|Review by sawdustroad||posted 05-07-2008 05:29 PM||4170 views||0 times favorited||26 comments|
Deciding that I wanted to purchase a saw with a designed-in riving knife was the easy part. Finding one that was available was a totally different story until a week ago.
My decision criteria: Riving Knife; Price < $2000; Power > 1.5 HP; Dust Collection; Step up from a contractor saw
My selection. This was the easy part. After stopping by the local Woodcraft and seeing the quality fence and other design features of Steel City made them a shoe in for the top choice. And they had a Riving knife saw, or so I thought. Apparently manufacturing the saw was proving to be more difficult than I thought, and it took nearly 4 months to get my hands on one. That’s a long time to be out of a table saw.
When the new saws came in, my contact gave me a call and I took an early trip up to the Woodcraft in Loveland, Colorado. They had both granite and cast iron 359xx series saws, still in the box, so we took it to task to take a look at them. The granite top was an easy sell for $50 and it looks great, flat as can be, smooth, and as heavy as you can imagine.
Getting the saw home was easy, as they loaded it up with a forklift; but getting it off the truck in the steel-cage within a cardboard box was more challenging. With two 4×4 cedar boards, and some good timing, my neighbor and I were able to slide it off with no problems and get it in the garage. After removing the cage, I got a full look at it. Everything looked great and I’ve seen no damage due to shipping.
Putting it together was simple and other than everything being huge, the materials and instructions were adequate to get the saw together. one bug in the design was the milled holes for attaching the fence guides to the table top do NOT align on the extension wing. This doesn’t bother me short term, but if they weren’t required for long-term stability, I’m not sure they would have put them in.
The mobile base: After being sold a $92 Delta Unisaw Base and finding out it doesn’t fit, I went with a Jet Base. Of course it didn’t fit, but after a few hours of hacksawing, it fits great, and I was able to get the saw and extension table mounted. Of course, I’m 100% annoyed with the base, it wobbles and the brakes couldn’t stop a sneeze. But, it moves the extremely heavy saw around, so I’ll find some way to stabilize it and get to using the saw.
Use: I haven’t yet put oak through the saw, but out of the box, most everything is stable and aligned perfectly. The only gripe I have is the insert doesn’t fit flush. I posted some pictures of the issues at: http://www.sawdustroad.com/steelcitytablesaw
Overall Review: The saw is solid and the top is better than I expected. I’d recommend this for anyone ready to make a purchase today. If you aren’t quite ready, I’m sure version 2.0 will fix some of the current issues.