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Advice on table saw purchase... do I buy this?

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Forum topic by BlueWolverine02 posted 09-19-2018 10:03 AM 796 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BlueWolverine02

4 posts in 28 days


09-19-2018 10:03 AM

New here, looking for advice. I’m a hobbyist trying to put together a shop in the garage (new house so I finally have a garage). Looking for a table saw so I can expand my projects beyond whatever I can put together from lumber from HD. I’d basically settled on the Delta 36-725 so my budget is right around $600. But I have been still perusing CL because… why not. Anyways, guy is selling his Dads old Unisaw. He knows absolutely nothing about it except it has an accu-miter, unifence and table extension. No mobile base but I figure I could always build one. He is asking $750. Fairly certain the guy had it in his house, not at a shop, since seller inherited it with the house. From the single pic, it looks well cared for. I imagine it’s not an ancient model as it has the red and green on/off switch. Should I jump on this or would I be happier with the new 36-725? If I can figure out how to post the pic of it, I will. Thanks for any advice you can give me.

edit: after scouring internet for pics to compare, I believe the unisaw is a 34-806 or 802, or something similar.


22 replies so far

View Underdog's profile

Underdog

1184 posts in 2179 days


#1 posted 09-19-2018 11:39 AM

Here’s some ready-made advice for you in an LJ review:

http://lumberjocks.com/reviews/3822

-- Jim, Georgia, USA

View Ottacat's profile

Ottacat

493 posts in 1995 days


#2 posted 09-19-2018 11:50 AM

Having personally done woodworking with both a contractors saw and now currently,a cabinet saw I much prefer the cabinet saw. It is more accurate, more solid, has a higher HP motor so it runs on 240 but cuts through 8/4 hard maple like its butter. I’d go and see the Delta as well as investigate whether it comes with a true riving knife (I don’t know for that model). If it doesn’t come with one, I’d see if an aftermarket one exists. A riving knife on a table saw is a safety feature I simply wouldn’t go without.

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BlueWolverine02

4 posts in 28 days


#3 posted 09-19-2018 12:50 PM



Having personally done woodworking with both a contractors saw and now currently,a cabinet saw I much prefer the cabinet saw. It is more accurate, more solid, has a higher HP motor so it runs on 240 but cuts through 8/4 hard maple like its butter. I d go and see the Delta as well as investigate whether it comes with a true riving knife (I don t know for that model). If it doesn t come with one, I d see if an aftermarket one exists. A riving knife on a table saw is a safety feature I simply wouldn t go without.

- Ottacat

Yes a lack of riving knife is one of my chief concerns. I’m not sure if this saw has one, but I’m doubtful. And then at $200 for an aftermarket sharkguard, we are going way over budget.

Fwiw, from scouring the internet and looking at pics, I suspect it might be model#34-806 or something similar.

View ohtimberwolf's profile

ohtimberwolf

862 posts in 2496 days


#4 posted 09-19-2018 12:59 PM

Here is a review from a fellow LJ that you might like to read. I have not but I’m not buying the saw. larry

http://lumberjocks.com/reviews/3881

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

View Planeman40's profile

Planeman40

1256 posts in 2904 days


#5 posted 09-19-2018 01:24 PM

I am a long time woodworker (60 years) and would want an old (but good) Delta Unisaw over any big box store’s contractor’s saw – and probably any saw they sell. Don’t let this one get away!!! Go see it and check it over. If it is all there, it runs, and is not damaged – GRAB IT! You won’t regret it. And if the table has a slight rust problem, discount the price a little bit and still take it. rust can easily be remedied and polished up.

And don’t worry about the riving knife. It is nice to have and it does help prevent kickback. You will be able to find a replacement with some more looking. You can even easily make one.

