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  • Work bench question

    I am about to purchase my first scroll saw but was unsure about the easiest or most comfortable set up. I am eyeing two options ... a Delta which comes with a set of legs that form a tripod and a Craftsman. I imagine the best way to set up an indiviual scroll saw is on a work bench of some sort but am not sure if most people find it easier to work at lengths of time standing or sitting. Since I'd have to purchase a workbench can anyone recommend one? Finally, whats the best way to keep the saw stationary on a bench? Thanks much.

  • #2
    In the long run, I think you will be far happier with the standalone tripod. As far as attaching to a workbench, bolting and clamping are your options. You might want to look at a pad to reduce vibration. Be forwarned that it will vibrate the workbench and any small hard to find parts left on the bench will dance across the top and fall off wherever it is hardest to reach (DAMHIKT).

    I bought a saw and put it on the bench and ended up buying a stand seperately.

    EDIT - Forgot to say that I sometimes stand and sometimes sit. I use a swivel bar stool with a back and no arms that is made of wood slats so it is easy to keep clean (sawdust doesn't collect).
    Last edited by arbarnhart; 12-29-2005, 09:34 AM.
    -Andy

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    • #3
      I agree the standalone is the way to go.
      I am not fond of vibration pads, they tend to isolate the vibration rather than reducing it.
      If you want to reduce vibration the easiest way is to increase the mass of the saw.
      Wood turners often use sandbags to reduce vibration on lathes, a similar technique is discribed by Nick Englar.
      He built a box with a floating top. the box is filled with sand that the scrollsaw is mounted to the floating top.
      Bolts which attach the saw to the top travel through the sand and the box.
      As the saw is run the vibration compacts the sand. the bolts are drawn tight and the process is repeated till the sand will not compress any more.
      This increases the mass of the saw and reduces the vibration.

      I know someone will say, buy a saw with less vibration.
      Sometimes this is not an option and we make do with what we have.
      I now sit and wait for the comments
      CAЯL HIRD-RUTTEЯ
      "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
      Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks guys ... I had the feeling the tripod would work out better. Thanks for your responses.

        Comment


        • #5
          Another good stabilizing method is to improperly cover a bag of concrete and let it get wet. After it dries and hardens, it can be strapped to the underside of the bottom shelf of a workstand or workbench with a couple of web straps and a piece of 1/2" ply under it. Duct tape the ends because dust will shake out otherwise. After a few months under a scroll saw, you will find it is mostly broken up again and you can swap it out with the one you bought to replace it and still didn't cover well enough...
          -Andy

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          • #6
            Please do not use the stand as a basis of your decision what saw to buy. It does not matter what type stand it sits on. That will not make the saw run any better. Look at the features of the saw itself. Those two saws I assume you can touch so try changing a blade on each one, see how easy it is and what is involved like taking a holder out of the way or a dust port to get to the bottom blade holder that is under the table. If you can have the store start them up for you, Look at the fit and finish of each one. Check the flatness of the table top. Check the ease of tilting the table. Check how easy it is to adjust tension on the blades. Check to see where the speed control is and is it easily accessible. These are the questions you should be asking. Not sure which Delta you are looking at but there are different blade holders than most other saws. See if that type or the thumb screw type is more appealing.

            As for mounting on a bench or a stand there again it really doesn't matter it is a convience thing. But if you are mounting to a bench you need to secure it down and I would suggest the carpet pad underneath to help eliminate some vibration. You have to be aware of the stool you will use so you can get your legs close to the saw and you are not reaching over it. You want a nice comfortable height such as elbow height when sitting. Some people even tilt their saws towards them so it is more comfortable and this is accomplished by raising the back of the stand up. As far as on a stand if you have to weigh the stand down with cement blocks or bags I would run far away from that saw. I know I am one who pushes for the better saws but let me say try to buy the most saw for the most money you can spend. Do not skimp here. Good luck!
            John T.

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            • #7
              Reducing Vibration

              Patrick Spielman's book "The Art of the Scroll Saw" describes a method used by Robin Wirtz to eliminate vibration. First, the scroll saw is mounted on a stand that is coming out from a corner and bolted to the floor. Then a secondary tabletop is bolted to the two walls that form the corner. The secondary tabletop is suspended over the saw's tabletop and doesn't touch it, so no vibration can be transferred.

