A litlle help would be appreciated a lot.

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Forum topic by Kristoffer posted 12-26-2009 09:05 PM 2494 views 3 times favorited 26 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Kristoffer's profile


675 posts in 3391 days

12-26-2009 09:05 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question tablesaw

Hello LumberJocks,

I’ve been working with a bottom of the line table saw, the $99 Delta from Lowe’s. I was excited when I got it, because sadly enough, that was a lot of money for me to spend on anything. But I had no idea when I purchased it, how bottom of the it actually is. I could work with the small table surface and a few of it’s other flaws. Now that I am getting deeper into my woodworking ventures, the vibration issues and the blade dropping every time I turned it on, it’s just not cutting it any more (no pun intended).

I am now fortunate enough to be able to upgrade. And this is where I could use some help and advice from all of you wonderful, fantastic, selfless, eager to share your knowledge lumberjocks. I was thinking about getting the Ridgid – TS2400LS 10” portable table saw for about $500. I don’t really care about the portable aspect because the only time it will leave the shop will be to move to a larger shop, but these are my reasons:

- I have always trusted Ridgid tools in construction.
- I like the large table surface.
- While I don’t really care about it being portable, my “shop” is 9 1/2’ by 9 1/2’ and I do like that it can be folded down and take up less space (not a must, but a plus).
- The price is right.

I was wondering if you guys and gals could give me some input or advice on comparable saws around the same price. While I know that the saw will eventually pay for itself, I do still need to stay at $500 or below.

I thank you in advance for all of your thoughts on this matter. And look forward to a similar post in about a year as I am also looking to purchase a mid to low end drill press that will have to be replaced.

Cheers and God Bless,
Kristoffer H.

-- Cheers and God Bless

26 replies so far

View MarkwithaK's profile


370 posts in 3353 days

#1 posted 12-26-2009 09:37 PM

Personally I have owned only 2 table saws in my life, a cheap $100 Craftsman and the Ridgid R4511. I considered the one you specified but for the same amount I opted for the 4511 and would certainly buy it again. The granite top was a concern but so far it has not proved to be a problem. I have heard that it is being discontinued but if you can find one I would give it a consideration.

-- If at first you don't succeed then maybe skydiving isn't for you.

View Planeman's profile


97 posts in 3752 days

#2 posted 12-26-2009 10:58 PM

Before I spent my $500 I really would consider a used professional grade saw. I believe you could take that same $500 and end up with a beautiful Delta Unisaw or equivalent. There is very little to go wrong with a good table saw. As long as there are no broken castings pretty much everything can be refinished and easily brought back to specifications. As I believe you have already found, the things to look for in a table saw are an accurate spindle and arbor and a well working trunion (the device that makes the blade tilt). After that a good table and an accurate and easily adjustable fence. Motors can be replaced. Keep in mind that most table saw blades can be aligned to the table by loosening the trunion bolts from beneath the table and shifting the trunion unit slightly and re-tightening the bolts. It takes a little fiddling.

I suggest you begin following your local Craig’s list ( and watch the surplus sales. Most governments have a list of tools that are sold at auction and some really NICE woodworking (and metalworking) tools can be found, mostly from schools that have been shut down or school shops that are being upgraded.

Try these web sites:

I would first consider Craig’s List as it would be local and you can go see the item in question. Next would be metro, county and state auctions of school equipment. If you can travel to the site where the item is located it would be safest as you can inspect the item before you bid. Other than that most bid listings have a pretty good verbal description and multiple photos to view. When buying this way always consider that there may be something unseen that you will have to fix or replace and adjust your bid offer accordingly. Last of all are the US Government sites. Be careful. Good deals can be had here, however military items often have been poorly stored outside and are in bad condition. Rust can be removed though if it is not too bad and pitted.

Another thing to watch out for are three phase motors. You can only use three phase in an industrial location and not at a home. There are some three phase converters, however they are expensive and not worth consideration for something like this. You can read up on three phase in the Internet.

Maybe the auction thing isn’t for you, however Craig’s List is ideal. Give it a try and be patient. What you are looking for will be out there somewhere. Check Craig’s List every day as the good stuff and bargains move quickly.

Rufus Carswell, Atlanta, GA

-- Always remember half of the people in this country are below average.

View Garyb6's profile


306 posts in 3805 days

#3 posted 12-26-2009 11:33 PM

Kristoffer. I feel your pain. :-) I just went through the same predicament with moving from the Bosch 4000. I chose the Ridgid 4511 granite top TS that HD is phasing out due to its weight and shipping costs. For the same amount of money you are planning to spend on the Ridgid portable saw you can get the substantial 4511. However I find it moves around my garage with ease on its Herculift base. You can still find these at most HDs however they are getting in short supply. Right now they are going for $499, and if you buy before the 31st you can get the Friends and Family discount (of course you could on the portable as well). I don’t have a lot of experience yet with the 4511, but just in the few days I have been using it I find there is no comparison between a solid heavy TS and a portable one.

My 2 cents.


-- Garyb6, “True simplicity does not reveal the tremendous effort it requires.” - Somerset Maugham

View rtb's profile


1101 posts in 3888 days

#4 posted 12-27-2009 01:57 AM

Both Rufus and Gary are right. If you don’t feel comfortable with the auction and restoration route then the granite topped Rigid is a great choice. I have its predecessor with the cast iron table and love it. rock solid and easily moved with the lift (same lift) and they are available at $499.

