Originally Posted by Minnesota Marty
Thanks for the great review. I am in the market for a new job site saw. This is going to be my last one. Since, I am towards the end of my career. My concern is getting it in and out of the trailer and since I do have to go to the second floor more times than I would like to. I am going to take a serious look at the Sawstop contractors saw based on your review. I also want to try the new Skil saw worm drive small saw. Size wise that seems more appealing to me. But, I am going to head over to Acme Tool this Saturday and check things out.
Given your situation and near-retirement physique, be sure to actually try moving any saw you consider up and down some stairs before you buy. That was one of the things I wanted to do, but couldn't, because at the store, they HAVE no stairs, and when I went to see the new-in-box one I found on Craigslist, it was still in a sealed box, AND the owner had no stairs either anyway!
I figured that the large wheels on the SawStop Jobsite saw would be a huge plus on stairs and I was right - they make pulling the saw up each stair,or letting it go down each stair, pretty easy. That is not the case with some other "portable" saws. To me, a portable saw that can't go up and down stairs easily, and that cannot be loaded and unloaded easily from a pickup truck or ramped trailer, does not qualify as "portable"! This is especially important when, like me, the owner has a back issue that flares up when carrying, pushing, or pulling.
Try some stairs that have a 90 degree turn if possible. Some saws, even when the cart is folded, are a bit big to comfortably go around corners with adjacent walls or railings. Again, the Jobsite saw handled my convoluted porch stairs fine, despite 3 90-degree turns and an OUTWARD-opening screen door that stuck out into the turn area.
Any pay attention to weight. The 108 lb combined weight of Jobsite saw (79 lb) and cart (29lb) is no problem when rolling it, but if you have to lift it up into a pickup truck bed, rather than roll it up a trailer ramp, it could be an issue for someone who cannot, or should not, handle 108 lb lifts. Yes, you can lean one end of the cart on the tailgate while lifting the other end, which reduced the lift weight a LOT, BUT if you don't have a liner on the interior surface of the tailgate, you could scratch the tailgate paint.
The point here is that before buying, try to simulate doing everything you might have to do with moving that saw.
In my case, I COULD have bought lighter and/or smaller portable tabel saws, but light weight and size are only 2 factors out of a number of factors on my "score card" for a saw, and the SawStop Jobsite scored "acceptable" on those, while scoring very,very high on other important criteria.
And, in hindsight, I did not put enough weight on things like smoothness and pleasure to use. Both of those very pleasantly surprised me, and make me eager to use the saw more. That counts for a LOT once you experience how good a saw CAN feel to use.