How to Keep From Overtightening Your Table Saw Arbor Nut

Topics Covered
1. Blade Tightening Procedure
2. Is That Tight Enough
3. Dado Blade Set Tightening Procedure
4. RH versus LH Threads
5. Arbor Shaft, Flanges, & Arbor Nut
6. Conclusion

 If you over tighten your table saw arbor nut, you run the risk of damaging your blade and/or arbor shaft threads. This possible problem, with a simple solution, is addressed in the following post.

 I use the two wrenches (shown below) that came with my table saw to tighten (and also remove) my saw blades.

1_TABLE SAW WRENCHES

Blade Tightening Procedure
1. Remove the throat insert
2. Place open-end wrench (shown above) across flats on arbor shaft
3. Finger tighten the arbor nut
4. Place box-end wrench (shown above) on arbor nut
5. Hold the arbor shaft in place with the open-end wrench, and tighten the arbor nut with the box-end wrench. To keep from over-tightening the arbor nut, turn the wrench on the arbor nut using just your thumb and forefinger (as shown in the photo below).

 2_TABLE SAW BLADE TIGHTENING

6. When the blade slips free from your fingers (which are maintaining a firm grip on the box-end wrench), the blade will have been tightened sufficiently, but yet not overtightened.

In the above blade tightening process, the fingers and box-end wrench function as a clutch to prevent over-tightening.

Is That Tight Enough
It is reasonable to question whether the above method will tighten the blade sufficiently. The short answer is yes. And here is why, every time you cut a piece of wood, the table saw blade experiences a force exerted on it by the wood being pushed thru the blade which tries to turn the blade and arbor nut toward the backside of the table saw.

And turning the blade and arbor nut towards the backside of the table saw tightens the arbor nut against the table saw blade.

Dado Blade Set Tightening Procedure
To tighten a dado blade set, you go thru the same six step procedure outlined above for a single blade. However, since you are tightening multiple blades, ensure that the multiple blades are tight against one another before finger tightening the arbor nut.

The following photo shows a dado blade set being tightened.

3_DADA BLADE SET TIGHTENING

RH versus LH Threads
Regardless of whether you have a table saw arbor shaft with RH (right hand) or LH (left hand) threads, you turn the arbor nut toward the back of the table saw to tighten the arbor nut. And, you turn the arbor nut toward the front of the table saw to remove the arbor nut. This is illustrated in the following two sketches.

The first sketch shown below is for a table saw with RH (right hand) arbor shaft & nut threads. If your blade tilts to the left (for doing bevel cuts), then you have an arbor shaft & nut with RH threads.

 4-TABLE SAW BLADE & LEFT TILT



This next sketch is for a table saw with LH (left hand) arbor shaft & nut threads. If your blade tilts to the right (for doing bevel cuts), then you have an arbor shaft & nut with LH threads.

5-TABLE SAW BLADE & RIGHT TILT
Arbor Shaft, Flanges, & Arbor Nut
Arbor shaft, flanges, and arbor nut are shown and labeled in the following photo and sketch.

6_ARBOR SHAFT-NUT-FLANGES PHOTO

7-ARBOR SHAFT-NUT-FLANGES SKETCH

Conclusion
Be sides not having to worry about blade and/or arbor shaft threads damage, not over tightening makes it easier to remove the arbor nut when changing blades. You got to like that; I know I do.

The table saw I used in this post is a Craftsman table saw with right-hand threads on the arbor shaft and left tilt.

 

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Until next time, Take care
AL

 

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