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Old 12-22-2014, 04:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Lol! Yup my stocking not big enough. I got the habor freight one. The 12" with the wide slide and laser. 25% off coupon made it like 144$, normally 199$ I think. It's pretty good for the price.

And yes $14.99 each. 10$ each would be better.
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Old 01-08-2015, 07:22 AM
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What makes a good table saw? My wife has been nagging me to buy her one for months now and I think I'm finally breaking down...(if you know anything about me, tools (and especially power tools) are not my thing)

I see Home Depot sells a few table says for $200, Amazon's top sellers go for $500, and used on Craigslist they seem to be about $100.

so what really matters when it comes to table saws?

Please keep in mind that I value conventional, functional features versus ones that not everyone would immediately find valuable. For example, I find the endless debate about audio and picture quality on this forum to be absolutely exhausting. It's not that I don't appreciate the difference - I just don't think it's worth the time and cost to go that extra mile.
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Old 01-08-2015, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRock3x8 View Post
What makes a good table saw? My wife has been nagging me to buy her one for months now and I think I'm finally breaking down...(if you know anything about me, tools (and especially power tools) are not my thing)

I see Home Depot sells a few table says for $200, Amazon's top sellers go for $500, and used on Craigslist they seem to be about $100.

so what really matters when it comes to table saws?

Please keep in mind that I value conventional, functional features versus ones that not everyone would immediately find valuable. For example, I find the endless debate about audio and picture quality on this forum to be absolutely exhausting. It's not that I don't appreciate the difference - I just don't think it's worth the time and cost to go that extra mile.
I've had a $200 table saw that I just replaced with a $600 table saw. My perspective is from an avid DIYer rather than a woodworker. In other words, I'm using my table saw more for construction projects than for building furniture.

There were two big upgrades with the new saw that justified the higher cost for me:
(1) Accuracy of the rip fence. With the cheap saw, the built-in measurement guide was useless and I constantly needed to recalibrate the fence for squareness. With my new saw, I calibrated once and it's been rock solid since. Also, the measurement guide is dead on, to the point where I don't bother measuring with a tape anymore.

(2) Portability. Even though my cheap saw was somewhat light, it came with a fixed / bulky stand. My new saw has a built-in rolling stand, which is absolutely amazing. I can wheel it out and get set up in about 60 seconds (and most of that time is spent trying to find an extension cord).

My new saw is a Dewalt DWE7491RS that I picked up on Amazon. There are other less expensive versions that have the same accurate fence system. But, I really wanted the rolling stand and slightly bigger rip capacity.
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Old 01-08-2015, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by ChadA View Post
I've had a $200 table saw that I just replaced with a $600 table saw. My perspective is from an avid DIYer rather than a woodworker. In other words, I'm using my table saw more for construction projects than for building furniture.

There were two big upgrades with the new saw that justified the higher cost for me:
(1) Accuracy of the rip fence. With the cheap saw, the built-in measurement guide was useless and I constantly needed to recalibrate the fence for squareness. With my new saw, I calibrated once and it's been rock solid since. Also, the measurement guide is dead on, to the point where I don't bother measuring with a tape anymore.

(2) Portability. Even though my cheap saw was somewhat light, it came with a fixed / bulky stand. My new saw has a built-in rolling stand, which is absolutely amazing. I can wheel it out and get set up in about 60 seconds (and most of that time is spent trying to find an extension cord).

My new saw is a Dewalt DWE7491RS that I picked up on Amazon. There are other less expensive versions that have the same accurate fence system. But, I really wanted the rolling stand and slightly bigger rip capacity.
Do you find any instability when your ripping sheets? I've always wanted a portable table saw, but felt ripping sheets would be unstable with a not a very large table and some kick stands.

I managed to build my theater with a Kreg circular saw guide, while not the greatest and most versatile, everything worked perfect and saved me $600
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Old 01-08-2015, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Larry M View Post
Do you find any instability when your ripping sheets? I've always wanted a portable table saw, but felt ripping sheets would be unstable with a not a very large table and some kick stands.

I managed to build my theater with a Kreg circular saw guide, while not the greatest and most versatile, everything worked perfect and saved me $600
The stand is very stable, but I don't even try to rip full sheets for the reasons you mention. I use the same Kreg circular saw guide for that. I was able to rip half sheets with no problem and have a portable "lifetime" table for the outfeed.
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Old 01-08-2015, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRock3x8 View Post
What makes a good table saw? My wife has been nagging me to buy her one for months now and I think I'm finally breaking down...(if you know anything about me, tools (and especially power tools) are not my thing)

I see Home Depot sells a few table says for $200, Amazon's top sellers go for $500, and used on Craigslist they seem to be about $100.

so what really matters when it comes to table saws?

