New Table Saw or Blade?

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Forum topic by funchuck posted 01-12-2010 01:10 AM 3198 views 0 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View funchuck's profile


119 posts in 3052 days

01-12-2010 01:10 AM

Hi Everyone,

I currently have a cheap table saw ($100 Delta TS200 w/ Stand) that is about 5 or 6 years old.

I get a lot of tear out when I use the saw. I think it is because I am still using the stock blade. The miter gauge on the saw is not good (there’s a lot of slop), but I am ok with the fence.

My question is, should I buy a new blade? I am considering one of the better Freud blades (the Forrest is too expensive). I would also need to make a zero clearance insert (Not sure how difficult that would be).

Or, would a new table saw be a better option? I am thinking the Grizzly G0444 for $589 delivered, or maybe a Ridgid one for around the same price. I would need to save up to get it, but would it be worth it?

A lot of what I have read seems to be that people upgrade their saws for more power and accuracy. I am just fine with the power from my saw and although it is not the most accurate saw, I am ok with that too. What would a better saw have that this one doesn’t?



-- Charles from California

27 replies so far

View bsherman's profile


76 posts in 3523 days

#1 posted 01-12-2010 01:16 AM

I used to have this saw and I upgraded to a used Ridgid TS3650 for about $275. In addition to more power, a bigger saw will be more stable (less tippy), less vibration, and should give you a better fence. I did a lot of work on the delta, but there really is a big difference.

If you are just worried about tearout, a zero clearance insert, and a new blade would help. Good luck.

-- Brian

View TheDane's profile


5423 posts in 3658 days

#2 posted 01-12-2010 01:17 AM

I had one of those little Delta saws … hated it. Good luck finding our making a zero-clearance insert.

To your question: A better blade will improve performance, but cannot offset any failings of the tool itself. I finally dumped mine and bought a Jet Workshop 708100, which I am very happy with. if you peruse the postings on this form, you’ll find a lot of info on both the Ridgid and Grizzly offerings.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3817 days

#3 posted 01-12-2010 01:24 AM

Charles, stock blades are generally not very high quality. Here is a post that Knotscott posted a few days ago on selecting a saw blade that is pretty informative.

One of the things I would suggest from reading your post is that your table saw should be accurate. Generally a table saw is the heart of the workshop and, if it does not produce accurate cuts, then it is extremely difficult to produce accurate work.

A friend of mine, who is a pro, gave me some solid advice when I first started into woodworking. He advised me to spend the most money my budget will allow on a given tool. The times that I have not heeded this advice, and let price alone be the determinate for buying a tool, I have come to regret it later.

Whether to get a new saw or not is really dependent on the type of woodworking that you do. If indeed as you say accuracy is not an issue then the saw should serve your style of woodworking well. A new blade should markedly improve the tear out. But, if you are into furniture and cabinetry, then a better saw (and blade) would be worth saving up for, in my opinion.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2137 posts in 3104 days

#4 posted 01-12-2010 01:34 AM

Whether or not you decide to get a new tablesaw, I would still look into a new blade. I have seen a few people upgrade their tools and then try to offset the increased cost by using cheaper cutters. Despite the saw, a good thin kerf blade will improve the quality of the cut. If you upgrade the saw, but still use stock blades, you will be disappointed and notice little improvement. One thing you might want to do is purchase a higher quality blade first and see if you are more satisfied with the cuts. You still might be unhappy with the saw, but you would enjoy an improvement in the shop until your new saw is set up.


-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Fireball's profile


71 posts in 4062 days

#5 posted 01-12-2010 01:47 AM

Go ahead and spend the money on a good blade. It will be an improvement on what you currently have, and can be used in your new saw as well should you decide to upgrade.

I love my Forrest WW2.

View knotscott's profile


8008 posts in 3371 days

#6 posted 01-12-2010 01:51 AM

“Both” is really the best answer from a performance perspective. Any saw is only as good as it’s blade and setup, but you’re current saw is pretty limited. I agree with you about not putting a $100 blade on that particular saw, but I do think it’s worth one of the entry level Freud’s like the Diablo D1040 for $30, or even a Ridgid Titanium R1050, Diablo 1050, or CMT P10050 for ~ $40….all surprisingly good budget blades.