-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

View WhyMe's profile

WhyMe

1053 posts in 1704 days


#6 posted 09-19-2018 01:53 PM

I have the Delta 36-725 and have been happy with it, but my one concern is if the motor ever takes a crap you’re out of luck because it’s a special motor just for the 36-725 and a replacement cost more than the whole saw. At least with the Delta Unisaw you don’t have that problem. I bought the 36-725 because I was trying to save a buck but wish I had gone ahead and bit the bullet and bought a better saw without an integrated motor.

View mathguy1981's profile

mathguy1981

38 posts in 48 days


#7 posted 09-19-2018 03:03 PM

I would inquire about the model number on the older Unisaw and do some googling. If it’s a 220V 2hp+ saw, then you’d definitely want that over the newer Delta. If you don’t have 220v in the shop, you can get it run for about $300-400 and is a considerable upgrade to your garage. The difference between a larger contractor saw and a cabinet saw is night and day.

View BlueWolverine02's profile

BlueWolverine02

4 posts in 28 days


#8 posted 09-19-2018 03:07 PM



I would inquire about the model number on the older Unisaw and do some googling. If it s a 220V 2hp+ saw, then you d definitely want that over the newer Delta. If you don t have 220v in the shop, you can get it run for about $300-400 and is a considerable upgrade to your garage. The difference between a larger contractor saw and a cabinet saw is night and day.

- mathguy1981

Seller can t find a model#, but I suspect it might be a 34-806. It is 220v, don’t know if it is single or 3 phase. As long as it’s single phase, running a 220 line is within my capabilities.

View jonah's profile

jonah

1841 posts in 3442 days


#9 posted 09-19-2018 03:55 PM

The 36-725 is a decent saw, but it’s not near the stability, power, and reliability of the Unisaw. $750 isn’t a bad deal, but it’s not a spectacular one either, especially since the saw doesn’t come with a lot of extras. Around here at least, it’s fairly common to see older Unisaws in varying states of repair for $500-$1000.

As for a riving knife, you can add a Sharkguard with riving knife (the ARK version) for about $200. I have one on my Unisaw and love it.

View bigJohninvegas's profile

bigJohninvegas

489 posts in 1605 days


#10 posted 09-19-2018 04:19 PM

I would look hard at the unisaw. I was in the same spot as you trying to stay on a $600 budget.
Wound up with a rigid r4512 back in 2013. $400 in upgrades and it’s a good saw. Sure wish I had bought that unisaw that was on CL back then that needed an overhaul. It too was a little over my budget. But turns out would have been cheaper and better in the long run. Grab the unisaw today, shark guard in a couple months.
Long run you will be glad you did

-- John

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GR8HUNTER

4713 posts in 856 days


#11 posted 09-19-2018 05:12 PM

TELL HIM $600.00 COLD HARD CASH IN HIS HAND THEN YOU WILL HAVE AN EXCELLENT SAW :<))
just hit img button above where you are writing then browse pictures

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

View BlueWolverine02's profile

BlueWolverine02

4 posts in 28 days


#12 posted 09-19-2018 07:59 PM

It’s a 34-761, talked him down to $650, pick it up Friday. 220v single phase but only 1.5 hp. Tell me I made a good decision.

View rolltide35's profile

rolltide35

7 posts in 285 days


#13 posted 09-19-2018 08:10 PM

+1 on the unisaw. I bought a 34-450 back in early June, 220V. I had to add the 220v to the garage, love the saw. In my review found out that is a 1968 model. Runs great

-- Andy in Atlanta....(Actually Suwanee, pretty close)

View jimintx's profile

jimintx

832 posts in 1728 days


#14 posted 09-19-2018 09:02 PM

I’d call it a good decision.
I love having a Unifence!

Not sure I know what an ascu-miter is, but I do say that almost any aftermarket miter gage is a great addition relative to the standard original version.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View ohtimberwolf's profile

ohtimberwolf

862 posts in 2496 days


#15 posted 09-19-2018 09:03 PM

Blue, you wil never be sorry. larry

-- Just a barn cat, now gone to cat heaven.

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