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I am guilty of being in a rush and buying price over quality when I purchased my table saw. I purchased the Ryobi RTS21G. It's a very ok saw for my craft needs and weekend use.

I need to build a cross cut sled for it, but here is the dilemma... the miter slots are proprietary. Instead of flat smooth slots, they have small tabs on top, so you can not simply drop a runner down into them. I've attached a picture of the slots.

My question.... should I try to make hardwood runners with a small rabbit on top or just grind off the tabs off with a grinder?

Any suggestions would be appreciated,


thanks,
-john
 

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Welcome, John...GRIND...

Did the same thing for a couple of Skil saws and it worked out fine.

Do it carefully so you don't cut off too much and make sure you chamfer it a bit so you don't have any burrs...
 

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replace the saw... suggest Bosch...
remove the tabs... do a full rail...
mimic the miter rails in the material of your choice...
 

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Easier to make runners with the rabbet than to grind off those ears IMHO. Then you're not altering the saw at all.

Nick:

we posted at the same time - my only concern with grinding is for possible resale.
Good point, Vince...resale is a consideration...
 
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John...if you rabbet the runners, just make sure there is enough meat left to securely hold the sled...especially when it comes off the back after a cut. The grain in the runner might lend to splitting.

Those tracks are not very deep if I recall...keep in mind you want the runners off the bottom of the track so that the sled slides on the surface of the saw.
 

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When I made a sled for my Triton table, I ignored the mitre slots, and used cleats that ride on either edge of the table - I don't know if your Ryobi table would lend itself to this solution.
 

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I made my sled runners from oak flooring. In your case you could make the runners the width of the slot under the tabs, and attach the sled to the runners using screws, with washers as spacers. Alternately you could edge a board on both sides to fit between the tabs, and then cut the runners to the necessary height.
 

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Sears does sell a saw similar to the old Ryobi BT 3000. Everything on their saws seems to be proprietary. I inherited one that I use for small jobs since it's nice & portable. Still don't know what all of the little parts are for. If you ever need to replace the motor bearing I found that a roller skate bearing works perfectly (Amazon). It's a b***h to get to.
 

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Cut your own out of hard wood. Make sure the fence is aligned with the miter slots. You can get the wood at HD, just pick the straightest piece you can find with straight grain when you look at the end. Be very picky abut it being straight and flat. Cut the width first by holding the board vertical, and sneaking up on the correct width.

Measure the depth of the miter slot, then cut a piece about 1/16th thinner from the edge of the board you just trimmed. Make it at least the full length of the table. Sand to a perfect fit with no wiggle room but still slides freely. Put dimes or a couple of small washers down in the slot, then place the new-made bars, so they extend a little higher than the table top.

At least, that's what I'd do. I'd probably use some fine screws to attach them. When you sell the saw, include this and any other jigs you make for it to sweeten the deal. I had a Ryobi at one point, but it was a floor model and was missing some parts that could not be replaced at the time.

To me, the table saw is the single most used tool in the shop. When you can, switch to at least the Bosch, which has a very good reputation around here. I finally bought a Laguna Fusion saw and the quality of my work really improved. There are so many things you can do with a good, full powred table saw.
 

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From the pic that John posted, it appears that the base portion of the slot is a dovetail design (?), complicating things somewhat.
 

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I had a similar problem with a saw from Sears. I used a hobby razor saw on the aluminum top and all worked well.
I was still disappointed with the non-standard width and the flimsy insert so I doctored my wounds and bought up.
I am a happy sawdust maker now.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you all for the great ideas.

I do have limited space to work with (in my garage) so the possibility of selling the saw is a valid option (versus keeping it as a second saw).
With that said, grinding the tabs is off the table. I would like to get the saw as intact as possible to try and sell later (or possibly sooner) - smile.

Purchasing a second miter gage, just to use as a second rail is also a good idea.

I will have to go out and inspect the table saw sides, building a frame that wraps around the body of the saw could be a clever solution.

...and lastly, I suppose its worth the effort to rip some walnut or oak that I have available and try to create some runners.


Thank you all for your time and I will definitely post my solution when I have it figured out.

Thanks again,

john-
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Good News / Update ------


The vendor that I purchased the table saw is working on an in-store credit / return - so I can upgrade to a Bosch or Dewalt saw.
Both saws have STANDARD miter gage table slots... (from what I read) --- so the upgrade should work well.

Glad I didn't take the grinder to the table (...and NOT bad advise... I just lucked out).

Anyways ---- due to space limitations, a compact saw is still my only option... I'm leaning towards the Bosch equal.

I just wanted to thank everyone for all their input....


john-
 

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Good News / Update ------


The vendor that I purchased the table saw is working on an in-store credit / return - so I can upgrade to a Bosch or Dewalt saw.
Both saws have STANDARD miter gage table slots... (from what I read) --- so the upgrade should work well.

Glad I didn't take the grinder to the table (...and NOT bad advise... I just lucked out).

Anyways ---- due to space limitations, a compact saw is still my only option... I'm leaning towards the Bosch equal.

I just wanted to thank everyone for all their input....


john-
John I'm happy to hear this as I wasn't liking that slot very much at all . If you had to use it , make the best of it I guess , but I never spoke up because I was liking the idea better of getting a differant saw if you could . Looks like things are turning out for the better :)
 

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you will be thrilled w/ the Bosch...
 
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What stick said. I got a Ryobi TS and didn't notice until later that it had removable/sliding top panels and no miter slots at all. It has a sliding "sled" with a miter but no way to use a featherboard as I'm a dedicated FB user. Good saw but limited.
 
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