Tablesaw or circular saw

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Blog entry by kosta posted 08-18-2009 10:03 PM 13682 reads 0 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Yo whats up everybody I was looking at the ryobi table saw at and I was thinking about is it really worth it to spend $115 on a bench top tablesaw or is it better to spend $100 on a circular saw. Now I dont have a working circular saw and I know that a table saw is more accurate then a circular saw. In this case its not I read some of the reviews on lumberjocks and on home on both the ridgid circular saw and the ryobi table saw and I really wasnt convinced that this ryobi table saw will work accurately. The other problem is that its a bench top which means that I have to store it then pull it out and thats just a pain in the ass. The really big advantage for the ridgid is the lifetime warranty now thats a big thing when you want to invest on a tool. The motor on the ryobi is 13 amp and the motor on the ridgid is a 15 amp but personally I think that the ridgid with a straight edge is more accurate then the ryobi. The other big thing that stands out is that there is no dust collection on the table saw not even a big and personally I hate having to wear masks or respirators even my scroll saw has dust collection so there really isnt any reason why that cant put a 2in pust port on the damn thing. Even if you could upgrade the fence its not really worth it for a $115 saw. I will probably get the ridgid circular saw next week sometime

14 comments so far

View Chris Wright's profile

Chris Wright

540 posts in 3446 days

#1 posted 08-18-2009 10:13 PM

Well, are you looking for portability or are you looking for something more permanent? I’ve used the Ryobi collapsible table saw (the older version of this saw It didn’t have the sliding attachment on the side, just regular miter slots). It’s a 10 inch, the legs fold up and it’s got a set of wheels so you can easily move it around. It cuts accurate and is easy to use. The small bench top table saws are basically a circular saw mounted under a small table. If you’re looking for accuracy, I’d go with the table saw.

-- "At its best, life is completely unpredictable." - Christopher Walken

View kosta's profile


946 posts in 3320 days

#2 posted 08-18-2009 10:19 PM

no im talking about just the bench top

View PurpLev's profile


8534 posts in 3613 days

#3 posted 08-18-2009 10:21 PM

the thing about a table saw as opposed to a circular saw, is not that it’s more ‘accurate’ per cut – but the fact the the settings can be left as is for repetitive cuts. meaning – if you have to rip 50 drawer sides that are 6” tall … good luck doing that with a circular saw and a straight edge (it’s doable, but will take a LONG time, a LOT of positioning the straight edge, a LOT of measuring the offset of the straight edge, and a LOT of room for mistakes) whereas a table saw , you set the fence, lock in place. and run all the pieces through it without having to think too much ( except for safety) – now THAT is the power of a table saw.

I used the ryobi table saw when I started out – I borrowed it from family as I was building a cabinet since I wanted to cut all parts equally without having to mess with a straight edge too much. it did the job fairly, but soon after I returned it, and ended up buying the Bosch 4100.

the ryobi motor was just TOO LOUD, the construction of the saw is not that great, so it vibrates a lot which is not good for a table saw. the miter slots are not standard size (they are smaller) so will not accept any aftermarket accessories – you’ll have to custom make anything you want for it – including a proper miter gauge… not a good choice in my book. it may be ok for construction where precision is not crucial to within 1/64”, but for fine woodworking – I’d stay away from it.

benchtop saws are decent- some better than others, their lower price is convenient, but I found that even the Bosch 4100 which is an EXCELLENT saw for what it is – didn’t quite cut it when it comes to precision work. I ended up upgrading it to the Ridgid 4511 Granite top saw – which is an amazing machine for the money.

bottom line – if you don’t have a circular saw – I’d start with that, Ridgid makes good stuff. their warranty is the best on the market as far as I know. customer service is good. and a circular saw will be handy in the long run even if you end up getting a table saw.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View a1Jim's profile


117062 posts in 3542 days

#4 posted 08-18-2009 10:40 PM

Hey Kosta
In the $100 range you can find a used table saw versus a bench top, you will use a table saw much more than a circular saw.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View PurpLev's profile


8534 posts in 3613 days

#5 posted 08-18-2009 10:43 PM

that is true – I’ll second Jim, you can find a good used Delta saw on craigslist for a good price. I would still stay away from the Ryobi tablesaws though…

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4902 posts in 3925 days

#6 posted 08-18-2009 11:04 PM

Look for used stuff. A $100.00 new saw will be junk. A $100.00 used TS could be an old jewel that just needs some tlc.


View kosta's profile


946 posts in 3320 days

#7 posted 08-18-2009 11:05 PM

yea I usually dont use ryobi but I will look on ebay and craigs list

View Trikzter's profile


42 posts in 3221 days

#8 posted 08-18-2009 11:18 PM

I have had a circular saw now for years. I always wanted a table saw so I bought me the Ryobi ten inch table saw( I haven’t even taken it out of the box yet).
Having a circ. saw is good, but I found that I was wishing for a table saw of some kind for more kinds of cuts.
I bought a cheap ts to learn on then I can graduate on up the ladder to a decent saw.
To me I found digging out the circ. saw to be a pain in the donkey.

-- Rick... A tree knows more about wood then I do.

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 3693 days

#9 posted 08-18-2009 11:19 PM

craigslist has lots of stuff in your neck of the woods. just keep your eyes open because the good stuff gets snagged quick.

View Kristoffer's profile


675 posts in 3181 days

#10 posted 08-19-2009 01:22 AM

If I were you, I’d get the table saw (FIRST, then get RIGID skill saw, then upgrade with a new table saw). I could give you a million why, but the best reason is the time and frustration you’ll save with with the fence over time you’ll spend with a straight edge!!!!!! It adds up very quickly! Believe me, I’ve been there.
I do have the RIGID skill saw and I love it, but for woodworking…. Ya gotta go with the table saw!!!

-- Cheers and God Bless

View kosta's profile


946 posts in 3320 days

#11 posted 08-19-2009 02:20 AM

actually I am looking on craigs list and theres some good stuff here but to be complety honest I dont really like ryobi but I did look at the skil table saw and that was a little better

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2781 posts in 3403 days

#12 posted 08-19-2009 02:51 AM

A skill saw is pretty much for cutting plywood down to size to work with and for cutting framing lumber on the job. For the woodworking stuff you do I’d think a table saw would be what you’d use a lot.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View kosta's profile


946 posts in 3320 days

#13 posted 08-19-2009 04:28 PM

Yea well see this is the other problem I only have enough money to get the ryobi tablesaw or the ridgid circular saw because of the saw dust chronicles contest that starts september 1st

View RussellInMaryland's profile


9 posts in 3139 days

#14 posted 09-17-2009 01:53 AM

I second everything you said about the Ryobi portable table saw (BTS10). The slots are non-standard and the miter gauge is too sloppy and the fence is not accurate. Aftermarket fences are not an option either. The throat is really weird and non-standard and Ryobi doesn’t offer a zero clearance plate. I had to build custom jigs, throat plate, sleds, fences, runners, etc. before I could make accurate cuts. On the other hand I feel I was forced to learn a lot instead of taking the easy way of buying manufactured or aftermarket items. The force and vibration of the blade starting up will cause whatever you are holding to a line to shift and you will always need to re-adjust before cutting.

Also I cannot figure out how to add dust collection. The ridged underside of the table makes it difficult to use clamps and the tabletop was not flat. I flattened the top with a flat file. It is lightweight and easy to carry around or put in the trunk of the car. Now that I have it rigged to make good (not great) cuts I plan to keep it and eventually upgrade if I keep up the hobby.

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