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Craftsman 10" Contractor Table Saw Model 21833 Review

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Review by Daris posted 691 days ago 8009 views 0 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Craftsman 10" Contractor Table Saw Model 21833 Review Craftsman 10" Contractor Table Saw Model 21833 Review No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

Craftsman Table Saw 21833

I’ve had my Craftsman Table Saw for about a year now, and it is rock solid!  I previously owned a craftsman saw that had the tabletop made out of aluminium.  It was okay for the money, but wasn’t very sturdy.  Frequently when I would feed plywood into the table it would tip the whole saw.  My new saw has been really solid and almost a year later I can say I’m very happy with it.


Craftsman Tablesaw 21833 Top Craftsman Tablesaw 21833 Front

Before I go any further though I have to say I have a weird myopic bias for and against Craftsman tools.  I believe that Craftsman makes the worlds best hand tools.  No one beats them, and the warranty they provide.  Power tools on the other hand are a different story.  I think as a general rule high end Craftsman power tools are usually pretty solid, but if you get the low end or middle models of a craftsman power tool it’s a bit of a gamble.

The table saw I purchased is the Craftsman 10” Contractor Table Saw Model No. 351.218330.  This is the second table saw I’ve owned, but I think it’s a great starter saw if you can afford it.  I paid roughly $550 (on sale)for this one, and that’s not a bad price for a solid table.  If you know for sure that your not going to use it much then save your money and go cheaper.  Conversely, if you know your going to want to use it every day, then you may want to look at an even higher end saw.  This saw for the money and performance was a perfect balance for what I need.

I’ll try and break down the best features of the saw as I see it:

  • The saw allows for cutting at a 45” angle.  There is a blade tip wheel that allows you to easily adjust this.
  • The saw includes a solid rip fence.  I’ve read other review where folks weren’t too happy with the rip fence.  I’ve never had any problems with it and I use mine all the time.
  • The saw comes with a miter gauge that is adjustable from 30” to 90”.  I usually only use this to square up stock, but I have made a few cuts adjusting this to a 45” angle and it was dead on.
  • The saw comes with two table inserts.  The first is a standard insert, and the other is a for a stacked dado blade.
  • The saw comes with a REALLY nice feature for me and that is a foot lift lever on the bottom of the saw that allows it to be moved easily.  The saw is on four wheels and the lever engages those wheels making easy to move.
  • The saw includes a riving knife and blade guard.  I have to confess I frequently remove the blade guard, it’s a little bulky, but the riving knife is great and really cuts down on kick back.

Craftsman_Table Saw Rip Fence Craftsman Tablesaw 21833 Side Vide of Top


I think my biggest criticism for this saw was the initial setup of the saw.  It was a nightmare!  Truly a nightmare!  It felt like a thousand pieces, and a couple of times it was a must to have two people flip it over and then right it.  I had to adjust the rails numerous times.  It was an all afternoon, nearly all day project to put this thing together.  In Craftsman’s defense I complained about his install to a friend of mine who has a large heavy duty Rigid saw and he informed me it was the exact same headache.  So I can’t necessarily blame Craftsman for this, as it appears to be a common thing.  However, keep in mind if you purchase this don’t think you’ll be using it an hour after you get it home.  You’ll easily spend an entire afternoon putting this thing together. Also another thing that bugs me about table saws is that they don’t include Zero Clearance plates. You can buy one over at amazon, or see how I made my own at woodlogger.com

Overall I really like the saw!  I think it’s a solid entry, and mid level grade saw.  If you’re a casual woodworker like myself I think you’ll find that it’s an excellent way to go. If you want to see more about this review or other woodworking products check out my other posts over at www.woodlogger.com

-- Daris, Indianapolis, http://www.woodlogger.com




View Daris's profile

Daris

104 posts in 869 days



14 comments so far

View Douglas's profile

Douglas

284 posts in 1156 days


#1 posted 691 days ago

I always post on these 21833 reviews, as I read them avidly before getting mine. You may have read my comments before, but here are my thoughts on one:

- It was a great value at under $500
- Mine didn’t have that blade height/alignment issue some earlier reviews described
- Making blanks for zero-clearance inserts is a BITCH, due to the odd “tabs” that intrude into the opening’s shape in the bottom edge. And none of the vendors of manufactured inserts make ones that fit this saw (If I’m wrong on that, please post!)
- I found the fence to be so-so at best; I upgraded to an Incra LS-TS system – awesome
- I bought a Shark Guard to replace the stock guards. Easier to add/remove, safer, and out of the way so I can leave it on more.
- built-in mobile base is really nice.
- doing blade alignment with the table is tedious, but not too bad. I just re-aligned mine after 2 years of use, just to check. It had drifted about .003 from the +/-.002, so I got it back in shape in a few minutes.

