|Review by lumberjoe||posted 06-19-2012 02:17 AM||3768 views||4 times favorited||16 comments|
Since the Ridgid R5412 is such a popular saw, I figured I would review these. They are available everywhere online – woodcraft, Amazon, rockler, etc. Woodcraft has them in the store as well. Because of the design of this saw’s throat insert, it’s really hard to make your own. After seeing how these are crafted, I don’t think I could safely make one.
Both of these are very well made. The instructions included are clear, and I don’t think they are outrageously expensive.
Once you get them in properly, they fit really snug. The back has a tab that fits under the cast iron. There is also a screw in the back that you can adjust to get a snug fit. It is a really snug fit also. No side to side or front to back movement at all when all dialed in.
The tops appear to be HPL and are slick. The initial cut is super smooth and doesn’t leave burrs on the top. Sendit a dado stack through the top initially was a bit scary due to the amount of material being removed, but it cut easily and cleanly.
Dislikes (and the reason for 4 stars)
I wish they were identical! Getting them aligned is not hard, it just involves messing around with the 5 leveling screws on the top of the saw. The problem is I need to change that alignment when I change from my standard blades to a dado blade, making the already arduous process even more so. I guess this is a minor annoyance that really cannot be avoided, however it is still annoying.
Ridgid does not make a ZCI (that i am aware of). They do sell a dado insert for around the same price, but I think the zero clearance is worth it for cleaner cuts – especially in plywood.
If you have an R5412 – get one. You will be amazed at how much cleaner your cuts are. It actually quiets down the saw a lot too, even tough it is already pretty quiet. If you get a dado blade, get both. Much better value than the standard insert. Just keep a Phillips screwdriver handy.