Table Saw decision help

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Forum topic by raydizzle posted 02-07-2012 04:42 AM 2832 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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21 posts in 2544 days

02-07-2012 04:42 AM

Topic tags/keywords: decision tablesaw table saw advice insight purchase

My last post was a few months ago, and i finally will be making a choice to buy a table saw.
My income tax refund is coming, so my budget has been beefed up a little.

My budget now is around $1000 on a saw.
Preferably under $1000, because I am saving up for a Vegas trip this year with my buddies for my best friend’s younger brother’s 21st bday.

Iv’e been looking around, and come across a Steel City 35925 Granite Top that fits in my budget and seems to be built well. I don’t mind the granite.

If anyone has some suggestions on a saw for me, or can give me insight on this particular Steel City saw, it needs to be able to be wheeled around because I don’t have a garage or car port, so I’ll be moving it from the inside to outside to work. The Steel City comes with a mobile base too.

Thanks in advance for any comments and suggestions.

16 replies so far

View knotscott's profile


8140 posts in 3550 days

#1 posted 02-07-2012 05:08 AM

The 35925 has cabinet mounted trunnions and a one-piece cast blade shroud for an arbor carriage, and a riving knife, which are nice features for a hybrid saw. The fence isn’t great on this saw, having a two-piece front rail system, but it’s functional and if you’re handy the two piece rail can be replaced by a one piece steel tube stock from a steel supply house. It’s essentially the same saw as the former Ridgid R4511 in a full enclosure…Steel City/Orion made the R4516. The Craftsman 22116 is very similar to the 35925, but comes with an upgraded fence…also made by Steel City/Orion. I’ve seen the 22116 drop below $900 on several occasions…even as low as $700 once, but I wouldn’t count on that price.

Here’s a look at what’s under the hood of all three of the above mentioned saws:

By any chance do you have 220v? If so, I’d strongly consider the jump to a 3hp cabinet saw.

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

View CharlieM1958's profile


16278 posts in 4393 days

#2 posted 02-07-2012 05:09 AM

I don’t have any personal experience with Steel City, but that looks like a nice saw with a good list of features.

My biggest problem with the granite (besides the possibility of cracking it) is that you can’t use any magnetic jig fixtures or feather boards with it.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View raydizzle's profile


21 posts in 2544 days

#3 posted 02-07-2012 05:18 AM

I’m not sure if i have a 220v, and this is going to be my first saw. Eventually when i actually have a place to set up shop,I’ll get a big powermatic or something, but something like this kind of saw will be sufficient for now. Especially since i need it to be reasonably portable.

View a1Jim's profile


117276 posts in 3751 days

#4 posted 02-07-2012 05:19 AM

I’d listen to Scott he’s the saw expert

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View raydizzle's profile


21 posts in 2544 days

#5 posted 02-07-2012 05:22 AM

it looks like i can get the Craftsman for $850 and pick it up locally also.

but it doesn’t look like it comes with a mobile base, like the Steel City

But buying the craftsman and buying the base seperately may be cheaper.

Any other saws I could be looking at?

View knotscott's profile


8140 posts in 3550 days

#6 posted 02-07-2012 05:37 AM

The Grizzly G0715P is worth a look too.

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

View jeff's profile


1112 posts in 3639 days

#7 posted 02-07-2012 06:41 AM

Scott is the table saw and blade guru :)...

-- Jeff,Tucson,Az.

View raydizzle's profile


21 posts in 2544 days

#8 posted 02-07-2012 07:18 AM

So would the better choice be the craftsman because of the better fence?

Also, i was wondering about possibly upgrading the fence with an incra fence in the future. And if i can, would these saws still be a good choice?

View MedicKen's profile


1615 posts in 3636 days

#9 posted 02-07-2012 09:48 PM

Steel City is a renamed and badged Craftsman. They are both made in the same factory, only difference is the top and paint colors. I had a Craftsman and quickly sold it. The fence was crap, would not hold any adjustments. If I were to buy a new saw, which I wont, I would look at Powermatic or possibly the new unisaw. A good used saw may not be out of the question either. There are a lot of good deals to be had on CL as well as other online auction sites. I am partial to the old machines and will never go back. You should be able to pick up a decent PM or unisaw for well under your max budget and with a little elbow grease and time have a much better saw than you can buy new today

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their

View raydizzle's profile


21 posts in 2544 days

#10 posted 02-08-2012 12:00 AM

If i were to go get a powermatic, and spend half of my savings, it’s probably be worth it in the long run. My question on that is the powermatic im looking at has a 230 volt motor, would i have to install a new outlet that could handle that voltage, or is an ordinary outlet going to be enough to run it.

View knotscott's profile


8140 posts in 3550 days

#11 posted 02-08-2012 12:23 AM

MedicKen – Was the fence you didn’t like on a 22116, or some other Craftsman model? The fence on the 22116 is a Biese clone.

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

View dpop24's profile


115 posts in 2744 days

#12 posted 02-08-2012 12:48 AM

I have the Ridgid R4511 version of that Steel City saw and while it does have wheels, I hardly view it as a mobile saw simply because it is so dang HEAVY. If your move from inside to outside is smooth concrete, you could probably make it work, but you might want to investigate a better mobile system.

That said, the saw is plenty capable and probably all the saw I’ll ever need as a weekend hobbyist.

-- If it ain't broke, take it apart and find out why

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2850 days

#13 posted 02-08-2012 03:02 AM

Just because a tool is made in the same factory as another tool doesn’t mean it is exactly the same quality. I worked for a Rubber company making hoses for a summer. If the hose was perfect we printed our name on it. If it had blemishes on it we buffed it with a sanding machine and printed another name on it. All from the same factory but different specifications. Keep that in mind. They all look the same but are they really?

View jordanusmc's profile


42 posts in 2587 days

#14 posted 02-08-2012 03:30 AM

I recently got the Ridgid R4512 I have not been able to use it for a whole lot but I do love it. The reviews for the Ridgid have been pretty good. I was able to get it for just at $500 (after the Harbor Freight 20% off coupon). The Ridgid also comes with a lifetime service agreement which is nice by no means is it a life time warranty but that is better then what other brands offer. With the money saved between the Ridgid and Craftsman you could easily pick up a new fence and or blade. The other good factor about the Ridgid is they are selling on CL for $200-300 so I figured should I out grow it quick I would be able to get back most of my money pretty easily.

View SnowyRiver's profile


51457 posts in 3655 days

#15 posted 02-08-2012 04:04 AM

Raydizzle…if you are going to run 220 VAC, you will need to run in a circuit with a new breaker and wire to handle the current. You will probably need a 30 A breaker.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

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