Yep, another table saw thread...but I've tried to be very specific vs. "I think I want a table saw and my budget is $100...help!"
A little about me: I am an amature woodworker...and that's being generous. I have built bookshelves, picture frames and tons of speaker boxes. I know how to use a TS, router, sanders and a planer. That's it on the experience.
While I'm buying my first table saw, as stated, I've got some experience with woodworking tools. I've used the Wood Shops on base for many years and have gotten used to "real tablesaws." Monster-size Jet/Delta/etc saws with 5-foot tables in all directions have spoiled me. Now that I have a house, I'm setting up my own shop. Buying used is not an option; I like return policies and warranties.
Being that I don't personally know anyone selling a TS and can't vouch for how they care for their tools, used is out.
I first looked at contractor table saws. They rattle around too much. Portable contractor TS's are too flimsy and I cannot afford a $2K cabinet TS. So, I'm looking at mid-level saws (Hybrid saws?). 120v variety only. Wheels are a must as the garage is small.
My original budget was $500, but I quickly realized how much more you get for a little more. The Steel City at $877 shipped (Amazon) blows my budget big-time, but you get what you pay for. I don't want to buy another TS...ever, basically.
I've narrowed it down to the Steel City 35990C http://www.steelcitytoolworks.com/pr...12&tool=35990C
and the Craftsman 21833 http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_1...ABTestAvl=true
I realize there is a substantial price difference b/t the two and the Steel City has lots of nicer features than the Craftsman (as it should for the price diff). BTW: I can get a 10% military discount on the Steel City...I think this might be a no-brainer, but I have to ask anyway.
For someone who will build speaker cabs and basic furniture, is the Steel City the substantially better table saw? $300 better? What matters most to be are dependability and accuracy. When the fence says 24 1/4" the cut should be 24 1/4".
I know there are a lot of TS threads and I tired to be very specific with this thread. Thanks for your assistance.