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I <3 the smell of sawdust
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So I think I found the limits of my 20 year old Delta 1 1/2 HP hybrid saw. And that limit is ripping 8/4 red oak with a high tooth count blade. I brought the saw to a full stop. And I was pushing the lumber through it pretty slowly.

I'll probably wait for something good to show up on CL (Should have grabbed that Shop Fox for $1k last month!), but am wondering what the difference is between saws like a Grizz 3hp with 50" fence (and the like) for $1500, vs a Powermatic (etc) with the same specs in the $3000 range.

I get the Saw Stop's safety features, and if I wanted to spend $3k, would probably go with that over a Powermatic, Jet, Delta, etc, but I'd like to stay around $1k, which is why I would probably go used.

However, I don't get the reason for doubling the price for the same specs. Is it just because they are made in the US, or just the quality, fit and finish of the parts, or both? Or is there something I am not noticing in the specs?

There does seem to be a steady supply of older Unisaws on CL, but even though I have a shop full of Delta tools, I'm a bit scared off by the recent development of sourcing parts. Are used Unisaws (say for $1k) with a 3 hp motor and 52" Beis fence a good buy? These things are generally a bit older, and some are old enough to have Rockwell/Delta name plates. Or are those just asking for trouble? (yeah, some are 3 ph, so that's a non-starter)
 

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Mauling Maple Since 1998
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If you're spending $1k on a used saw I'd spend a few hundred more and get a new grizzly 690.
Can't fault that logic; I love my G0690. It's a heckuva deal. AND the April edition of Woodworker's Journal magazine has a Grizzly 10% off coupon on the front cover. Just sayin'. :yes:
 

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I know where there is a cream puff 1990 PM66, 5hp, 54" bies fence. like 900 bucks.

I wouldn't just spend a few more on that new "saw" they was talking about.

+1 Unisaws I've seen on CL for $1000, looked in excellent condition.
They are heavy duty saws, and 10, 20, 30 years in a home shop is nothing. Lots of life left
A PM66 even better yet!
If I needed a cabinet saw, and found a 10 year unisaw, that looked almost new, and spent it's like in a home shop (most likley with extras) for $1000, I would chose that over an import cabinet saw, hands down.
 

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No Longer Here, BY CHOICE
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So I think I found the limits of my 20 year old Delta 1 1/2 HP hybrid saw. And that limit is ripping 8/4 red oak with a high tooth count blade. I brought the saw to a full stop. And I was pushing the lumber through it pretty slowly.

I'll probably wait for something good to show up on CL (Should have grabbed that Shop Fox for $1k last month!), but am wondering what the difference is between saws like a Grizz 3hp with 50" fence (and the like) for $1500, vs a Powermatic (etc) with the same specs in the $3000 range.

I get the Saw Stop's safety features, and if I wanted to spend $3k, would probably go with that over a Powermatic, Jet, Delta, etc, but I'd like to stay around $1k, which is why I would probably go used.

However, I don't get the reason for doubling the price for the same specs. Is it just because they are made in the US, or just the quality, fit and finish of the parts, or both? Or is there something I am not noticing in the specs?

There does seem to be a steady supply of older Unisaws on CL, but even though I have a shop full of Delta tools, I'm a bit scared off by the recent development of sourcing parts. Are used Unisaws (say for $1k) with a 3 hp motor and 52" Beis fence a good buy? These things are generally a bit older, and some are old enough to have Rockwell/Delta name plates. Or are those just asking for trouble? (yeah, some are 3 ph, so that's a non-starter)
A ripping blade is much cheaper than a new saw. Your still gonna have issues ripping 8/4 oak with any of the saws mentioned if your doing it with a cross cut blade. Replacing the saw isnt the solution to this problem, unless of course, you just want a new saw.:thumbsup:
 

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Some of this debate will boil down to what you're doing with the saw. Once you get beyond the performance, durability, and precision of one of the Griz 3hp cabinet saws, you get diminishing returns for your dollar IMHO. Yes, the PM, Unisaw, General 650 are a bit heavier duty, likely more refined, closer tolerances, offer dealer support, etc, etc, etc., and the Biese or Accufence might have slightly better fit and finish than the Shop Fox Classic fence, but if you're not running them hard on a regular basis, the Griz doesn't seem to be leaving many people wishing they had more saw. You could buy several hundred dollars worth of accessories to really trick out a $1400 Griz 1023RL or G0690 (nice blades, dado, inserts, aftermarket miter gauge, mobile base, Gripper, feather boards, Wixey, board buddies, router table, etc), and still be well ahead of the game vs a non-accessorized PM2000, Uni, SS PCS, General 650, etc. If you run a commercial shop, or are an extreme hobbyist with some extreme special needs, you could bend the argument in the other direction pretty easily, but otherwise there's a lot of "want" involved vs need. If you've got the funds, and "want" it, go for it....nothing wrong with that.

The argument for the SS is a little different....it definitely offers something that none of the others do. Whether or not it's worth the extra money is up to you.
 

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I <3 the smell of sawdust
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Discussion Starter #8
So it sounds like some of you guys are saying (without having actually said it), that the $3k saws really aren't much different than the $1.5k saws. Maybe a bit "heavier duty", whatever that means (thicker iron and a higher end motor? More trunion adjustability?)

