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Thread: Overarm Blade Guard

  1. #1

    Overarm Blade Guard

    I'm getting ready to build an overarm guard with dust collection, for my table saw, based on the design by Gordon J Sampson.

    I would like to be able to lift the guard higher than that design seems to allow, in order to make blade changes a little easier. However before I start experimenting I thought I would ask if anyone has made a guard like this and if any of you have a design that enables the guard to lift higher without sacrificing stability.

    Thanks
    JC

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Spokane, Washington
    Posts
    3,944
    Jack---Welcome to the Creek! It's a fine place to hang out, and more than likely you will have an answer soon. I'm not familiar with the guard you mentioned, but as I need one myself, I will be watching this thread.

    Dan
    Eternity is an awfully long time, especially toward the end.

    -Woody Allen-

    Critiques on works posted are always welcome

  3. #3
    Jack,

    Welcome to the creek! You have joined a wonderful forum!

    I am not familar with the gaurd you are building, do you have a link? I would think if you had a pic or a link, someone could help you out.
    Jeff Sudmeier

    "It's not the quality of the tool being used, it's the skills of the craftsman using the tool that really matter. Unfortunately, I don't have high quality in either"

  4. #4
    I beleive he's refering to this one archived on wood-central from the badger pond.... Linkey

    I built one similar and fasened it to my basement celing. It works but is not as solid (stable) as I'd like it to be...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Douglasville, GA
    Posts
    776

    Overarm Guard

    Welcome Jack:

    The Creek is a great place to learn and share info. Hope you enjoy it as much a I have.

    I'm not familiar with the overarm design you mention, but will share one that I have used for a couple of years.

    Warning: it is not pretty, but it works very well.

    The third shot is with the overarm raised to clear the cross-cut sled with a similar dust collection concept.

    Hope this is helpful. Best regards and welcome again, TJH
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Lancaster, PA
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    1,363
    Jack,
    If this is the one over on Woodcentral, I think the telescoping support arm that goes to the ceiling would allow plenty of room for blade changes. Replace the bolt with another T-knob on the lower square tubing and slide it up out of the way.

    Just food for thought,
    Wes
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    37,906
    It's good that you are aware of the need to raise the guard up out of the way and I'll add that you'll also want to make sure you can "completely remove it from the scene" if necessary...like when you have a, umm...design revision...on a fully assembled cabinet and need the headroom. DAMHIKT! (This was one of the reasons I bagged the UniGuard a few years ago and moved to the Excalibur...the latter is easily removable from the saw; the former is not)
    “Never raise your hands to your children, it leaves your groin unprotected.” - Red Buttons

    If you want your spouse to listen and pay strict attention to every word you say -- talk in your sleep...

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  8. #8
    Jim, I have to completely agree with you. One of the draw backs to this design is it is not easy or convienent to completely remove out of the scene and yes I've needed to due to ummm... "Design Revisions" as you tactfully put it

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker
    It's good that you are aware of the need to raise the guard up out of the way and I'll add that you'll also want to make sure you can "completely remove it from the scene" if necessary...like when you have a, umm...design revision...on a fully assembled cabinet and need the headroom. DAMHIKT! (This was one of the reasons I bagged the UniGuard a few years ago and moved to the Excalibur...the latter is easily removable from the saw; the former is not)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Ventura, CA
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    77
    Not sure if this is relevant but I have an Excalibur overhead blade cover and I can move it to the side for blade changes. It is also fairly easy to completely remove the guard but trivially easy to move it to the side. Could that feature be incorporated into your design?

  10. #10
    Hope I'm doing this right.

    Thanks for the input and for throwing out the welcome mat.

    The picture Wes showed from Wood Central is the guard I was referring to. I was intending to mount it to the floor instead of the ceiling.

    I could use longer arms to raise the guard but I don't want to make it wobbly. I lost a finger and ruined another one in an accident earlier this year, and if my GI contractor saw's guard had been a little more flimsy my whole hand would be in serious shape.

    Jim; Is your setup not stiff enough because it's hanging from the ceiling, or is it the lower assembly that moves?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by jack christensen
    Jim; Is your setup not stiff enough because it's hanging from the ceiling, or is it the lower assembly that moves?
    I beleive that it *IS* due to the fact it's mounted to the celing. It's probably not mounted as stiffly as it could be. It's not been such a pain that I feel compelled to fix it as of yet, but it is on my eventual *TO-DO* list.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Downingtown, PA
    Posts
    56
    Hi Jack,

    Here is a link to the post which shows how I mounted a similar guard:
    http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t=20321

    John Motzi
    Downingtown, PA

  13. #13

    Here's another option

    This is the Over Arm Saw Blade Cover I constructed AFTER severely breaking the thumb of my left hand. I can't stress enough the importance of a blade cover after my experience, I had completed the cut I was making and dropped the material on top of the spinning blade resulting in a kickback into
    my left hand which was still partially holding the stock. The design of this guard allows complete removal of the guard or support tube without the need for tools.



    I had looked at the many ceiling mounted Blade Covers on the net and in magazines but I have a garage door that rolls up over the saw and I was not willing to give up the ability to fully open the door. I have heard others ask about a shop made Over Arm Blade Cover that would work with a mobile saw and think that this design could easily be adapted to work with a mobile base. I incorporated a shelf for mounting my DeWalt portable planer into this system as the planer was always sitting on the extension table when I wanted to use the saw. If you don't have the need for such a shelf this design could be modified to work without it.

    This system does involve some metal work - Aluminum - which I choose for its' light weight and ease of working. The parts I made from metal could also be made from a suitable hard wood, just be sure not to make it to heavy for the tube to support. While I had the benefit of a full machine shop at my disposal, I designed these parts such that they could easily be made in the home shop with a jig saw and a drill press. I was able to complete all work including the Lexan blade cover except for the pivot assembly in a single Saturday, figure on another day to construct the pivot assembly.

    Dust collection was recently added to the blade cover to supplement the cabinet saw's base dust collection. I picked up a 3" x 3" x 2" PVC Y fitting at the local HD. After bisecting it at the band saw, I was left with a 2" fitting in the form of a saddle fitting. I placed a sheet of sandpaper over the tube and formed the fitting to fit the OD of the mounting tube - it was very close to begin with. After marking the tube to match the shape of the branch fitting, I used a pair of hole saws and a jig saw to cut a matching hole in the tube. A little caulking and some pop rivets and presto - one perfectly matched 2" Branch fitting.

    For the full description including pictures, Bill of material and drawings, please visit This web page
    "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb deciding what to have for dinner.

    Liberty is a well armed lamb contesting the decision." Ben Franklin


  14. #14
    Wow

    You've all loaded me with ideas. Thanks again.

    JC

  15. #15
    Jack,
    Good luck with this. If you follow John Motzi's link above you will come to his reply to a question of mine. If you follow some of the responses including one of mine, there will be some other links to nice designs by Todd Frank and others. I was planning to make one but bit the bullet and bought the Excallibur when I saw it go on sale for $300. Now all I have to do is build an extension table so I can mount it...
    --Rob

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