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My new saw says to use a 6" dado blade. That is fine with me as it will give me a 1½" deep cut, which is probably 1 1/8" more than I will ever need. I have to get something I can afford, which means <$80. There are no 6" dado sets in any of the stores I've visited, so I went to Amazon. They have a Freud set that I can almost afford if I go without coffee for a couple of weeks, at $95, and a Vermont American set that I can afford at $42.

Now I know the rule about getting what you pay for, but considering that I won't be using it daily (orperhaps weekly, depending,) would I be very sorry if I got the Vermont American set? I use Freud blades for crosscutting and ripping, which I do a lot of, and I am familiar with Freud quality, but for a tool that wil be used less frequently, will the Vermont American brand hold up, i.e. without tear out, inaccurate dadoes and impossibly rough bottoms?

I humbly thank you in advance.
 

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A big unknown for me would be whether this dado set cuts a flat bottom dado which would save some clean up time.

I do not have experience with the set, so I hope someone who has used one can comment.

I saw a favourable review at Sears.

"I have had this set for 10 years, I do not use it often but I have always been happy with it. The only only significant issue is that it is only 6" so dado depth is somewhat limited. Also I recommend getting some spacers if you want more precision widths. "

I looked at the Vermont site, but it did not mention anything about the cuts.

For this price I expect the cutter may not have carbide teeth. The Vermont site states they are Stacked Steel Dados. So these will not stay as sharp as long as carbide.

The pro is that the outside cutters have a lot of teeth.

http://www.vermontamerican.com/Products/productdetail.html?CID=4243

The shims are available at Lee Valley.

http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?p=30063&cat=1,41080,51225
 

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John
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My new saw says to use a 6" dado blade. That is fine with me as it will give me a 1½" deep cut, which is probably 1 1/8" more than I will ever need. I have to get something I can afford, which means <$80. There are no 6" dado sets in any of the stores I've visited, so I went to Amazon. They have a Freud set that I can almost afford if I go without coffee for a couple of weeks, at $95, and a Vermont American set that I can afford at $42.

Now I know the rule about getting what you pay for, but considering that I won't be using it daily (orperhaps weekly, depending,) would I be very sorry if I got the Vermont American set? I use Freud blades for crosscutting and ripping, which I do a lot of, and I am familiar with Freud quality, but for a tool that wil be used less frequently, will the Vermont American brand hold up, i.e. without tear out, inaccurate dadoes and impossibly rough bottoms?

I humbly thank you in advance.
Hi Roger - which saw did you get? My 4510 is also limited to a 6" diameter x 3/4" stack and I went with the Freud set. Not a bad set but the bottoms aren't as nice as I'd like.
If I were shopping now, I'd likely give this one a try
Oshlun SDS-0630 6-Inch 30 Tooth Stack Dado Set with 5/8-Inch Arbor - Amazon.com

I've heard good things about it on this and other forums and the Amazon rating is pretty good also.:smile:

Incidentally, the only time I've needed more depth was when I tried cross lapping some 2x4 stock. I had to make the extra 1/4" up with a router.
 
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I'd go with the Freud. That little bit of coffee money will be well spent.
 

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What Gene said...go with the Freud. That set (has to be the SD206, I would think) is consistently rated a best value dado set in reviews.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hi Roger - which saw did you get? My 4510 is also limited to a 6" diameter x 3/4" stack and I went with the Freud set. Not a bad set but the bottoms aren't as nice as I'd like.
If I were shopping now, I'd likely give this one a try
Oshlun SDS-0630 6-Inch 30 Tooth Stack Dado Set with 5/8-Inch Arbor - Amazon.com

I've heard good things about it on this and other forums and the Amazon rating is pretty good also.:smile:

Incidentally, the only time I've needed more depth was when I tried cross lapping some 2x4 stock. I had to make the extra 1/4" up with a router.
I, too, have a 4510. I got it for Christmas, but I won't be able to use it for at least a couple of weeks, until the weather gets above 10ºC.

Thanks to all for your help. I think I'm thinking Freud, although I don't have any hang ups about it.
 

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Skip the Vermont American set....it was the very dado set I bought before I knew any better....it's junk IMO.

Holbren has the Oshlun 6" .... Use discount code "BT310" to bring it to $69 shipped. It's a much better set than the VA. The Freud, Irwin Marples, or CMT sets would also be better choices than the VA. For a little more, the Delta/DW 7670 set is terrific at ~ $100, but is 8
", which I never had any trouble spinning even on my compact bench saw.
 

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I have the Vermont American. They work. Thats about all I can say as I have nothing to compare them to. I purchased them at Sears a long time ago. I would buy the best you can afford.

I needed them for notching out some 2x4s inside an interior wall. Have ended up using them numerous times since. I was pretty impressed with the smooth cuts at first. Lately seems they have dulled as the dados have become a little ragged.

The next go around I will be getting better quality dado blades and upgrading
the table saw. My focus will be more for furniture builds and cutting harder woods.

At the time I couldn't see spending big bucks on 6" dado blades for a 200 dollar table saw.

Depending on your passion for woodworking and type of work, the Vermonts may be all you need for around the house construction type projects.

If you do serious furniture building projects and you are in it for the long haul, get the best dado blades you can afford. They likely will cut better and stay sharper longer.
 

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where's my table saw?
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Get this one

I, too, have a 4510. I got it for Christmas, but I won't be able to use it for at least a couple of weeks, until the weather gets above 10ºC.

Thanks to all for your help. I think I'm thinking Freud, although I don't have any hang ups about it.
The best band for the buck, no tear out and dang near perfect bottoms:


Holbren

Oshlun is great. I'm using an 8" set now, but I also got a new 6". I have never needed the full depth of the 8"dado.
 

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I wish I'd have asked the question before I bought my set.
The choice of the Freud or the VA was easy to make and that's why I recommended the Freud, earlier. Although mine is a Tenryu. It's a very good set but NO FLAT BOTTOMS!
If The Oshlun does, in fact, produce flat bottoms, it would have saved me a bundle. The Tenryu makes excellent blades with good, thick carbide. A good thing because I had the outside blades ground flat to eliminate the "bat wings". They were cutting about 10 thou. deeper than the Chippers. Not a good thing when used to make dentil molding or box joints!
Yeah, I know. Why not just use the RT? Sometimes the dado set in the TS is just more efficient .... for me.
 

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Gene - None of the standard stacked dado sets I know of produce a truly flat bottom because they all use beveled teeth on the outside cutters that protrude slightly above the flat raker teeth of the inside chippers. This is intentional to reduce tearout on cross grain cuts. The better sets minimize the depth of the bat ears, but they exist on all of them that I know of.

This graphic from “Woodhelp” illustrates the “bat ears” effect and the cause:


 
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