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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    3,562

    Default Another Saw Question

    In the past, I posted about buying a table saw to make my own boxes (and cut off my fingers). I still haven't bought a table saw (I sorta like my fingers), and now I've got a different idea.

    The man I bought my house from sold me all of his woodworking tools as part of the deal. I already have a really nice radial arm saw and band saw. I also have a ok router table that he made by mounting a plunge-type router inside of a cabinet/table. I don't want to make a huge number of hives. I just want to make my own woodenware for hives and nucs. It would be hard to recover the investment on a table saw, although it would be cool to have one.

    Instead of buying a table saw, could I use the radial arm saw to cross-cut the boards, get a fence for the band saw to rip the boards, use the router table to cut frame rests and rabbet joints, and then use a skill saw to make hand holds? (I've seen a jig set-up for making hand holds with a skill saw.)

    I have all of that stuff except a fence for the band saw. Does such a fence exist, and would there be some standard fence attachment that would fit a standard but old Craftsman band saw?

    Also, what size router bits would I need to make rabbet joints and/or frame rests?

    Would it be better to bite the bullet and just get a table saw?

    Thanks for any suggestions.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    DesAllemands, Lousiana
    Posts
    218

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    I would say buy a table saw. It will make it so much more enjoyable. You could get them relatively cheap at home depot since you wont be making many hives. But me personally, I would invest in a better quality one. They are worth it in my opinion.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3,169

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    simple answer yes. Long answer is that you will find a wide variety of quality of the work due to the tool chosen. Will a router cut a mortise? yes. will it do it well? actually the quality of the cut will be good with practice. but it is not the most efficient method. get a carbide bit. HHS are worthless.

    My biggest concern would be the ripping on a band saw. yes it can be done. but the saw needs to be very well tuned and the blade needs to be in excellent condition. otherwise the saw does not make a straight cut making a fence useless. On this one count I woudl encourage you to shop around and find a low priced used table saw on craig's list or at a garage sale to make rip cuts with. as for cross cuts with a radial arm saw. well that is the primary purpose of a radial arm saw. sort of what was in mind for it to do as it was being thought up. You can do much more with it if you want. just like you can make rip cuts with a band saw. but is it not what it was made to do. In fact you can make your rip cuts with the radial arm saw. and I would probably advice you learn how to do that over messing with the band saw.

    With some homework and figuring out just how to get each cut made. you have all the tools you need to make hives. Just don't take on any offers at a race by someone with a shop like I have.

    Part of that speed thing is experience though. I had 100 boards cut to length that needed to be ripped into top bars for frames yesterday. to gt it done i sent 4 different people out to cut 25 each. I was the last one to go. My pourpose was to have an opportunity to work with each one and their skill at using the table saw.

    Person one My oldest daughter. she is new to using the saw and i felt it best to just show her once or twice and then leave her to find her own comfort level. time to rip 25 boards. just over an hour. Next up is my Youngest daughter fiancee. Also new to the saw but a bit timid so I specifically encouraged him to pick up his speed. His technique is good. He ran right at 45 minutes for 25 boards.

    My son who is the next best at the table saw next to me went out half board, half distracted and ran through 25 boards in 35 minutes. He lost quite a bit of time due to not staying on task.

    My turn and now everyone is standing there with a stop watch. literally. 19 minutes 45 seconds to rip 25 boards to 1 and 1/16th inch wide pieces. That is a total of 200 at an average time of less than 6 seconds per cut. and i had several boards that gave me some serious trouble and tripped the breaker on the saw 3 or 4 times. Lousy quality wood is what that is called. And running a saw on a 15 amp circuit does not help. Btu my real average cut time was probably closer to 4 seconds per cut. Closer to 7 for my son and nearly 30 seconds for my daughter.

    In all there is a lot that has to do with the operator rather than the machine. Keep that in mind.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    3,562

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    I use the radial saw for cross cuts, and I'd do that even if I had a table saw. But wouldn't it be crazy dangers to rip boards with that thing?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    3,441

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Buy a decent used table saw, you'll be glad you did. With a table saw included in your arsenal you will be able to easily make any hive parts you like.

    I bought an old Atlas belt driven table saw for just over $100 and it's made a lot of hive woodenware. Paid for itself very quickly.
    To everything there is a season....

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,588

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    I recommend buying a decent but inexpensive tablesaw from someone on your local Craigslist.

    You can also buy a commercial fence for your bandsaw, but a fence for a bandsaw is not hard to make from wood. Here's one example:
    http://www.ibuildit.ca/Workshop%20Pr...w-fence-2.html
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    monterey Ca USA
    Posts
    87

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    As a hobby woodworker I agree with what Mr. Y stated. Look for a used table saw. Rockwell 10's for example can be found for $250 often on CL bonus if it comes with a Dado set. Quick tuneup and you will have a very nice saw that will last a lifetime. If you do not plan to do much woodworking out side of making boxes I would recommend selling the bandsaw to recoup $ for the Table saw.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,588

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Here is a $70 Rockwell 10" tablesaw in the Tulsa area:

    http://tulsa.craigslist.org/tls/4314715927.html
    Looks like a bargain.


