Circular Saw or Table Saw? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 03:10 AM Thread Starter
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Default Circular Saw or Table Saw?

Hi everyone,

I need advice on a matter relating to woodworking. As you might know I am planning stage of acquiring a table saw for my open plan shop. However I saw on You Tube people converting their circular saws to table saws by mounting the circular saw upside down to the table. Now for the questions: 1. Is this method safe, taking the necessary precautions as with a table saw; 2. Will I be able to do the same cutting with this idée as with a purpose build table saw. The circular saw is a Ryobi 1300W Circular Saw at a lower price than the Ryobi 1500W Table Saw. The saving will be R900-00 in South African terms. Or in the approximately $125-00 US.

I do not want to save money and lose limbs or worst, but if possible this will help me to buy more tools that I need.

This grasshopper will listen to the voices of the masters experiences.

Thanks Altman.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 05:33 AM
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Hi Altman,

This is not something that I would consider for a variety of reasons, safety being one of them. You will not get the accuracy nor the depth of cut of a table saw using a method like this. Spend the extra.... I think you will be happier and safer in the long run.
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 05:37 AM
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Save yourself a lot of time and annoyance and just buy a real table saw. Sure, you CAN rig a circle saw in various ways but it is just not as stable, not as capable and not as versatile as a regular table saw.
Dependent upon what you do most of the time you may be able to get along without a table saw and just use a GOOD circular saw and a proper guide. Remember: a great deal of the time a table saw just sits there.....being used as a TABLE!
Other, wiser heads will no doubt expand on this.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 06:52 AM
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There's no way I would mount a circular saw like you describe. With a proper guide rail system, a circular saw can do most of the same cutting jobs as well as a table saw, with the added benefit that it's safer for cutting large panels too. See Eurekazone's EZ-Smart system that works with just about any circular saw (and with an accessory plate, routers too.)
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 08:26 AM
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I have no table saw, I use a circular saw with a guide rail for long cuts (rips as well) and a have a cross cut jig like this - Free Circular Saw Cross Cut Jig Plan - Vinyl Siding Cutting Jig
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 09:43 AM
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I use both. I use the table saw for most ripping and crosscutting and angle cuts, and cuts in smaller pieces of sheet material. I have a couple of straightedges I made for my Makita circular saw, and a B&D crosscutting guide made for the Workmate system, which I use for construction-type projects. When you are dealing with 6 to 10' (2 - 3m) lengths of timber, it is so much easier to move the saw through the timber than the timber through the saw.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 11:42 AM
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I'm in a similar boat. I think you're way better off either getting a table saw, or keeping your circular saw pointed down, and making some good jigs for it. I'm still trying to perfect ripping narrow stock with it, I can do it, but the set up is a real fidgety pain.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 12:43 PM
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I agree - use the tools in the manner for which they were designed. Anything else is an invitation for a trip to the emergency hospital . . . or the morgue.

As others have mentioned, you can make guide jigs to use the circular saw safely and accurately for cutting sheet goods. Or you can buy a track saw. I use a Festool TS55 with their guide rails, for example, but mostly due to the other features of the Festool saw.

Jigs for doing smaller cuts with the circular saw are possible, but the accuracy won't be as good as with a real table saw.

- Ralph
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
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Default Thanks

Hi everyone, I want to thank you for your contributions to the question I have posted and value your input and info most highly. I think the lesson learned is when tools especially power tools have been designed to work in a certain way well work in that way with them, rather than taking a short CUT to the emergency room or morgue.
Once again thank you for your quick responses.
Blessings to all.
PPPPP (Pre Planning Prevents Poor Performance)
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-01-2010, 08:34 PM
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Hi Altman,

The Triton Workcentre is designed to use a circ. saw in that manner.

Wether you can find one in SA cheaper than a Table saw is debatable.

Sydney, Australia

I don't mind if other members disagree with my comments.
I don't profess to know everything, and I may learn something new.

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