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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Long story short, bought a place with nice roomy shop. Funds were limited so basically built a work bench with cheap TS integrated and router. Router fence has worked great, just need to build something to raise the router, tired of crawling underneath. But I am tired of table saw fence (lengthy time it takes to get precise measurements being the main issue) So with limited funds, lets say $500 how would y'all go about redesigning the fence. Or am I better off just saving and buying a better TS?

Thanks for the feedback :thumbsup:



 

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I think a better table saw with a decent fence would be good, but appreciating the need for budget constraints, you just need a better DIY fence design. The present picture looks like a fence for a router more than table saw, since it will not always be parallel to the blade.

I saw this post last year. A DIY more like Biesemeyer fence. It should be possible to design this so is can be adjusted, does not flex and can be set easily.

http://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f13/table-fence-table-saw-44219/
 

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Get a different saw. It should come with a good fence, probably decent guard, kickback pawls and maybe a riving knife, not to mention more power and precision as well as a larger work surface and better dust collection. You'll be able to accessorize with things like dado blades, sleds, tenon jigs and have a more substantial throat plate, depending on what you can afford.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank guys

Hammer, that was pretty much the answer I was expecting. Are there any saws you would recommend in my budget?
 

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So for 500 bucks you can go home with a new ridgid 4512, or on a good day a craftsman 21833..... I'd go that route.
 

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Thank guys

Hammer, that was pretty much the answer I was expecting. Are there any saws you would recommend in my budget?
I'm in the business, I use an older Rockwell cabinet saw I bought new in the 70's. I'm not really up on newer model saws. A table saw is the heart of a woodworking shop and a decent one will make a world of difference compared to what you have. At a $500 budget, you are limited. If you could muster $800 or more, there are some saws with similar characteristics to cabinet saws.

I've looked at some saws out of curiosity on Amazon and they send me notices of sales. I don't know anything about this saw but Grizzly has a hybrid that sells around $800. I think that's the least expensive that is similar to a cabinet saw. You probably don't want to try to rip 2" maple all day on it but it should be fine for lighter work loads.

I'd look for a cast iron top, no pressed steel or open aluminum grid wings. 3/4" x 3/8" miter slots, 1/2" thick throat plates, good blade lift and tilt controls, decent guard, riving knife can be a plus, dust collection outlet, good fence, 30" rails, nice switch, adjustability for proper alignments, substantial base.

I don't think you will find many of these features on a portable saw. Most won't be much of an improvement over what you have. When I see positive reviews on any tools. I have to ask, what other similar tools does the reviewer have experience with, what do they do with that tool, what is the reviewers level of competence and depth of experience.

We all have cheap tools we bought with limited funds. Most are collecting dust in some far off corner. You don't have to buy "the best" but you don't want to waste money on something that won't keep up with your growth or give marginal performance. A good table saw will payoff over the long run and actually be inexpensive considering it's length of service. I wouldn't let that $500 burn a hole in your pocket, just yet.
 

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where's my table saw?
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being a contractor, i experience the portable saw vs the cabinet saw differences. you will not regret buying a better shop saw for more than just the fence reasons. you will get more saw for your dollar going the used route. Nice table set up though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for the feed back guys. Unfortunately Denver is a little out of the way, lol

So I guess I should start a new thread with an $800 dollar cap :laughing:

Hell guess I could make it $1000

What do y'all suggest
 

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One thing I can tell you however, is don't go into the stores and let the quality if the assembled floor model sway your decision. Most of the floor models were put together by no one who understands the need for accurate assembly. Often the fences aren't aligned, the wings aren't flat with the center, ect. However, when assembled properly (ie how you'll assemble it when you get it home) it's dead on every cut.
 

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I own one right now. It's made by steel city so they have some similar options. I wouldn't trade the granite top for 500 bucks....
 

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where's my table saw?
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I love mine

I got it on a crazy deal. Store demo/closeout. $486.00 + tax.:thumbsup:
Biesemeyer fence. :thumbsup:
Large table and fold up extension on the rear. :thumbsup:
Why anyone would sell theirs is a mystery to me. :blink:
 

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spending i more money on tools is easy, but properly set up, the ridgid 4512 offers a lot of value. also, if a HD can be located that will honor harbor freight's "20% off any single item" coupon, it can be had for ~ $400 plus tax. IMHO, that kind of a deal would be worth trying it in the hope that the store has at least one that doesn't have the "blade alignment changing with blade elevation" problem. with it's 90 day satisfaction guaranty, there's not much risk. if it's got the problem, return it.

after that, the next best option is a griz hybrid or an offering from steel city when they run a sale.
 
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