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Sawstop Jobsite Saw (JSS) as a Shop Saw

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Forum topic by Willowman posted 03-29-2016 02:21 AM 1642 views 1 time favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Willowman

9 posts in 251 days


03-29-2016 02:21 AM

Topic tags/keywords: jss sawstop incra biesemeyer portamax jr tablesaw custom fence

As a new saw owner, I recently decided to stop lurking here on lumberjocks and make my presence known. The majority of this posting was written a couple of days ago as a response to DarkLightning’s review of the Sawstop Jobsite saw (JSS), but he suggested that I start a new thread on this particular saw since information and discussion online is fairly limited. Most of what I was able to find while doing research is focussed on comparing the JSS to the rest of the portable saws out there and whether the Sawstop technology is worth the high price. Lets assume for this discussion, that we don’t need to rehash that here since I have already purchased the saw.

I also have read Kalison’s review of the stock set up of this saw elsewhere on Lumberjocks. He speaks highly of everything except the Miter slots and gauge.

What i would love to see here is postings of actual experiences with the Sawstop JSS and ways in which people have used aftermarket attachments to make it more useful and precise for finer woodworking than framing up houses and general contractor work. My initial posting below goes into my current specific need to repair or upgrade the fence system.

Here is that post (slightly edited) and i will follow up with the relevant reply copied from elsewhere on Lumberjocs in order to get this thread started. – Dave

I used to have access to friends $9000+ sliding saws and big Powermatics, but I moved. Now my little garage shop in the making (and my bank account) won’t accommodate those wonderful and accurate saws. Most of my work is with hand tools and willow branches (see my website) but I want to start expanding what I can do which means more tools. I was looking at a Delta Hybrid for around $650 that had a few good write ups, but when a Sawstop JSS showed up on CL for the same price, I went for it. Mobility was not my priority in buying this saw. I just decided to sacrifice the benefits of a hybrid or cabinet saw in order to get the safety features of the Sawstop.
Luckily, I got an amazing deal because the front and back fence rails and far right aluminum tabletop were damaged by a forklift in the crate during delivery to the original purchaser. I assume they got a replacement saw, and this one went into the land of damaged and returned merchandise. Aside from the damage, it is brand new.

The people at Sawstop are being very helpful figuring out the parts needed for the repair, and it looks like the parts will run me $150-$200 to bring it back to new condition. As long as I have to replace the rails and table extension though, I thought I would also look into alternative fence systems that might work on this saw to improve accuracy and ease of use. As I said, mobility was not my priority in buying this saw. I just decided to sacrifice the benefits of a hybrid or cabinet saw in order to get the safety features of the Sawstop. I know I can easily resell this saw if I outgrow it’s capabilities.

What is everyone’s experience with the stock fence? Maybe a good sled and upgraded Miter Gauge would be enough to improve accuracy? My budget is not unlimited, or I think I would buy the smaller Incra Fence to play with, assuming it bolts on ok. HAs anyone done this? IT looks like the JSS’s table extension is supported by the rails, so without having the Incra rails in my hand, I cannot tell if it would all bolt up ok. The Incra does seem to be the only aftermarket system that uses slotted rails so the hardware that attaches to the saw can be lined up with the original threaded holes in the saw table, which saves any drilling of the new fence rails or the saw itself. Given that the JSS is mostly plastic and thin aluminum with reinforced threaded blocks at the mounting spots, I would not want to try to drill new holes in the saw anyway. It does look like the extended rails wont mess with folding the saw up for storage that much, since when the cart folds, the left side of the saw goes to the ground and the rails would point straight up in the air. Not great for loading into a pickup truck, but that is not me end use.

The options I am currently considering are:
1- Saving up for the Incra Fence ($400?) It seems BIG though, for this size saw?
2- Buying stock parts ($150-200)
3- Buying a Rossuau Portamax Jr 2600 if it fits ($155)
4- Maybe a Delta T3? ($185) This may be TOO big though, and weight may become an issue.

Any insights gained in owning this saw would be appreciated. I can’t wait to bolt something on and make sawdust.

00000000000 Response from Dark_Lightning 0000000000

I had an Incra Miter 1000 HD that I bought many years ago. It works great on this saw.

