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Ferm table saw - advice needed please

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Knot Competent

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I've got one of these, model FZT 250N, and the table is about 26" x 26" in old money. I need to cut up, as accurately as possible, some 8' x 4' sheets of 12mm and 18mm chipboard and MDF. Given that the Ferm fence provided with the saw is on the dangerous side of unreliable, and that the table is so small, I need an extension to the table to support most of the length of the 8' sheet, and a trustworthy fence to run the sheets against. A table extension is not beyond me, but how can I fix it to the edge of the cast aluminium table? I can't be the first DIY-er to hit this problem, and no, there isn't a board-cutting service nearby.
I can use a nice straight 2" x 2" well clamped to the top as a fence, but it isn't the best answer, I'm sure.
Any suggestions, guys? (other than spending megabucks on a much better saw table!)
Regards, John
 
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Anonymous

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....I can use a nice straight 2" x 2" well clamped to the top as a fence, but it isn't the best answer, I'm sure.
Under the circumstances John, I think it probably is your best answer. I have a Ferm table saw ( the contractors 2000w) and though I wouldn't have the room in my shop to cut that size of board, I don't think I would try if I had.
 

Dewy

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I have a small table saw and on one occasion I was desperate for a bigger table.
I used a piece on white melamine chipboard laid on the table making sure the front edge was parallel with the table.
My table has a number of through slots on both left and right sides.
I drilled & countersunk 2 holes each side to fit coach bolts with washers and nuts underneath to hold the chipboard.
Once fitted I switched on and slowly raised the blade through the board.
Now you have the saw cut to set the fence parallel to by clamping a straight piece of timber to the new table top.
Unfortunately there is no mitre slot but it helped to do the one job I needed.
I wouldn't cut full sheets on it.
I use a cordless circular saw & straight edge to cut close to the finish size then finish later.
 
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Anonymous

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KC

I don't think I'd try cutting 8x4 boards on your saw (certainly not 18mm anyway). I don't attempt 8x4 on my Scheppach TS2500. I usually get my boards sawn in half (or therabouts) one way or the other at source. Although I see this is not an option for you.

If I were you I'd make the initial rough cuts with a jigsaw or handsaw keeping a good original straight edge to at least one side if possible and finish the cut on the saw or with a router guided by a straight edge.

Other contributors advice regarding table extensions would doubtless help with the final cuts.

Regards

Roy
 

DaveL

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I would normally cut sheets up out on the lawn!

I lay them on bits of 2x2 or 2x4 and clamp a long straight batten in place and them run the hand help circular saw long the batten. I have now bought one of the cheap clamp guides that is 50" so it will fit on a 4' wide board I still have a 9' batten tucked away for length wise cuts.
 
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Anonymous

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Dave

Yes, a circular saw would give a true cut straight off. I didn't think of this as I never use the circular saw because it frightens me.

Roy
 

johnelliott

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I have an Electra Bekum PKF255 which is designed to cross cut 8'x4' sheets, but I wouldn't attempt it without an assistant who was completely au fait with what was going on. The others are right, a straightedge and a circular saw are the way to do this job. I have four wooden trestles that I lay the boards out on. Being wood they don't damage the blade if contact is made, and there being four means two under each of the two parts that are being seperated. When not in use they stack quite well
John
 

Dewy

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For a cheap straight edge for sawing along the length of a board I use a 6" x8' length of contiboard. In fact I made a couple of folding saw horses to fit in the car & take my cordless saw with me. Buy the sheet material plus an 8'x6" piece of contiboard and set the saw horses up in the car park. I have a piece of material cut to the exact distance between the blade and the edge guide & use this to set up my straight edge.
Problem solved and no delivery charges. ;)
 

Ian Dalziel

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I agree with most replies, i have a home built panelsaw mounted outside on my fence for my 8x4's. Although most proffesional saws can cut these supporting them throughout the cut is a tad more difficult especially on your own. try alf's or steves methods.

If you want your saw to perform better and your fence to cut like a proffesionals look out for my tablesaw station in GWW 153, i have built a setup that can give fantastic results from a lower end tablesaw, i am particularly pleased with the fence, but you'll have to wait and see

regards
Ian
 

DaveL

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Newbie_Neil":3p0vhm8k said:
Will you please stop teasing us? :wink:

After your bench and latest jig I can't wait for the next issue.
Hear Hear, the hook is well baited :shock:
 

Knot Competent

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OK, I’ve given up the idea of using the table saw. I thought it was dangerous, or just problematic, but couldn’t see another way.

But Alf’s jig is obviously the way to go, especially considering that I’m blessed with a 30’ x 20’ workshop, and have an 8’ x 4’ table in the centre, with loads of room to move. Well, it’s a sheet of chipboard on trestles, but I bet some of you would love that much room to move. I can put my sheet to be cut, propped up on offcuts, on the table, clamp on the straightedge, and off I go with the circular saw. But why didn’t I think of that?

Thanks, Alf and the others who added their thoughts. I think this site is great!

Regards, John
 

Midnight

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John.....
sorry I'm late getting back to you about this...

I've the exact same saw, with the exact same prob.....
I partially resolved it by deep 6ing the origonal fence, and dropped the saw into a customised bench with a 5ft top. I use a 5ft length of ally 4x2 and a pair of G-clamps, zeroing the fence to the extended mitre slots in the larger top. It's crude....damn ugly....an painfully slow..... but it works after a fassion....but NOT.....I repeat NOT with a whole sheet....

I make intital cuts with a circular saw to get the sheet into more manageable sizes, re-ripping on the table saw to close the tolerences to whatever the project requires.
 
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