Thursday, February 18, 2010

My SawStop Stopped!

A couple weeks ago I was ripping some sycamore to make frames for earring holders when my SawStop refused to cut. I had lightly touched the blade with the end of the board I planned to rip when the saw stopped running. After that, each time I tried to fire it up, it would start, then immediately stop.

I contacted the service department at SawStop and got a fast reply from Roger and Tom, who helped me diagnose the problem. The fix is to send me a new and upgraded control box and cable, which they can do since my saw is still under warranty. In addition, they asked me to send in my brake cartridges, the ones that keep the saw from cutting off my fingers, so their software could be updated to the latest version. These changes, we hope, will take care of the problem.

But I haven't been able to implement the fixes yet. The problem is not on SawStop's end; they responded quickly. It is due to Mother Nature, who dumped 35+ inches of snow on us two weeks ago, most of which is still on the ground and seriously impeding UPS deliveries in our area. The package with the control box has been on the truck, "out for delivery," several days this week but UPS has refused to leave it on the snow bank by the side of the road and each day it has gone back to the warehouse undelivered. I don't know how long this will go on; the prospects for this much snow melting anytime soon do not seem very good.

So for now, I'll just have to be content with other woodworking jobs that don't require my table saw, jobs like turning pens on my lathe, hand planing wood for cutting boards, cutting the boards to shape on the band saw and installing the vises that have been hanging around the shop for all too many months.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Milling Lumber

I got about half of the poplar I'll need for the Winchester desk in and stickered about two weeks ago. The other day I started milling the first batch, jointing one face and edge smooth and then planing the other side smooth. That's done now for the 5/4 stock. I still have the 4/4 stock to do. When that's done, I'll have enough room on my lumber rack to get the second half of the poplar.

I'm doing the milling in stages. I first marked up the boards into the lengths for their eventual parts and cut them roughly in half to make them easier to handle. Then I milled them lightly, just until smooth. Now I'll stack them under cover and leave them until later, when I'll mill them to nearly final thickness and rip them into near final width. The reason I'm doing this is to account for any additional movement in the wood that might lead to cupping or warping as the wood continues to acclimate to my basement humidity. The idea is to get some of the work done now so it doesn't stack up right before the course starts, yet assure that the wood is accurately shaped when construction time arrives.

In the meantime, I have a few other projects in mind. I'll write about these in the future.