-- RTB. stray animals are just looking for love

View WhittleMeThis's profile


125 posts in 3548 days

#5 posted 12-27-2009 02:16 AM

The Ridgid saw on sales sounds good though I have heard people having problems with the top cracking but Ridgid is a rock solid company and should easily take care of you. Personally I would take my time and find a quality used saw from a hobbiest who didn’t take to woodworking. I have seen near new contractor TS from delta powermatic and jet go for around $250 – 350 many many times. Use to search craigs list.

View a1Jim's profile


117276 posts in 3752 days

#6 posted 12-27-2009 02:22 AM

I agree that The Ridgid is about the best you will do for that amount of money unless you go the used saw route.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 4181 days

#7 posted 12-27-2009 02:30 AM

older model used delta unisaw. It will outlast you!

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View KnotWright's profile


258 posts in 3663 days

#8 posted 12-27-2009 02:56 AM

I started out with a craftsmen table saw and used it for 10 + years till I up graded to a nice Jet table saw and its still in my shop working right beside my MiniMax CU300 smart combo machine.

The Jet equipment for me is very easy to align and maintain. I just checked on craigslist in your area and found this saw you might want to look into: also has an equipment section you could check into, might find something in your area for a lot less and a lot more saw than you hope for.

Keep us posted on what you get!

-- James

View russv's profile


262 posts in 3344 days

#9 posted 12-27-2009 03:32 AM


I too started off with a direct drive tablesaw and finally moved up to a rigid contractor TS. with the limited space in your shop you describe, the TS2400LS is an excellent choice. everyone has an opinion about what is a “better” TS but if you want good quality in a small package, rigid makes great products. I bought a rigid 10 years ago and it still does all I need. by starting with that saw you will be able to live within your space. you can upgrade your saw later as you go and won’t need to buy another one. I eventually built my own base and added an Incra fence system so you too can grow with that saw. take a look at my projects for a look at what you can do with a rigid over time. the TS2400LS is small and accurate and has a good fence system to start.

good luck with what ever you decide.

-- where to go because you don't want no stinking plastic!

View dmorgantx's profile


70 posts in 3258 days

#10 posted 12-27-2009 06:02 AM

I have never owned or used a portable table saw… but I can say that from my experience sturdiness matters, especially if you are cutting whole sheet goods. I would think you’d do better with a contractor saw. Two years ago I got a Delta contractor saw with the Bessy fence for around $500- it was an end of year clearance deal- so perhaps you’ll be able to find something of the like. At the time I was also looking at portables and I’m really glad I didn’t go that route. Also Grizzly has been running some specials in Wood magazine that include free shipping and discounts so maybe there is something there to help you.

View danr's profile


154 posts in 3360 days

#11 posted 12-27-2009 06:23 AM

Fine Woodworking magazine has an anual issue out now called “Tools and Shops”. In it you will find (page 76) a review of portable table saws. They picked the Bosch as best overall and the Rigid as best value. You may want to make the $9 investment to see what they have to say about the several portable saws that they reviewed. I generally find thier reviews very helpful.

Good luck with your research.

View Kristoffer's profile


675 posts in 3391 days

#12 posted 12-27-2009 10:46 AM

You guys have NO idea how much I appreciate the input that you have given me already. I’m stil going to wait a few days before I take the leap. As of now, I think that I am going to stick with my first choice (I still haven’t heard one bad thing about it). But, it’s also 3:40ish in the morning and I have a few suggested sites to chech out. I REALLY wish that I could pick up a used/old school, sturdy saw that needs some work, but I wouldn’t know whrere to start on fixing it. And to be honest, I can’t really trust the cat trying to sell it. That’s a sad bit to swallow but unfortunately, that’s the path that folks seem to have taken. Maybe, 15-20 years ago, I could have snatched up a great used saw for the right price and I could trust the guy trying to sell it, but…. Well, that’s a whole other story:-(
Thanks for the thoughts, guys.

-- Cheers and God Bless

View iamwelty's profile


259 posts in 3291 days

#13 posted 12-27-2009 02:25 PM

I’m voting with the Ridgid R4511’s… But they are being cleared out fast. The local Home Depot had the floor model left. $499 and they said they’d take $50 off. BUT, as a floor model it showed sign of abuse… Fence was scratched up and loose, the saw had been assembled poorly. You’d have to take it apart and reassemble is though. So, if you found a similar deal, if you could use the Friends and Family rebate, you’d be under $400 for a very, very solid saw. Buy a good blade and start a cool project.

-- There is a fine line between eroticism and nausea...

View russv's profile


262 posts in 3344 days

#14 posted 12-27-2009 05:38 PM

one more thing about rigid, parts availibility is very good. they have a sight with the maual and schematics so getting parts is easy. this is true for every power tool they make. you order straight off this sight.


-- where to go because you don't want no stinking plastic!

View Kristoffer's profile


675 posts in 3391 days

#15 posted 12-27-2009 05:56 PM

I forgot to ask…. Do any of you have an enemy or an in-law that is looking to buy a used table saw? I’ll give ‘em a good deal, well a good price, that is;-)

-- Cheers and God Bless

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