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  • Hold Down Recommendation

    First of all, thank you to those who answered my previous post. I have set up my 788. I wish that all tools set up so effortlessly. It runs very well; no noise and no vibration. My question concerns the position of the hold down. Should it just touch the stock or should there be some degree of clearance? I am practicing on some measured 1" stock and cut out a rudimentary puzzle that came out prettty good. I set up with some space between the stock and the hold down and didn't have any difficulty. There will be quite a bit more of practice runs before I start using good stock and I wanted to know what your preferences and recommendations are. Thanks in advance, Flintlockjoe.

  • #2
    My question concerns the position of the hold down. Should it just touch the stock or should there be some degree of clearance?

    There should be some degree of clearance. About 3 feet or however far your storage drawer for spare parts is....LOL None of us use it at all. Just use finger pressure and pivot your work using your fingers near the blade.
    "Still Montana Mike"

    "Don't worry about old age--it doesn't last that long."
    Mike's Wood-n-Things LLC

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    • #3
      I'm with Mike on this one. You could either put it in a drawer far from your saw or maybe see how far you can throw it. Hold down bars just get in the way.

      Jan

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      • #4
        Dang, guess I'm the only one who still uses my hold down foot! I don't think I could cut without it. I like the security of only having to manipulate the stock without concerning myself with holding it down too. I've tried it once or twice and if I let go of the wood for a split second, it just goes wild and I've broken a few blades that way. I love my hold down foot! IMO!! Don
        Don

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        • #5
          Chuck it as far as you can, but don't throw an arm out or anything, you need them for SAWING!
          Dan

          My Gallery

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          • #6
            Hold down arm? Oh, that's the thing I screwed to the wall and hang my shop apron on. I agree with most others, chuck it. Hey, maybe we should see what other uses we can come up with for that thing.
            Dan H

            I would rather be friendly to a stranger than be a stranger to my friends.

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            • #7
              Hold down clamps and blade guards are the first things to go from any serious scroll saw. They only get in the way, and you need to learn how to exert finger pressure close to the blade to control the wood in any event.

              These add-ons give the illusion of safety, but the saw is such a basically safe tool that a reasonable degree of care and attention are all you really need. Plus a dust mask and eye protection, and some way to control the sawdust.
              Carole

              Follow me on my blog: www.scrollsawbowls.blogspot.com

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              • #8
                The hold down was the first thing to go (in the drawer).
                "All it Takes For the Forces of EVIL to Rule Is For Enough GOOD People To DO NOTHING!"

                Saws: Excaliber 30; Dewalt 788 'Twins', Makita SJ401 (Retired), Grizzly G1012 18" Bandsaw

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                • #9
                  Some of you guys are "Hot Stuff" with your replies! Based on the consensus of experience the hold down foot has been removed and stored away. Practice is continuing with emphasis on those two most important safety proceedures: Patience and Common Sense. Thanks again, Flintlockjoe.

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                  • #10
                    Tdub4ever,
                    Maybe you should put your blade in right side up
                    Just kidding.
                    I agree with the rest get rid of it it gets in the way and it will also break deilcate fretwork.
                    Rolf
                    RBI G4 26 Hawk, EX 16 with Pegas clamps, Nova 1624 DVR XP
                    Philosophy "I don't know that I can't, therefore I can"
                    Proud Member of the Long Island Woodworkers Club
                    And the Long Island Scrollsaw Association

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by tdub4ever View Post
                      Dang, guess I'm the only one who still uses my hold down foot! I don't think I could cut without it. I like the security of only having to manipulate the stock without concerning myself with holding it down too. I've tried it once or twice and if I let go of the wood for a split second, it just goes wild and I've broken a few blades that way. I love my hold down foot! IMO!! Don
                      I'm curious as to why you'd let go of the wood while you're cutting it. I find that the hold down arm gets in the way of seeing exactly where I'm cutting.

                      Jan

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                      • #12
                        I didn't want to loose my hold down piece so I loosened it and turned it to the back of the saw, moved it all the way up and tightened down the lock screw and now I don't even know it's there. If I ever sell my saw the next person may want it and if I put it in a drawer it's gone forever.

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                        • #13
                          I agree with discarding that holdown, but, if you get used to it, that's up to you. I feel that if you use poor quality blades, you will need it. They just don't cut as smooth as the quality blades do. After I found quality blades, Flying Dutchman, I never have any problems with holding the work piece. Very little effort is necessary to hold it while cutting. Good Luck
                          PERK

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                          • #14
                            I guess they are alright but one of the first things I did to my new EX-21 was remove the hold down and put it on the shelf.
                            Bob making sawdust in SW Louisiana
                            with a EX-21

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