I made a “throat deepener” out of aluminum that I have yet to post. That will be in a different thread. I want to get a picture of it, but haven’t done that. It lays in the slots and I have a larger sled that has HDPE rails routed in the bottom that ride on the aluminum bars that fit in the slots. It is dead-on.

The stock fence is, so far, dead parallel to the rails and the blade. I have no problem making cuts parallel when using it. Of course, with wear, that may be an issue, but I expect that to be many years from now.

As far as communication, here is fine. I don’t see a lot of people posting about the JSS, so having the information available “in the open” is better, I think. Maybe a new thread that talks about what we’ve done to make the saw do things outside what it was meant to do?

0000000000 And my Follow Up 0000000000

Good idea about the new thread. I will get that going soon. It will be a good way to get started here at LJ and a good way to consolidate info about this cool saw.

I would love to see the Throat deepener and sled set up. I assume that is to make up for the lack of table in front of the blade?

As for the incra, It sounds like you use it AND the stock fence. How do you switch back and forth without swapping the rails?

I really cant decide if I should stop trying to reinvent the wheel like I usually do, and just buy the Sawstop replacement parts. Maybe they designed it really well to tight tolerances. Tight enough for me anyway. That thin aluminum tube fence just doesnt “feel” as solid as any of the other aftermarket ones I have used. To be fair though, I have not been able to make a single cut on the Sawstop without making the repairs first.


16 replies so far

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Dark_Lightning

2631 posts in 2569 days


#1 posted 03-29-2016 02:57 AM

OK, here are a couple of pics of the “throat deepener” that I made to make the JSS more useful for the kinds of things I want to do. First article off this is a new chest for my carving tools. The fixture is made from a pair of aluminum bars and some angle aluminum stock. The bars are on top. The angle aluminum piece at the left side of picture 2 is there to hook the assembly on the rear fence rail so that the fixture doesn’t tip when I load the front side. (It is upside down in the pic. I should probably install it and take a side view shot to make it more clear. I’ll do that tomorrow.) The whole magilla is held together with JB Weld until I get some rivets in it. I simply lay the fixture onto the table so that the back angle aluminum piece clears the back fence rail and then pull it towards me (about 1/2”). Then I use one of those plastic chinesium clamps to keep it from slipping back when I run the sled over it. The sled is pretty much like any other, but runs on top of the aluminum rails instead of in the miter tool grooves. I dadoed some HDPE strips for that. I neglected to take a picture of the sled, but it should be pretty straightforward from the description. If anyone thinks that my explanation above isn’t enough, let me know and I’ll get some pics. I have to use the camera on my wife’s phone, and it isn’t always readily available.

NB: I do not use Incra miter gauge and the fence at the same time!

-- Random Orbital Nailer

View Willowman's profile

Willowman

9 posts in 251 days


#2 posted 03-29-2016 04:50 AM

Those pics are good. I can see it. It is very elegant. Thank you. I like that JB weld works in the short term.

As for the Miter gauge and fence use… got it. Don’t use them at the same time. Well… unless I want to make a cutoff launcher. My question was actually based on the fact that I thought you had said you had an Incra fence and rails on your JSS. Like this one shown on a similar Bosch saw.

When you said that an Incra tool worked great on the JSS I skipped over the word “Miter” and saw what I wanted to know, which was if the Incra “FENCE” could be fitted to the JSS. No matter what, I will buy one of the Incra Miters, but which one will depend on how much I spend on repairing or replacing my fence and rails.

Thanks again for the pictures and info.

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Dark_Lightning

2631 posts in 2569 days


#3 posted 03-29-2016 03:12 PM

Thanks for the compliment on the jig. I think that JB Weld might be good for the long term, but I’m more of a weld or rivet kind of guy. I don’t want to have it welded now that the glue is there, as I’ve never welded aluminum, myself. I don’t like dealing with heat distortion, in any event.

I have one of those fences. I didn’t mount it, because I wasn’t sure it would work. If you took the side rails off to get that Incra fence to fit, I may do that. Can you still get to the tool tray under the table? I see you took the saw off the stand. I considered that. If I use that Incra fence, I would take it off the stand, too, and make leg at the end of the fence. That fence pretty much renders it “non-transportable”, but I can live with that.

