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Forum topic by unclearthur posted 02-15-2017 06:20 PM 1868 views 0 times favorited 50 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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unclearthur

123 posts in 1626 days


02-15-2017 06:20 PM

This question is aimed at those people who currently use tablesaws with under say 2 hp. I’d be interested to know what sort of cuts that you make where you wish you had more power, in particular what sort of cuts that you find you cannot make cleanly with your saw?

I’m curious because I am planning to upgrade my 1.5 hp contractor saw to a hybrid/cabinet saw (probably Laguna Fusion or PM 1000), and reading through various threads it seems a lot of people feel these types of saws are underpowered and it is more or less a no-brainer to get a 3 hp saw instead. I totally get why you would want a bigger saw for a prod’n shop but for a very low volume hobby shop where speed and wear/tear are not really factors, I’m wondering what the practical difference would be. What sort of cuts would I be able to do on a 3 hp saw that i wouldn’t be able to do on a 1.75 hp saw? Interested in people’s actual experiences with this. (I do have a bandsaw for resawing).

Thanks for any replies!


50 replies so far

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papadan

3584 posts in 3206 days


#1 posted 02-15-2017 06:27 PM

I was going to offer some info, but your original question kicked me out of the conversation by not pertaing to me. Good luck.

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unclearthur

123 posts in 1626 days


#2 posted 02-15-2017 06:28 PM

Sorry, didn’t mean it like that. All replies of course welcome and appreciated.

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johnstoneb

2641 posts in 2011 days


#3 posted 02-15-2017 06:35 PM

I have never had a cut I couldn’t make. I cut up through 8/4 hardwoods. A sharp blade makes all the difference in the world. Using a 113 craftsman and now a sawstop contractor’s

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

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William Shelley

479 posts in 1307 days


#4 posted 02-15-2017 06:38 PM

I have a Ridgid R4512, 1.5hp I think. Haven’t had any issues except when I tried to rip 4/4 hickory. That stuff is ridiculous. I even resawed 3” Ipe and the saw didn’t struggle like it did with the hickory.

-- Woodworking from an engineer's perspective

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MrUnix

6006 posts in 2037 days


#5 posted 02-15-2017 06:45 PM

In terms of what can be cut – both of these will cut the same stuff:

The main difference being that the Unisaw will take stuff being thrown it all day long without complaint, while the plastic saw would melt and die under the same circumstance. For occasional hobby type stuff, the blade is more important than the horsepower, and both will cut the same materials just fine.

Cheers,
Brad

PS: I think you will see a trend in these ‘what size saw’ threads – those who have larger saws will tell you they wouldn’t want to go smaller, and those with smaller saws will tell you they don’t see a need to go bigger :)

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

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bondogaposis

4478 posts in 2189 days


#6 posted 02-15-2017 06:49 PM

If you intend to rip 8/4 hardwoods or thicker you will be limited to thin kerf blades. Even then you will have to watch the feed rate or you will stall the saw. Sharp blades are a must. I used a contractor saw for 30 years and got by with it, I recently upgraded to 3 HP cabinet saw and don’t miss tripping the breaker on heavy cuts.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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LittleShaver

207 posts in 457 days


#7 posted 02-15-2017 06:59 PM

As another hobbyist, I can tell you that a small saw will do everything a big saw will do, it just may take a little longer.
It took me almost 25 years to kill a Ryobi BT3000, cutting everything from pressure treated 4×4s to full depth of blade rips on oak and hickory. I always used thin kerf blades. Just “upgraded” to a delta 36-725. So far it feels like it will do the same work as the old saw. Miss the sliding table from the BT3000, but now I get to build sleds like the rest of you. If you are looking at small saws, pay particular attention to the fence. That’s what sold me on the delta.

-- Sawdust Maker

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Slider20

119 posts in 359 days


#8 posted 02-15-2017 07:03 PM

Not sure if this is helpful to you, but I have a SawStop Jobsite Saw, I use a Standard Full Kerf Blade on it, right now it’s a Forrest Woodworker II, an all purpose blade.

Recently I ripped quite allot of 8/4 Walnut on it with no issue at all, very clean cuts with minimal burning.
Maybe I could have ripped a bit faster with a more powerful motor, but I’m just a Hobbyist, so It’s fine if it takes me an extra 2 seconds.

Personally, see no reason for more power

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Jimbo4

1578 posts in 2601 days


#9 posted 02-15-2017 07:09 PM

Are you in a hurry ? Slow the feed rate. I’ve had a 113 for over 15 years, haven’t stalled it yet.

-- When I was a kid I wanted to be older . . . . . this CRAP is not what I expected !

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Woodchuck2010

704 posts in 696 days


#10 posted 02-15-2017 07:21 PM

My PM1000 cuts everything cleanly with no problems. Love it.

