How to Make a Rip Fence for a Circular Arm Saw How to Make a Rip Fence for a Circular Arm Saw

What You'll Need
Pieces of wood
Safety gloves

When you are looking for a rip fence for your circular arm saw, you may be surprised at the expense of this particular tool. Rather than trying to purchase one from a shop, which is pricey and may not quite fit, you should consider making your own. The fence itself is a thin, flat board, which attaches to the back of the table, and is used to keep the board to be cut moving straight down the table, into the saw. Making one of these plates is easy, and it can be done by following some simple steps.

Step 1 - Remove the Old Rip Fence

In order to use the rip fence, you will need to know how wide your saw is. Unplug the radial arm saw, and allow it to cool down if it has been used recently. You should then clean the area of the rip fence using a small brush. Remove the old rip fence by unscrewing it from the sides of the table. You may have to lift up the front of the saw, in order to get full access to the rip fence. Take off the large wing bolts at the side of the sacrificial table, and this should allow you to take off both the old rip fence and the back table.

Step 2 - Cut the New Rip Fence

Take your old rip fence, and lay this down on the piece of wood that you intend to use for your new installation. A good type of wood for this is MDF, or a similar fiberboard. Use a piece of chalk to mark around the edges of the fence, so you can clearly see the dimensions you need to cut. Take a saw and cut out the shape you have marked. Measure the cut out wood against the side of the table, to ensure that it fits correctly. Add 2 pieces of wood to the back of the rip fence, 1 on each end. Screw these on until you have them secured.

Step 3 - Installing the Rip Fence

When you are ready, manually move the circular arm saw down, until it touches the top of the sacrificial table. Then, lift up the blade 1/4 turn. Use a framing square against the blade, and lay it along the front table. Pull the saw to the front, and place your rip fence behind it. Fit the rip fence against the back edge of the framing square, and then place the 2 pieces of wood flat on the back table. Screw these down, so that they are holding the rip fence securely in place. You should then turn the circular arm saw back on, and cut a piece of wood using your new rip fence. Make sure that the blade is square before making the first cut.


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