              The problems I see with this setup is you can't tilt the saw's tabletop and you reduce the maximum thickness of wood you can cut. You may want to construct the secondary table so it can be flipped out of the way when necessary.

              Dan

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              • #8
                JT is correct in saying that you should not decide on the saw only because of the stand. My point was that I think you will be happier with a workstand than mounting on a bench where you will also do other work.

                However, I respectfully disagree with JT about vibration and I think the laws of physics are on my side. It's the old action and reaction thing. Leverage comes into play - you are moving a small mass (blade assembly) a fair distance at the ends of the arms and the best you can do is move a large mass (the whole saw) a very small distance. As you increase that mass, you decrease that distance. You increase the mass by bolting down the saw so that it and the stand become a single unit and you can further decrease it by making the stand weigh more. When do you reach the point of diminishing returns? Tough to say. My saw, which is a realtively low end one, has a cast iron table and base and I can saw accurately with it sitting on a table top unbolted. But if doing really fine fretwork, the vibration will bother me. If you read reviews of low or high end saws, you will find vibration discussed and it's never "none".
                -Andy

                Comment


                • #9
                  You can disagree with anything I say. I do not care but I can say this I own A hegner, 2 Rbi and a Dewalt and if you look at my albumn you will see some of my work and not one of those saws has a vibration problem. I scroll the finest of details and all are sitting on stands not bolted to the floor. I really do not want to get into low end saws versus high end saws because that was beat to death here. But they are more expensive for a reason. But if you have to put sand bags on a stand to take vibration away from a saw there can not be good things happening there. This is my opinion and I will stick with it. A friend of mine has a $250 RYOBI and I mentioned to him to put the thing on a carpet pad and he did just that and couldn't be happier. He bolted it to a workmate. So if the need to weigh down a saw base or whatever please do so. The object here is to enjoy the artform. Happy Scrolling.
                  John T.

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                  • #10
                    I have just recently gotten back into Scroll sawing after a few years away from it. I use an RBI Hawk scroll saw and I love it, but it's an expensive brand and out of the price range of many.

                    My Best Friend has been watching me scroll saw and he decided that he wanted to get into the hobby. I loaned him an older model Craftsman saw that I originally bought for my Dad to use, when Dad passed away I got that saw back. My poor Friend was having a terrible time with that saw, so I loaned him my old FretMaster scroll saw that I made from a kit that I purchased from a world renowned scroll sawer. His scroll work took an immediate improved and his skills skyrocketed. Sadly for some of his projects the 450 speed was too slow.

                    So we went to town to checkout a few brands of scroll saws for him. One of the first places we went was to Sears. I'm sorry to say, but I was not impressed with any of the Craftsman saws that we looked at and tried !

                    Then we looked at Grizzly Import saws, Ryobi saws and Dremel saws. I was not even remotely impressed with anything but the Dremel saw. It looked to be a much better product, but it still didn't fit my criteria specifications, so then we went to look at the Delta scroll saws.

                    The only saw we found was the Delta Machinery 16 In. VD Deluxe Saw and Stand Model SS350LS. Man, Now There Is a Great Little Scroll Saw! I was immediately Impressed with it and how quiet and vibration free the saw is! Needless to say, my Best Friend took my word about the saw and bought it. He couldn't be happier with the saw and his skills are quickly growing! If I don't watch out, he will be soon teaching me how to do better work with a scroll saw!

                    Please do yourself a favor and check out the Delta Machinery 16 In. VD Deluxe Saw and Stand Model SS350LS. You can't go wrong with this fine piece of equipment! (In my humble opinion)

