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Replacing table saw with Straight Line Rip8/2
We currently process solid lumber by straightening one edge on a jointer and then ripping it with a bandsaw. Sometimes we use a table saw for the ripping.
Would like to add a straightline rip saw but space is getting tight. I know we could replace the bandsaw easily with the SLR but how about the tablesaw? The table saw is used for lots of random sizing for parts that are sometimes ten inches long.
How successful would we be doing the random ripping on a straightline rip saw? Accuracy in dimension matters and the boards will vary in thickness.
Do we still need to keep a regular table saw in the loop for this?
It depends on what type of work you do but i would say that only you can make that decision for your shop...without knowing more info.
First, if you are using you table saw for crosscuts, then no, it will not replace your table saw.
Second, I never rip anything less then 15" in length. The fence isn't long enough to feed the piece in before the saw grabs lumber.
We are ripping random widths all the time very accurately and quickly.
As for various thickness' you will have to adjust the hold downs if you are going from 4/4 to 5/4 for instance. If you're talking about going between 7/8" and 15/16" as long as your hold downs are set for the 7/8" you would be ok.
As many others have said before, the time savings as well as a better quality edge that you'll be able to glue up off of by switching over to SLR, you will wish you'd switched over much sooner.
There is one more thing I should have added to my response .
The SLR will only replace a table saw if you are ripping your lumber before it's been planed and sanded.
Residual oil from the chain lubrication system will transfer onto the faces of your rips. Not a big deal when planing afterwards, but not for finished thicknesses parts.
You will though never use the jointer again to establish a straight edge.
In a small shop - 1-5 people, the table saw can be a central part of the operation, used for many types of cuts beyond basic ripping and crosscutting of solids and panels.
The larger shops refer to the table saw as a 'variety saw' and they are often off in an area where they are rarely used, or jigged for some specialty use.
One type of operation and then another are replaced with more specialized and efficient equipment as a shop grows.
In my experience; first a table saw, then a good radial arm saw, then a panel saw added, then a SLR. Beam saws, etc will follow.