-- Chuck, Michigan,

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knotscott

7787 posts in 3213 days


#11 posted 02-15-2017 07:23 PM

I owned 3 saws that were less than 2hp before I went with a 3hp cabinet saw. With the right blade and good setup, all could cut nearly anything I needed to full blade height. However, they didn’t always do it easily, and they were never as nice to use as the saw I have now. It’s alot easier to bog a 1.75hp saw than it is a 3hp saw. My question is if you’re going to make a change from your current saw, why not buy the best saw in your price range, and why wouldn’t you want 3hp vs 1.75hp if it’s an option?

The Fusion and PM1000 are not an inexpensive saws, and are not the necessarily the best saws in your price range IMO. Of those two, the PM1000 is the more robust saw with a better fence, but for the same or less money you can land you a new 3hp industrial cabinet saw at your door….you’d gain about 65% more mass, 70% more power, a better fence (pertains to the Fusion), larger hand wheels, and more robust underpinnings. All that should potentially lead to better long term reliability, better accuracy, increased stability, smoother operation, and ultimately increased user satisfaction….possibly even better resale value. There are more variables involved than just horsepower.

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

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knotscott

7787 posts in 3213 days


#12 posted 02-15-2017 07:26 PM

...dbl post

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

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papadan

3584 posts in 3206 days


#13 posted 02-15-2017 07:46 PM



Sorry, didn t mean it like that. All replies of course welcome and appreciated.

- unclearthur


OK you asked about lower power tablesaws. I have the Ridgid portable TS2400. I bought it when they came out new in 99-2000, I don’t know the HP but it is low. If I rip over 5/4 hardwoods or evn 4/4 exotics I have to slow down my feed rate to keep from stressing the saw. There is what your question intended! You kept going with what cuts can’t you do with this saw. That got my first reply to not reply. There is no such thing as a clean cut my saw wont do. The table saw is a frame to hold the motor in place and support the workpiece, The ability of any saw is dependent on accurate set up to prevent binding of the piece, The quality, type, and sharpness of the blade and then knowledge of how to operate the TS with the different pieces. I have no problems ripping 12/4 purpleheart on my 18 yo little portable tablesaw. Neither of us are kids anymore so we just slow down and get-r-dun.

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papadan

3584 posts in 3206 days


#14 posted 02-15-2017 08:20 PM

Almost forgot about this one. No long ago I bought a new Ryobi 10” TS for a hundred bucks. My health went south for the winter, and forgot it’s way back, several years ago. I can’t do what I used to, but My stash is in the garage along with my milling equipment. I use a 2×4 frame and C saw to rip down most of my wood. It’s mostly Veneer core so it is 12-24” wide and 12-24’ long. Ok then I joint and edge so I can rip it down to close usage sizes. I plane it to thickness I want Cut the lengths down to manageable also. These days most of my woodworking is small jewelry boxes, shadow boxes desktop curios all the way down to jewelry. I can’t stay out in the elements anymore so I built a small shop out of a spare bedroom. The only full size machine in there is my Delta 18-900 drill press.( I ordered a casket to fit us both) Most of the wood I use is 1/8”,1/4”, 1/2”. On occasion I will use some 1/16” or 3/4”. This little Ryobi saw is only about 22” wide and 17” deep including the rails. I went and looked at it, all it says is 15amp, no HP stated, I would guess maybe 1/2-3/4hp at most, but it does what I need great. The built in riving knife is a pain in the but and will disappear shortly. The new design blade guard is an engineering feat in itself that POS will be gone when I can dig out and old Skill guard I have had since the 80s. The miter gauge seems pretty good but I have to find a piece of rail to fit the table, 1/16” slop sideways. Answer to your question, YES you can have an underpowered tablesaw that is incapable of doing normal things. LOL But I love my little toy tablesaw for what I do.

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unclearthur

123 posts in 1626 days


#15 posted 02-15-2017 09:10 PM



..... the PM1000 is the more robust saw with a better fence, but for the same or less money you can land you a new 3hp industrial cabinet saw at your door….you d gain about 65% more mass, 70% more power, a better fence (pertains to the Fusion), larger hand wheels, and more robust underpinnings. All that should potentially lead to better long term reliability, better accuracy, increased stability, smoother operation, and ultimately increased user satisfaction….possibly even better resale value. There are more variables involved than just horsepower.

- knotscott

Well to compare apples to apples, the 3 hp upgrade to the PM1000 would I guess be the PM 2000, which is about $1,000 more plus a need for 220 V plus the extra weight for moving it etc. So I’m just trying to understand what practical advantages the bigger saw would provide. I realize it is theoretically better in all the respects you mention, but for practical purposes I’m trying to understand how much of a difference will it make to a hobby user? Interesting to hear people’s experiences even if the lack of consensus doesn’t actually make the decision any easier, LOL Thanks for your input.

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