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Thread: Rigid 4511 fence replacement?

  1. #1
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    Rigid 4511 fence replacement?

    I am considering buying a new tablesaw in the real near future. My budget is somewhat limited but would like a cabinet/hybrid style saw for the stability compared to my little contractor saw. I like the price on the Rigid Granite 4511 saw but am concerned about the stock fence not providing consistantly accurate results. I'm fairly new to this woodworking hobby so don't mind if I ask stupid questions. But does the Rigid TS have the ability to accept aftermarket fence systems? Or should I just bite the bullet and buy the Grizz G0478?

  2. #2
    I just recently bought a 4511.

    The fence actually is ok, it *DOES* lock down squarely. It is the front rail that is the issue for me.

    My plan is to get a 7'6" section of 2" square tube, and appropriate 2.5" angle for the front and the same for the back, and extend the rails and make them one piece, while gaining a lot of extra rip capacity.

    The one thing that I REALLY dislike is how unsmooth the fence glides on the rail. I'm thinking of having the new rail chromed, and using felt pads for the glides.

    It's early days in my thought process, but if the above is feasible (and it seems to be), then I'd come out with a 500lb hybrid with riving knife, 50-60" rip capacity for about $600 (I only paid about $320 for the saw inc rebates). The one thing I am having trouble with is an estimate on the chroming.

  3. #3
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    I would just go for the Grizzly. The grizzly has a riving knife which the Ridgid does not. Also, by the time that you get the new saw and put an aftermarket fence on it, you will have probably spent as much as the Grizzly cost. I think that you would end up being happier with the Grizzly. I have heard people say that they are please with the Aluma-Classic Fence that comes with the Grizzly. Good luck on your decision, let us know what you do.

    CHuck

  4. Quote Originally Posted by Mark Ashmeade View Post
    I just recently bought a 4511.

    The fence actually is ok, it *DOES* lock down squarely. It is the front rail that is the issue for me.

    My plan is to get a 7'6" section of 2" square tube, and appropriate 2.5" angle for the front and the same for the back, and extend the rails and make them one piece, while gaining a lot of extra rip capacity.

    The one thing that I REALLY dislike is how unsmooth the fence glides on the rail. I'm thinking of having the new rail chromed, and using felt pads for the glides.

    It's early days in my thought process, but if the above is feasible (and it seems to be), then I'd come out with a 500lb hybrid with riving knife, 50-60" rip capacity for about $600 (I only paid about $320 for the saw inc rebates). The one thing I am having trouble with is an estimate on the chroming.
    I would tend to agree. I have been using my 4511 for a little over 3 months now and the fence seems fine. I put a sacrificial fence on so it isn't possible to line up the measurements anymore, but now I just have to add 3/4". Doing that I am always within 1/32 with the first set. I would also agree on the single piece front and rear rails, my fence hangs up everytime I hit that joint, it would be nice if it slid a little smoother as well. All said though, I am happy with it.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Isaacson View Post
    The grizzly has a riving knife which the Ridgid does not.
    Actually, the Ridgid does have a riving knife.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Shea View Post
    Or should I just bite the bullet and buy the Grizz G0478?
    You can get the grizzly G1023SL for the same price as the G0478. Then you would have a true cabinet saw.

    http://www.grizzly.com/products/2-HP...inet-Saw/G0478

    http://www.grizzly.com/products/10-T...t-Tilt/G1023SL

  7. #7
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    Is it the one that is built into the blade guard? Or is it a separate riving knife?

    Chuck

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Sweeney View Post
    Actually, the Ridgid does have a riving knife.

  8. #8
    At this point, it comes down to one's definition of riving knife.

    The Ridgid 4511 comes with a blade guard that is mounted on a riving knife, NOT a splitter, like the earlier Ridgid contractor saws. By riving knife, I mean a metal plate coplanar with the blade, shaped to follow the blade, in close proximity to the blade, that rises and falls with the blade, and tilts with the blade.

    The two Grizzlys quoted above appear to have the splitter type arrangement, which I found to be questionable on my older Ridgid. The riving knife is one of the reasons I decided to upgrade, in fact. Some 4511 owners have dispensed with the blade guard and made their own low-profile riving knives (or used Steel City ones) that would fit any definition of riving knife (as applicable to table saws), ie the top of it is lower than the blade, so can be used for non-through cuts, though at the expense of blade guard.

