MJC

SawStop setup issue

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So its a couple weeks ago or so now since I put together the new table saw and my electrician finally put my outlets in today. After he finished I wanted to turn both the saw and dust collection on at the same time to make sure I was going to have any issues. Well when I turn the saw on the blade is hitting the zero clearance insert. I shut everything off, unplugged the saw and double checked to make sure everything was square. When I turn the blade by hand I notice each revolution it rubs so I am not sure what would cause this. 
 

I took the blade back off to check for any burrs and debris but didn’t find anything. I only knew to do this from what I have read online so I am hoping maybe someone here can give me some further direction.

 

I was really looking forward to trying everything out and now this. 

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4 hours ago, drzaius said:

Call SawStop tech support. They'll look after you.

Well I did try to call them but they are closed until Monday so I just thought maybe there was an easy fix or something obvious I haven’t double checked or adjusted properly that maybe someone here might be familiar with. I will just wait and call them Monday. 

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I'm assuming that you're meaning that the blade is hitting the bottom of the insert. If so, is the insert level with the table? There are elevation screws under it to bring it up to level.

Are you using the blade that came with the saw or another blade? It's possible that the blade was ground slightly oversized. 

The only other thing I can think of would be that the bottom limit of the elevation screw is set too high or maybe there's some gunk interfering with it. I know mine is very close. When I lower my blade all the way it's not much below the surface.

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If the blade angle is a bit past 90, say 91 or 92, it may rub.  This is a brand new insert after all, so it may need some breaking in.  I bought my saw used so the ZCI is a little roomy.  

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If the blade seems to rub the insert on and off at regular intervals as it rotates, that may indicate the disappointing possibility of a blade, or perhaps an arbor, that is bent. I would remove the blade and check its flatness, and examine the arbor flange for any debris that might have prevented the blade from seating properly. If you have a dial indicator, check that the arbor and blade run true.

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3 hours ago, Mick S said:

I'm assuming that you're meaning that the blade is hitting the bottom of the insert. If so, is the insert level with the table? There are elevation screws under it to bring it up to level.

Are you using the blade that came with the saw or another blade? It's possible that the blade was ground slightly oversized. 

The only other thing I can think of would be that the bottom limit of the elevation screw is set too high or maybe there's some gunk interfering with it. I know mine is very close. When I lower my blade all the way it's not much below the surface.

Mick - yes it is hitting on the underside of the insert up front. I have attached a photo to show where it is hitting. I don’t have the insert completely level with the table. I went by the manual which said it was to sit just below and even though they said it is set from the factory I understand it could be off. It does sit just barely below the table surface as described in the manual and figures the have in the manual.

i am using the blade that came with the saw but I don’t know about the being oversized part.

I took the insert out and made sure everything was clean and I don’t see anything that would be creating any issue. What I do notice is that with the blade raised all the way up and I spin it by hand it doesn’t seem to rub. If I lower it 1/2 inch then it rubs on the front and will rub no matter how much lower I go with the blade.

 

2 hours ago, Mark J said:

If the blade angle is a bit past 90, say 91 or 92, it may rub.  This is a brand new insert after all, so it may need some breaking in.  I bought my saw used so the ZCI is a little roomy.  

Mark - I have it right on the zero line. Is it normal for it to need to be ground down more so to speak after setup? 

1 hour ago, wtnhighlander said:

If the blade seems to rub the insert on and off at regular intervals as it rotates, that may indicate the disappointing possibility of a blade, or perhaps an arbor, that is bent. I would remove the blade and check its flatness, and examine the arbor flange for any debris that might have prevented the blade from seating properly. If you have a dial indicator, check that the arbor and blade run true.

I removed the blade and I don’t have a dial indicator but I laid it on the table and it seems flat. Sorry that’s the only way I had to check it or knew how to check it. Doing the other stuff you are explaining is something I haven’t done before so I will have to look up some videos so I can better understand what to do. 

7CCF0A69-09CB-49B1-A5CD-D64994FD6A20.jpeg

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Let's get some terminology straight first because I think you are chasing a non-problem ;).

You say the blade is hitting the ZCI.  Do you mean ZCI or do you mean the throat plate that comes with a slot already cut into it?

If it were the ZCI you would have cut the slot yourself and it would fit even if the blade or arbor were wonky.

