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table saw ASAP Options
tardedfish
Posted: Monday, January 21, 2013 7:04:53 AM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 1/21/2013
Posts: 0
Location: conroe, texas
I am getting a table saw but don't have much money to spend on one and working with limited space. I want to know what the best one i can get thats relatively inexpensive. I am new to detailed woodworking. Help with this would be greatly appreciated.
klandin
Posted: Monday, January 21, 2013 7:57:12 AM
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Joined: 6/1/2006
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Location: Connecticut
Don't do it! A cheap tablesaw will never be anything more than just that. Here's what you should do:

- If money were no object I'd advise you to get a Sawstop. In addition to being much safer, these saws are actually very fine machines.

- Since money is an object I strongly advise you against wasting your money on a brand new piece of crap. Instead go to the internet, be patient, and shop for a good quality used machine. Unlike cars, 20 - 30 years is not old for a saw, and nowhere else is it more true that "they don't make 'em like they used to anymore". Old machines are often the best bargain out there. Start with craigslist or your local newspaper's classified section.

- As a general rule you really can't go wrong with Delta brand saws. You're in luck there because right now there is a flood of perfectly good Unisaws on the market since everybody is trading in their trusty old workhorse for a shiny new Sawstop.

- Stay away from anything purchased at a big box store. Those things are not tools, they're toys.

Keith Landin
Woodshop instructor, Woodstock Academy
"Mens tua sit implementum acerrium in fabrica"
woodnfire
Posted: Monday, January 21, 2013 10:14:35 AM
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Joined: 4/16/2006
Posts: 0
Location: Bend, Oregon
What Keith said
Dansilvernail
Posted: Monday, January 21, 2013 12:34:09 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 8/8/2012
Posts: 0
Location: West Linn, OR
X2. But check with your district because I know that my district won't allow me to buy used machinery.

Seems to me that Jet may be a decent brand if you can't get Delta or Powermatic. The school that I student taught at has a Jet milling machine (along with the Bridgeports) and the Jet has held it's own. Maybe someone else could chime in one way or the other on Jet quality.

Another thing to consider is how much use it gets. If you're in a high school where the students are using the saw every day, then yea, do all you can to get the best possible. But if you are in a similar situation as I am, where the only one using the saw is me (to prepare material for student use), a lesser expensive saw may work.

One more thing: get the best possible fence. I have a Biesemeyer and it's spot-on. I don't even bother measuring from the blade to the fence (as we were all taught to do).

Good luck!

Champlainbuilder
Posted: Monday, January 21, 2013 2:22:05 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 3/7/2012
Posts: 0
Location: Middlebury, Vermont
I wouldn't get anything other than a sawstop. Do a google search on the lawsuit from a few years past that set a legal precedent that if anyone gets cut on a saw, regardless of how careless they may have been, it is the saw owners fault because they should have bought a sawstop. Seriously, I'd sooner use a jigsaw or bandsaw than a tablesaw that is not a sawstop.

If you want cheap, buy the contractors version of a sawstop. I have one as second saw that I use for dadoing. I think they're in the $800 range but I forget, could be more. Its nowhere near the cabinet saw they make but it will do if needed.

Or, buy a cheaper saw and don't allow students to use it. You do all the cutting. The liability is huge.......

Good luck with your decision.
klandin
Posted: Monday, January 21, 2013 3:13:42 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 6/1/2006
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Location: Connecticut
Based on the question I assumed that tardedfish wasn't a woodshop teacher, and that this was for personal use.

Keith Landin
Woodshop instructor, Woodstock Academy
"Mens tua sit implementum acerrium in fabrica"
tardedfish
Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 1:51:36 AM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 1/21/2013
Posts: 0
Location: conroe, texas
You are correct I'm not a teacher. I'm a Machinest. I've been working metal for a long time and figured I would try my hand at woodworking. What about the Craftsman Professional 10 in. Contractor Saw (Sears#21833)? This is mostly for hobby and maybe make a little extra money with.
J.marquart
Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 6:45:36 AM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 9/1/2009
Posts: 0
Location: Sebring Florida
A machinest with no fingers is as good as a one armed paperhanger.

