SawStop Question - Longevity of the product

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Forum topic by riverb posted 02-14-2011 10:45 PM 2367 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View riverb's profile


45 posts in 2095 days

02-14-2011 10:45 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tablesaw

Do any of you SawStop owners worry about the longevity of the company? Can you run the machine without a brake installed? I know you can run it in bypass mode with a brake installed just not for sure about without the brake. What if 8 years down the road that company goes under and is no longer manufacturing the brakes? I like the idea of the SS, but the price and company stability worries me.

11 replies so far

View BobG's profile


172 posts in 2382 days

#1 posted 02-14-2011 11:07 PM

I am amazed that one of the big tool manufactures didn’t buy up the patent rights!

-- BobG, Lowell, Arkansas--------My goal in life is to be the kind of person my dog thinks I am! Make more saw dust!!

View JJohnston's profile


1614 posts in 2712 days

#2 posted 02-14-2011 11:11 PM

It won’t run at all without the brake. If it ever became truly necessary, I would have no qualms about bypassing the electronic brain and wiring the motor directly through the switch. I’m sure the switch box would have to be gutted, too, but I like the ergonomics of the switch, so I would try to preserve it. If I did all that, I would remove the brake completely just to avoid a random trip.

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View dbhost's profile


5590 posts in 2652 days

#3 posted 02-14-2011 11:25 PM

I suspect with the company, and Gass gone, there would be any number of Chinese manufacturers more than happy to sell you a replacement brake cartridge…

-- My workshop blog can be found at

View ClayandNancy's profile


511 posts in 2436 days

#4 posted 02-14-2011 11:28 PM

dbhost I didn’t know he left the company, am I missing something?

View rrdesigns's profile


526 posts in 2606 days

#5 posted 02-14-2011 11:30 PM

I suspect Sawstop will grow, not fade especially given the attention their product is receiving as of late;

-- Beth, Oklahoma, Rambling Road Designs

View Knothead62's profile


2581 posts in 2382 days

#6 posted 02-14-2011 11:41 PM

The Chinese will start building them when the patent runs out or redesign it to bypass the patent. Tonight’s paper said that China’s economy has surpassed Japan. Don’t recall reading where the USA was positioned.

View mcase's profile


446 posts in 2550 days

#7 posted 02-15-2011 12:03 AM


I understand your concerns. No it will not run without the brake. However, this is a function of the electronic system not anything mechanical. I hope I never need to find out, but I suspect that if you simply “pulled the plug” on the whole safety system and connected the motor directly to a switch it would run like any other saw. As to the longevity of the company – that’s a good question. Here’s my read on it. I was so impressed with their product that my first question after using my SS for a week was about buying stock in the company. I intended to buy stock, but it turned out Sawstop is not a publicly traded corporation. They are privately held. This means you can’t get much of a profile on them since they have no legal obligation to disclose information as do companies that trade shares on the open market. Estimates for their revenues vary wildly somewhere between ten and twenty million. They never originally meant to make saws, but merely sell the safety technology to established manufacturers. The skinny is they demanded an 8% royalty and the major manufacturers told them to take a hike. This did not stop them though. I have to admit these folks have brains and guts. From the ground up, they started manufacturing heavy American-style cabinet saws that were better in every regard than those offered by the competition. Not only did they have the proprietary safety technology, but they produced the finest quality saw of this type with their industrial model. They have smoked the competition and are now the biggest selling cabinet saw in the U.S. So while other companies such as Delta are retrenching Sawstop is expanding. Some people claim they still are waiting to sell out to one of the biggies, by forcing legislation that would require the use of their technology. Maybe, but even in this scenario the brakes will still be in demand though they may be supplied by some other company. But what we do know for sure is that they are off and running on their own. Currently they are working on the development of a band saw with braking safety technology. My guess is they will be around. Hey, I could be wrong, but that’s the way I see it.

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 2489 days

#8 posted 02-15-2011 01:22 AM

AHA!!! Maybe that helps ‘splain Gass’s efforts to get his dohickey mandated by the Feds. Then, he would be eligible for all kinds of federal bailout money if his company heads south. – lol

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View Domer's profile


252 posts in 2787 days

#9 posted 02-15-2011 01:53 AM

It is my understanding that the brakes are made by Texas Instruments in surprise, Texas. So if they do go out of business, I assume that that brakes will be available.

But like mcase said above, they are smoking the competition. They are the best selling cabinet saw on the market. Part of the reason is that workers compensation and liability rates are a lot less with this saw than saws without to safety brake. So cabinet shops and schools can easily afford the extra price because of the discounts on their insurance.

Lots of people give Mr Gass grief about his pushing for the technology to be mandated by the government. He may be motivated by money but I think it is just as likely that it is something he believes in so much that he wants everyone to have it. I do not know Mr Gass nor have any knowledge of his intentions but my dealings with entrepreneurs leads me to believe that profit and the general good are both at play.

Could be wrong but that is my take.


View tommyt654's profile


122 posts in 2869 days

#10 posted 02-15-2011 03:34 AM

I really have to laugh at the statement that their the best selling tablesaw in the U.S. ,by whose standards? They still do not outsell the Delta Unisaw by anymeans,but if you wanna buy into Gass’s claims be my guest.BTW if you do purchase one just make sure you read the fine print. If it fails he’s not liable for any damages and when it fails(it will computers and electronics always do) then where will his company be,just another tablesaw(overpriced at that) and no better built than many of the current available on the market now.It is however well built by those Taiwanese manufacturers while the Unisaw while recently purchased by TOTY will continue to be manufactured here in the US in their new plant being built in S.C. by AMERICANS, keeping money flowing into AMERICAN familys pockets

Just my take:)

View Jack_T's profile


623 posts in 2452 days

#11 posted 02-15-2011 05:39 AM

I have not purchased a SawStop yet. I am still saving up for mine. I am not worried about the longevity of the company because it is the technology that is special and even if the company folds from mismanagement or acquisition the technology is not going away. The ability to make a table saw that does not cut fingers off is not going to go away. The genie is out of the bottle.

I do hope though that attempts to mandate the technology by way of government regulation fail. We have enough government intrusion in our lives.

-- Jack T, John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life."

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