Shopping for a new table saw
The more I learn, the more I realize how little I know. So, in line with shopping for a new fence and after much deliberation and soul searching, I came to the realization that it is necessary to get a new saw. In particular, Iíve been looking into contractor and hybrid models and for my budget, the top picks would be Ridgid R4512 and Grizzly 0771Z.
Iím leaning more towards the Ridgid since itís readily available at a big orange store, about 30% cheaper than the Grizzly and easier to pay off; there are certain things Iíve read about it that concern me somewhat, but Iíd like some input from the community first.
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Depends on what your concerns are with the Ridgid. Several of the members here (me included) have the Bosch 4100-09 and are pleased with it. That's not the newer model with the safety feature (REAXX). The -09 means it has the gravity rise stand. I bought a used one a few years ago, after much searching and deliberation to replace an older 8" Beaver I had for many years. TBH, I took it off the stand and built my own stand. If you have limited space, the gravity rise stand comes in handy as you can fold the saw/stand up and roll it into a corner. I really deliberated on getting a cabinet saw, but couldn't justify the price and even used ones (unisaw, General) on Kijiji (Canada) are priced high in my area.
I should have mentioned that you could check out CPO Outlets as they have a Bosch 4100-10 with stand for $599. or a 4100-RT (no stand) reconditioned for $349.
I have the 4100...
and it to be applauded...
Reaxx not available in the US anymore (thanks, SawStop…..)
I have an older Craftsman Hybrid, like the Grizzly it has the enclosed base, and I love it. It's over 400 lbs, it came with a big table extension on the right hand side and I added a deep outfeed table. Needless to say, it doesn't get moved often, and takes up a lot of floor space.
I hadn't seen this grizzly (I don't need a TS right now...) but it looks like a nice saw
The big things to look for in portable saws are "will it take a full dado blade stack", "are the miter slots the full standard dimension of 3/4 X 3/8", and "is the arbor shaft 5/8" diameter"? Most won't take a full dado stack, and few have accurate standard 3/4 X 3/8 miter slots, although some are close, but not a proper fit for a standard miter gauge bar.
Most of these saws use a high speed drill type motor that screams when it's running and none of these saws seem to have any really good saw dust control. It is possible to cut dados with routers, so having dado capability isn't a deal breaker, but it's a nice feature. A Ryobi BT-3000 saw that I once used would take about a half stack of dado blades, so 3/8" dados were possible with it, but it sure did scream because of the type motor in it. It didn't even have a miter slot, so commonly available jigs couldn't be used on it without extensive modification. I've heard that the present DeWalt saws have inaccurately sized miter slots, so again, available jigs won't work well on them.
Older "Contractor Saws" have motors hanging out the back and these motors are much quieter induction motors with better speed control at the proper rated blade speeds, but none seem to have any good method of controlling saw dust issues, but all of these that I've seen can take a full dado blade stack. Be careful to avoid the pre 1950's saws with 1/2" arbor sizes, because finding blades for them is now nearly impossible. You can get bushings to make 5/8 arbor blades work, but they are hard to keep in place when changing blades and get lost in the saw dust easily.
The older Delta Contractor Saws use a specially made motor that produces 1.5 hp on 120 volt power to keep it's running current rating below the common 15 amp rating of construction site circuit power, but will produce a full 2 hp when connected to 240 volt power. All have 5/8" arbors and can take full dado stacks. The Delta 34-444 model that I found for my son has proven to be every bit as accurate and capable as my Unisaw once we cleaned it up and calibrated it. Any one of the 34-4__ series seems to be the same saw with tiny year to year changes. I think they incremented the model number each year that they were in production, so any one of them should prove to be a good and accurate saw once cleaned up and calibrated.
I have no experience with the newer Bosch Contractor Type Portable saws, but other's recommendations on them would have me leaning toward one of them if I wanted to buy a new portable saw. The included folding stand is a nice feature in this saw too.
I'd be inclined toward the Grizzly hybrid. I have a Laguna and really like using it, and it's very close to the Grizzly design. I'm not really much of a fan of contractor saws, and yet, would not be unhappy with the Bosch 4100.
Based on what I learned so far about the R4512, itís a hybrid saw masquerading as a contractor type. At a price point of <$700, itís impossible to beat.
The high points are belt drive, iron cast table with extension wings, full length 5/8Ē arbor, under 300 lbs weight, portability, lifetime service (if bought at HD) and, of course, the price tag. The low points would be the common issues people complain about, such as getting a lemon with uneven table, 3-wheel system, sloppy fence and the dust collection isnít the greatest. I can live with the wheels (donít need them TBH, not planning to move the saw around) and the fence since Iíll change it to the W1410 anyway, but will definitely bring a straight edge to the store for checking the table before buying. Plus, as opposed
I thought that perhaps someone has/had it and could provide some 1st hand perspective.
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I'd also go with the Grizzly, if you can swing it.
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