(I asked Should I sharpen or replace my table saw blade? and got a good answer. (Paraphrased: sharpen $100 blades, replace $30 blades.) But, as it turns out, I was suffering from superstitious behavior, attributing the problem to the last thing I did rather than finding the root cause. A brand new blade bogs down ripping 1/2" poplar so the blade is not the problem.)
I have a Craftsman table saw (model 113.298031) which recently started bogging down and stalling while ripping soft woods (1x4 pine, 1/2x3 poplar). I cleaned the blade to no effect and put in a brand new combination blade also to no effect. I now wonder if the belt or motor are to blame.
The motor mount allows the motor to be pivoted to tighten the belt but is at the furthest point from the blade so there is no room to tighten it by adjusting the position. The belt is a series of links that look like leather. It seems I could take the belt off, remove a link, and put it back together as a quick and cheap way to prove if the belt is the problem. If that works, does it mean the belt is so stretched out (and weakened) that it needs to be replaced or does that solve my problem?