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  1. #16
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    The rotation of the blade is the same.
    Many people will pull the blade through the cut and there is a chance the blade can grab and climb out of the cut.
    I have both a miter saw and an old Rockwell radial arm saw.
    I read the instructions on the miter saw and it says to push not pull the blade.
    40 years of doing it wrong and all of a sudden it makes sense.

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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    If you start with the saw back and pull it towards you, the rotation of the blade tends to drive the saw/motor towards you. This is what I would consider 'normal' operation. If you pull the saw out and cut on the push stroke, the rotation of the blade tends to try to lift the work off the table. To me this seems more awkward, in that you have to position the work piece behind the saw head. These saws tend to coast down for several seconds to a couple of minutes, so I would be afraid of the temptation to position the work behind the saw with the blade spinning. I am not patient enough to turn the saw off and wait in between each cut.

    I would get a negative rake sliding miter saw blade and use the pull stroke to do my cutting. You just have to keep in mind that the saw wants to lunge towards you and stay focused on controlling that tendency. You should also get familiar with the adjustments to square the guide arm to the fence, because you will probably need to check and tune the squareness of the cut fairly often. At least that was my experience.

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  4. #18
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    http://www.rockler.com/how-to/are-ra...g-of-the-past/


    https://www.thespruce.com/using-your-radial-arm-saw-safely-3536819


    Here are a couple sites discussing the RAS and some info on safety and operation. Might help.

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  6. #19
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    I assume that with proper setup and enough practice I can get the hang of it. After all, I can do a climb cut with a hand held router when necessary and appropriate... Hopefully it will not be too much scarier than that

  7. #20
    Papa Red Senior User
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    It's just like any other piece of woodworking equipment, you have to know what you're doing. I've owned a delta for years and loved it for what it was intended to be used for. It's not a table saw. To me they are two different animals all together. Just read the manual and practice with it. I don't own one today but will probably find a decent used one once my new workshop is built and I am up and running.

    Red
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  9. #21
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    Be sure to buy a blade designed for RAS (some MS blades are appropriate) as they have a lower tooth hook angle are less prone to grabbing and stalling the saw. Mark the blade for RAS use only, and keep it sharp. WRT push cutting, yes it's possible, however dust ejection will become an issue. A RAS typically throws the sawdust straight back through the cut kerf. In push cutting, that kerf is not there, so the saw dust will want to throw up instead of back. Also on the push cut the blade will want to lift the stock off the table so hold downs are a must or you may get a big surprise!

    HTH,
    C.
    "Remember - If the women don't find ya handsome, they should at least find ya handy!" - Red Green
    "Always take hold of things by the smooth handle." - Thomas Jefferson

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  11. #22
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    Radial arm saws have been in use long before the internet and the advent of plastic/aluminum chop saws.

    As you suspect, its no biggie. It'll take five or ten cuts for you to get the hang of it.
    Below is a Monarch Unipoint radial arm saw that's used on a daily basis by both middle school and high school students. If they can do it, you can do it.

    Attached Images Attached Images

  12. #23
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    I made a set of 4 inch square tapered legs for a dining table with a Craftsman RAS before I knew any better. Worked fine ripping with a sled.

    Wouldn't do that now, value my hands too much.



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

  13. #24
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    First, keep in mind this is THE most dangerous ww'ing machine in a shop. Many will disagree with me on this, but trust me, you WILL eventually get a scare. IMO a lot of the problems are caused by being underpowered.

    Yes, it can be operated safely. The most important factor is the blade: SHARP with a Negative hook angle. Nothing will get you in trouble quicker than a dull blade.

    Second, learn how to use it. Rather than trying to pull the saw thru, often times I use a bumping or slight back and forth movement. I also keep my arm stiff. You can also slightly tighten the locking knob to put some drag on the track.

    Be ESPECIALLY careful with thin stock. This is when self feeding is the worst.

    Yes, you can push forward, but also be aware thin material can lift on you.

    If dealing with twisted or warped wood, it will often bind which will result in either self feeding or the motor will stop.

    I paint the table red 3" on either side of the blade that the "No Hand Zone".

    Hope this helps.

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  15. #25
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    1 - When you get the saw adjusted make a cut in your table around 1/8 in. deep. Combine this with a negative 5 degree blade and you have solved most of the clime cut problems.

    2 - The real beauty of a RAS is the stability of the arm. Unlike a sliding miter saw, when you adjust the to it's accurate positions it will say there with very little additional adjustments.

    3 - My 1st power tool was an old Craftsman. I've had a Delta saw for a while now. Yes I ripped with the saw. I've had it snatch wood out of my hand and leave me counting my fingers. I do not recommend ripping with a RAS.

    4 - I have never used the stand provided with the saw. I've always built a bench. I just finished my new RAS & miter saw table. Everything is bolted down & aligned across all tables in vertical & horizontal planes.

    I've used RAS all my life. They were notorious for cutting off hands fingers. The guard has little to do with safety. The bottom line here is be careful & keep your body parts away from the blade.
    Those who beat their swords into plowshares will plow for those that did not.
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  17. #26
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    Okay. got it a little sooner than I thought. It is a Delta/Rockwell. Other than that, I can't determine a year, model or ID... anyone?
    Attached Images Attached Images

  18. #27
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    Rockwell Multiplex

  19. #28
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    Go to youtube and search for Frank Howarth. He likes older equipment, I think he has three RASs lined up along one wall. he has made several good videos related to restoring and setting up RASs.

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  21. #29
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    Absinthe, some of the best advice you will find on using a radial arm saw is to be found at the Radial Arm Saw Forum. While most of the forum members are Dewalt RAS users, the advice offered will apply to any RAS. Like the NCWoodworker forum, the RAS Forum is a very welcoming and friendly bunch of people. I suggest you start with the FAQ section and go from there.

    FWIW, I grew up using an RAS and and now bringing my old RAS out of storage to set up as my principal power tool in the principally handtool woodworking shop I'm setting up. Like any power tool, treat it with respect, have it well set up and aligned, use the CORRECT blades for a RAS (not a table saw), and the tool will reward with good performance.
    Last edited by Rushton; 07-18-2017 at 01:24 PM.

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  23. #30
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    Re: Looking for RAS advice

    My old shop teacher had a RAS in his personal shop. He attached a small cable to the motor housing and stretched it back to a pulley behind the arm on the wall. At the other end of the cable was an old iron window weight. Voila! automatic blade return, and an additional source of resistance to avoid blade climb.........
    WHAT BOX?

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