So you guys that would rather have a 10 year old Uni over a new Grizz, why? What's better about it?

Also, some of the used Unisaws I'm seeing on CL, look like they are sitting in more of a commercial environment than a basement or garage. I'd probably stay away from something used commercially.
 

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I <3 the smell of sawdust
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Discussion Starter #9
A ripping blade is much cheaper than a new saw. Your still gonna have issues ripping 8/4 oak with any of the saws mentioned if your doing it with a cross cut blade. Replacing the saw isnt the solution to this problem, unless of course, you just want a new saw.:thumbsup:
Yeah, I think there is some (ok, a lot) of that running through my head. I also like the idea of a larger table surface, depth and width.
 

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I bought a new Grizzly 1023RLW and I have been happy with it. I decided on a new one to get the riving knife and the router table extension which give me a 48 inch wide surface. I don't have room for the wide rail fence.

I am currently building two coffee tables and a toy box. A lot of the same work - ripping and routing - made for a productive day for me.

Good luck in your search.
Mike
 

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So it sounds like some of you guys are saying (without having actually said it), that the $3k saws really aren't much different than the $1.5k saws. Maybe a bit "heavier duty", whatever that means (thicker iron and a higher end motor? More trunion adjustability?) ...
You'll never be able to tell which saw cut a piece of wood. They're all really nice saws, with excellent precision and durability. They all need good alignment and good blade selection to be excellent performers. No extra trunnion adjustments that I know of the better saws, but machining, bearings, gears, etc, might be a better, tops might be specked a little flatter. The $3k saws ARE a little nicer....I just don't happen to think that the quality difference justifies double the price for what I do, but others may, and the price difference might not mean a darn thing to someone else. We're all in different circumstances, have different preferences, and we buy accordingly. It's kind of a Mercedes/BMS vs Chevy/Ford thing.

In the end, you should buy whichever one makes your motor rev higher. :thumbsup:
 

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...I go out of my way not to purchase asian made machinery and tools.
Which leaves for very few recognizable brands for a lot of folks if you're talking new tools....used isn't for everyone, and the market is hard to predict. Jet, PM, Saw Stop, Rikon, Shop Fox, Grizzly, General International, Laguna, Craftex, King Industrial, Craftsman, Ridgid, Hitachi, Porter Cable, some Delta, and many others are made in Asia.
 

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So I think I found the limits of my 20 year old Delta 1 1/2 HP hybrid saw. And that limit is ripping 8/4 red oak with a high tooth count blade. I brought the saw to a full stop. And I was pushing the lumber through it pretty slowly.......
really? just admit you want a new/different toy and that you might be getting that "what am i missing not having a cabinet saw?" feeling. i had that same question and, after acquiring and refurbing a '72 all original rockwell uinisaw, i got to answer that question. and my answer, for me, was............nothing. i ultimately sold that unisaw (turned out to be a pleasant way to make $200 and really get to know the innards of a unisaw) and retained my two emerson electric built CI contractor saws. they do whatever i need to do in my hobbyist shop and i even ripped the 8/4 oak for the unisaw's mobile base on one of those contractor saws, the one that has a 1 hp motor. i used a 24T ripping blade and it cut without incident or stalling.

so if you want a new/different TS, you should get it. if i were making that decision again today and divesting of my two saws, i'd look at grizzly, being value oriented like KS. used unisaws can be nice tools, but i'd check the FAQ on this site first as they can become mini-money pits quite easily: just my $.02.

http://www.sawcenter.com/unisaw_faq.htm

and steel city tools are sold though HD online and include free shipping. when they have their annual sale, there are some pretty appealing offerings. i'd skip jet and powermatic as their prices make them poor values.
 

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I <3 the smell of sawdust
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Discussion Starter #16
I would rather have a 100 year old saw, but I would rather have most anything besides a grizzly.

I go out of my way not to purchase asian made machinery and tools.

Yeah, I see what you've done here. :shifty:. I love those old iron saws you have refurb'd, but I don't have 3 phase or much space, and have to get it into a basement workshop. So I'm limited to something way more conventional.

Do I *need* a new saw? No, I don't. Do I want one? Sure. But I have to figure out if the expense is worth the gratification. My guess, is like Toolguy said, that it may not be. I think if I were to put an appropriate blade in, and spend $50 building a proper infeed table, I'd be happier with what I have.

One issue I seem to run across on a fairly regular basis, is trying to crosscut boards that are 12"-24" wide (sheet goods). My table is just too small to get it started with a miter gauge and the board is too big for the SCMS
 

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....... I think if I were to put an appropriate blade in, and spend $50 building a proper infeed table, I'd be happier with what I have.

One issue I seem to run across on a fairly regular basis, is trying to crosscut boards that are 12"-24" wide (sheet goods). My table is just too small to get it started with a miter gauge and the board is too big for the SCMS
i routinely CC sheet goods > 24" wide on my 10" CI contractor saws, the tables of which are probably the same size as your hybrid saw's table. so i am inclined to think that your saw's table top isn't too small. there's a thread on one of the sites knotscott posts to which covers an infeed table that he fabricated that may address part of your 24" CC issue. perhaps he'll add a link. as i recall, it appeared to be a neat set up. also, building an appropriately sized CC sled, ~ 26" between the front and rear sled fences, will facilitate 25+" CCs. perhaps something like this:
 

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