If it is the supplied plate with an existing slot, we should continue.  Let's assume that's the case.  From your picture the blade is hitting the front of the insert.  This would normally only happen if the blade were exceedingly high.  What height do you have to get the blade to in order for it to strike the plate?

The insert has positioning screws as show in in your manual.  These allow you to set a snug position that will be your "normal".  There is enough deviation during assembly where the blade may not end up perfectly centered in the factory slot.  You may be able to use these positioning screws to solve your issue.

Since I have run ZCI's for so long I am always cutting a new slot any time the ZCI opening becomes worn.  I do this a few ways.  One is that I have a replaceable insert plate where I just replace the insert.

1616293648_SawStop-Shop-made-ZCI-Inserts(9).jpg.160a2528e939052d6ba4322feea68203.jpg

Another is that I have some "new" ZCI plates that I picked up here and there over the years at a good price.

Another is that I refresh the worn opening in a plate by placing packing tape over the slot, pour in epoxy to re-fill the slot at the front of the plate and re-saw a new "first" cut.

5ac3c5b72d779_ZCIrepair(1).jpg.34bec041c5dea7180f7b59728636a164.jpg

5ac3c5b974879_ZCIrepair(4).jpg.3959f682fb45cab406cfefd59f268aef.jpg

Let's get past the question as to whether there is anything actually wrong with the arbor's placement before we start doing major things to a new machine.  So let's recap the questions at hand:

1. Are you talking about a ZCI or the factory plate that already has a slot?

2. What height do you have to get the blade to in order for it to strike the plate?

Please let us know what you find out.

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43 minutes ago, MJC said:

Mark - I have it right on the zero line. Is it normal for it to need to be ground down more so to speak after setup? 

Don't know.  My saw more is than ten years old.

44 minutes ago, MJC said:

with the blade raised all the way up and I spin it by hand it doesn’t seem to rub. If I lower it 1/2 inch then it rubs on the front and will rub no matter how much lower I go with the blade

I may be in the minority, but that observation concerns me.  It sounds like the blade/arbor are not moving exactly vertically as the mechanism is raised and lowered.  I recall my manual described an adjustment process for the mechanism, but mine was in good alignment from the previous owner.  I think that's worth a phone call to SS to discuss. 

Does the blade bind or just brush the insert?  Ultimately a titch of misalignment may not matter.  I tend to be a precision-ist, but I have to keep reminding myself that I'm not making parts for the next space telescope.

Still, worth a call.  Just think of it as keeping someone at SS employed.

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11 minutes ago, gee-dub said:

Let's get some terminology straight first because I think you are chasing a non-problem ;).

You say the blade is hitting the ZCI.  Do you mean ZCI or do you mean the throat plate that comes with a slot already cut into it?

If it were the ZCI you would have cut the slot yourself and it would fit even if the blade or arbor were wonky.

If it is the supplied plate with an existing slot, we should continue.  Let's assume that's the case.  From your picture the blade is hitting the front of the insert.  This would normally only happen if the blade were exceedingly high.  What height do you have to get the blade to in order for it to strike the plate?

Well I’m not all that well versed in this stuff and was only going by the manual so I apologize for my lack of use on the proper terminology. With the blade at max height it does not hit. Measuring to the center of the blade with it raised all the way up it is 3 1/2 inches and if I drop it 1/2 inch that is when it starts to rub and any drop there after.

 

Here is a image from the manual of the part I’m describing which is where I got my terminology from. Hope this helps explain the part I am speaking about.

ED50C3BF-3499-4D48-8B28-12BCF4B607F0.jpeg

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3 minutes ago, Mark J said:

Don't know.  My saw more is than ten years old.

I may be in the minority, but that observation concerns me.  It sounds like the blade/arbor are not moving exactly vertically as the mechanism is raised and lowered.  I recall my manual described an adjustment process for the mechanism, but mine was in good alignment from the previous owner.  I think that's worth a phone call to SS to discuss. 

Does the blade bind or just brush the insert?  Ultimately a titch of misalignment may not matter.  I tend to be a precision-ist, but I have to keep reminding myself that I'm not making parts for the next space telescope.

Still, worth a call.  Just think of it as keeping someone at SS employed.

Well Mark I am a bit OCD so I don’t care if I’m making twigs it will bother me if it is not setup right. I appreciate all your feedback and help.