Please keep in mind that I value conventional, functional features versus ones that not everyone would immediately find valuable. For example, I find the endless debate about audio and picture quality on this forum to be absolutely exhausting. It's not that I don't appreciate the difference - I just don't think it's worth the time and cost to go that extra mile.
Do you need a table saw? What is the intended use?

I ask because different types of table saws cater to different uses and there really isn't a one size fits all recommendation.

You may not need one at all! This is coming from a guy that has two table saws and uses them pretty frequently... but I recognize that much of theater building can be done without one.
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Old 01-08-2015, 09:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry M View Post
Do you find any instability when your ripping sheets? I've always wanted a portable table saw, but felt ripping sheets would be unstable with a not a very large table and some kick stands.

I managed to build my theater with a Kreg circular saw guide, while not the greatest and most versatile, everything worked perfect and saved me $600
Ripping full sheets on a table saw is tough without help even on a full size saw. Doing it alone really requires some quality jigs and large auxiliary surfaces to make it work.

It can be done without all that, but I can attest from frequent personal experience that it's not at all fun and the accuracy of the cut isn't guaranteed. When accuracy matters, then it's far better to cut the sheet to rough size using a circular saw and then just fine tune the much smaller piece on the table saw.
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Old 01-08-2015, 10:33 AM
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so what really matters when it comes to table saws?
A good riving knife, a functional guard that you will use, table surface area and power that will accommodated the work you will be doing. The rest is gravy, like the fence system, contractor vs cabinet, mobile base, adjustability, blade safety systems, etc....
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Old 01-08-2015, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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There is a good thread in the DYI audio forum on tables saws: Hunting for a good Table Saw...
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Old 01-08-2015, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Track saw for big sheet goods
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Old 01-08-2015, 12:30 PM
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Track saw for big sheet goods
IMO, all solutions for cutting sheet goods suck in their own unique ways -- it's a matter of finding the pain point that matters the least to you and sticking with that.

Here's a quick run-down:

Table saws allow for precise, repeatable, and clean (minimal tearout) cuts, but they require at least 16' of space to do an 8' sheet. Plus, handling 75-100lb sheets are waist level on your own is a massive pain. It also makes the precision go way down, due to the ease of moving the panel away from the fence during the cut.

Panel saws allow for precise, repeatable, and clean cuts and improve on table saws in that they support the panel while you cut and only require 8' of space. But, they aren't at all portable so you'll need to carry the sheet to the saw. Their fatal flaw is that they are ungodly expensive, making them cost-effective only if you cut tons of sheets.

Track saws allow for very clean cuts with minimal setup, while being very portable and easy to use. They are neither precise nor repeatable, though, as they require hand-measuring and marking where to cut each time. They are also quite expensive, compared to the alternatives.

DIY saw guides allow for clean cuts and cost very little to make. But they require clamps, which complicates matters quite a bit over a track saw. The thickness of the guide also subtracts from the already shallow depth of the saw. They have the same precision and repeatable flaws as track saws.

Rip guides allow for precise and repeatable cuts and don't require clamps. But they don't often give you clean cuts and they are dependent on having a straight edge to index off of. They almost never give you a cut width of more than 2' which makes them mostly unusable for cross cuts. Cheaper versions can have design flaws that make repeatable cuts a problem.

I could go on and on... but the end result is what I said earlier -- they all suck in some way that will be a deal-breaker to some people.
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Old 01-08-2015, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GPowers View Post
A good riving knife, a functional guard that you will use, table surface area and power that will accommodated the work you will be doing. The rest is gravy, like the fence system, contractor vs cabinet, mobile base, adjustability, blade safety systems, etc....
Hmm... I actually disagree with this. I'd say that a solid fence is the most important feature to look for. It doesn't matter to me how much power my saw has or how safe it is to use if my cuts aren't perfectly precise and repeatable.

I do agree that a good safety system is important, although I say that as a hypocrite. My own saws don't have any guards, splitters, riving knives, or anything of the sort. Oops. Not at all recommended!
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Old 01-08-2015, 01:25 PM - Thread Starter
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+1 on the fence. Without it you might as well just use a tracksaw. A high end superior fence makes a table saw awesome. I'd take less power in the motor and no riving knife and no guards to get it.

I'm about to install a Vega PRO50 fence upgrade on my old saw when I click reply
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Old 01-08-2015, 03:55 PM
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Can't live without them

Makita LXT 18V compact hammer drill.

I know the Gen1 batteries had some minor issues. Gen 2 has been great.

