Hands On

Volume 47/Issue 4

Project Articles
Antique Quilt Display Rack
Heart-Shaped Display Stand
Duck Napkin Holder

Ask Smitty
Owner’s Gallery
Letters from Owners
New Baby Workshop Calendar
Academy Notes
Hardwood Information You Should Know - Pt 1
Service Pointers
MARK V Alignment

Woodworking Technologies
New Woodworking Glues
Safety Lessons I've Learned

What's New
The Shopsmith Gift Card

Find A Shopsmith Woodworking Academy Near You

National Woodworking Academy in Dayton, OH

Online Accessory Catalog
Request Printed Accessory Catalog
Online Replacement Parts Catalog

Find A Shopsmith
MARK V Demo Near You

Request MARK V Information Package

Links Worth Visiting
Free Woodworking Tips

Contacting Shopsmith

Copyright 2004.
Shopsmith, Inc.
All Rights Reserved


Ask Smitty No woodworker (except SMITTY, of course) has ALL the answers. From time-to-time, everyone hits a snag, trying to figure out some sort of in-shop problem.
Don't worry, SMITTY can help. Just use the
special e-mail link to send your questions to SMITTY. He’ll do his best to get back to you soon, with the answers to those questions.

Here are the questions . . . and SMITTY’S answers for this issue!

If you're having a problem setting-up, aligning or maintaining your Shopsmith equipment, you should contact Shopsmith's Technical Support Staff (NOT Smitty).
Call TOLL-FREE, 1-800-762-7555 during normal business hours to speak directly with a Shopsmith Technical Support Representative.

Printer friendly PDF copy of article (18K)

Bandsaw Blade Problems
From Rob B. via email:
Please provide instructions for adjusting the 1/16" Bandsaw Blade. I have followed the instructions in the Shopsmith book and set tension at 1/8". The problem is...the blade keeps popping off the tire when backing it out of a cut. Also, what is the clearance for the “cool Blocks”.

The 1/16" bandsaw blade is the most sensitive to back-out...and for tracking problems. I suspect that there is not enough tilt on the upper wheel. One of two things has happened: If this is a new machine, it was not adjusted properly. If it is an old machine (as I suspect) there can be a couple problems.

First, the bearings in the upper wheel may be worn. Test for this by removing the blade and gently wiggling the upper wheel. If it feels loose, the bearings are bad and the upper wheel needs to be replaced.

Second, the axle in the upper arm that supports the upper wheel no longer sits at the proper angle. Over time, with the constant tension of the blade, the angle of the axle is reduced by a slight amount. The arm actually twists very slightly and takes a set. This can be corrected by removing the blade, grasping the wheel at the top and bottom and pulling the bottom of the wheel out while pushing the top in toward the frame with LIGHT pressure.

To test whether this twisting was effective, lay a straightedge on the upper wheel. There should be a 1/8" space between the straight-edge and the top edge of the lower wheel. If there is less than the above space, repeat the twisting procedure above. If there is more than a 1/8" space, flex the wheel in the opposite direction until the proper space is obtained. If this happens again it can be adjusted again but this is a sign that the arm has become weak. Plan to replace the upper arm soon.

Regarding the Cool Blocks: There is no gap between the Cool Blocks and the blade. They are designed to run in contact with the blade. With the blade centered in the blocks, tighten the Cool Blocks in place while gently squeezing them against the blade. The friction of the blade rubbing against the blocks makes a custom seat to guide the blade.


Eliminating Face Shield Static
From Jerry Nutter via email:
I have a new full-face shield which is just GREAT - third one I've owned and by far the best. Thanks to Shopsmith for carrying it. Its only drawback is the static attraction of sawdust onto the surface. Cleaning with a soft, dry cloth helps for a bit, but the very act of rubbing the surfaces (inside and outside) seems to enhance the “magnetic personality” of the mask. Do you know of any anti-static spray which can be used to clean it...or should I just run a ground wire from the mask to the nearest convenient iron stake in the ground?

Well, now...that's an interesting picture! If you had terminal lugs on your neck (ala Frankenstein), you could simply ground the mask to your neck and you'd only have to run the wire a short distance. Just kidding, Jerry.

A web search produced this spray-on, anti-static product. Check it out. Good luck. Thanks for the chuckle !


Self-Sharpening Your Jointer Knives
From Colby H. , via email:
I have three questions: FIRST: What is the best way to sharpen Jointer knives? I need them to be as sharp as possible, because I do a good bit of planing and when they get a little dull, my results are just too rough. I don't really want to spend the money for something like a Tormek, because by the time you get the grinder and the jig to do the jointer/planer blades, you could have $400 dollars invested. I doubt that I could sharpen them with just a wetstone, because I'm just not used to sharpening without some kind of guide. SECOND: What is the angle used to hone jointer knives? THIRD: What is the difference between hollow ground, and flat ground?

If you have a Shopsmith MARK V, there is an attachment available to sharpen your Jointer knives on the MARK V. It is designed to be used with our Conical Sanding Disk . You can find these products (and photos of them) in Shopsmith's On-Line Woodworking Catalog. With this fail-safe system, you'll only have a little over $100 invested and the sharpening process will be fairly simple. Your only other option is to have them professionally sharpened by a local sharpening service.

The correct angle for “Multi-Purpose” cutting using Shopsmith Jointer Knives is about 45-degrees.

“Hollow Ground” is when you sharpen against a circular grinding wheel, creating a concave edge. Although many claim you can get a sharper edge this way, it is a far less durable edge.

Continue . . .

Have a Question? E-Mail Smitty Today. . .