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18 minutes ago, MJC said:

Well I’m not all that well versed in this stuff and was only going by the manual so I apologize for my lack of use on the proper terminology. With the blade at max height it does not hit. Measuring to the center of the blade with it raised all the way up it is 3 1/2 inches and if I drop it 1/2 inch that is when it starts to rub and any drop there after.

I was not trying to sound condescending.  You're doing great.  We want to help. :)

Mark is right on with his level of concern over the variation in position and the resulting behavior.  Obviously Saw Stop will be the place to call on Monday but, let's work it a bit more.  Do you have a combination square or can you rig up something that will set in the left hand miter slot and reach the blade-plate?

If you have seen tablesaw alignment videos or articles you probably know where I am going.  We want something that will set in the miter slot, just touch the blade plate and stay put while we spin the blade slowly by hand.  Let me see if I can grab some examples . . . 

1237959837_22124Alingment005.jpg.21c5c34927e7eecf95d560e5770ad4ea.jpg

1892767997_combosqalign.JPG.cd94c42fb8dfaeb3d7be499e89d7b9b1.JPG

Even a block of wood with a screw in the end will work.

Position whatever is to touch the blade, mark the plate at that point with a felt pen or something, slowly rotate the blade 180 degrees and watch for an irregular gap between plate and your fixed object.

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7 minutes ago, gee-dub said:

I was not trying to sound condescending.  You're doing great.  We want to help. :)

Mark is right on with his level of concern over the variation in position and the resulting behavior.  Obviously Saw Stop will be the place to call on Monday but, let's work it a bit more.  Do you have a combination square or can you rig up something that will set in the left hand miter slot and reach the blade-plate?

If you have seen tablesaw alignment videos or articles you probably know where I am going.  We want something that will set in the miter slot, just touch the blade plate and stay put while we spin the blade slowly by hand.  Let me see if I can grab some examples . . . 

Yes I did this using the right side miter slot and set the edge until it just brushed the carbide tip of blade. I marked it and then rotated it 180 degrees and checked the same measurement and same tooth I marked on blade at the back to see if it still hit and it does. 
 

Not sure if this is what you were going to have me do so I apologize if I got ahead. I did it from the right side also no sure if this makes a difference. Right miter slot but the left side of the right slot.

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Yep I did that after watching a SawStop video. :) 

 

I am going to try making some adjustments with the screws on the plate as you mentioned as I seem to be getting it to go away a little when making some initial adjustments with the screws up front. I will let you know shortly how it goes. Thanks for the help and photos!

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26 minutes ago, MJC said:

Yes I did this using the right side miter slot and set the edge until it just brushed the carbide tip of blade. I marked it and then rotated it 180 degrees and checked the same measurement and same tooth I marked on blade at the back to see if it still hit and it does. 
 

Not sure if this is what you were going to have me do so I apologize if I got ahead. I did it from the right side also no sure if this makes a difference. Right miter slot but the left side of the right slot.

Nope.   That's perfect.  I just normally use the left slot for alignment because that is the one I use my miter gauge in.  This test basically tells us that the blade is rotating on a consistent plane.  That is, it is not wobbling on the arbor or the arbor is not wobbling in the ways, etc.  that's good.

Back to the concern that Mark grabbed on to; why the change when the carriage/trunnion height changes?  Again, we have to be careful that we are not jumping to fix something that is not really a problem.  I've seen so many unhappy people who tear into their jointer tables when a simple fence adjustment was all they needed.

I am going to recap what I think I understand to make sure I don't send you down the rabbit trail:

  • When the blade is at or near full height, the blade does not hit the slot sides in the insert.
  • When the blade is lowered 1/2" it begins to rub and does so pretty at much any other height.

Now we will look at that plate positioning thing I tossed out earlier.  As the blade is raised and lowered, the tooth's position as it passes through the slot moves forward and back, yes?  Visual aids . . .

799534591_aligntopview.JPG.a8640b776de7fae1bc3b8671fe2720ba.JPG

Let's adjust the positioning screws to see if we can find a sweet spot.  I will assure you that even if we fail miserably, the blade will clear its own path and as long as nothing else untoward is going on, you're good.

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Well I couldn’t get it to go away completely either way I made adjustments. I had another blade from a Dewalt saw  but the blade kerf is .095 and the SawStop blade is .118

I put the Dewalt blade on and it didn’t rub but would that be because if the difference in kerf sizes?

