Best bet for FLAT surfaces off the shelf


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Old 10-30-14, 08:08 AM
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Best bet for FLAT surfaces off the shelf

Wanting to make larger tops for my portable table saw and router table, as well as a rip fence and a few other goodies/jigs. Don't have a planer. What's the flattest surface I'm likely to find at the big box? Furniture grade ply, MDF, melamine? Is thicker (say .75 v. .5) likely to be flatter?

ddk
 
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Old 10-30-14, 09:29 AM
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Other than CDX, most plywood is fairly flat. I'd think how slick it is [for sliding the wood across] would be more important. How big do you intend to make the top?
 
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Old 10-30-14, 11:30 AM
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Not thinking about making tables hugely bigger. Don't have the space. Was thinking maybe maybe 2-3 inches per side. And figure that I'll be putting poly or some other sealer/finish on the surface. That ought to take care of any friction issues, shouldn't it?
 
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Old 10-30-14, 11:32 AM
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Look in the shelf isle They have 18 maybe 24 inch shelves that are flat and have a finished surface that boards will slide on. I use then for gigs and in panel area there is a 3/16 or so hard board I will glue on a piece of plywood to make a good flat surface.
 
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Old 10-30-14, 03:33 PM
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Use MDF. You will need some good support to keep it flat. MDF is pretty slick on its own, but you will want to put some paste wax on it to reduce friction. Do it to your table saw while you are at it.
 
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Old 10-30-14, 10:04 PM
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I'd consider angle iron or load bearing steel studs to prevent warping.
 
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Old 10-31-14, 04:16 AM
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Are you replacing the top of the table saw, or just making an extension? Being portable presents its own problems unless you make the extensions removable. When you move the saw, flexing will cause anything attached to it to become dislodged or disoriented to the flat. My Delta Unisaw has a 6' top with a melamine type top as an extension. It is very slick and has held up pretty well. It is also about 1" thick with legs. Far from portable. Far from even moving it easily. I made a run off table from old solid core scrap doors which sits at the back of the table saw. Sure helps with longer lumber ripping.

I have a 12' top for my radial arm saw stuck in the back wall of the shop. Made it from laminating 2x6's with legs. The original tops for RAS's is far too inadequate, while the longer table allows for one person operation on longer boards.

As Borad suggests, support is definitely required.
 
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Old 11-03-14, 04:49 AM
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Table Saw Table

Saw these plans recently:

DIY Table Saw Table

Disassembles for storage or transport.
 
 

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