Saturday, April 1, 2023

The jack of all trade sliding compound miter saw. Evolution

 As part of my current hydroculture experiments, I am using a lot of PVC piping.  And while it can be cut with regular woodworking tooling, it can be a bit brittle and crack or even explodes while cutting small pieces.  Using the right blade on any saw makes all the differences.

In addition, I need to make a series of stop cuts along a 4 inches pipe.  Yes, could be done by hand, but a sliding miter saw has the upper hand in this situation.  Quicker, repeatable, even cuts.

And yes, could also be accomplished using one of my old school miter saw boxes, but I digress :-)

These cuts are for creating the 2 inch round opening with a heat gun to install the 2 inch net cups.

While researching what kind of blade I could use, came across this Evolution which taut itself has a multi material saw.  Cuts wood, ferrous, non ferrous material, plastic and etc.

Pic source Evolution website
Its secret is the blade itself.  Material and shape

Then there was this sale at my local Canadian Tire (Hardware store and etc.) They had a sliding compound miter saw R255SMS by Evolution on sale at a good price, so... it followed me home.

This is kind of an unboxing, assembly set up and first usage report on the saw.

Spoiler alert, it tricked me but it's good.

The duo I purchased for these projects.
A new heat gun, mine long ago died in a sparking fit.
I'll review the heat gun later, after I used it.

First impression, very well packed.

Top layer upon opening box.

Removing the top layer we got this.

Removing the cutting head we are left with this

Everything seems accounted for, let the games begin.

Of course, I gave the instruction a thorough review, I glanced at them, and proceed :-)

Every thing when swimmingly well, until...

I went to install the blade.  It used yet, another kind of fastener for which I had no driver.  So I cursed the manufacturer for being so stupid for not providing this important tool with it, then....

Realized it was there all along, tucked safely on the left hand side of the saw base... Who knew?  Not me apparently :-)

The closest I found was a Torx screwdriver, fits but not quite right.
You can see the elusive  Allen wrench sticking out (I pulled it out) 
on the saw base.  

Then also realized the other power miter saw I used, also had its key stored in same place.
Humm, been meaning to change its blade for a while, but was also cursing the stupid manufacturer :-)
There you go, right there I got my money worth before I even plugged it in.

Moral of this story.  Be like Norm.  Always read and follows all the directives that came with your tool and there is nothing more important that this, safety glasses.  Yeah, especially while cutting brittle plastics. 
All set up ready to cut...
Until I realized, dummy I'm going to cut my front fence in half

Hooking up my vacuum hose for dust collection

This is the feature I was most interested in.
The depth of cut stop.

Cutting 4 in PVC pipe

Cutting 2 inch PVC pipe.
The foot shape on the holder hold well round pipes.

The poor dust collection in the pics above was because even with hooking up the vacuum, it does not do much unless you turn it on.  I was too busy cutting my pieces to noticed.  My story, sticking to it. 

Practically all my pieces cut.  
I say practically, because I will realized later I missed one

Rudy the supervisor 

The small PVC ring to hold the 2 inch net pots.
They maybe a tad too long, may have to make new ones??

Except for the mess I made, everything went pretty well once I got used to the saw.

You see, when I first powered it up, I was greeted by a low hum and no blade rotation, so I immediately turned it off and check for any mechanical problems.  Does the blade rotate? Yes.  No wobble or anything wrong mechanically.  Electrical??  After re-reading (better) the instructions It does mentioned letting the blade spin up to speed before cutting.   Huh, I wondered?

Sure enough, keep depress the switch a few seconds before the blade start to spin up.   Everything is fine, work as advertised... Soft start for longer motor life.

One thing I noticed was to avoid or minimized chipping while cutting, Let the blade come to full speed before cutting.  Once thru, do not bring back the blade before it comes to a complete stop.  Also when cold it is more prone to chipping.  Garage shop has been hovering around zero C for a while  Was in the near 10 C when I first cut.

I currently need to cut a new 8 in piece and I had second thoughts about the reservoir made up of pipes pieces.  Could be tricky to clean.  So after much head scratching decided to go ahead but I will not glued up all the reservoir pieces, to be able to take it apart for cleaning.  I do not relish the idea of having a few gallons of water leaking all over so I will caulk the unglued pieces.

I am waiting for garage to warm up so I can cut my PVC pipes and  make my pockets in the main tower piece.  Hopefully soon.

Meanwhile, I can see a future miter saw station to accommodate both powered miter saws.

Bob, awaiting impatiently better weather

1 comment:

  1. The jack of all trades in sliding compound miter saws – gotta love Evolution! 🔧🔨 Any DIY enthusiasts here excited about this tool?
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