Thursday, February 04, 2010

Fine tuning your Radial Arm Saw (Part two)

The radial arm saw puts out a significant amount of sawdust, unless it's hooked into a dust collector. Mine has never had that luxury, so dust has infiltrated most of the various components of the saw.

The next step was a big one - cleaning the rollers and track on which the saw travels. They were a mess. First I pulled off the front plate on the overhead arm, and peeked inside.

It was filthy,

but before I could really clean anything, I had to pull the whole saw out of the track. Not an easy feat, as the motor is very heavy. So I pulled up a cart to the front of the saw, and lowered the motor until it just rested on the cart.

Then I slowly wheeled the cart (and the motor) out of the carriage. Here are the bearings, which were really dirty.

My rag went from this

to this.

After the cleaning, the track looked like this.

I wheeled the cart right back up to the overhead arm, and slid the bearings back in place. After making sure everything moved smoothly, I put the front plate back in place.

The locking handle needed an adjustment, too.

When locked down, the knob on the end of it hit the body, keeping it from fully locking in place. This adjustment required loosening the set screw, and pulling off the handle, putting it into a different position so the knob wasn't in the way. This simple procedure took forever, as I couldn't loosen that big bolt in the center of the handle.

A call to Delta saved the day. The nut doesn't come off! So I grabbed the biggest screwdriver in the shop and pried the handle off.

Next step? Replacing the table.

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