ETA- I just looked up the Incra 1000HD miter gauge, it is $200 now at Rockler! I paid less, pretty sure I got in during a sale. I’ve also had it about 8 years. I pulled it out of the box a couple of weeks ago to use it on my new saw.

-- Random Orbital Nailer

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Willowman

9 posts in 251 days


#4 posted 03-31-2016 04:33 AM

That photo was just something I found online to reference what the Incra system would look like on our saw. That saw in the photo is a Bosch I believe, but the build is very similar to the JSS.

I do in fact have the rails off of my saw now. They were both damaged, so I had no choice. popping the end caps off and loosening a few screws allows the whole thing to slide off the pucks that support it. What I liked about the looks of the Incra rails, was that they are the only rail system I have seen that have vertically and horizontally adjustable mounts. They seem to be able to be lined up with the existing threaded holes on the JSS for mounting without any drilling of the saw or the new rails. The more I look at pictures of the Incra on other portable saws, the more it seems that you might be right, that it is just too big once mounted. In order to have 25” capacity right of the blade like the stock set up, the Incra rails and supports are hanging WAY out there to the right.

I have written to Rousseau about the JR system they fit to the little Bosch and Makita saws to see if they have mounted one on the JSS. The price would be similar to Stock replacement parts, but possibly more precise? At this point I have not used either of them, so should probably stop speculating. I just really want to do this right and once.

I will start watching for sales on the Incra Miter gauges. Thanks for the tip.

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rwe2156

2189 posts in 941 days


#5 posted 03-31-2016 06:24 PM

Why would you put a fence system that is 3X what the saw is worth?

I don’t get it.

Take the money the Incra jig costs and just buy a decent saw, no?

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

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SirIrb

1239 posts in 690 days


#6 posted 03-31-2016 07:10 PM



Why would you put a fence system that is 3X what the saw is worth?

I don t get it.

Take the money the Incra jig costs and just buy a decent saw, no?

- rwe2156

^^^this guy^^^

...Speaks the truth.

-- Don't blame me, I voted for no one.

View Willowman's profile

Willowman

9 posts in 251 days


#7 posted 03-31-2016 09:14 PM

Well, the premise of this thread is that I wanted my first tablesaw to have a riving knife and maybe even Sawstop technology. That fact changes the conversation significantly from the usual “find an old powerful hunk of iron and clean it up”. Originally, even the Sawstop was out of my price range, but I found a deal on the Jobsite saw and jumped on it. I just decided to sacrifice the benefits of a hybrid or cabinet saw in order to get the safety features of the Sawstop. If my skills and needs outgrow it, (and my budget for a new saw increases) I know i will have no trouble selling it. I know some guys think the Sawstop is a waste of money, but I have seen first hand the damage a tablesaw can do to even the most careful and attentive woodworker. Look up the definition of “accident”. If i CAN afford the extra safety, why NOT? I am primarily a sculptor and am always testing the limits of my tools. Also I have a seven year old that is showing interest in the tools in my shop. When I do teach him to use the big saws, I will feel WAY better knowing the Sawstop tech is there.

So the JSS is no cabinet saw, but it is supposed to be a very precise machine. To fix the broken fence and rails on mine (the reason I got it cheap) is a couple of hundred dollars. The Incra is a couple of hundred on top of that, which is still only 1/3 of the original cost of the saw, not 3x. I cannot afford a better saw right now, but maybe I can improve the saw I have with the best fence out there, which will be able to transfer to any saw I own in the future. Mostly, I am just working with what I have and trying to make the most of it.

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bbasiaga

754 posts in 1455 days


#8 posted 03-31-2016 10:24 PM

You’ll do fine with that saw. Make some sleds for it. Find a way to weight it down for working on big pieces of deep cuts. My bro has one and he likes it. The fast up and down on the blade s a super nice feature.

-Brian

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View Dark_Lightning's profile

Dark_Lightning

2631 posts in 2569 days


#9 posted 04-01-2016 12:37 AM



You ll do fine with that saw. Make some sleds for it. Find a way to weight it down for working on big pieces of deep cuts. My bro has one and he likes it. The fast up and down on the blade s a super nice feature.