"Think"
Check out the saw stop
spend the extra $$$
you won't be sorry you did
dbrannen
Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 9:54:34 AM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 5/2/2007
Posts: 0
Location: Grants Pass, Oregon
Wait a few months, save your dough and get a saw stop. Over the years I have used Sears, Jet, Delta, Powermatic and even a couple of the small "contractor" models such as Ridgid. They all work in the sense that they will rip a board. You mention that you want it for hobby use with the possibility of making a couple bucks down the road. I am not sure if the sawstop I have in my classroom was built on a Wednesday or what but I have never pushed a board through a better machine. Although we have their big cabinet saw I have to believe that their contractor version is just as well made.

Saving a finger or two is worth it's weight in gold. If you plan on future profits from your endeavours, get the best tools you can afford. Since you are a long time machinist I am sure you already know this.
Giz
Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 11:27:56 AM
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Joined: 6/6/2006
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Sawstop.

Contractors model starting at $1600.
klandin
Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 6:44:49 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 6/1/2006
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Location: Connecticut
Or you could follow my original advice. I well remember that "back in the day" when I first started woodworking on a pauper's budget if I'd waited until I could afford a $1600 dollar machine I'd never have started at all. If you can afford the price tag, then by all means go out and get a Sawstop. Otherwise do as generations have successfully done before you. Learn the limitations and constraints of your tools, work carefully, work smart, and understand that every morning that you get out of bed you are taking a calculated risk.

As for the Craftsman saw, don't do it. You wouldn't buy your micrometers at Sears would you?

Keith Landin
Woodshop instructor, Woodstock Academy
"Mens tua sit implementum acerrium in fabrica"
facarroll
Posted: Wednesday, January 23, 2013 1:37:58 AM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 4/7/2010
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Location: Ballarat, Australia
New technology that looks like it will effectively compete with Sawstop is being developed as an after market bolt-on. The difference here seems to be that the bolt-on senses when the operator's hand is too close to the danger area and simply shuts down in 1/8th second. The system can be added to any machine and is non-destructive. I'd investigate this further at http://www.whirlwindtool.com/.

Frank Carroll
Jindabyne Central School (Retired)
Australia
http://www.SafetyTestingOnline.com
tardedfish
Posted: Tuesday, January 29, 2013 1:45:08 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 1/21/2013
Posts: 0
Location: conroe, texas
I got it everybody loves sawstop but I just can not afford a 1600 machine right now. nobody on here ever used another saw that they liked? what did yall use before sawstop came out? enough with the SawStop.
MrsN
Posted: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 12:37:24 PM
Rank: Newbie
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Joined: 4/2/2008
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Location: Wisconsin
I have a delta contractors saw. it is not a bad little saw. It could use a little more power (if you rip a 2x6 it starts to bog down a bit) but that is true of most saws in that size.
I have it in my shop for my own use to prepare material for students, kids dont touch the saw. I teach middle school and decided that I didn't want them using a table saw (reguadless of the safety features)
Also there are other forums with more non-teachers that might be helpful for you. Try Lumberjocks.com full of woodworkers with opinions
schadlk
Posted: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 1:57:44 PM
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Joined: 8/31/2009
Posts: 0
Location: Olivet, MI
We had a Rockwell/Delta Unisaw in our school shop since 1959 and it ran like a beast! I loved it! I would strongly urge you to look at an older/reliable saw if you can't afford a Sawstop. My friend recently purchased a Craftsman and it is junk. The top is plastic and the fence isn't true (super flimsy)and I know he paid more than a few hundred for it. My father-in-law has had some luck recently with purchasing some Delta saws and a Dewalt contractor's saw ($250) at auctions and through classified ads. By the way, the only reason we purchased a Sawstop was for safety of the students. There was really nothing wrong with the old one...
thibault
Posted: Sunday, February 03, 2013 4:23:48 PM
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Joined: 9/18/2010
Posts: 0
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
We replaced a venerable old Delta Rockwell Unisaw with a Sawstop for the safety of the students. The Delta is 60+ years old and still runs great and is a great saw! I have not been able to sell it (partly because it is 3-phase), but if you lived closer to Santa Cruz, California you could have it for a song. I expect that you could find a similar saw in Texas and it would be a great machine to have.
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