|Review by Rex B||posted 04-11-2012 09:03 PM||15523 views||6 times favorited||19 comments|
Prior to owning this saw I made all of my cuts with a circular saw and a straightedge. Once I decided that I was interested enough in woodworking to dedicate half of my garage as a shop, it was time for a table saw. I did a lot of research and had pretty well decided on this saw. When I found out that I would be in Springfield, MO on Black Friday, I knew I had to check out the Grizzly showroom. While the Black Friday deals were pretty lousy, I ventured into the outlet store and found this machine. It was for sale for $675 (list price was $795) because it had a scratch in the cast iron top and a broken insert plate. The insert plate had actually been replaced and that item was crossed off the tag, and I don’t think they raised the price any after doing this, so I got an even better deal. This damage was from shipping; the saw was still brand new. This price, along with being able to save another $100 by hauling it home myself (versus ordering online and having it delivered) were enough to convince me to jump on this deal. The scratch is about 1.5” long and is located a few inches from the front edge in the center of the saw. It wasn’t bad to begin with, and I used some 2000 grit sand paper to remove any raised edges, so it’s no problem at all. With the help of two strong friends, I was able to move the saw from the bed of my truck to the ground pretty easily.
Experiences and Opinions:
I have now been using this saw for more than 4 months, and love it! I have it hooked up to 220V and have had no power issues so far. I have cut into a block of cherry at full cut depth (3-1/8”) to aid in resawing and had no trouble. It is powerful enough to cut hardwoods quickly without burning. The cut quality is very good, and I haven’t even replaced the stock blade yet. I have used an 8” dado stack quite a bit with this saw, and it has performed without any problems.
The saw was assembled when I got it (being a scratch and dent item), so I can’t comment on the assembly process. I measured the blade alignment to be about .001” and the 90 and 45 degree stops to be spot on, so I didn’t have to do any major tweaking. The fence took some adjusting, but it was all simple and easy. I also had to align the extension wings a bit, but no big deal. I haven’t had any problems with the fence getting out of alignment so far, which is one of the main complaints I have seen in other reviews.
The included miter gauge, as others have noted, is pretty sloppy. I almost always use a crosscut sled, so this isn’t a big issue. But every once in a while I do need to use the miter gauge, so I ended up fixing it by tapping a few holes in the bar and inserting brass set screws. It’s easy to adjust out the slop now.
The cabinet base contains quite a bit of the dust produced. I don’t have it hooked up to any dust collector yet, so I just vacuum out the cabinet every so often. When I looked inside the cabinet after a few months of use, I found quite a bit of dust buildup on the motor, which I don’t like, so I think the 2HP Harbor Freight DC is in my near future.
The included blade guard seems very clunky, so I haven’t ever used it. But I do ALWAYS have the riving knife installed (except when cutting dados). It doesn’t interfere with my crosscut sled either. The start switch for the saw takes a pretty hard push to activate, which I view as an added safety feature. And the off switch has a large paddle that can be pushed with a knee if necessary.
In summary, I have had a great experience with this saw and would not hesitate to recommend it to others. It is solidly built, and the fit and finish are good. The fence and the blade controls operate smoothly and easily. The fence rails provide a perfect place to install a router table extension (which I have done). My future plans for this saw are: new blade, shop-made zero-clearance insert, dust collection, and eventually an outfeed table.