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how to deal with table saw vibration

How to Deal With Table Saw Vibration

Have you been experiencing problems with your table saw? Maybe it doesn’t cut straight, maybe it moves around, or maybe there is a whole lot of vibration. Well, today we’re here to help you solve the problem of a table saw that vibrates way too much, an issue that can end up causing crooked and unclean cuts.

Vibrations may be caused by several different things, and we’re going to walk you through each of those causes and how to solve them as well.

Unfortunately, these are tools that are built to be lightweight for portability, but that light build can cause a whole lot of movement. That may not be the only problem, so let’s get to it and talk about all of the different ways in which you may be able to reduce vibration.

Various Causes & Solutions To Table Saw Vibration

Since table saw vibration can be caused by several different things, this is not going to be a straightforward one step tutorial on how to stop it. Getting rid of excessive vibration may require a bit of trial and error to figure out what is going on. Follow these simple tests and steps, and you should have no problem at all getting rid of that pesky vibration.

Being Too Light

One of the things that can cause your table saw to vibrate excessively is a lack of weight in the base. The lighter your table saw is, the more it is likely to vibrate. This problem is perhaps the easiest to fix because all you really need to do is to use a ballast to weigh down the frame.

One of the easiest things to do is to attach some plywood onto the frame to make it just a little heavier and sturdier too. Other options that you can go with to make the base a little heavier include using things like sandbags, concrete blocks, and paver stones.

If you want to have the maximum amount of control regarding how much weight you put onto the base, you can even cast your own concrete slabs which are the perfect weight and shape to weigh down the base of the table saw and stop all vibration.

There is, of course, another option that you can go with to weight down your table saw, which is building your own frame and base to attach to the saw. Remember that if you do build your own base, you need to make sure that the fasteners which hold the saw to the base are very tight because if the fasteners are not tight enough the saw will still vibrate.

As you can see in the image below, building a base can help stop vibration, plus it can help make your saw more portable too. If your table saw is heavy enough to avoid vibration you can move on to the next cause of the vibration.

Table saw vibration

Excessive Runout

Another thing that may cause your table saw to vibrate excessively while you use it is runout. If you aren’t sure what runout is, it is when your saw blade does not spin straight in a perfect circle. If your saw blade deviates up or down, or also left or right while it turns, something that can cause a whole lot of vibration, cause crooked cuts, and can end up being quite dangerous too.

You can test to see if there is excessive runout by placing a dial indicator on the arbor, something that can measure the runout. If the dial shows that there is a runout of over .0015, you have a problem.

Perhaps the easiest solution to this problem is to buy a new blade which is more adequate for the table saw which you have. If you don’t want to replace the blade you can always try following manufacturer instructions to align the blade properly.

Straightening out the blade should result in less vibration. Aligning the saw blade will most likely involve loosening a few bolts which attach the blade to the trunnions and to the saw. Loosen the bolts, tap the saw blade into its proper position, and then re-tighten them.

If the runout on your table saw is not the problem, it may be the balance which is causing the vibration issue. You can refer to the YouTube video below for exact instructions on how to check the runout of your table saw.

How to deal with table saw vibration

Being Off Balance

Yet another problem that may cause too much vibration in your table saw is if it is off balance. This is a problem that will most likely be caused by a crooked or off-center base. To correct this problem you can use a bubble or laser level to make sure that the base is straight. The base should be as straight as humanly possible to reduce vibration.

Moreover, when using a vertical table saw the upper mechanism which houses the blade needs to be perfectly vertical. Once again you can make sure that the mechanism which houses the blade is straight using a bubble or laser level. Making everything as straight and properly level as possible should help to stop vibrations. If your table saw is perfectly balanced and aligned, then it may be either the belt or the pulley which is causing the problem.

The Pulley & The Belt

Other things that may cause your table saw to vibrate too much include the pulley and the belt. The belt is what is attached to the motor, and it is attached to the pulley that makes the saw blade spin. First of all, the belt may be the cause of vibration, in which case it could be due to a belt that is not attached to the motor or the pulley properly, or a belt that is simply old and worn out past the point of all repair.

To solve this problem you can try making sure that the belt is properly attached on either side, or if the belt is worn out too much you may just need to replace it. Furthermore, if the belt is not the problem, then the only other real cause of the vibration problem would be the pulley.

You need to make sure that the pulley is firmly attached and that it is properly aligned, plus that the belt is well attached to the pulley. If the pulley is the problem, follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to align the pulley on the specific table saw which you have.

Once again, if you have an older table saw, the pulley may be worn out or damaged, in which case it will need replacing. Generally speaking, the same goes for all of the parts of your table saw, meaning that if they can’t be properly aligned, they may be damaged and in need of replacement.

How to deal with table saw vibration

Table Saw Vibration: Conclusion

As you can see, excessive table saw vibration can be caused by a wide variety of factors, and the only way to determine which one it is, is to do some trial and error to test it out. By all means a table saw should not vibrate when you use it, at least not very much, because it can cause bad cuts, may damage the structure of your saw over time, and can actually be quite dangerous too.

To stop vibrations, you need to check all of the possible causes above and work your way down the list as you eliminate potential suspects. A vibration free table saw is one that will serve you well and help you get the job done without question.

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