                    Dick

                    Practice Doesn't Make Perfect! Perfect Practice Makes Perfect!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Now as a beggener myself. I think that is all good advice. Dick I think you hit it on the nail head. shope before you invest. I think it was good for me to learn the hard way. my first saw is a 16" craftsmon. pin blades. no variabale speed. an I had to turn it on and off buy hand. I put it on my work bench on top of a pad.and bolted it down. but still dancesed all over the place. not knowing anything about scrolling or saws. I thought wow is this all there is. lol. then i got some books , and some magazines. and started learning what other folks did.I waisted 2 years. learning on a bad saw. and was very frustraited.then I bought my Hegner 18". on a stand. I just love it. the vibration . to me was not at all. got it off my work bench. so i could have room for lots more tools.like a 8" drill press , which i use in drilling the wholes for my fret work, and lots moretoy.my stand is a full size. so i can sit or stand. which comes in handy when the wood project. is long. I think the sand idia. is a cool one. for some of us have to deal with what we have . could have used that on the craftsmon. there is lots of high dollor saws out there. i have one. but i probley could have bought a good one back then for lots less $$$$. had i found this sight first. but I am glad i got the saw i have now. I broke a few blades learning . but have not had to replace any parts at all. that counts for something too i think. well enouph from me. long winded lol. Dick watch out your friend is learning fast now. lol your friend Evie

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                      • #12
                        Well JT there is no disputing the quality of your work.
                        I will also say my work has all been done on low end saws.
                        This piece was done on a 16"VS Delta sitting on top of a bench with no clamps

                        The entire vase of roses is one cut. lots of backing up, but one continuous line.

                        All saws do vibrate, unless they are turned off
                        If they didn't vibrate then the blade wouldnt move.
                        If you want to reduce vibration, increas the mass of the saw itself, not the mass of the moving parts.
                        Although the quality of a saw will make scrolling easier, price does not equate quality and a good workman never blames his tools.
                        CAЯL HIRD-RUTTEЯ
                        "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
                        Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Whatever, have fun. I thought we were talking about stands. Why in the world I let myself get sucked into this conversation about saws is beyond me. One of my New Years resolutions will be to never, ever state anything about saws and the differences again on this site. Please forgive me and all have fun scrolling.
                          Last edited by jttheclockman; 12-29-2005, 08:34 PM.
                          John T.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Ahh JT if you make that resolution I will have no one to poke fun at on here.
                            Ok to be fair I will agree to disagree, two trains of thought on the same track

                            I have to say hats off to you though for the following
                            Those two saws I assume you can touch so try changing a blade on each one, see how easy it is and what is involved like taking a holder out of the way or a dust port to get to the bottom blade holder that is under the table. If you can have the store start them up for you, Look at the fit and finish of each one. Check the flatness of the table top. Check the ease of tilting the table. Check how easy it is to adjust tension on the blades. Check to see where the speed control is and is it easily accessible. These are the questions you should be asking. Not sure which Delta you are looking at but there are different blade holders than most other saws. See if that type or the thumb screw type is more appealing.
                            Best advice you have ever given on here .
                            You should also try a blade change with the table tilted........something I should have done before I bought my most recent saw.
                            I am good for about 30 degrees, any more than that and it is a little awkward
                            CAЯL HIRD-RUTTEЯ
                            "proud member of the best scroll sawing forum on the net."
                            Ryobi SC180VS scroll saw EX21

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              As a newby

                              back when i started scrollsawing, the biggest thing i lacked was knowing how good saws preformed,, the special functions while scrolling, so shopping for a scrollsaw was based on price,

                              thinking all saws have a blade that moves up and down, so a harbor freight $50.00 saw was my bargin.. until i tried to buy blades PINNED END blades...HA!
                              the saw too was very light and i found myself chasing it across the bench as i snatched & grabbed for tools raining off the same bench,,, 6 months of that was all i could stand. i bought a dremel 1680 with a stand, the stand was the topper over same options on a delta saw the dremel was underpriced so i got it ..
                              set up the saw and found the great 4 legged stand was too high for me to use comfortably, i built a stand, but now i got a saw on a stand that still viberates but less with added weight its managable.

                              ---
                              i guess put simpler you just dont know the pitfalls in features while buying anything until you have some experiance with tools like scrollsaws, first starting out.

                              some conversations on the fourms, will help you find major problems,
                              but most topics are like airplane jokes - that just confuse you with terms and jardon untill you have some experiance with them..

                              maybe we should have paid more attention to grandpaw when he said, {"when your faced with a tool purchase, buy the best you can afford at that time! then you have nothing to be sorry for, later if you can afford better tools and they benifit you, then buy them,,, "}

                              thomp2
                              Dremel 1680 & Delta ss250 shopmaster

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