+Fat Max tape measure

Lecica Distro E7100i
It transfers measurements to my phone via Bluetooth 4.0
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Working on the next one...
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Old 01-09-2015, 03:27 PM
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+Fat Max tape measure
Anyone building a theater needs at least three of these
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Old 01-09-2015, 03:34 PM
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+1 on the fence. Without it you might as well just use a tracksaw. A high end superior fence makes a table saw awesome. I'd take less power in the motor and no riving knife and no guards to get it.

I'm about to install a Vega PRO50 fence upgrade on my old saw when I click reply
Have you started building your theater yet? When you do, I definitely want to subscribe

My HTPC is doing pretty awesome! Filled about 10TB and using Plex for my front end. Works really well controlled by my IPad and IRule
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Old 01-10-2015, 09:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Have you started building your theater yet? When you do, I definitely want to subscribe

My HTPC is doing pretty awesome! Filled about 10TB and using Plex for my front end. Works really well controlled by my IPad and IRule
Nope. Not yet. SOON!

That's awesome to hear on the HTPC. Glad you like it.

I did get my table saw fence installed:

Update on the fence situation:

I got my VEGA PRO 50 TABLE SAW FENCE installed on my old saw.

Happy to report it's absolutely wonderful! Special thanks to @BllDo for giving me the nudge I needed to pull the trigger, I had my eye on it for a while.

Installation was a breeze- it bolted right on and came with all the hardware I needed. I was able to use all the stock holes already there, the threads were the same, and the general process of installation was trouble free and as easy as I could have expected. It probably took about an hour to get the old one off and this installed, and that was with taking time to read the instructions and have some beers with my dad who helped me.

Here is some pictures:

First thing I did was take off the old crappy fence bars:




Then basically just bolted on the new one in a similar manner. The kit was very nice- it had adjusting plates at all the location to dial it in, basically you just turn the bolt/wrench until you have the perfect level, or perfect clearance. It was pretty well designed and worked well.






I now have a lot more rip capacity!



But a lot more importantly- I have very fast, accurate, efficient cuts!



The fence is easy to glide (easier than my old one). It's dead nuts accurate. I ripped a few pieces after dialing it in, and it's as accurate as I can measure. The micro adjust to dial it in works really well- but the fence itself is so good that a quick tap and lock is really all you need for a perfect cut- which I love how easy and fast that is to do.


And for the Bonus and back to something we talked a little earlier about:

DUST COLLECTION:








Yup. I did that too

Now all I need to do is grab (or make) a zero clearance insert and get a new blade. Anyone have a good suggestion on a blade?

I am leaning towards this:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Diablo-12...-202786845-_-N

I slapped a 10" version on there now I took of the miter saw (that I would like to replace) that I believe is 80T/10" so I am trying to figure out if a 12"/100T is about the same cut? I see they make a 80T version of the 12" but I really like the blade I have now, but I am open to just about anything. The saw has a 2.5HP motor I think, it never bogs down. I think it works with either 12" or 10" sized blades. I use the table saw a lot more than the miter, so I was thinking to just put this blade back on the miter and get a better one for the table- rather than just buy one for the miter saw. What's a great blade? My budget is probably $100 or less- but I am flexible.
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Old 01-10-2015, 09:58 AM
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I did get my table saw fence installed:
Sweet!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post
Now all I need to do is grab (or make) a zero clearance insert and get a new blade. Anyone have a good suggestion on a blade?

I am leaning towards this:

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Diablo-12...-202786845-_-N

I slapped a 10" version on there now I took of the miter saw (that I would like to replace) that I believe is 80T/10" so I am trying to figure out if a 12"/100T is about the same cut? I see they make a 80T version of the 12" but I really like the blade I have now, but I am open to just about anything. The saw has a 2.5HP motor I think, it never bogs down. I think it works with either 12" or 10" sized blades. I use the table saw a lot more than the miter, so I was thinking to just put this blade back on the miter and get a better one for the table- rather than just buy one for the miter saw. What's a great blade? My budget is probably $100 or less- but I am flexible.
I've had good luck with the Diablo blades, but do tend to be leary of using the 80T (10" blade) as a general blade. In my experience, they work very well when they are brand new, but as time goes by and they get a little gummed up and duller, then they start bogging down on rips quite a bit. The general purpose blades (40T or 48T) tend to work better over time. Ideally, you'd have a general purpose blade for generic cuts, and a finish blade for plywood or glue-line cuts.

Forrest makes the blades that get the most love from woodworkers, but your $100 budget puts those out of the running. Oof, those are expensive.