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16 minutes ago, MJC said:

 

I put the Dewalt blade on and it didn’t rub but would that be because if the difference in kerf sizes?

Most likely yes.

Sounds to me as if the elevation trunion, which should move in a plane parellel to the blade and perpendicular to the table, is not moving perpendicular to the table, since the rubbing varies with height. I don't have a sawstop, so no direct knowedge, but perhaps there is some adjustment their service tech can suggest.

While it doesn't sound dangerous, a cut that does not remain perpendicular as the blade hight changes will lead to some very frustration glue-ups...

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1 hour ago, gee-dub said:

Nope.   That's perfect.  I just normally use the left slot for alignment because that is the one I use my miter gauge in.  This test basically tells us that the blade is rotating on a consistent plane.  That is, it is not wobbling on the arbor or the arbor is not wobbling in the ways, etc.  that's good.

Back to the concern that Mark grabbed on to; why the change when the carriage/trunnion height changes?  Again, we have to be careful that we are not jumping to fix something that is not really a problem.  I've seen so many unhappy people who tear into their jointer tables when a simple fence adjustment was all they needed.

I am going to recap what I think I understand to make sure I don't send you down the rabbit trail:

  • When the blade is at or near full height, the blade does not hit the slot sides in the insert.
  • When the blade is lowered 1/2" it begins to rub and does so pretty at much any other height.

Now we will look at that plate positioning thing I tossed out earlier.  As the blade is raised and lowered, the tooth's position as it passes through the slot moves forward and back, yes?  Visual aids . . .

799534591_aligntopview.JPG.a8640b776de7fae1bc3b8671fe2720ba.JPG

Let's adjust the positioning screws to see if we can find a sweet spot.  I will assure you that even if we fail miserably, the blade will clear its own path and as long as nothing else untoward is going on, you're good.

It rubs just the front only until I drop the blade almost completely down where the tips of the blade are only hitting the middle or side of the plate and then hit does hit the sides.

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OK, the last thing I would like to confirm is that the blade is moving on the correct plane regardless of height.  To prove this, take your measurement on a given tooth and then rotate 180 degrees.  Without changing your measuring devices horizontal position, lower the blade an inch and re-test.  If the results are consistent I would say you are good to go.  The teeth will eventually clear the slot in any places where it is too tight.  Inserts with slots and ZCI's are both wear parts.  The abrasion of the wood fibers passing through them will wear the opening wider as shown in my refreshed ZCI pics above.  The real test once we are confident there is nothing wrong with the blade and arbor will be the results of your test cuts.

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5 hours ago, gee-dub said:

OK, the last thing I would like to confirm is that the blade is moving on the correct plane regardless of height.  To prove this, take your measurement on a given tooth and then rotate 180 degrees.  Without changing your measuring devices horizontal position, lower the blade an inch and re-test.  If the results are consistent I would say you are good to go.  The teeth will eventually clear the slot in any places where it is too tight.  Inserts with slots and ZCI's are both wear parts.  The abrasion of the wood fibers passing through them will wear the opening wider as shown in my refreshed ZCI pics above.  The real test once we are confident there is nothing wrong with the blade and arbor will be the results of your test cuts.

Ok I did this and it is the same with each change I make when lowering it. I am ordering a saw gauge from woodpecker so I can know for certain where it is measurement wise. I ordered the saw gauge 2.0 and I will also make a call to SS tomorrow. I am nervous about setting the safety function off so while testing it do you think it is best to run it in BY-PASS mode? I don’t know what the materials are made of on the insert so if it cut into it I don’t want it to set any false errors off.

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35 minutes ago, Mark J said:

The insert is non-conductive so it's not going to trigger the blade brake.  

Ok well I will give it a go. Stay tuned....

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Well I ran the saw blade up and down and it was zinging as it rubbed a little but quickly started to quiet down. It still rubs a tad So I don’t know what to think. I wish I had a more precise way to measure right now but I will have to wait.

On another note the new DC works great and I am real happy with it. 

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So after speaking with SS they have me trying a new blade so I need to run to get that. Any suggestions from those who use a SS on what is an overall good blade for general use? I don't mind buying more than one if I need to but I would like to get something I can pickup today that is of good quality.

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