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Custom adjustable blade guide pics Uploaded

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  • sidgarcia2000
    Hi all, I ve finally uploaded the pics of my custom blade guides to the Photos section. My album is titled Sid s Mods and is on pg. 3. Let me know what you
    Message 1 of 4 , Nov 2, 2006
      Hi all,

      I've finally uploaded the pics of my custom blade guides to the Photos
      section. My album is titled "Sid's Mods" and is on pg. 3. Let me know
      what you think!

      http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/4x6bandsaw/photos/browse/f01e
    • runchdawg
      ... So in the end, are you happy with how it cuts? Is it a big improvement over the stock guides (the ones like mine that nicely twist the blade as you
      Message 2 of 4 , Nov 3, 2006
        --- In 4x6bandsaw@yahoogroups.com, "sidgarcia2000" <sidgarcia2000@...>
        wrote:
        >
        > Hi all,
        >
        > I've finally uploaded the pics of my custom blade guides to the Photos
        > section. My album is titled "Sid's Mods" and is on pg. 3. Let me know
        > what you think!
        >
        > http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/4x6bandsaw/photos/browse/f01e
        >

        So in the end, are you happy with how it cuts? Is it a big improvement
        over the stock guides (the ones like mine that nicely twist the blade
        as you tighten, making for an off-square cut)?

        Sigh, another project to add to my list !

        - John
      • sidgarcia2000
        ... Well, I honestly tried everything else to get my saw cutting square. When it seemed that having to still use my old chop saw was going to render my $200
        Message 3 of 4 , Nov 3, 2006
          > So in the end, are you happy with how it cuts? Is it a big improvement
          > over the stock guides (the ones like mine that nicely twist the blade
          > as you tighten, making for an off-square cut)?
          >
          > Sigh, another project to add to my list !
          >
          > - John
          >
          Well, I honestly tried everything else to get my saw cutting square.
          When it seemed that having to still use my old chop saw was going to
          render my $200 investment a waste, I thought I'd go for broke and make
          my own guides.

          The design is pretty simple, but I had nothing to go on when making
          these, so I made a few mistakes. I made the front guide to the same
          length as the original, but when I noticed the blade was dancing around
          in round stock, I realized the guides were too far apart, so I had to
          cut the rails, lengthen them, and re-weld.

          I made the rear guide adjustable in both X and Y axes (a pivot within a
          sliding joint), but the T-slot I fabbed up was another doozy. I don't
          have a milling machine, so I made the slots by plug-welding different
          sized flat stock. Due to the heat involved in the welding, the collar
          part of the slot expanded a bit and wouldn't fit the sliding mechanism,
          forcing me to grind it down.

          Another headache was all the hand taps I went through tapping threads to
          take the 1/4" x 20 bolts. I broke 3 Home Depot taps making all the
          threads for the bearings and adjusting bolts. And at $5 a piece, it was
          more than a bit annoying.

          I suppose this type of project could have been done any number of ways
          (and likely better by someone with a machinist background) I will say
          this...even though this project set me back 2 weeks and more money than
          I bargained on, it sure was sweet to be able to "dial in" my blade pitch
          by turning a few bolts. I can calibrate the angle by making a cut,
          checking the cut with a square, and adjusting both guides accordingly (I
          have to set the saw vertical and "eyeball" the two guides to make sure
          they are more or less both set to the same angle. Then I'll adjust the
          horiz. angle if it's off. I am now getting *perfect* cuts in up to 2 7/8
          pipe (the largest I've tried). It wasn't so much about being obsessive
          with perfectly square cuts as it was about the trickiness of cutting
          pipe. When my old guides were cutting crooked, the angled blade would
          tend to pull in toward the vise. However, the curvature of the pipe
          would act to force the blade outward. The resulting cuts would end up
          looking like a fishmouth (it was that bad).

          There is probably an easier way than making the guides out of scratch.
          Maybe it would be possible to cut the exising guides and make a pivot on
          each, with bolts to push down on each side to adjust the angle? (My
          guides were cast aluminum, and rather thin)
        • runchdawg
          All s well that ends well, right? So what if it took you a while, now your saw will be way more useful. So if I understand it correctly, are your 2 degrees of
          Message 4 of 4 , Nov 4, 2006
            All's well that ends well, right? So what if it took you a while, now
            your saw will be way more useful.

            So if I understand it correctly, are your 2 degrees of freedom that
            you (1) can move the guides towards/away from each other, changing the
            'blade opening', as well as (2) changing the 'twist' of each guide
            with your bolt/pivot arrangement? Or can you also adjust each guide
            toward/away from the vise as well....oh wait that would be a waste,
            you can tweak that with the rear vise plate.

            I wish my saw had this, will probably do a similar thing once I finish
            the screen room on my deck. Oh yeah and my daughters bedroom mirror,
            and paint my tablesaw dust collector I made, and ... and.... it never
            ends does it!

            Congrats on making a very nice saw from a $200 machine.

            Even in its less than perfect state, I still love mine, a true bargain.
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