Workbench for a 1963 Craftsman Radial Arm Saw Model # 103.29310 Help.

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Forum topic by cherrywoodworker posted 11-03-2014 03:10 PM 10091 views 1 time favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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11 posts in 1814 days

11-03-2014 03:10 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

I just purchased a 1963 Craftsman Radial Arm Saw Model # 103.29310. The saw does work, but it is sitting on a metal cabinet with wheels. Since I have never owned a Radial Arm Saw before and new to wood working, should I mount it to a sturdy work bench that is at least 48” Long and 26” Wide ? I don’t want to lose an arm before I learn how to work with wood. I would appreciate any tips or if someone has a spare plan on PDF that I could get a copy, so I can do it right the 1st time. Thanks in advance for any advice I receive.


-- CherryWoodWorker in the house.

11 replies so far

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

5227 posts in 4470 days

#1 posted 11-03-2014 03:16 PM

I built a rolling cabinet for my RAS so I could have storage and a substantial base for the saw when it was in use.
You’re gonna need a table and fence set up as well.

-- [email protected]

View timbertailor's profile


1594 posts in 1934 days

#2 posted 11-03-2014 03:25 PM

Remember, a RAS is primarily for cross cutting, so you need to provide ample table space to hold long pieces of stock to be cut. I have my cabinet built so that I can cut ANY length of wood since the RAS bench allows me to open the garage door and feed the saw as material comes into the shop.

I do not have any dimensional drawings but it should give you some ideas to consider.

DeWalt RAS Forum

-- Brad, Texas,

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5753 posts in 3003 days

#3 posted 11-03-2014 03:48 PM

If you truly tune that saw to be accurate, you want as little frame flex as possible. That typically requires it to be mo8nted on something really stiff, those metal OEM cabinets that Sears provided were never stiff enough. On mine I just built a really strong box (cabinet) and put drawers in them. I wanted them mobile, so I sat the boxes into a mobile base from HTC. If yours will be stationary, just build a base for it. The cabinet should be a little larger than the frame, and to insure stiffness, put 2 layers of 3/4” ply on top for the frame to sit on….which is glued and dadoed into the cabinet sides. Then the saw frame gets bolted to the top. This gives you as stiff a frame as you’ll need to make that saw hum. Lastly, I prefer the table of an RAS to be up a little, mine’s at about 41”, which for my particular saws put the cabinet’s top at about 32 1/2” tall.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Neptuno's profile


32 posts in 1828 days

#4 posted 11-03-2014 04:52 PM

I had used mine for many years mounted in the original Craftsman stand, but when I got my Mitter saw, I have mounted it lin tandem, like this:


-- We must all cross the line.

View Rick  Dennington's profile (online now)

Rick Dennington

6661 posts in 3704 days

#5 posted 11-03-2014 05:57 PM

Maybe this will help with an idea or two, if you’re inclined to build something like this….I built this cabinet about 8-9 years ago to house my chop saw and radial saw…...Both are in line with a 2 fence system…..all aligned to handle an 18 ft. board, if necessary…..Of course I have the room, but you can scale down to meet your needs according to the room you have….It’s 42” high, and 32” deep, and each machine is hooked up to dust collection (as all mine are)......Plenty of storage and drawer space…Here’s a couple of shots of the set-up…..

-- " The secret to staying young looking.....hang around old people.." R.D.

View MT_Stringer's profile


3183 posts in 3741 days

#6 posted 11-03-2014 06:29 PM

Getting that saw mounted on something sturdy and at a comfortable working height will make a big difference.

I had a late 70’s model RAS and built a cabinet for it. I used 2×4’s, yellow pine and mdf for the panels. I did follow a plan but that was a long time ago.

If you decide to build a cabinet (with casters for mobility), consider keeping your cuts less than 48 inches (and 24 inches). That will help get more pieces from plywood or 8 foot long boards and minimize waste.

Here is an example of a project I am starting this week. If you decide to build a cabinet similar to this, take note of the face frame details. Rails and stiles…look em up on you tube. I build mine using pocket screw construction…look it up on you tube.

Disclaimer: I am a beginner at learning how to use Sketchup so my drawings might not be totally accurate, but they are close enough for me to work from.

Face frame details

Your cabinet sides, top and bottom can be 3/4 inch plywood. The face frame should also be 3/4 inch wood of your choice – pine, poplar or whatever hardwood you decide to use.

Kitchen cabinet assembled – plywood sides, poplar face frame.

Cabinet construction for miter saw station.

Hope you find some inspiration from these pics. I have a number of projects with pics. Check them out.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View Don W's profile

Don W

19336 posts in 3078 days

#7 posted 11-03-2014 06:32 PM

I had used mine for many years mounted in the original Craftsman stand, but when I got my Mitter saw, I have mounted it lin tandem, like this:


- Neptuno

this is the same setup I have. I’ve been using it probably 25-30 years.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View MrRon's profile


5715 posts in 3753 days

#8 posted 11-03-2014 07:30 PM

I did the same thing as Rick Dennington did, except I didn’t put any drawers under. It takes up a lot of wall space, but my shop is big, so no problem. If it will be your only saw and your shop is small, then a roll about stand may be better. Ripping with a RAS can be done, but it takes a bit of extra caution. When it was my only saw, I did a lot of ripping, including on 4×8 sheets of plywood.

View Neptuno's profile


32 posts in 1828 days

#9 posted 11-03-2014 09:38 PM

I must confess that I have recently sold the old Radial arm, for I rarely used it for its lack of precision. I installed a Bosh chop-saw in its place, great machine, inspired by this article:


-- We must all cross the line.

View cherrywoodworker's profile


11 posts in 1814 days

#10 posted 11-04-2014 01:30 AM

I appreciate the advice. I have been waiting since last week for them to approve my thing. I built my stand. it is 30” x 5’. Table Top is 7’ long. It also has storage underneath the Bench Top.

-- CherryWoodWorker in the house.

View cherrywoodworker's profile


11 posts in 1814 days

#11 posted 11-04-2014 01:30 AM

Some of you know that I just purchased A 1963 Craftsman RAS Model # 103.29310 . I wanted to build a bench for the RAS, because I didn’t like the metal cabinet it was on.


I used my DEWALT 7-Amp 2-Blade Planer Model # DW680K to plane the 4” x 4” legs, because it had paint and the wood looked rough. I built the top with the deminsions being 30” x 60”.


Then I mounted the legs to the bench top.


Once I had the top secured, I started on the storge shelp for the lower part of the bench.

Tomorrow, we will be bracing the top bench to support the RAS.

-- CherryWoodWorker in the house.

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