Table Saws about $600

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Forum topic by bmontz posted 02-24-2012 08:39 AM 2851 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4 posts in 1707 days

02-24-2012 08:39 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question tablesaw

Hi All – I’m looking to purchase a new table saw in the $600 range. I’ve been looking at the Ridgid r4512 and Porter-Cable PCB270TS. Does anyone have any recommendations/warnings for either of these or another model? It needs to be accurate enough for quality wood working, but I wouldn’t want to spend much more than $600.



10 replies so far

View knotscott's profile


7147 posts in 2799 days

#1 posted 02-24-2012 08:47 AM

Welcome to LJ Bob.

I’d lean toward the R4512 over the PCB270TS. Some folks have had luck getting HD to accept a 20% Harbor Freight coupon. The Craftsman 21833 is nearly identical to the R4512 and is made by Dayton in the same plant. The PCB270TS has a plastic elevation gear that really should be made of metal….that’s show stopper for me, plus the fence isn’t very impressive. About the only other new full size saw I know of in that price range is the Steel City 35990CS (~ $627 at Lowes).

A good used saw is always an option if the right deal comes a long.

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

View nwbusa's profile


1017 posts in 1709 days

#2 posted 02-24-2012 08:59 AM

I own the R4512—it’s a good saw for the money, in my opinion. If you don’t mind buying used then I echo knotscott’s comment—this week I saw a Ridgid 3650 in like new condition on CL for $300 obo. But, if you prefer to buy new, then with a few easy tweaks the 4512 is a solid performer.

-- John, BC, Canada

View jeff's profile


976 posts in 2888 days

#3 posted 02-24-2012 10:13 AM

Welcome to Lj’s. i have the R4512 also.great for a beginner/hobbyist like myself.definely check out CL.i originally looked at the PC but when i peaked inside and saw the plastic,just like knottscott mentioned,i decided on the R4512.

-- Jeff,Tucson,Az.

View mrg's profile (online now)


655 posts in 2422 days

#4 posted 02-24-2012 01:05 PM

Home Depot is carrying the full line of Steel City saws that you would have to order.

-- mrg

View DIYaholic's profile (online now)


19140 posts in 2098 days

#5 posted 02-24-2012 01:05 PM

First off, Welcome to LJs.
A great place if your insane & have a saw dust fettish!!!

I vote for Craigslist!! You can get more saw for the money. You made need to upgrade a fence &/or invest a little sweat equity, but it is well worth it if you are budget conscious. I just picked up this (picture) for $125.00 with upgraded fence & Herc-U-Lift. You also learn about your saw from a minor rehab!

Good luck with your search

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View Charlie's profile


1100 posts in 1709 days

#6 posted 02-24-2012 01:44 PM

A new Steel City 35990CS is $599. Stamped steel wings like the R4512. Cast iron main table has the miter slots milled into it (like the R4512), so you don’t have to fiddle with the seam in the miter slot like the 35990C and G models.. I had the R4512, but unfortunately ran into a defect that was not resolvable. Home Depot took it back.

I now have the Steel City 35990G model. So having owned both the R4512 and a Steel City 35990…
The R4512 has table mounted trunnions. Some folks have difficulty aligning miter slot to blade because the rear trunnions are pretty much at the end of their travel. I found I had to loosen the FRONT trunnions and move them to the RIGHT and THEN I could get it aligned using the rear trunnions.

The Steel City has cabinet mounted trunnions. Loosen the 4 main table bolts… tap, tap, tap… aligned.

The R4512 has a much nicer lift/caster system. Might be a consideration if you’ll be moving it a LOT. The 35990 has an ok caster system. The fence on the 35990 is much more robust than the R4512. Both use a 2-piece front rail. In my opinion, the fence on the 35990 wins.

Both have issues reported in various places on the web. Only seems to affect random machines. I haven’t seen any glaring issues affecting ALL saws of either model.

I looked at the PC270 and it really felt kinda chincy compared to the other 2. People that have them like them, but for the price range I think one of the other 2 is a better choice.

All that being said… if you have time to wait, I agree with others saying to watch craigslist and estate auctions and pawn shops or wherever you can find used equipment. There are bargains out there. In my market, I watched everywhere for 3 weeks and simply ran out of time.

View willoworks's profile


41 posts in 1974 days

#7 posted 02-24-2012 02:03 PM

I just bought the Ridgid 2 weeks ago and couldn’t be happier with it. The lifetime warranty cinched the deal.

-- Turning A Round

View waho6o9's profile


7124 posts in 2000 days

#8 posted 02-24-2012 02:11 PM

Great advice as stated above, welcome to LJs Bob.

View bmontz's profile


4 posts in 1707 days

#9 posted 02-24-2012 02:13 PM

Thanks for all of the feedback – it’s much appreciated and you’ve all been very helpful (FAST feedback too!). I have been poking around on Craigslist, but haven’t found a table saw I’d be interested in yet, but I’ll keep checking. Sounds like the R4512 is the better of the two (I had been leaning that way).

Thanks again,


View Charlie's profile


1100 posts in 1709 days

#10 posted 02-24-2012 03:49 PM

Make sure there’s a service center near you for Ridgid (or any other for that matter).
The only service center Ridgid told me I had available was 90 minutes away. Not terrible, but I CALLED the place to see if they could fix my saw and they no longer deal with Ridgid warranty work and Ridgid won’t remove them from the list. So….. lifetime warranty is kinda useless to me if there’s nobody nearby to fix it. That was just my own experience, but it points out that you should make sure a service center is available for whatever you buy.

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