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Episode 33 – Cutting and Sawing Part 2

In this episode I discuss the various adjustments and features of a portable circular saw, sometimes called a Skill Saw.  This episode builds upon the material talked about in Episode 31.  Although everything is talked about in the audio of this file, it was necessary to add a lot of visual in this also. I did manage to get all of this on this page.  However, I also have a pdf file of these notes available for downloading. Cutting and Sawing part 2 notes.pdf.

Picture 1 shows the depth adjustment lever. All this lever does is loosening the clamp allowing the shoe of the saw to move up and down in relation to the motor and blade.

 

Picture 2 shows the depth scale on my saw. Most saws do not have this feature. The best way to judge the depth is to set the saw on top of the material, pull back the guard and adjust the depth until about ¼ to ½” of the saw blade sticks out past the bottom side of the material.

Picture 3 shows the bevel adjustment. This angles the blade so the saw will produce an angle cut.

Picture 4 shows checking the bevel adjustment with an bevel gauge. Two things are important here. 1st, check the blade somewhere other than a tooth of the blade, remember the teeth of a carbide tipped blade actually are wider than the blade itself. 2nd , there is lots of possibility of error here, the only real check is to cut a piece of scrap lumber and check it.

Picture 5 shows the guard of the saw and the lever used to retract the guard. This is necessary when doing “plunge cut” in the middle of a large sheet of material. Please note, one thing neglected in this audio, A circular saw by the very fact that the blade is circular cannot produce straight up and down cuts at the end of the saw cut. The corners of that cut must be finished with a hand saw or a jig saw.

Picture 6 shows a work light built into this saw. It is a nice feature but is not found on all saws.

This is not discussed at all in the audio, but this saw has one other feature. It displays a laser line showing where the saw is aimed. This feature is not as useful as it at first sounds because the laser line requires you look ahead of where you are cutting while moving the saw through the material. You will do a much better job if you look at the point where the saw blade is cutting the material and the line drawn on the material. The one and only place where this laser is of help is when first starting the cut. At that time you are positioning the saw just ahead of the material and in correct alignment with the line you have drawn. One quick check to make sure the saw is angled to proceed down the line is good to prevent starting the cut at an angle to the line and binding the blade.

In the next episode I will discuss some fixtures that are very useful to make repeating and accurate cuts.

Gary

 

 

 

 

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