the top on BOTH sides. That HAS to be an issue with the cast iron top right? I tried to include some pictures to show you guys what I’m dealing with. Thanks so much for any help and I look forward to learning so much more from this group! P.S. I’m sorry about the upside down pictures. I’m not sure why they imported this way but I can’t seem to fix it. Essentially I just wanted you all to see the obvious gap under the straight edge in each direction on my cast top and how on the same setting, one side of my blade is square to the top and there is an obvious gap on the other between my blade and combo square. This happened with 3 other squares I checked with also.


11 replies so far

View WhyMe's profile


1290 posts in 2362 days

#1 posted 04-05-2018 03:05 PM

I have the same saw and my top is flat. There just seems to be an issue with cast tops depending on how they are made because this problem is not unique to the Delta 36-725. Have you contacted Lowe’s about an exchange?

View dlandes14's profile


6 posts in 853 days

#2 posted 04-05-2018 03:19 PM

I was going to wait for Delta’s reply but maybe I ought to just take it back to Lowe’s.

View bbasiaga's profile


1243 posts in 2796 days

#3 posted 04-05-2018 03:29 PM

2) sounds like your .inter its are out of parallel by about .001” no big deal. The blade should have been toed in by .004, the same it was off on the other side, but the slot was already .001 off so you got .005 instead. Make sense? And that is assuming there is not .001 of error in your jig. Either way, who cares.

As for the fence, you could make sure that both faces of the fence are parallel to each other. They may not be, which could be part of the reason the measurements are off. It doesn’t matter though. Within .005 as you are you should be fine.

3 and 4 could be the same problem. If it is not flat you won’t be able to square to both sides. Is it square to the insert on both sides? Or can you shim the insert so that it is square on both sides of the blade? That can help a lot as the cut edge rides there for support.

I had a Ridgid contractor saw and I never checked for anything except to square the fence to the miter slot. I am sure the table was not flat and the blade was out of parallel. I just didn’t know to check at the time. I still made a lot of great projects. Don’t let all these measurements stop you.


-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View dlandes14's profile


6 posts in 853 days

#4 posted 04-05-2018 03:35 PM

The insert plate has these leveling screws but the trouble is I think if I try to mess with it, it will be above the level of the cast top and my workpiece will hit it as it’s approaching the blade. I hate being this OCD about it but it’s just frustrating! Thanks for your feedback though.

View Tdgkorn's profile


2 posts in 1077 days

#5 posted 08-15-2018 02:14 PM

Did you ever resolve this? I have a similar issue. The right miter slot, blade and fence are all parallel, but the let slot isn’t. Love to hear if you found a solution.

View dlandes14's profile


6 posts in 853 days

#6 posted 08-15-2018 02:32 PM

Nope unfortunately i have not. I even took the original saw back to Lowe’s and exchanged for a new one. Same issue. Table isn’t completely flat and can only line up the right slot and fence. I tend to only really use the fence on the right side of the blade so I’m just trying to deal with it. If I ever need to use the fence on the left side I guess I’ll have to get my dial indicator out and line it up. It’s frustrating but I didn’t have the energy to take a 2nd saw back. I’ve still been able to do everything I need to do with it so far. Haven’t tried anything that requires super precision like tenons yet so we’ll see how it goes.

View Tdgkorn's profile


2 posts in 1077 days

#7 posted 08-15-2018 02:38 PM

That’s a bummer, I was really hoping Delta would help you out. I was debating taking it back to Lowes too, but as you found it may make no difference. I also almost exclusively use the right side. Sad that you need to pay a lot more for a saw that has no issues. I guess I need to start saving my money. Thanks

View dlandes14's profile


6 posts in 853 days

#8 posted 08-15-2018 02:41 PM

Yeah i did call delta and they were willing to look at it but the nearest service center for me was almost 2 hours away. Sorry to hear you are having issues as well.

View Lazyman's profile (online now)


5634 posts in 2189 days

#9 posted 08-15-2018 03:01 PM

Did you ever resolve this? I have a similar issue. The right miter slot, blade and fence are all parallel, but the let slot isn t. Love to hear if you found a solution.

- Tdgkorn

As long as the right face of the fence is parallel to the blade when the fence is to the left of the blade, it is safe to use. If not, you may have to adjust the fence anytime you need to use it on the left side of the blade. On the other hand, if the left slot is not parallel to the right slot there is not a permanent fix for that but is not dangerous to use, since it just affects the accuracy using your miter gage, though you could similarly adjust your miter gauge when you need to use it on the left. Measuring from the right slot, how far out of alignment is the left slot? If you have made a crosscut sled (everyone should), does it slide smoothly with guides in both slots?

I have had the same saw for 4 years now and the only problem that I have is that the faces of the fence are cupped slightly, probably because they over tightened them when assembling the fence but I can deal with that by using an auxiliary fence face when needed. One of these days, I will make some new faces to replace the cupped extruded aluminum ones. While I have been happy with my saw, recent reports of issues like this would prevent me from buying it now and if the miter slots are not parallel or the table was not flat, I would return the saw.

-- Nathan, TX -- Hire the lazy man. He may not do as much work but that's because he will find a better way.

View johnstoneb's profile


3146 posts in 2974 days

#10 posted 08-15-2018 03:16 PM

.010 is the manufacturer tolerance and you are at .004 or .005. What’s the problem?

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View dlandes14's profile


6 posts in 853 days

#11 posted 08-15-2018 03:46 PM

The blade tolerance is fine. It’s that on my 2nd saw now the table still isn’t flat. Thankfully this 2nd table isn’t quite at warped and I can get the blade to 90 degrees to the table on each side of the blade by adjusting the throat plate a little. My 1st saw was so warped I couldn’t get the blade square to the table on each side.

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