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Did you regret selling your Radial Arm Saw?

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Forum topic by B4B posted 12-06-2016 02:31 AM 966 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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B4B

154 posts in 1196 days


12-06-2016 02:31 AM

I now have both a radial arm saw that was given to me by my father in law, and I recently purchased a 12” hitachi compound sliding miter saw. I’m considering selling the RAS to free up my limited storage area for my tools. I really don’t use the radial much, and for my projects use it mostly for crosscutting, I’ve used it in a pinch for ripping and really don’t feel safe using it for that. The radial is not really all that precise either as the stops are off and I have to align it each time I drag it out to use it (I have to remove the work surface to fit it in my storage area).

I have read a few RAS vs SCMS threads and have a good feeling about the limitations of either option. I could also tune up the RAS and get it dialed in if I do keep both.

I feel that between the SCMS and a table saw sled I really won’t use the RAS any more.

So, for any hobbiests who has been down this road, did you keep both or sell the RAS? Did you regret the decision to sell? If you kept both do you use then a lot?

Thanks!

-- There's two routers in my vocab, one that moves data and one that removes wood, the latter being more relevant on this forum.


28 replies so far

View DirtyMike's profile

DirtyMike

637 posts in 740 days


#1 posted 12-06-2016 02:54 AM

I have never sold a Radial Arm saw and I don’t think I ever will. It has been a very valuable time saver when used along with my miter saw. If you got a one, keep it.

View Halc's profile

Halc

146 posts in 1440 days


#2 posted 12-06-2016 02:59 AM

I didn’t sell my RAS, I gave it away. As you said, they need constant tuning and are more dangerous than any other woodworking tool I’ve used. I was glad someone took it from me and don’t miss it all.

View EFR's profile

EFR

20 posts in 706 days


#3 posted 12-06-2016 04:06 AM

I also gave away a RAS that was given to me. Got it from my father who took his thumb off with the same saw. Never liked it, seemed dangerous, and it was.

I know many of you still have one, and have used it without incident. To me, it speaks volumes about the care you take in using it, and I respect that.

Ed

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MikesProjects

171 posts in 1740 days


#4 posted 12-06-2016 04:32 AM

I won’t be selling my radial arm saw. Even with a 12” sliding miter saw the radial arm saw has its place.

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

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Woodmaster1

854 posts in 2425 days


#5 posted 12-06-2016 05:18 AM

I have had my radial arm saw for 35yrs. I would not sell or trade it. I use it almost every time I am in the shop. I rarely use my miter saw. It has been over a year since I have used it.

View Redoak49's profile (online now)

Redoak49

2903 posts in 1827 days


#6 posted 12-06-2016 12:04 PM

I sold my DeWalt RAS. I would have kept it if I had the space as it was a very solid machine.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4761 posts in 2331 days


#7 posted 12-06-2016 12:08 PM

Let me say I’m am a fan of the RAS, and I went without one for a short time. That will never happen again! But as i read your post, I think in your case that 1) you have a Craftsman and the alignment thing will haunt you forever. 2) Your work habits seem to have developed in a way that you can survive just fine without one. So my suggestion is (if I’m right about your saw being Craftsman) dump that saw and go without, or better yet: step up to a used Dewalt (one with a solid cast iron arm) or a Delta/Rockwell turret arm saw. Those saws, once tuned, stay dead nuts and most definitely earn their keep in the shop.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

6006 posts in 2037 days


#8 posted 12-06-2016 12:13 PM

Not selling mine any time soon… use it too much. One of the best $50 purchases I’ve made. And I just picked up another one (that I sent the motor back for the recall, and made a few beans on) that I plan on making into an overarm router.

Of course, if you don’t use yours and don’t really have the need, then I see no reason to keep it.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View Garret D., Rock Run's profile

Garret D., Rock Run

72 posts in 1634 days


#9 posted 12-06-2016 12:13 PM

So the thing about a radial arm saw, is that as opposed to the sliding compound miter saw, the RAS usually has an arbor to handle a Box cutting Dado stack on it. Once you got that, well now you have a Dado cutting machine that you can see the line your cutting your groove into and also not have to change blades on your table saw. Also before you toss out the RAS, you should put a shaping bit on it (assuming it is capable) and see what you think about it as a shaper. Just don’t rip with the thing, I never believed in that.

-just my two cents.

View Gene Howe's profile

Gene Howe

9771 posts in 3266 days


#10 posted 12-06-2016 12:21 PM

If mine were the Delta as described by Fred, I’d still have it. Unfortunately, it was the Crapsman. It’s utility was far outweighed by it’s creeping inaccuracy.
Sold it and never looked back.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View gmc's profile

gmc

49 posts in 1994 days


#11 posted 12-06-2016 12:38 PM

Sears bought back both of mine due to a safety recall for more than they were worth. I built a lot of stuff using them but I have never missed them. They took up a lot of space and could be dangerous. Just like all tools it is user preferences. I think they have their place but a table saw and a good multi bevel trim saw satisfy all my needs more safely.

-- Gary, Central Illinois

View LittleShaver's profile

LittleShaver

207 posts in 457 days


#12 posted 12-06-2016 02:12 PM

I had an old crapsman for a few years. Built many things with it, but it always needed adjustment and scared the beejezes out of me. I finally got a table saw and gave the RAS away. One of the happiest days in the shop.

Perhaps if I’d had a good RAS things might have worked out between us….sorry, I tend to get attached to my tools.

-- Sawdust Maker

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

2716 posts in 1319 days


#13 posted 12-06-2016 03:10 PM

You probably won’t be able to sell it – give it away, maybe.

I have both MS and RAS. I keep a fine tooth blade in the MS and a use the RAS for cutting stock to length.

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

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

613 posts in 747 days


#14 posted 12-06-2016 03:29 PM



step up to a used Dewalt (one with a solid cast iron arm) or a Delta/Rockwell turret arm saw. Those saws, once tuned, stay dead nuts and most definitely earn their keep in the shop.

- Fred Hargis

+1 on that. I have a DeWalt RAS that’s more than 60 years old and is the most solid machine I own. Granted, it was a Royal PITA to set up and build the table for but now it chews through anything that fits in it and you could run it over with a locomotive and it’d still cut dead accurate. I use it for everything from crosscutting to miter cuts. Definitely not a tool I would use to rip stock with, but that’s what the TS is for. After having a few close calls with other tools and managing to keep all my fingers, I absolutely approach the RAS with a healthy dose of caution. But, as with any power tool, is only as safe as the user in charge of it.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View GR8HUNTER's profile (online now)

GR8HUNTER

2965 posts in 550 days


#15 posted 12-06-2016 03:55 PM

mine was a craftsman I just let it die a peaceful death ….. first tool I ever bought for the shop …....... thought I needed one cuz grandpa had one ….....LOL …... find out didn’t use it much …..had a lot of play in it …......left to right impossible to fix it …....... will NOT buy another one …....... my craigslist has them for $50.00 bucks

-- Tony Reinholds,Pa. REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

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