    A $40 one:
    http://tulsa.craigslist.org/tls/4287107005.html

    Obviously, examine in person before making a decision.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
    Posts
    924

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Yeas ago, I made all my wooden wear on a table saw. Sucked up a hug amount of time, but I had no money so I had no choice.

    I am hobbyist with a dozen hives and little free time, so I now buy my wooden wear.

    I guess whether and how you build your hives depends on many factors such as what you like to do with your free time, how many hives you need, etc.

    BTW, having a race on using a table saw sounds like an invitation to disaster, to me. Especially with inexperienced users.

    jus say'n
    --shinbone
    (3rd year, 12 hives, Zone 5b, 5400 ft, 15.8" annual rainfall)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Columbia, Missouri, usa
    Posts
    211

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    All good advice - spend your money on a table saw. I probably use my radial arm saw more than any other saw , but I do not rip boards with it.
    Charlie
    12 hives - 5 years (also had 7 hives in early 1970's) T as needed - zone 6

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    3,169

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    So who has invited anyone to a race?
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    monterey Ca USA
    Posts
    87

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Good deal on both of these, although they are a light duty version of the Rockwell 10 probably made over sea's. As long as they can spin a dado set they should work fine.



    Quote Originally Posted by Rader Sidetrack View Post
    Here is a $70 Rockwell 10" tablesaw in the Tulsa area:

    http://tulsa.craigslist.org/tls/4314715927.html
    Looks like a bargain.


    A $40 one:
    http://tulsa.craigslist.org/tls/4287107005.html

    Obviously, examine in person before making a decision.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Whitla Ab. Canada
    Posts
    474

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Rader Sidetrack View Post
    A $40 one:
    http://tulsa.craigslist.org/tls/4287107005.html

    Obviously, examine in person before making a decision.
    Neil: Run don't walk to look at this saw I have one almost identical and it is more than you'll need. $40 what a steal!
    Colino
    But every sunday afternoon he is a dirt track demon
    In a '57 chevrolet- Jim Croce

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,588

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Seem like mention of a stopwatch and noting production throughput of woodworking newbees amounts to a virtual race. Take the clock off the wall ... watch their fingers instead.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,605

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilV View Post
    I use the radial saw for cross cuts, and I'd do that even if I had a table saw. But wouldn't it be crazy dangers to rip boards with that thing?
    Not crazy dangerous, just not very fast and requires a lot more space to use this way. I often use my radial arm saw for truing up a board edge with table extensions on both sides that are 12' long. Get a table saw, and preferably one that is belt driven that allows a stacked dado blade use.
    Regards, Barry

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    3,562

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Barry, sorry for the wrong forum. Didn't mean to make work for you.

    I am tring to look into the yellow saw pictured. That is actually within bee range of my house, at least during a dearth.

    How do I tell if a saw has enough power/space to run a Dado?

    As to racing, won't be happening!!!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,588

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Measure the remaining arbor beyond the end of the nut when a regular 1/8" blade is already mounted. If you have at least 5/8" of unused thread then you have enough arbor for a 3/4" stack dado.

    Power is not as clearcut, but as long as the saw motor can bring the dado up to speed, it will cut. How fast you can feed the wood will be dependent on the HP available.

    I would look to see that the saw has adequate arbor, and has an induction motor. If it doesn't vibrate excessively when running, for $40-$70 you can hardly go wrong IMO.

    Note that you don't necessarily have to use a full 3/4" of the stack dado set. You can make box joints with fingers smaller than 3/4" if you choose.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,605

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    That saw looks like it has a direct drive motor. I don't know of any direct drive saws that accept a stack dado. The base looks plastic, so I think it's a portable saw that has been put on a stand. Call and find out.
    Regards, Barry

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,541

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    Ripping boards on a radial arm saw is a very poor idea, almost as bad as cutting toward yourself with one (I see too much of that).

    Look for a table saw with a cast iron table and belt drive. Any age, any make. Old ones that look nasty can be just fine with some elbow grease to shine up the table, and I would assume that any saw, including new ones, needs to be checked and adjusted for proper alignment of blade and table.

    A radial arm saw is just the ticket for cutting boards to length. Beats messing around with a table saw every time.

    Cutting box joints on a table saw isn't difficult, just a bit time consuming and fiddly to set up. Once you have a working jig, you can cut many, many boards fairly quickly. Make sure you have a fence high enough to keep your fingers clear of the blade!

    I do use a band saw for producing end bars and top bars, at least for some cuts. It's fiddly, you need a good blade (don't buy cheap ones!) and there is some learning curve, but the extra parts make up for it.

    I'll be out in the garage this afternoon making top bars and end bars myself - finally got the power fixed so it's much less hassle than it used to be. I'm making about 300 frames this year, I think....

    Peter

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    lafargeville ny usa
    Posts
    887

    Default Re: Another Saw Question

    entry level 10 inch table saws are light on power for a dado blade, unless you like to go real slow and still wait for the reset button to cool off.

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