|Review by DaveTPilot||posted 11-18-2010 01:24 AM||5556 views||3 times favorited||12 comments|
I ordered this Grizzly Hybrid saw online on a Friday afternoon. Grizzly sent me an email with all of the shipping information and tracking number. The order was shipped the following Monday and 3 days later it was in my garage!
The first thing I noticed was the quality of the packaging. The saw was packed very neatly and securely and arrived without any damage. I was even more pleased when I started the unpacking process. I was very impressed with the overall quality of the saw. It is a very solidly built piece of machinery to say the least.
Assembly and setup was easy and straight forward. Which leads me to the Owner's Manual. I have bought numerous new consumer products in my life and I have to say that the owner’s manual that came with this saw is the best manual I have ever seen. That may seem insignificant to some but when it comes to setting up a piece of precision machinery, it is nice to have a manual that explains everything in great specificity and detail.
I assembled the wings by myself as Szczuldo did. I clamped two 2×2 cauls to the table then clamped the wing to the cauls. The clamps held it in place and made inserting the bolts a snap. So if I got a phone call, no worries. :) The table has threaded holes to accept the bolts. Not needing to add nuts made the assembly all the more easy. One word of caution, if you over tighten the bolts, the internal threads will strip. I did this on one hole. (I simply used a nut, bolt and washers in that one hole.) My wings were in perfect alignment and didn’t need shimming. Another nice surprise.
I did unpack the stock blade and noticed it was considerably thinner than my standard Forrest Woodworker II. I too, opted out of using the stock blade and instead installed my Forrest Woodworker II. The arbor lock is a very nice feature. The quick change riving knife is awesome! It was out of alignment but was very easy to remedy that.
The rails were very easy to install. I was a little dismayed at the thought of trying to get the measuring tape applied straight but it was much easier than I thought it would be. The tape was longer than the right side of the rail, which gave me pause, but after making sure I was applying it correctly I cut off the excess with a razor knife. I slide the rail back and forth several times, locking in in place and check the measurement from the blade to the fence and it is spot on.
Again, the owner’s manual shined, with one exception that I will explain in a moment. Setting up the fence was easy but it did take some time to get it perfect. I had to make every possible adjustment but in the end it is as perfect in every alignment as I can measure.
The MANUAL DISCREPANCY
The manual states, “Clamp the fence in place and tighten the front set screws until they touch the fence tube, and then back them off 1/8 of a turn.” I found that doing that made the fence next to impossible to move. It does say to readjust as required but it would take a lot of readjusting.
I unclamped the fence and tightened the front set screws until they just barely touched the fence tube. It moves freely now and the front set screws help the fence stay parallel while moving.
I am extremely happy and satisfied with the fence. It is very solid and remains square to the miter slots.
As stated above, I needed to adjust the riving knife and make multiple adjustments to the fence. I did not need to adjust the trunnion. I don’t have a dial indicator so I can’t give you a blade run-out measurement. Using an adjustable square, I measured from the left miter slot to a marked tooth on the front of the blade, then checked the same tooth in the back of the blade and there was no difference.
DUST COLLECTION PORT MODIFICATION
I modified the dust collection port and converted it to an incorporated blast gate using some 3/16” ABS plastic I had in the shop. You could use hardboard or plywood to achieve the same functionality. Using the plastic, you would think the saw came that way from the factory…which it should! IMHO
The only complaint I have is the stock miter gauge. I don’t expect the stock gauge to be anything to write home about but this gauge is so poorly made that it is practically nonfunctional.
THE TEST RUN
After cleaning all the rust preventative from the table top and trunnion gears, lubing the gears according to the instructions, checking that I set everything up properly and didn’t miss any steps…it was time to give it a go!
The switch was more difficult to push than I expected, which is a good thing. You really have to make a positive effort to turn the saw on. Once the button was pushed the saw came to life. It was much quieter than my Harbor Freight contractor saw and ran as smooth as glass. It passes the nickel test easily.
I ripped some hickory first. I figured I’d go for something hard straight away. The saw cut through like butter. I measured the cut and it was perfect.
Next I tried a couple of crosscuts, using the Harbor Freight miter gauge, and all was square.
The dust collection works perfectly. I noticed the same thing about the dust chute as mentioned in Szczuldo’s review. I added a little tape to the open slots on the dust chute to prevent the sawdust from reaching the floor. I haven’t moved the saw to see if that helped or not but either way, not a big deal.
I am absolutely pleased with this product and would highly recommend it to anyone. The price is untouchable for similar quality.
-- How valuable is time to a person who spends his disparaging the beliefs of others? --David Berthelette www.pilotwoodworks.com