  9. #9
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    You can get the grizzly G1023SL for the same price as the G0478. Then you would have a true cabinet saw.
    I did notice that and was heavily contemplating that option. The issue I will have is the mobility of the saw. I am working down in the basement where space is somewhat limited and not being able to move it might be an issue. Decisions, decisions. I really like those Grizzly's but the price on that Rigid is some nice. The Rigid's lifetime garuntee is also a plus. Not sure about Grizzly's warranty on their's.

    If I was to order the Grizz, roughly how long would I expect to wait for the shipment to come?

    I think I like an iron top compared to a Granite, just seems more natural to me on a table saw. But then again I have now basis for this as I never have used a granite top.

  10. #10
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    Tony,

    I do not own that Ridgid saw. In the past the most dissapointing part of all my less expensive saws was the fence. A real good fence can make a cheap saw usable. A cheap fence can make a superb saw unusable. My suggestion is to purchase the saw with the best fence. My impressions of the ridgid were very poor due to the piece of scrap metal they call a fence. Personally I don't like it. The price of $500 is very attractive but a bad fence would drive me nuts. If ridgid covers the grainte top for life as well as the other componets that is a plus. But remember life is not for your life it is the expected life of the tool. A $500 tool does not have as long an expected life as a $1000 tool. I am not a real big fan of grizzly table saws, but bang for your buck they cant be beat. For $1000 you wont find another table saw with as many good features as the grizzly saws. In the past I would have recomended a look at the steel city line, but they are hard to come by now. I have a feeling the company is concentrating on production for ridgid and craftsman. But on those saws the craftsman has a better fence but is $1000, overpriced, and the ridgid has the junk fence. So that leaves you with the ridgid and trying to polish a turd(fence), or look elseware. Cragislist is always an option, but you must be patient.
    Last edited by Paul Ryan; 11-14-2009 at 11:33 AM.

  11. #11
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    To listen to someone who does not even own the Ridgid R4511 tell you it is junk...

    I own the saw and use it nearly every day with the stock fence. There is nothing wrong with the fence that would make it unusable. Set-up is the key. The only thing I don't like is the split front rail. Once aligned properly, even that is not an issue. You don't have to start out with a top of the line fence system to get good results. I would like to upgrade the fence in the future, but as long as it is working with good accuracy, I cannot justify the expense. As I said, I use mine nearly every day and still get consistent results.

    If it were junk, you would see a ton of threads telling you not to buy it. Those that own the saw are the ones to listen to for the facts, the floor models that most have seen have been mis-handeled and not set-up properly.

    BOTTOM LINE: It is your money, use it how you want. Spend more now, or spend more later, it all ends up the same. Anyone in this hobby is always looking to improve something about a tool, no matter how nice or expensive it is.

    My .02

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Isaacson View Post
    I would just go for the Grizzly. The grizzly has a riving knife which the Ridgid does not. ...
    It's the other way around...the R4511 has a riving knife, the G0478 does not. The G0661 has a riving knife.

    It is possible to put an aftermarket fence on the R4511...here's a pic of one that someone put a Shop Fox Classic fence on:
    Last edited by scott spencer; 11-14-2009 at 1:32 PM.
    Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

  13. #13
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    I own the saw and use it nearly every day with the stock fence. There is nothing wrong with the fence that would make it unusable. Set-up is the key. The only thing I don't like is the split front rail. Once aligned properly, even that is not an issue. You don't have to start out with a top of the line fence system to get good results. I would like to upgrade the fence in the future, but as long as it is working with good accuracy, I cannot justify the expense. As I said, I use mine nearly every day and still get consistent results.
    Thanks for the positive reply. As far as the fence is concerned, does it lock down securely from front to back? I've heard that the rear part of the fence does not lock down and that concerns me. Also, how are the mitre slots? Are they smooth or rough? What do you use to treat the granite to keep it slick, is it the same method as with an iron top? And how is dust collection on the Rigid?

  14. #14
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    Tony - The majority of modern steel fences lock only in the front...Beisemeyer, HTC, General, Shop Fox Classic, Exacta, Delta T2, Vega, etc. It's a design feature that ensures parallelism and ease of use. They're still plenty strong to handle the real world forces that are mainly applied just in front of the blade.
    Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

  15. #15
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    The R4511 fence only locks on the front, as the high end fences do too. The clamping force on the front rail is adjustable and is part of proper set-up and squaring the fence. My miter slots are square and smooth, not polished, but smooth. As with an iron top saw, an occasional coat of wax keeps things super slick. Dust collection works reasonably well, I have never used a saw with excellent dust collection, but this one is adequate with my small 1 HP Delta and a ZCI did help as well. About once a month I pull out the throat plate, turn on the DC, and blow out the cabinet with my compressor.

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