I tend to also prefer the thin kerf blades because even though I have a 220v 2hp (maybe 2.5hp) motor, the thin kerf gives the saw just enough "head room" that if there is a challenging cut, it'll have that extra push to complete it. Full kerf blades were fine 90% of the time, but just didn't cut it that last 10% (literally).
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Old 01-10-2015, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
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I have a lot of time on my 80T blade and it still cuts great. Just FYI. I recently put 50 sheets of MDF through it, it's still good. I think more teeth actually last longer than fewer teeth with regard to blade edge holding... At least that has been my experience.

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Old 01-10-2015, 10:35 AM
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Yeah, MDF should never pose a problem for any blade. My issues with the 80T blades was more when I was cutting a lot of hardwoods. Hrm... come to think of it, I'm cutting plywood and MDF almost exclusively these days, so maybe I should switch to a finish blade.
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Old 01-10-2015, 10:44 AM - Thread Starter
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I like the finish blades. Most of my table saw work is mdf or hardwood or sheetgoods like ply, for lumber I use he miter saw mostly
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Old 01-10-2015, 02:56 PM
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Lowes has a 2-$20 FatMax tape measure package. What's curious is that they are also selling them as single tapes for $20. Makes me wonder if they are somehow different. The logos are slightly different, but the specs appear to be the same.
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Old 01-10-2015, 11:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRock3x8 View Post
What makes a good table saw? My wife has been nagging me to buy her one for months now and I think I'm finally breaking down...(if you know anything about me, tools (and especially power tools) are not my thing)

I see Home Depot sells a few table says for $200, Amazon's top sellers go for $500, and used on Craigslist they seem to be about $100.

so what really matters when it comes to table saws?

Please keep in mind that I value conventional, functional features versus ones that not everyone would immediately find valuable. For example, I find the endless debate about audio and picture quality on this forum to be absolutely exhausting. It's not that I don't appreciate the difference - I just don't think it's worth the time and cost to go that extra mile.
If it is for your wife I would go with a track saw, especially if it isn't something she will use very often. Table saw takes up room, track saw can be stored away, assuming you don't have a large shop. My wife is able to use my track saw system but had a hard time with my table saw (got rid of the table and strickly use track but I have extensive system from eurekazone). There are several track saw systems, some more versitle than others. Brands that make the track system are festool, makita, dewalt, kreg (guide), and eurekazone.
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Old 01-11-2015, 07:51 AM
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Not to mention a Track Saw is so much safer then a table saw...
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Last edited by Tedd; 01-11-2015 at 08:01 AM.
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Old 01-11-2015, 09:08 AM
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Not to mention a Track Saw is so much safer then a table saw...
Especially when cutting large pieces, like 4x8 sheets of whatever. Unless you have a fantastic feed out system, a table saw is a challenge with those.

Bob
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Old 01-11-2015, 06:29 PM
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I didn't see this mentioned so I thought I'd throw it in the mix - I'm just starting work on my second theater so what I spend above and beyond what I already own remains to be seen - but between the first (albeit small) build, and a number of other DIY type projects I've done - I have somehow never owned a good tool belt, I just picked one up a week or so ago since after remodeling my workshop a bit I swore I would not do another project without one and it's already been WELL worth the investment in not running back and forth picking up tools that were left anywhere but where I needed them...still have to remember to put things back IN the belt but so far it's been working out great.
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Old 01-11-2015, 09:16 PM
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I didn't see this mentioned so I thought I'd throw it in the mix - I'm just starting work on my second theater so what I spend above and beyond what I already own remains to be seen - but between the first (albeit small) build, and a number of other DIY type projects I've done - I have somehow never owned a good tool belt, I just picked one up a week or so ago since after remodeling my workshop a bit I swore I would not do another project without one and it's already been WELL worth the investment in not running back and forth picking up tools that were left anywhere but where I needed them...still have to remember to put things back IN the belt but so far it's been working out great.
My decision making paralysis kicks in with tool belts in that there are so many types. I can't decide which one to get... so I don't get any. Likely any would be better than none, but my OCD nature won't let me buy one if it's not the clear "right" one. Alas.
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Old 01-12-2015, 03:15 PM - Thread Starter
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I am a set it down and forget where you put it kind of guy. My solution is to buy multiples of everything so there is one laying around someplace...

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Old 01-13-2015, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Mfusick View Post
I am a set it down and forget where you put it kind of guy. My solution is to buy multiples of everything so there is one laying around someplace...
My wife helped me organize my shop this fall. It was weird, I had a pile of about 5 tape measures.

...for the rest of the week
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Old 01-13-2015, 11:03 AM
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I mentioned to my wife that I was going to get two new FatMax tape measures and she said "I thought you already had a tape measure". That's cute. I can remember where at least SIX tape measurers are, and that doesn't count the ones that I just don't know what happened to them. Of course I need a couple more!
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