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Feed Speed

Table saw feed rate indicator based on cutter tip temp
  [vote for,

My husband is a woodworker and has a "Northfield" table saw that he loves more than me. I sometimes go out into his shop and watch him work. When he is working with particularly dense or fragile hardwoods he has to be careful about how fast he feeds the stock through the saw. Too fast and the cut can be ragged, too slow and it can scorch or burn (especially if with both dense and naturally oily woods like cocobola). This evening he mentioned that most mistakes are made when people feed the wood too slowly; too gingerly.

His comment made me think about how an interactive feed rate indicator might be designed.

My thought: a thermal imager mounted below the feed surface that reads the cutter tip temperature of the whirling blade and drives a segmented LED (or other) display up on top of the saw. If the feed rate is too low the cutter temp will rise and the imager will send a signal to the display which, in turn, tells the operator to increase the feed rate.

I don't have a solution for too high a feed rate, though.

bristolz, Oct 15 2002

Northfield table saw http://www.northfie.../tablesaws/4saw.htm
Except his has a bigger table than this one. [bristolz, Oct 20 2002]

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       Good idea, anything which helps a craftsman to do a better job can't be a bad thing. About too fast or slow a feed rate; what if the thermal imager directly controlled the R.P.M,s of the blade, to keep the optimum heat level regardless of how fast or slow the wood was being fed in. For someone who is a professional, having to take your eyes away from what you are concentrating on to glance at a display may result in more inconsistancies than it would cure. I don't know woodworking, but working daily with porceline, limestone, slate, and marble, has taught me that even small distractions can cause you to easily blow a cut.   

       How about an audible alert? The woodworker is probably already using his ears to detect the high feed rate, which slows the saw blade too much...
Something like the old fashioned cream separators. "clank clank" is too slow, "dingdingding" is too fast.
lurch, Oct 15 2002

       feed your cat speed.
Gulherme, Oct 15 2002

       As my elf is a former custom cabinetmaker , I award you the coveted 7200 rpm croissant
thumbwax, Oct 15 2002

       Cocobola! I love the sound of it.   

       I’ve also burned wood in my ever-present incompetence during the occasionally building of wood prototypes. So, instead of a complicated and expensive thermal imager, which would be more expensive than the woodworking equipment that it was attached to, how about just running a filtered tube to the woodworker’s nose. (You can experiment on your husband.) That way he would detect the burning, and would know, within a few seconds anyway, if his feed rate was too slow. (And maybe a green smell if the rate was too fast.)
ldischler, Oct 20 2002

       "...would be more expensive than the woodworking equipment that it was attached to..."   

       I think an inexpensive CCD imager in a rugged case could do this. I doubt it would be very expensive. Probably under $100. On the other hand, I think a good table saw is pretty expensive. At least they look expensive to me.   

       On the whole though, I admit this idea is not too well cut.
bristolz, Oct 20 2002

       Bris - you could buy very expensive woodworking equipment and a cheap camera, or you could skimp on the woodworking equipment and spend a bundle on the camera. I prefer to do the latter, because then what I said previously seems less stupid.
ldischler, Oct 20 2002

       This is a good idea; but why does it need a feedback? What Bubya said in his last sentence. Twin 4" conveyor belts either side of the blade.
General Washington, Oct 20 2002

       You don't need CCDs- why do you need to image? Just use an infrared photodiode, an opamp, and an LED or a buzzer. Pennies.
shameless_self_reference, Oct 21 2002

       You're right. No imaging required.
bristolz, Oct 21 2002

       I churned one up for [bris]. +
xandram, Mar 11 2008


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