In recent months, the worldwide lumber market has seen a massive upheaval, with supply chain issues and increased demand leading to prices that are higher than ever. In turn, this has led to an increased interest in automated products, such as the automated saw fence.
What Is Happening to the Lumber Market?
Recent demand for housing has led to dramatically increased lumber prices over the course of the past year. Since August of 2021, the cost of raw lumber has gone up by about 50 percent, a trend that shows no signs of slowing down. In October, prices stood at around $713 per thousand board feet, a number that has only increased since and is expected to continue increasing.
These newly high costs are driven by unprecedented demand created during the pandemic, as more people search for homes or attempt to renovate the ones they have. If you are in the process of a renovation project of your own, you may have discovered that these astronomical costs are rendering everything far more difficult.
The fact is, with the lumber market being what it is, and costs being as high as they are, builders cannot afford any wasted materials. Whereas in the past, there was a certain margin for error, as lumber was more easily replaceable, these days, precision is an absolute must if you want to get a project completed on time and within budget.
Reduce Waste With an Automated Saw Fence
With any error during the construction process potentially proving to be extremely costly, the precision brought by automation may be able to help you save thousands of dollars on a project. Automation can also dramatically increase the speed of your project, allowing you to devote more time to other elements of the project.
The saw itself isn’t the element that’s automated, however: the saw blade merely spins and cuts through the lumber at whatever speed you have it set to. The saw fence is the element of the table saw that helps you to position the material in exactly the proper position to make the cuts you need. Essentially, it serves as a guide so that you can cut the lumber exactly how you need it, with minimal exhausting measurements and calculations on your end.
When you are shopping for an automated saw fence, your primary concern should be accuracy. In most cases, the saw fence that is included when you purchase the saw just won’t be up to snuff. You must find a saw fence that is exactly parallel to the saw blade when it’s in position, and we do mean exactly parallel. It’s important that this accuracy is maintained, as the saw performs many, many cuts. Low-quality saw fences will gradually lose their accuracy, which means that they’ll ultimately end up costing you money in the form of replacing lumber. Ultimately, paying more for a higher-end saw fence will pay for itself in short order.
A Few Recommendations
Below, we’ve listed a few of TigerStop’s top recommendations for automated saw fences. The ones listed below prioritize accuracy as well as quality so that you will be able to save on lumber costs. Needless to say, safety is also a critical factor.
The flagship product from TigerStop is perfect for attaching to an existing machine. If you have a trusty saw that’s served you well over the years, don’t get rid of it: upgrade it by attaching a TigerStop automated saw fence to it. This high-end piece of equipment boasts roller tables that can push and pull up to 180 pounds, more than enough for the vast majority of projects. It’s extremely easy to work with as well, with a touch screen that allows you to program it to your requirements with ease.
There are plenty of available upgrades to this piece as well. For example, Dynamic Optimization will help you to minimize waste even more by going through every piece of material in your cut list and offering you the best cut options available. The combinations are virtually infinite, maximizing versatility while reducing costly waste to the bare minimum.
An automated stop that can adapt to multiple types of saws, TigerStop’s SawGear is perfect if you have a double miter saw, vertical panel saw, chop saw, or even a drill. It works with nearly any type of saw and can perform a great many complex calculations for you. It also has the ability to store up to 100 different lengths, which you can punch in at will and alter whenever necessary. It’s a highly intuitive piece of equipment that reduces errors by removing the need for a tape measure or manual fence.
One of the most critical features of the SawGear stop is its accuracy. With the ability to cut with a precision of about 0.008 inches and the ability to convert between fractions and decimals, you’ll put all of your lumber to its fullest possible use.
Larger projects might require a seriously heavy-duty piece of equipment to get the job done, and this is where TigerStop’s TigerSaw 1000 shines. This is perfect if you have large, heavy amounts of material to push through. The push feed of this saw system can handle up to 2,100 pounds of lumber or plastic.
The TigerSaw 1000 also makes use of TigerStop’s Dynamic Optimization software, reducing waste to the absolute minimum and saving you money on projects that make use of large amounts of material. With projects on those scales, it’s an absolute necessity to be as efficient as possible. The downloading software, included patterns, and statistics reporting all help to maximize your cost savings on your projects.
Even better, TigerStop includes installation and training with its TigerSaw 1000 so that the builders who will be using it can take advantage of its intuitive design as quickly as possible. As with any major project, time is money, and included installation and training will save you a great deal of time and help to maximize the efficiency of your project even more.