You’ll enjoy yours. If you find a source for pre-made inserts, please let me know.

-- Douglas in Chicago - http://dcwwoodworks.com

View don1960's profile

don1960

212 posts in 1283 days


#2 posted 691 days ago

I believe these ZCI will fit that saw. woodcraft also makes them for the Ridgid 4512, which I have and is pretty much the same as the Craftsman.

http://www.woodcraft.com/product/2000909/37493/craftsman-21833-table-saw-zeroclearance-insert-cr4.aspx

-- -- Don from PA

View Douglas's profile

Douglas

284 posts in 1156 days


#3 posted 691 days ago

(forehead slap) ok, that’s great. These must be newer or my Googling sucks. Thanks for the link!

-- Douglas in Chicago - http://dcwwoodworks.com

View don1960's profile

don1960

212 posts in 1283 days


#4 posted 691 days ago

No problem. If the ones for the Craftsman are the same quality as the ones for the Ridgid (and there should be no reason otherwise), they are absolutely top-notch.

I couldn’t imagine any way to improve on it. I still have to order the dado ZCI insert from them. (keep forgetting)

-- -- Don from PA

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

1447 posts in 1110 days


#5 posted 691 days ago

Essentially the exact same saw as the Rigid R4512, save that the Rigid comes with a lifetime service agreement and regular price is $499.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

View Tomj's profile

Tomj

204 posts in 977 days


#6 posted 690 days ago

Just remember to cut the the UPC off the R4512 box, print the register confirmation page and mail those along with your receipt to Ridgid with in 90 days form the day you bought it, otherwise you will not get the lifetime service agreement.

View TerryDowning's profile

TerryDowning

993 posts in 713 days


#7 posted 690 days ago

NOT “a weird myopic bias for and against Craftsman tools” I agree with your sentiments completely.

-- - Terry

View GCM's profile

GCM

70 posts in 922 days


#8 posted 690 days ago

aaah you woodworkers in the US are so fortunate – spoilt for choice and price – drool…

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.

View Andrew Betschman's profile

Andrew Betschman

284 posts in 1819 days


#9 posted 689 days ago

http://www.forrestsawbladesonline.com Also has the ZCI’s you will need.

-- Andrew, Ohio http://andrewmbetschman.com/

View cdhilburn's profile

cdhilburn

95 posts in 1280 days


#10 posted 689 days ago

It’s awesome that yours doesn’t have the alignment/height issue. I had the 21833 for about a year and after aligning it for the 10th time I finally figured out that I had a defective one. I don’t do a lot of woodworking so it took awhile to figure it out but by then Craftsman wouldn’t honor fixing it or replacing it. With that said….I loved that saw. It seems to be a really good combination of features, size, power, etc. I replaced it with the granite top Ridgid off of CL (granite is great for me because I live near the coast) and while I like it….I really would have preferred keeping the 21833 if it would have worked. Congrats on the saw!!!!

View Daris's profile

Daris

104 posts in 869 days


#11 posted 689 days ago

Thanks Terry, Glad to know I’m not the only one..! LOL..

-- Daris, Indianapolis, http://www.woodlogger.com

View Daris's profile

Daris

104 posts in 869 days


#12 posted 689 days ago

Where you from GCM? Fedex delivers everywhere (I think)..! Might be a little pricey though.

-- Daris, Indianapolis, http://www.woodlogger.com

View jaydubya's profile

jaydubya

183 posts in 1408 days


#13 posted 688 days ago

I like my 21833. i did replace the fence with a ridiculously heavy duty 52 inch sawstop tsquare fence that i picked up on ebay CHEAP

View 47phord's profile

47phord

174 posts in 833 days


#14 posted 683 days ago

Sadly, I do have a 21833 that does have the blade height alignment issue. Of course, I didn’t figure this out until after the warranty expired, but oh well, I’ve learned to work around it. Other than that, I am very happy with mine. The miter gauge that mine came with was a piece of junk for anything other than a 90 degree cut, so I upgraded to an Osborne EB-3 and have never looked back. The fence is pretty good, though keep in mind it will drift out of square pretty easily. Enjoy!

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