My first table saw - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 01:02 PM Thread Starter
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My first table saw

Looking to buy my very first table saw. I'm no pro, just someone who likes to make things, and getting a house this year, I know I'll need one.

I've made some things over the year using a circular saw, but...even using jigs etc for straight cuts, they never end up straight. So I figured now was a good time to get one.

This is the one I'm looking at getting : http://www.amazon.com/Rockwell-RK7241S-Table-Saw-Laser/dp/B004ULR8EQ/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top.

Or even this one. Craftsman

That's about all I'm willing to spend, and want to buy new. It seems to have great review on Amazon, and Youtube...but I figured asking in a specific forum is generally best. I've searched and saw another gent was asking about this saw back in April, but no one ever gave him an answer.

So...thoughts for a first time, DIY buyer like myself? Thanks guys!

Last edited by Gannicus; 12-26-2012 at 01:21 PM.
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post #2 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 02:08 PM
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I think you should consider a step up to something like the Ridgid 4512 or a Bosch 4100 if you do not have the space like me.
http://www.homedepot.com/buy/ridgid-...l#.UNs8M6y9wkQ
http://www.amazon.com/Bosch-4100DG-09-10-Inch-Worksite-Gravity-Rise/dp/B000S6VCOY
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post #3 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 02:25 PM
where's my table saw?
 
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Here's the same Bosch 4100 "refurbished"

I have never purchased a refurbished tool, BUT as I understand it the factory technicians have gone over it thoroughly and inspected, it therefore is may be as good or better than new. They usually come worth the same or slightly less warranty than new AND in this case the prices is $400 less than new.
I have the original Bosch 4000 model and it is a great saw. Powerful accurate, lightweight and pretty fair dust collection out the back. The 4100 has a new blade guard which is faster to remove and install, nice.
http://www.cpotools.com/factory-reco...8&zmap=4100-RT

Another nice refurbished saw: http://www.ebay.com/itm/RIDGID-R4512...item20cd092e88


http://www.nextag.com/Factory-Recond...2AB3120C10E5EC

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 12-26-2012 at 02:38 PM.
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post #4 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 02:53 PM
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Why do want a tablesaw? Just home remodeling? I suggest checking the 3-part tablesaw guide under the power tools and machinery section. I was able to get along fine with a job site saw for a lot of things but it wouldn't be sufficient for what I do now. Just the same, a 5hp cabinet saw would be nice but certainly not necessary for the work I currently engage in. Spending upwards of $500 for a portable saw with a smooth gravity-rise stand is great if it fits your needs but maybe unnecessary if the saw is going to be setup permanently in your basement or garage. There's a wide variety of tools for a wide variety of needs.
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post #5 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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Space isn't so much of an issue. Neither is mobility.

Price is more the issue. LOL
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post #6 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 03:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burt View Post
I think you should consider a step up to something like the Ridgid 4512 or a Bosch 4100 if you do not have the space like me.
http://www.homedepot.com/buy/ridgid-...l#.UNs8M6y9wkQ
Bosch 4100DG-09 10-Inch Worksite Table Saw with Gravity-Rise Stand and Digital Rip Fence - Amazon.com
Yeah those are both pretty much out of my wheel house.
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post #7 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 03:33 PM
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Congrats!

I can't imagine not having a table saw, it's the tool I use more than anything else. I have 2, a little Makita, and my big brute, a late '50's Sears Craftsman that was my Dad's, best silly saw I have ever owned.

As much as I would like to say go for the Craftsman, I have to confess, I think the quality of their newer saws has really gone down hill. I used to have a "modern" Craftsman tablesaw, 10", 2.5 hp, and I was really unhappy with it. It was hard to get setup to be precise, and it would not stay set for long.

I have not shopped for a tablesaw in a very long time so I'm out of touch with what's out there new and is really good, but I will say this, my silly little Makita is one impressive little saw, very precise and it stays that way.

Just be careful you don't get too focused on price, there is nothing more frustrating than buying a new tool, then after using it a few times come to realize you really should have spent a bit more and gotten a better one. One think to consider, is how long you plan to own it, and how much you will use it. If it's something you plan to use for a long time, a couple hundred more now might seem like a lot, but think about how little that will be amortized out over say 20-years.

Best of luck, keep us posted on what you decide.

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post #8 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 03:41 PM
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For a starter saw, the Craftsman isn't too bad. My first one was the same kind of Craftsman saw and served me well. The fence is junk on those small saws, so be prepared to double and triple check every cut. Be prepared to replace it if something breaks though because the parts are expensive. Also the plastic body of the saw and aluminum tops are easily damaged.

IMO, you would be better served by looking at used full sized saws. The Rigid and Craftsman contractor style saws can be had for around the same amount your looking to pay for the smaller saw and are full sized units.

If Woodworking is so much fun why isn't it called WoodFUNNING?

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post #9 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 03:42 PM
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If i had to do it over I would not get the craftsman like the one you linked to. They are very light , the table is not very big, and they have non-standard miter slots.

If you plan on doing remod work on a house you might want to consider a power miter saw. IMO, much easier to do cross-cuts and miter cuts on. They can be had typically cheaper
than a table saw. You could use your circular saw with an edge guide for large panel
work.

You could build a sled for a table saw to do cross-cuts on also.

For 100 dollars more than the Rockwell you could get the Ridgid. Its a very good value. But again, if its beyond your budget than thats an issue.

Whatever saw you choose, you should stay away from the saws with the non-standard miter slots. Otherwise you will be limiting yourself to any future customizations.

Standard miter slots are 3/4" x 3x8". I suggest you stick to a saw that has those.

Cross-cutting long 2 x material is a pain on the craftsman saws without a sled of some sort.

