DIY – Biesemeyer fence rails Part 1

It all started when I watched this 27 part series By AskWoodMan  and then watched this by AskTheSteelGuy My Porter Cable PCB270TS Table saw badly needed a new fence system. I watched the videos and contacted Askwoodman, who by the way is an all-around good guy. I went and got the required materials:
7 feet 3” x 2” x 11 gauge rectangle tubing             $51.00
7 feet 3” x 3” x ¼” angle iron                                $27.00
Cutting Fee                                                             $2.00
Tax                                                                          $7.00
Total                                                                        $87.00
I rounded everything up to the nearest dollar, 87 bucks not bad. Getting to make it myself, even better! A quick search on the internet shows 52 inch Biesemeyer fence rails going for $250 to $500. Mine will be 84 inches and a much higher quality.
Let’s get started. Here is a shot of the metals:
There is an extra piece of 3×2, I am saving for another project. Next I made some ¾” x ¾” blocks out of some scrap hardwood I had laying around and gathered up a couple ½” dowels:

 

I put the dowel and ¾” spacer in to get my distance from the back wall. Then I place the 3” x 2” rectangle weld side down and snugged it up against the block. I placed a mark about half way between the block and the edge. This does not have to be exact!

 

For me, that turned out to be about an inch from the edge.

 

 Then I laid out the location of the holes on the angle iron that will be used to hold the tubing in place. I went an inch in from the sides and then cut everything in half until I was done. This is what I ended up with measuring from the end: 1” -> 10 ½” -> 21” -> 31 ½” -> 42” -> 52 ½” -> 63” -> 73 ½” -> 83  

 

Then I marked the holes with my metal punch. Again, does not need to be 100% accurate. You will understand a little further down.

 

Then I put the angle up on my drill press, chucked my number 7 metal drill bit and made sure everything was on the level. The number 7 bit is the size needed to tap ¼” x 20 threads that we need to hold down the tube. I then drilled all the holes.

 

 

 

I then put the angle back on the table using 3 sets of  2 x 4’s to raise it up high enough for the clamps. I put the rectangle, weld down; the dowel and then the ¾” blocks I made together. Making sure everything is lined up the way I want. I then clamped it tight.

 

 

Then I flipped it up to expose the #7 holes I just drilled. I don’t have a picture, kind of difficult to take. But I then put the #7 bit in my hand drill and drilled “marks” using the holes in the angle iron as a template. I drilled just enough to see the location I needed to drill. You can see the “mark” here:

 

Back on the drill press and drilled the marks out with the #7 bit.
I then measured the location of the holes on the saw and marked them on the angle iron.

 

I then drilled the holes for the rectangle tube out to 5/16” and the holes to mount to the table saw out to 3/8”

 

I will be using ¼” x 20 bolts to mount the angle to the table so I pulled out my ½” metal countersink and went to work.

 

Checked every hole to make sure I was at least flush.

 

Test Fit. SWEET!!!

 

While I have it mounted, I mark the miter slots. I then put it back on the table.

 

I then use a combination of drill press, jig saw and Dremel to cut out and clean up the slots.

 

I am going to build an extension table and out feed so I need angle iron for the back of the saw as well. I have extra 2” x 3” angle lying around. I clamped the 2 inch side to my already drilled 3” x 3” angle. Using shims I raised it up to be level with my miter slots and used a transfer punch to mark the holes.

 

I then drilled out 3/8” holes and moved everything out for cleanup. I used 3M abrasive pads to get everything all cleaned up.

I then started to Primer it up. At this point I am into it for about 4 hours. And I mean a Saturday, not a hard core work day. This has turned out to be a lot easier than I thought it would be. The paint and primer is going to take a while to dry in between coats. I will show the paint and mounting in the next post

Here is another link to Ask Woodman’s Video:

On to PART 2