Repairing a Bent Table Saw Top

tony_in_wsnc

Tony
User
So last year I bought a Powermatic Model 66 table saw at auction. I got a great deal and its a fantastic saw. However, the top got bent after I bought it. I'm pretty sure this happened when the guy was moving the table saw from the auction yard to my trailer using a forklift. He was not gentle and lifted the saw via the wings connected to the top. It looks like the left wing torqued the top and now it has a slight bend. Anyway, not happy about it, especially because I didn't catch it at the time, but in general the saw still cuts well and overall I'm very happy with it. But the fact that its bent is a problem because it has slightly compressed the left miter slot which I'd like to use with a sled, so I'd like to get the bend out. Anyone here have any experience with a bent table saw top? What did you do about it?

Also, is anyone in the Winston-Salem area and can maybe recommend a machine shop that could maybe do the work of bending it back? I'm new to W-S (and North Caronlina in general) having moved here last summer, so don't really know who does that kind of work around here. I guess I could also drive somewhere (Charlotte, Raleigh, etc) if there's a good recommendation of a shop that can do the work for a decent price.

Here's a close up pic of the bend. Since its on the left side of the blade (generally the 'waste' side of cuts) it hasn't been a problem so far, but it will be a problem with a sled. Thanks in advance for any advice!

1582817391443.png
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
I had the same problem with a $3000 bicycle one time, took it to my local shop and they took the wheels off, put in a couple bare axels, set it on 2x4s on the floor and applied about 190 foot pounds. He might have been a little lighter, I'm not sure.

Anyway, I think you could remove the top, turn it upside down on some 2x4s on the floor and carefully stomp the crap out of it.

Let us know how that goes.

A fantastic machine shop in Kernersville is Custom Machining. Ask for Kevin but don't tell him you know me...
 

tony_in_wsnc

Tony
User
I love the "carefully stomp the crap out of it" part. That's too funny. But actually, its not a bad idea. I wonder if my 200 lbs might do the trick if I put my jumping weight right on the miter slot area, and support the rest of the table properly. Although with my luck I'll just break my ankle and pay more for the medical bills than going to a machine shop.
 

Willemjm

Willem
Corporate Member
You would need a shop with a hydraulic press and a surface grinder. With shop rates these days, might be cheaper to explore another auction.
 

Michael Mathews

Michael
Corporate Member
What about checking with Powermatic to see if a replacement top is available? If so, then you could be seated and ask what the cost would be!
 

Roy G

Roy
Senior User
Powermatic seasons their cast iron, or at least they would have for the PM66 saw. This lets the stresses settle out so when the piece is machined is stays flat. When your top got bent, it put in some stresses so Mike's suggestion makes sense in that putting weight on the underside would help relieve the stress by moving the top back to flat. An old FWW article described straightening a jointer fence by standing on it when supported at the ends.

Roy G
 

Mike Davis

Mike
Corporate Member
Powermatic seasons their cast iron, or at least they would have for the PM66 saw. This lets the stresses settle out so when the piece is machined is stays flat. When your top got bent, it put in some stresses so Mike's suggestion makes sense in that putting weight on the underside would help relieve the stress by moving the top back to flat. An old FWW article described straightening a jointer fence by standing on it when supported at the ends.

Roy G
Tony, If you try this you probably need 1/2 inch or less strips at each end of the table. If using 2x4 the possibility of over correcting is much greater.
 

Gotcha6

Dennis
Corporate Member
This might be a little overboard, but what about some machinist's T nuts and studs with a rigid bridge across to the two high sides, and then start tightening? Would the T nuts fit in the slot? I'd think at least 5 or 6 would be needed to distribute the stress and avoid breaking the casting at the slot.
 

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