-Brian

- bbasiaga

That fast up and down is a detraction, in my book. If I am making a rabbet or dado, I have to fiddle the crank slowly, possibly up and down several times, to get the height right. I haven’t used my JSS all that much, so maybe I’ll get more practiced and it will seem less fiddly over time.

-- Random Orbital Nailer

View Willowman's profile

Willowman

9 posts in 251 days


#10 posted 06-17-2016 03:35 AM

Follow up…

I decided to rebuild the saw as stock, since I had already wasted lots of time researching options. All of the non-stock options required lots of customization of parts to make everything fit, with unsure results.

So far I love it. For basic work it is fantastic. A little slow ripping 4×4 but I knew that would be the case. (Stock blade – possibly less than ideal electrical source blowing the fuse once). I have already found the saws limitations for fine woodworking, but am going to stick with it for now, as a good friend and careful woodworker just about lost his thumb a couple of days ago to an unforseen table saw accident. Hearing him talk about it made me thankful for my decision to sacrifice the big precise saw for safety for now. I hope I never have to go through what he is now going through. Thumb hanging by skin, rebuilding with wire and rod and flesh from elsewhere on the body, loss of work, changing the baby’s diaper one handed, cancelled surf lessons after just moving to the beach in California, etc… No thanks.

Incra miter is in the works, as are an outfeed table and a sled or two. Lets see what I can make with this thing.

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MikesProjects

162 posts in 1362 days


#11 posted 06-17-2016 05:04 AM

you could have fun building the outfeed table. Perhaps it could be an extended workbench with drawers & storage. Sorry about your friend injury, i cut my thumb 15 years ago at work on a 5hp table-saw in a cabinet shop, luckily it was just a flesh wound that only needed 6 stitches , was super scary, taught me to slow down early in my woodworking career. Recently, (February) there was an accident at the woodshop I install for, the shop foreman with 20+ years experience cut off 2 fingers on the table saw, dust collection sucked them up & the shop guys looked for them for hours while he was rushed to the er. Never found them (industrial collector) Well, not only does he not have fingers his pride was taken away & it is a very extremely embarrassing situation for him as any of us can imagine. I spoke up about possibly replacing the 3 commercial table saws for sawstops ics & they said the owners would never spend that kind of money upgrading, to be careful. There ya have it.

-- -Mike, Southern California, YouTube User ( Give & Take )

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MrUnix

4203 posts in 1659 days


#12 posted 06-17-2016 07:36 AM

I just decided to sacrifice the benefits… to get the safety features…
- Willowman

That right there pretty much sums it up…

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

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johnstoneb

2143 posts in 1633 days


#13 posted 06-17-2016 01:43 PM

I think you will find that saw will work very well for you. And to find any Sawstop in the $6-700 range is unheard of. The safety alone is worth way more than that. The saw it self is very well built.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

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a1Jim

115201 posts in 3037 days


#14 posted 06-17-2016 02:06 PM

Each person has to decide for them self what tools are best for them. I’m a big fan of saw stops but normally would not recommend a job site saw because of their light weight and small table top and minimal power ,but if this saw works for you and the projects you make ,enjoy!

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

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WhoMe

1464 posts in 2703 days


#15 posted 06-17-2016 02:29 PM

I spoke up about possibly replacing the 3 commercial table saws for sawstops ics & they said the owners would never spend that kind of money upgrading, to be careful. There ya have it.

- MikesProjects

Sorry to hear of the accidents.
Maybe you should revisit that when the additional insurance bills, any workmans comp claim payouts and the true costs of the loss of productivity rear their ugly heads.
I have been told by several owners of wood/cabinet shops that some insurance companies do premium discounts for saw stops due to liability/injury reductions. Not to mention they need to talk to their tax man. That is a business expense that is immediately deductcable and has an annual depreciation for the first several years. I bet they will find that it will not be near as costly as they think. Not to mention the better benefit of minimizing any more serious accidents.
Where I work, we sell numerous saw stops (mainly ics) the last week of the calendar year just on that reason alone.

-- I'm not clumsy.. It's just the floor hates me, the tables and chairs are bullies, the wall gets in the way AAANNNDDD table saws BITE my fingers!!!.. - Mike -

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