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Author Topic: Calibrating fence angle on Domino  (Read 4424 times)

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Offline Pete Brown

  • Posts: 5
Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« on: April 10, 2007, 10:10 PM »
Hi All

I haven't had a ton of luck calibrating the fence angle on my domino, There is very little surface to work with due to those two white slick pads being in the way. I'm not confident I'm at exactly 90 degrees when set at 90 degrees. It's close, but there is little room for slop with a precision machine like this.

What are other folks doing?

Pete

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Offline markrcarlson@gmail.com

  • Posts: 53
  • Los Angles, CA
Re: Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2007, 06:58 PM »
Pete,

I've been using two engineer squares to make sure my fence is at 90 or more importantly parallel to the base.  It seems like this is a very important 1st thing to check.  Weird that it isn't mentioned in Festools manual or the Unauthorized version.  If you flip the domino upside down and put one square on the fence and one on the base the two squares should come together without any gaps. 

To get my domino at 90 degress, I placed the base on my the cast iron top of my table saw (my flatest surface).  I then loosened the angle and height levers and slipped a piece of 3/4 in MDF under the fence.  You should probably loosen the pointer because theres a little tab underneath that catches the angle mechanism. Press down on the fence until its sits flat on the MDF.  Tighten the angle lever.  Push the pointer to the right as far as it will go and tighten down the pointer screw.  Check for 90s with the 2 squares and you should be good to go.   Note: my initial check for 90s showed that my domino was off by a lot and my results were poor.   Now I'm getting great joints and couldn't be happier :)

~mark
« Last Edit: April 11, 2007, 10:17 PM by Mark Carlson »

Offline greg mann

  • Posts: 1907
Re: Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2007, 09:09 AM »
Mark,

I was going to post the exact same technique. It's very fast and very accurate. The only nitpicking I can do is to say you forgot to mention that the height adjustment needs to be tightened as well befor resetting the pointer, probably just before tightening the angle lock. It is far easier to set the fence parallel to the base than it is to make the fence perpindicular to the front. This is a similar dynamic to using the angle stop as a reference (very short fence) to achieve long square crosscuts. We have an expression where I work when one tries to use a short reference surface to control a much longer dimension. We call it "The tail wagging the dog".
Greg Mann
Oakland, Michigan

Offline Pete Brown

  • Posts: 5
Re: Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2007, 09:58 AM »
Thanks guys

The obvious assumption in this technique is that the cutter is parallel to the fence base. I assume you have found that to be the case

Pete

Offline markrcarlson@gmail.com

  • Posts: 53
  • Los Angles, CA
Re: Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« Reply #4 on: April 12, 2007, 11:04 AM »
Pete,

If that assumption isn't correct all cuts with the base as a reference will be wrong. 

Another way of checking for 90 degrees is to make a mortice in two boards.  Insert a tenon into one of the mortices and flip the boards over onto a flat surface.  The face that the fence referenced should be down.  Apply some downward pressure to assure the boards are flat and bring the boards together.  If the mortice goes into the emtpy mortice then your at 90 deg.  I think I got this description correct.  This works for checking a biscuit joiner too.

~mark
« Last Edit: April 12, 2007, 02:08 PM by Mark Carlson »

Offline Dave Rudy

  • Posts: 771
  • Coloroda Front Range, in the lee of Pikes Peak
Re: Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« Reply #5 on: April 12, 2007, 01:14 PM »
Pete,

If that assumption isn't correct all cuts with the base as a reference will be wrong. 

Another way of checking for 90 degrees is to make a mortice in two boards.  Insert a tenon into one of the mortices and flip the boards over onto a flat surface.  The face that the fence referenced should be down.  Apply some downward pressure to assure the boards are flat and bring the boards together.  If the mortice goes into the emtpy mortice then your at 90 deg.  This techique doubles any error.  I think I got this description correct.  This works for checking a biscuit joiner too.

~mark

Mark,

I'm unclear how what you described doubles any error.  If the fence is off registration on both boards, I think the test would be fine even though the fence was off.  Maybe I just didnt understand your description.

Dave

Offline markrcarlson@gmail.com

  • Posts: 53
  • Los Angles, CA
Re: Calibrating fence angle on Domino
« Reply #6 on: April 12, 2007, 01:57 PM »
Dave,

I made a couple of pictures on paper and agree that my statement about doubling the error seems wrong.   I'm going to delete that part from my earlier post. 

~mark