Get that blade mounted on your current saw, then you can start planning that saw upgrade, and wait for the right deal…eitherway, that $30 or $40 blade is going to come in handy on whichever saw you end up with.

A “better” saw will be much more pleasant to use overall and will be safer. A full size saw will have every mechanical advantage you can think of over the TS200. It’ll have more space to work with, especially in front the blade, quieter smoother motor, much more stability, it’ll hold alignment better, have better accuracy, better longevity, better resale value, easier blade and fence adjustments….everything but better portability.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View iamwelty's profile


259 posts in 3111 days

#7 posted 01-12-2010 01:55 AM

It all depends on what you do, what you want to do, what your goals are. If you are cutting an occasional 2 X 4 and don’t have a need for accuracy, then get a better blade and don’t worry about it. If your goal is to do more wood working, make some great projects and to develop into a wood worker, then I’d invest in a better saw. Of course, it must be affordable… I look at tools and wood working as therapy…

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

View davidroberts's profile


1027 posts in 3481 days

#8 posted 01-12-2010 02:23 AM

The bottom line is the best quality most expensive table saw is only as good as the blade installed. You will improve your saw’s performance 100% using a quality blade. Freud is good quality and a good start. Besides you can always keep the blade to use when the time comes to upgrade your saw. Good luck.

-- Better woodworking through old hand tools.

View funchuck's profile


119 posts in 3052 days

#9 posted 01-12-2010 02:26 AM

Wow, thanks for all the advice!

I just bought a grizzly jointer, so it will be a while before I can afford another big purchase.

I think the advice of buying the blade first is good. I didn’t think about it, but I would have to buy a blade either way.

In the past, I’ve use my table saw for cutting sheet goods, but since I’ve gotten a good circular saw (the Dewalt 18v cordless one), I much prefer the circular saw.

But now that I bought a jointer, I want to use the table saw to square up my stock.

knotscott: I did not think about the safety factor or the quieter motor. I live in a residential neighborhood and my table saw is pretty loud. There is no link belt option on this saw either.

I think I will buy a good saw blade, then see if I am satisfied. If not, I will probably be looking for a new table saw… the “safety” factor should be a good one to mention when i discuss the budget with my wife!

-- Charles from California

View _bp's profile


18 posts in 3262 days

#10 posted 01-12-2010 05:22 AM

Well, if you decide on a new saw and if tomorrow is soon enough for a big purchase, it might not really need to be such a big purchase.

Ridigid Granite-top saw: $299.

I don’t know that these are the quickest movers, but that pace will probably pick up at that price.

I can confirm that this exists at least in the DC area, and it appears that it might be national.

View drfixit's profile


318 posts in 3139 days

#11 posted 01-12-2010 05:30 AM

Same price here in Jacksonville, FL
and they match %off coupons from other competitors

-- I GIVE UP!!!! I've cut this @!&*!% board 3 times.... its still too short!

View BuilderII's profile


6 posts in 3053 days

#12 posted 01-12-2010 06:33 AM

I would definately get a new saw, but pick out your saw before you buy an expensive blade. Some good saws come with what you need for the job and if it don’t, then you can always get what you need afterwards.

-- Build Better.

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3064 days

#13 posted 01-12-2010 07:26 AM

Is the stock blade carbide? If it isn’t, it’s probably well past the point of giving decent cuts in even the best saw. Since you’re “ok” with your saws power and accuracy, why not pick up a new blade and see if it’s performance doesn’t improve. Even a $40 blade from Home Depot will probably be a significant improvement.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View funchuck's profile


119 posts in 3052 days

#14 posted 01-12-2010 11:18 AM

_bp: That is a great price! I was looking at the Ridgid TS3650/TS3660 model, but if this is 299, then I am getting it! From reading the slickdeals thread, it looks like people are already buying them up. I will be at my local HD tomorrow, hopefully, there will be one sitting there just for me! At that price, I can buy a good blade too!

Sawkerf: I believe the stock blade is carbide, but the writing on the blade is all worn off, so I can’t verify for sure. But I have always gotten some tear out. I usually ended up sanding it down and filling it in.

Thanks guys.

-- Charles from California

View iamwelty's profile


259 posts in 3111 days

#15 posted 01-12-2010 02:50 PM

People were happy with the saw at $699… $299 is simply crazy cheap… I paid $450 and am extremely happy. I’d race over to HD and buy that $299 saw…

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

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