I want to use a magnetic base and precision deflection meter with my tablesaw, which has aluminum instead of cast iron table, which means it is not a magnet-friendly material. I'm wondering if anyone has ever succeed doing something like mounting rare earth magnets to the underside of their aluminum tablesaw deck, to get a magnetic attachment to work, or if they have found an alternative to precisely measure a tiny movement of the tablesaw fence that works for them?

I want to be able to do things, which might be IMPOSSIBLE with a portable-aluminum saw: I saw a guy on youtube using one to reduce the size of his workpiece by a small amount. I want to be able to remove a small amount of material from a workpiece that is, say a few thousandths of an inch too wide.

I suspect from the comments that using a precision magnetic deflection meter is an exercise in futility in a saw like mine (Bosch 4100-09)

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    I think you are perhaps barking up the wrong tree here. Or possibly you could describe more fully what you hope to achieve with the measurement you are taking. Virtually all tablesaws with aluminum tables are "somewhat less than rigid" so I'm not seeing the point of measuring the (expected, inevitable) slop. Either work within the abilities of the saw or shop for a better one... – Ecnerwal Jul 1 '14 at 2:07
  • Thanks. Good to know when there's a non-point at the end. – Warren P Jul 1 '14 at 16:53

I'd suggest clamping a piece of steel in place temporarily -- or using a meter which references from one of the miter gauge slots -- or combining the two by getting a piece of steel made to fit comfortably in the miter gauge slot.

(I have a plastic fitting which lets me use a micrometer that way. I think I paid $10 for it at a woodworking supply shop.)

  • the miter gauge slot thing sounds promising. – Warren P Jul 1 '14 at 16:53

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