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Replace the top of a table saw - Newbie here!

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Forum topic by majorleaguewood posted 05-21-2019 04:15 PM 383 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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majorleaguewood

2 posts in 28 days


05-21-2019 04:15 PM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw question

Hey everyone! First timer here to the forum and to woodworking.

I recently purchased a Ryobi RTS 10 from someone on the FB Marketplace and the table top is a little rough. There are some rusty spots as well as overall gunk.

My question is: Should I replace the top with 1/2” MDF (or something else) OR is there a good way to remove the rust and smooth the surface out?

Thanks and I look forward to your responses!

-Anthony


8 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

7387 posts in 2587 days


#1 posted 05-21-2019 04:31 PM

Clean it – rust is easy to remove. After cleaning, give it a good coat or three of Johnsons paste wax.
For more specific answers, post a picture or two so we can see the condition it’s in.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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DutchW

2 posts in 33 days


#2 posted 05-21-2019 04:39 PM

Scotch pads (gray) with Boeshield T9 makes for an awesome combination to clean the gunk and rust from a table saw.

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avsmusic1

417 posts in 1073 days


#3 posted 05-21-2019 08:04 PM

evaporust and steel wool
if you have really bad areas literally soak a rag (shirt, towel, etc) with the evaporust and lay it on top of it for a couple hours to work

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BobAnderton

294 posts in 3178 days


#4 posted 05-22-2019 12:36 AM

Yeah, I’m with Dutch. Call me crazy but I like to wet sand steel surfaces with Boshield and wet & dry silicon carbide paper (the black stuff). That way there is no cleanup to remove oils before getting Boshield on it. I use evaporust on small stuff but those big surfaces I sand with Boshield.

-- Bob Anderton - Austin, TX - Nova 3000 lathe, Alaskan Mark III mill, Husqavarna Saw

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majorleaguewood

2 posts in 28 days


#5 posted 05-22-2019 12:19 PM

Thanks everyone! Looks like I’ll be going the Boeshield route this weekend. I’ll share a before and after pic.

Thanks again!

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Sprung

99 posts in 2104 days


#6 posted 05-22-2019 12:40 PM

Before you go crazy with the abrasives, use the edge of a razor blade to scrape the top. You will be surprised at how much it will remove, how easy it is to scrape most of it off, and how much faster it is that starting on the rust and gunk with abrasives. Then you have to use less abrasives on the top.

I would also never use sandpaper on a table saw top – that’s just bad advice and you can, depending on what grit you use, sand the top to have a small divot or shallow area. If an abrasive must be used, following the razor blade, some 0000 steel wool or a green scotch brite pad, with some of the T9 or WD40 as lubricant, will work wonders to get the last bit the razor doesn’t.

Finish it all out with an application of paste wax, which is then buffed out with a dry cloth after a few minutes. Apply paste was every week (if the saw sees heavy use) or about once a month (if the saw sees more occasional use).

I have restored several older, American made machines – all of them have had at least some sort of rust issue with the top – and this is the method I’ve used on every top. You do NOT want to use sandpaper on the top – that is a last resort item on saw tops, or any sort of machined or precision surface.

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Sprung

99 posts in 2104 days


#7 posted 05-22-2019 12:45 PM

Also, if the rust is still pretty bad after the razor blade, that is not the time to get out the abrasives either. Again, that is a last resort. If it’s still bad enough after the razor blade scraping that the steel wool or green scotch brite won’t get it easily enough, then I will use either Evaporust (as mentioned above) or phosphoric acid to take care of the rust. Phosphoric acid works as a rust converter. Both work quite well at taking care of rust – but both also work better when you can remove as much loose rust as possible first.

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MrUnix

7387 posts in 2587 days


#8 posted 05-22-2019 04:42 PM

Thanks everyone! Looks like I’ll be going the Boeshield route this weekend.
- majorleaguewood

You can save some bucks by just using Mineral Spirits instead of the Boesheild. T9 is basically Mineral Spirits and Naphtha with a little bit of mineral oil and paraffin wax mixed in. You can make your own for a lot cheaper. For cleaning though, all you are looking for is the solvent portion to help break up the gunk.

I also tend to stay away from abrasives. Evaporust is great, but not easy with large surfaces – which is where electrolysis works best (and is way cheaper). Hint: If you go the electrolysis route, use carbon electrodes instead of metal if possible.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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