Joe Youcha's Two Cents

Here are some simple things you can do to reduce the tools' vibration and improve their power, adjustment, and stock control.

Go for the bigger horsepower motor. Size matters, at least on a table saw.

Upgrade to better pulleys and use link belts. Good, balanced pulleys vibrate less and link belts absorb vibration. Make sure all your stand bolts are tight. Take the time to line up your drive assembly.

Go for high tolerance inserts. I like the phenolic zero-clearance throat inserts. They cut back on chip-out and prevent some types of kickback. They also allow you to rip thin stock.

Go for the fence upgrade. I personally like a good Biesmeyer style fence. You shouldn't have to check the squareness of your fence for every cut.

Build sleds. I never use a miter gauge for crosscutting. I build sleds that ride in both machined slots in the table and provide solid stock control. When I need to change an angle, I cut an insert block. My sleds have good quality 3/4-inch plywood for the bases and clear 2-by or 5/4 stock for the end rails. The runners are appropriate-width steel bar stock screwed to the plywood.

Control the stock. Build or buy good infeed and outfeed rollers. If you have the space, build tables.

Use a good push stick. I use a 3/4-inch-thick plywood rectangle (usually about 5 inches x 10 inches) with a 1/2-inch step in its lower edge. It lets me push down on the piece while I push it through the saw and rip thin stock without fear.

Joe Youcha is a wooden boat builder and woodworker in Alexandria, Va.

Spec out Table Saws on ebuild, the Professional's Guide to Building Products(TM).