Canadians - which cabinet saw?

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Forum topic by DalyArcher posted 11-23-2016 09:08 PM 940 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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118 posts in 1354 days

11-23-2016 09:08 PM

I am still a few months off from having my shop move in ready, and I perhaps foolishly implicated myself in a new project (got a lift of hardi-plank for too good a price to pass up, will be residing my home in the spring) all said however, I do want to start seriously researching a new cabinet saw.

I currently own a Delta contractor saw (36-650), a great saw, but I feel I need more. I want to build my own kitchen cabinets, living room and bed room furniture, closets, etc. I want a 3 hp saw (already wired the shop appropriately) with a 50 inch rip capacity and riving knife.

Could probably squeeze around 3 grand, but if anyone knows a screaming deal I am not aware of, let me know. I have looked at briefly online the following:
1) General International
2) king Industrial
3) CWI Stallion
4) Laguna Platnium
5) Powermatic

I received a quote from the Powermatic but it was north of 4k. I do like the General line, but it seems a lot of retailers are no longer carrying (KMS Tools for example), something happening to the line I do not know about? The King industrial has a surprisingly nice fence. I did get to play with one at KMS Tools last year, but the hand wheels are a little weak feeling and the throat plates seem around 1/8” thick.

Online the CWI looks great, but I have not heard much about this line despite their claims to have been around for 47 plus years. Are they a re-branding of something else or was my head in the sand the last 15 years while I was using delta machines.

I started looking at Laguna last week and truthfully like what I read. However, I know the value of putting hands to steel and getting a true, hands on experience.

All truth told, I would love to find a 20 odd year old unisaw I can retro fit with a riving knife. Unfortunately I live in Northern BC and as hesitant as I am to drop a few grand on a saw brand I am unfamiliar with, I am even more so to drop a thousand or more on a used saw I cannot fully inspect.

Anybody use any of these machines or want to suggest something else that will fit the bill?

6 replies so far

View Randy Woodworker's profile

Randy Woodworker

68 posts in 2564 days

#1 posted 11-23-2016 09:15 PM

I love my setup. A bit more than your price, but over the years the incremental cost is peanuts. Won’t cut my fingers off either.

The SawStop is a top quality saw, even if you ignore the safety aspect. I have owned General (whose Canadian built saws were put out of business by the SawStop) and Unisaw and the SawStop is equal to or better than both.

The Jessem slider I got off Kijiji new in the box. They don’t make them anymore.
There is a Jessem router lift on the RHS with a 3 HP Milwaukee router.

View knotscott's profile


8173 posts in 3610 days

#2 posted 11-23-2016 09:46 PM

The PM2000 is a top line saw…so is the Saw Stop ICS. Even the SS PCS is an excellent saw. The Canadian made General line was also excellent, but was discontinued a few years ago. You might find NOS or a used General 650 or 650. The General International line is more similar to other Asian made imports. At one time the Laguna Platinum was the same saw as the Grizzly G0690 and Craftex CX200, so those would be models I’d add to your list. King Industrial can be a good bang for the buck.

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

View Andre's profile


2354 posts in 2040 days

#3 posted 11-23-2016 11:51 PM

I picked up an older Delta(Made in the U.S.A.) 2hp hybrid a couple of years ago and switched it to 220V and bought some good blades and havn’t found anything it will not cut. That said I did put on an Craftex fence and replaced the miter with a Kregg, hindsight would of went with a Incra.
The General would have been my first choice if the Delta hadn’t shown up, that said I really do like the Craftex CX200, same fence as the one I bought. General has been replaced by Magnum and from what I have seen so far, might be another contender, especially since KMS in Kamloops should carry them.

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View DalyArcher's profile


118 posts in 1354 days

#4 posted 11-24-2016 12:43 AM

I wondered about the Magnum line at KMS. Is it being manufactured by General? Is General still around, I know the General Canada line is sadly no more. If I could find a good used General Canada, I would pick that up and retrofit an aftermarket riving knife.

View Downwindtracker2's profile


2 posts in 797 days

#5 posted 11-24-2016 12:44 AM

General International has run into financial problems . Jet(Powermatic) has problems exporting to Canada. The Magnum brand is the old General International tools painted dark grey. They are talking about doing a decent job of parts.

-- man of foolish pursuits

View DalyArcher's profile


118 posts in 1354 days

#6 posted 11-24-2016 12:50 AM

CWI and Laguna are pulling away from the pack as contenders.

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