SawStop Floating Overarm Dust Collection Blade Guard
This heavy-duty overarm blade guard from SawStop is designed to protect the operator's hands while also removing above-table dust. Since the guard ''floats'' above the table, it can be used for both traditional through-cuts as well as joinery cuts like rabbets, dados and grooves. The transparent blade cover provides clear visibility and is easily raised out of the way for blade access via the scissor-action lift mechanism. In addition, the rigid steel overarm swings smoothly out of the away when needed. Compatible with 36'' and 52'' versions of SawStop CNS, PCS and ICS table saws. Also fits ICS Mobile Base.
- Ships directly from the manufacturer.
- Must be shipped within 48 Contiguous United States.
- Estimated Delivery time: 1-2 Weeks.
That said, I was expecting a bit more suction because I have a 5 HP Gorilla unit with Nordfab ducting. The floating guard does fan out over a large volume which I assume is the challenge. Still, it definitely stopped the dust spraying in my face that my Powermatic would kick up despite having the standard dust collection port engaged. When cutting something like plywood with the unit right against the wood, it is as effective as I think is possible.
For reference, i upgraded from the normal blade guard dust collection with the 1.5" tube, which sucked at collecting, even if you hooked a high CFM or high static pressure vac up directly to the back of it.
They mention the guard sits too far back on the blade, however, it's completely adjustable in every direction. It has slots to make it sit wherever you want on the blade, side to side, front to back, The manual is very clear on how to get it wherever you want.
I'm also unclear on the complaint about the nub. Unless you are cutting without a fence, or doing something really dangerous, i don't see how you have a panel overhanging that side.
(Though have an incra fence and router table on that side, so something would be in the way anyway)
Past that, it collects dust *very* well.
I have a nice cyclone (oneida 5hp), and it generates enough suction to want to be pulled to the table.
I don't understand why you would put it an inch off the blade.
It's meant to sit touching the table, and is spring loaded so that it retracts and pushes down easily. You can adjust the spring tension
It gets at least 5-6x what the normal dust collecting blade guard does, maybe 10x.
I also did the same MDF test, and it got all the dust, whereas the regular overarm blade gets it everywhere. Same with cutting the edge of pieces.
My guess here is that they just don't have powerful enough dust collection (13 amp is .... not a lot).
Overall, i'm incredibly satisfied.
Not too tough to set up, though there's a single nut/machine screw that will make you question your sanity. It's a lock nut and an overly long screw in a tough location, and you can only move it a quarter turn at a time. Either way, doable.
The thing is quite beefy. The main trunk is surprisingly stout, and once set up pivots out of the way nicely. A small gripe is the way the pipe mounts to the way.
You can pop the pipe entire pipe assembly off the bracket on the end of the saw if needed quite easily, but the bracket has a 1" nub that sticks up proud of the table. Now and then I'll have a very long panel that hangs off the end when I'm using a cross cut sled, and that wouldn't work now. If I absolutely had to make that cut, I'd have to remove the entire bracket. I have the 36" saw, so its not that unlikely that I'd have something hang over the far end while cross cutting. Seems like an avoidable design flaw in my opinion. Such as, put the pivot pins on the tube and just have holes in the bracket that attaches to the saw. That way the joint doesn't really change, but when you remove the tube you don't have anything in the way.
Another small annoyance, it doesn't come with a Y adapter so you can hook up both the cabinet port and the floating arm. How much would that have cost them???
Now the parts that can't be ignored or fixed as easily. The thing just doesn't get the dust very well. I have it hooked up to a pretty large 13 amp dust collector (we aren't talking a shop vac here) with a nice after market Wynn filter. My first test was to sprinkle dust on the insert and turn on the DC. The guard was positioned about 1" off the surface. A little dust got sucked up, but not a lot. See attached pic, assuming I did that right.
Next test was to actually cut something. I like MDF, but avoid it due to fears of nasty dust. So, I grabbed a scrap and did a few cross cuts. 1/2" MDF, with the guard as low as I could go without hitting the wood. The thing got some of the dust, but there was still plenty spraying back at me and on the saw table.
I think the problems aren't too hard to spot. As the guard is one solid piece, there's frequently a big gap between it and the saw/wood surface. Larger gap means less pressure sucking up the dust. For some reason the guard sits quite far back on the saw blade too, so the front of the blade (you know, the part that actually cuts the wood) is very close to the front of the guard.
I was super hopeful, and am VERY motivated to improve my dust collection. This just doesn't do it though, so I think I need to pack it up and return it. I think some basic changes to the actual guard assembly could make this work much better. Some movable sides to lower the air gaps would help (or brush strips, which would be easy to add). The guard also needs to sit back at least a couple inches more.
If there's a version 2.0 in the future I'll try again. I am in love with the saw itself, can't say enough good things about it.
1 year ago
Thank you for your interest in our Floating Dust Collection Guard. Yes, the blade guard portion would work, but I am not sure about the installation part as ours is installed to the extension table and we don't test it on other manufacturer's saws, so you may have to make some adjustments.
Thank you for your interest in our Floating Dust Collection Guard. In response, it doesn't come with a Y fitting. I hope you have a great week.