As usual, click any photo to bring up a larger version.  

Tablesaw Fence Tape

 

I put this off for way too long...

I've needed to replace the adhesive tape on my tablesaw fence for way too long. The numbers are all worn to the point that it is now useless.

(This is not actually the original tape. I replaced that one many years ago, but the replacement did not last as long. During this process I figured out why, read on!)

I picked up a replacement adhesive tape measure some time ago. I don't actually remember where I got this, as it has been sitting in the drawer for a number of months. I have a few links below to sources for adhesive bench tapes.

Before removing the old tape, I added a piece of masking tape and made a mark where the zero position is on the tape. The cursor/indicator on the fence is adjustable, so this does not need micro accurate precision.

I peeled off the old tape and first used a razor blade scraper (on the saw in the photo) to remove the glue. I then switched to using Mineral Spirits, which cleaned the fence rail very nicely. I then waited until the mineral spirits had evaporated so that the rail was fully dry.

I cut the new tape down to the required length -- 34 inches for my fence -- and stuck it down onto the fence rail. I rubbed it vigorously to try and give it a really solid adhesion.

During this process, I discovered that the plexiglass cursor on the fence was rubbing on the old tape. I think the old tape was probably a bit thicker than the factory original tape. The new one is a similar thickness. This is why the old tape was so worn down.

Fortunately it is a pretty easy fix. I removed the plexiglass and added a few thin washers BELOW the plexiglass, which lifted it up a bit.

With the fence zeroed -- placed flush against the tablesaw blade -- I lined up the cursor with the zero on the tape. The cursor is that fine black line etched into the plexiglass. I then tightened the screws.

And that is that.

It's hard to see in a photo, so I used a thin probe to show how the plexiglass piece is now a fraction of an inch raised up above the new fence tape.

And here is a shot of the shiny and clean new fence measuring tape.

Yes, this an imperial-only measuring tape. Sorry, it is what it is. In the links below you can find metric or metric-imperial ones. The main point is that this job turned out to be a pretty quick and simple fix, which should really help improve my use of the tablesaw.

(But habit is strong... I bet I still will double-check the measurement by measuring between the blade and the fence.)

As mentioned above, I don't remember where I bought that adhesive measuring tape. But here are a few links to other sources online, along with some other (affiliate) links to tools and jigs that I use and like.

 

Thanks for reading!

See Also:


Fixing My Tablesaw Stand


Tool Bag Organizer


The BEST Tape Measure