Monday, March 12, 2012

It Came From Hell

Well, not really, but it sure was a pain in the rear and there was a whole lot of swearing involved. I speak of the latest component in the basement rehab, a stand for my big radial arm compound miter saw with an integrated cabinet. Maybe the problem was that I just didn't fully think it through. No, that is the problem for sure.

I was trying to minimize material usage and work with the current stock that I had lying around. I was also trying to add some spiffy features like side feed supports that were fixed but also had folding extensions on them. Those details got me tied up so that I didn't fully validate the design. As such, the initial design was flawed. When do you think I discovered the flaw? Of course, it was after I built the darn thing.

Fortunately I hadn't gotten to the trim and finish part but I was complete with the framing and sheathing. When I threw the saw into the inset space between the upright feed supports it fit fine, as expected. However, because I made the supports, which were 3.5" in height, the height that the saw's deck is above the base, the full width of the stand, 2', the lock handle of the miter saw as well as the rear lock handle of the compound miter struck the uprights, which blocked the full pivot of the saw. D'Oh! Dumb-ass!

The extension supports pivot on piano hinges and fold down. The whole thing is on casters.

So then I got to design and implement a work-around. Funny how this whole process is so similar to software. I guess it all comes down to the fact that design and manufacturing is the same world over; there are always flaws. It's just a matter of how well you cover them up.

Yea, I planned it that way.

One more piece to go and the project will be complete. This one should be pretty easy. I'm taking the freestanding band-saw and making it platform mount with a pivoting motor mount to easily adjust belt tension. Piece of cake.

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