You will also soon find the miter gauge is practically useless in its factory configuration for any stock over a few feet in length. Its too
small . I had to attach a larger push fench on mine.

These small craftsman saws sell well. For the occassional job around the house they can do the job but you may need to get creative .

You can usually find these craftsman saws on craigslist by the dozen. There is a reason for that.

Also the laser is bit gimmicky imo. I have one on my miter saw and find I never use it or need it.

Last edited by against_the_grain; 12-26-2012 at 03:54 PM.
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post #10 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 03:55 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by against_the_grain View Post
If i had to do it over I would not get the craftsman like the one you linked to. They are very light , the table is not very big, and they have non-standard miter slots.

If you plan on doing remod work on a house you might want to consider a power miter saw. IMO, much easier to do cross-cuts and
miter cuts on.

Then again, you could build a sled for a table saw to do cross-cuts on.

For 100 dollars more than the Rockwell you could get the Ridgid. Its a very good value. But again, if its beyond your budget than thats an issue.

Whatever saw you choose, you should stay away from the saws with the non-standard miter slots. Otherwise you will be limiting yourself to any future customizations.

Standard miter slots are 3/4" x 3x8". I suggest you stick to a saw that has those.

Cross-cutting long 2 x material is a pain on the craftsman saws without a sled of some sort.

You will also soon find the miter gauge is practically useless in its factory configuration for any stock over a few feet in length. Its too
small . I had to attach a larger push fench on mine.

These small craftsman saws sell well. For the occassional job around the house they can do the job but you may need to get creative .

You can usually find these craftsman saws on craigslist by the dozen. There is a reason for that.

Also the laser is bit gimmicky imo. I have one on my miter saw and find I never use it or need it.
That's precisely why I came here to ask. That was one of the telling comments on the Craftsman saw I read, was that the miter slots were not industry standard. I don't know what that is or isn't good for, but I hate when companies use proprietary parts instead of industry standard. I usually stay away from them.

So basically, the consensus here is, don't get anything lower than the Rigid? That should be the bottom of the entry level table saw for wood working?
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post #11 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 04:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gannicus View Post
That's precisely why I came here to ask. That was one of the telling comments on the Craftsman saw I read, was that the miter slots were not industry standard. I don't know what that is or isn't good for, but I hate when companies use proprietary parts instead of industry standard. I usually stay away from them.

So basically, the consensus here is, don't get anything lower than the Rigid? That should be the bottom of the entry level table saw for wood working?
There are other capable saws to be sure. But the Ridgid is one of the best values out there for new contractor saws imo.
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post #12 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 04:51 PM
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I have been using my dad's 1977 Craftsman up until this past week. I had installed a Vega Pro fence system on it last year and it has been working great. The problem is I am building bigger and bigger projects with thicker wood. 2 inch hard Maple was too much to ask for my saw to rip.

In your case, doing remodeling stuff around your house is exactly what my dad did when he bought the saw new in '77. He built a lake house including all of the cabinet work, and remodeled the kitched in his house also.

These days, the Rigid gets good mention. It should last you a long time.
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post #13 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 04:52 PM
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If you have a Craigslist in your area, keep checking there. Older Delta contractor saws last forever and can be gotten in your price range. I had one for 30 years and upgraded to a Unisaw for a little more than I sold the contractor saw.
Just saying...keep looking...deals are out there.

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post #14 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 09:21 PM
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Where do you live? Someone might be able to point you in the direction of a good local deal.

Often these kind of deals show up.....

http://appleton.craigslist.org/tls/3490493786.html

Anyhow...if your hooked on a new saw, alot of people have gotten Home Depot to take the 20% off Harbor Freight coupon....which gets that rigid saw almost down to the price of the rockwell one you pointed out.
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post #15 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 10:12 PM
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I'd definitely suggest passing on either of those saws, or any saw in that class. As others have mentioned, a good used full sized belt driven saw with an induction motor is a much better bet in your price range. List your general area, and someone here may be able to offer suggestions.

some reading if you'd like to learn more
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post #16 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 10:24 PM
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I have the craftsman 21833 and I cut a lot of wood every day. It's a good saw.

"wood does not do well outside.....well....except for trees"
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post #17 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 10:40 PM
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Do not go cheap. I agree with all the comments above. The cheaper plastic made table saws are too light and move if doing any heavy work and you can not trust the fences. You end up measuring every single cut and rip.
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post #18 of 60 Old 12-26-2012, 11:08 PM Thread Starter
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All great info guys thanks! I've got a 20% off coupon from Harbor Freight, and I'm going to see if home depot will honor it. If they do, I'll be getting the Rigid.
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post #19 of 60 Old 12-27-2012, 12:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VIFmike View Post
I have the craftsman 21833 and I cut a lot of wood every day. It's a good saw.
That particular craftsman gets decent reviews. He was talking about the
benchtop models.

Someone brought up in another thread that the craftsman 21833 (professional) may be built by the same factory that makes the Rigid. If you painted the Craftsman in the same color scheme as the Rigid, its hard to tell the difference between the two.

But the Professionals I have seen, retails for around 100 dollars more than the Rigid.
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post #20 of 60 Old 12-27-2012, 03:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gannicus View Post
All great info guys thanks! I've got a 20% off coupon from Harbor Freight, and I'm going to see if home depot will honor it. If they do, I'll be getting the Rigid.
if you get resistance at the store level, don't be afraid to contact HD corporate CS (800-homedepot). i've had those reps instruct reluctant HD ASMs to honor the coupon. i haven't ever taken "no" for an answer, even when buying $1500 generators. good luck.

and FTR, the 4512 is not a contractor style saw. with the motor inside the cabinet, it is technically a hybrid TS.

there's a solution to every problem.....you just have to be willing to find it.
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