|Review by LostinLA||posted 09-27-2009 05:41 AM||25490 views||0 times favorited||30 comments|
Hey Everyone -
I’ve never posted here before, but I did a lot of research here before buying a replacement for my beloved cast iron Ridgid table saw. It had served me well through a major renovation, but now that the project is complete, I wanted something I could more easily tuck out of the way.
I’d narrowed it down to the Ridgid 2410LS and the Bosch 4100, and was leaning toward the Bosch when I dropped in at my local Home Depot. The Ridgid rep happened to be there on a Saturday (unusual) and asked me to wait a sec while he ran to the storage/receiving area at the back of the store.
A few minutes later, he returned, all smiles, pushing a cart on which sat what looked like a 2410LS box. I didn’t get what he was so happy about—there were a couple 2410s already on the floor.
“Look again,” he said. “These just came in.”
So I examined the box a bit more closely and saw that this was, indeed, a NEW version of Ridgid’s well-reviewed 24XX portable saw. And WOW – it looks like they’ve addressed just about every issue I had with the saw, and then some.
The R4510 is superficially very similar to the 2410LS – but now has the safety features that made many people give the nod to the Bosch in head-to-head comparisons. There are a few major changes:
Completely redesigned splitter/guard – now has a removable riving knife that can be set to two different heights and a split blade guard for bevel cuts.
Relocated power switch – many people complained about having to “hunt” for the switch – it’s now a bit bigger and located so you can bump it with your thigh without taking your hands or eyes off your work.
Tool-less table insert – FINALLY! It wasn’t a huge deal, but it sure is nice, not having to hut around for a screwdriver every time I switch blades.
Tool storage is still great and now includes a push stick that stores next to the miter gauge.
Unfortunately, the table I received must have been a “Monday” saw. The fence rails were so far off, the fence was hitting the extendable side table and rubbing across the surface of the table. It took over an hour to get them level-ish—I say “ish” because it wasn’t possible to get a consistent clearance across the table, as it seems there’s a slight crown the to table top on the right side. I don’t know how flat these cast-aluminum tables are supposed to be—I may be spoiled by my experiences with the cast iron model—but I don’t think a 24” level should “rock” ANYWHERE on the table. Finally—and again, I may be spoiled by the smooth, quiet operation of the belt-drive Ridgid—the soft-start motor didn’t sound so great at first. It sounded a little “gravelly” on startup and there’s a visible wobble to the arbor.
You’d think that all these flaws would turn me off to the saw completely, but I’ve owned several Ridgid tools (table saw, thickness planer, drill press, jointer/planer, as well as cordless tools galore) and have always been very pleased with their quality in the past—I’m hoping this is an aberration, rather than representative of their current quality standards.
I’ve already spoken with the Ridgid rep and he says that as soon as some more 4510s come in, I can swap out the saw, no problem. So I’m not too worried about it.
In the meantime, he urged me to beat the hell out of this one. I’m building 120’ fence with a semi-complicated design requiring a bunch of dadoes—a lot of cuts, but nothing that requires cabinets saw accuracy or cut quality. I’ve run a pile of lumber through it and have been pleased so far; I’ve ripped a couple of 4×8 sheets, done a load of 3/4 dado cuts and ripped a bunch of 2Xs and am very impressed with the motor’s power, the accuracy of the fence, and the overall usability of the saw.
I’ve already made a simple router table attachment that drops into the space created when you extend the table, a bunch of fingerboards, a couple of jigs and table inserts (zero clearance and dado). The slotted table and fence are must-haves for the way I like to work and (fingers crossed) once I get a unit that isn’t such a POS, I’m confident that this saw will do just about anything I could ask of it. I haven’t put together a good outfeed support or thrown any bevels at it yet—those tests will decide whether or not I can really consider this a viable alternative to a hybrid or cabinet saw.
But so far, I’m pretty pleased with the saw overall and LOVE how easy it is to move around and store. I’m (perhaps optimistically) giving it 5 stars based on my experience so far and what I expect to learn once I get a better unit in-hand.
Oh – I almost forgot – I got a heckuva deal on this sucker. Turns out Home Depot will honor HARBOR FREIGHT coupons, too! I get an email coupon from HF just about every week, offering 20% off any single item. That brought the price down from $499 to $400. And when I bought this last week, HD was offering a $75 instant rebate for tool purchases of $300-600 or so, so I ended up paying just $325!!
(Actually, they didn’t want to “stack” the discounts at first, but I talked to a manager and pointed out that the terms of the rebate didn’t say anything about “not valid with any other discount”, so he overrode the computer and gave me both deals. Might have had something to do with all the lumber I’d bought that week (with a Lowes 10% coupon!), or maybe he was just being cool.).
Here are some pics of the saw—I haven’t seen anything anywhere on the web about this model, and I thought you might like to see the changes:
Hope this is of interest!