View Full Version : Unifence or Biesemeyer????????????
I 'm planning on buying a new saw (Delta) and I was wandering if anyone has some insight into which fence I should go with. I'm more concerned about quality than $$. I've heard good things about both. What do you think??
12-07-2000, 10:51 PM
Delta has had the Unifence for a long time. But they went out and bought the Biesemeyer fence company. Why because it is a better fence. I have had one for about 15 years and it still is as good as the day I installed it. Installation if you don't buy it already installed is very simple.
It is very capable of very fast adjustment to withing 1/64 of an inch over the total range of the saw. For me that is over 6 feet.
It is very repeatable and i have been able to go back and reset a cut for one more piece that had to be cut and not be able to tell the difference between the first cut and the piece cut after the fence was reset to the orginal dememsion.
It is very stable it functions like a T-Square on a drafting machine. The only issue I have ever had was if I tried to cut very this laminate. I had one go under the fence one time when I was trying to rush a cut.
12-07-2000, 10:58 PM
Have you looked at the Incra TS-III?
MadMark, I must be getting ESP as soon as I saw the subject I knew I would see TSIII in your response.
Other Mark, take some good advice and check out the Incra systems. I don't have the table saw system yet but, do have the Ultra Jig on my router table and as soon as I recover from the Christmas budget crunch am going to put a TSIII on my TS. Most accurate and repeatable system IMHO.
12-08-2000, 11:22 AM
Ski, too bad you can't drop a router insert in the TS and use the ultra over there. Gives you the advantage of the Incra on both tools without having to buy two of them!
12-08-2000, 12:05 PM
I have looked at this fence a few times mostly in regard to a Router table. I don't think I would want one on my TS. It seems to be to be way over kill on a saw and I can't think of a time when I would need or want more that what I get wtih the Biesemeyer. Very easy setup and repeatablility. It is very hard to think of cutting wood finer than 1/64 of an inch. The material is not like a metal. I have used metal milling machines nad lathes in the past and know that you can make cuts to 1/1000 and that would be nice, but in the final anlysis we are working on a material that can't be held to that level of tolerance due to the characteristics of the material. It moves.
That is just my 2 cents on that subject.
12-08-2000, 03:09 PM
Think about cutting "step and repeat". When you want to make several cuts a fixed distance apart (box joints). The repeatability is essentially perfect. You might be able to set the bessy to 1/64" but you're going to have a much larger tolerance on the cut than I am.
Being able to measure a piece, cut, and have it fit *perfectly* on the first try is what woodworking is all about. The Incra TS-III does that bettern than any "continuous adjust" fence.
12-08-2000, 07:42 PM
OK I will give you that one. It is not a cut I would make on a table saw. Now on a router table I would do that kind of cut. I am much more likly to cut dovetails and not box joints. Its almost the same level of effort and the dovetail is a better joint for most things.
What I like about the Biesemeyer, is that for 99% of the cuts you make on the TS, it is repeatable and fast to set. I don't have to think about it or worry that something is not going to be cut right the first time. There is a rule that I have found very useful over the years and I still find it to be the case that KISS is the best policy. (Keep it Simple Stupid)
I am glad that you have found a fence that works for your still of work. That is one of the great things about woodworking, You can find lots of people doing great work and not two of them go about it the same way or use the same tool.
12-09-2000, 12:57 AM
Incra isn't hard to set nor is it fussy. release the clamp, slide it where you want it and pull the clamp. It'll be on an *EXACT* multiple of 1/32" *EVERY TIME*.
I have my ½" Freud mounted in the R wing of the TS so I can use the Incra on both tools. I have the M1000 miter gauge with the 36" fence so I can crosscut to the same accuracy.
Incra also has front and back anti-lift locks and front has knob to lock in. You could hoist the saw by the fence and not have it move.
Side and top of fence has slots for ¼-20 bolts/nuts so attaching finger boards, holddowns, etc. is easy.
Incra is both accurate and repeatable. You measure it, cut to match and it *fits* - every time.
Bessy is damn fine fence. As is Xacta. Wouldn't trade my TS-III for either.
12-09-2000, 02:06 PM
I've got both and like the Unifence better. I see no diference in accuracy or repeatability and the Unifence will do some operations that the Bessie won't. The Bessie is bound to be cheaper to produce so maybe that is the reason that Delta bought them.
12-09-2000, 05:17 PM
I have a Delt with the Unifence. Very accurate but wish I had the Biesemeyer. Why? Well ya know all the fancy little do dads you can build (Jigs) that fit a regular fence? The don't work on a Unifence. And there is really no way to attach them. You have to build another fence that attaches to your Unifence and go from there.
Just built a router table because I'm just not too crazy about TS router table wings. I like the mobility of the router cabinet not to mention the storage space it adds. Didn't actually intend to buy both, I was just going to have one Incra on the router table and upgrade the TS fence with Bies or Unifence. But, the results I am achieving on the router table have impressed me enough to want an Incra on the TS as well. Don't forget...when it's all over the one with the most toys wins!!!!!