|Forum topic by DavidNJ||posted 450 days ago||2562 views||0 times favorited||45 replies|
450 days ago
Why a SawStop? Because my wife says “you had 10 fingers when I married you, you will have 10 fingers when I divorce you”. The married part started 26 years ago, I’m still waiting for the divorce.
I would classify myself as a novice. I am more than willing to take on projects, but my only table saw is a 20 year old Sears model I pretty much gave up on years ago: the stand shakes, the fence has the stiffness of yesterday’s newspaper, and miter slots don’t fit anything. My work relies on a 10” sliding miter saw, a 12” double compound miter saw, and hand power tools: circular saw, drills, jig saw, router.
If this was a $500 or $750 dollar purchase there wouldn’t be much of an issue. But require blade stopping technology pretty much eliminated that option.
At the price of any SawStop model and the difficulty of getting it into the basement this is likely to be a 15-20 year purchase. So rather than a starter table saw, I’m looking at a saw that needs to be versatile for a long, long, time.
The options: 1.75hp Contractor Saw, 1.75 Professional Cabinet Saw, 3hp Professional Cabinet saw. The first two share the same motor; the second two share the same chassis. All are vertical lift and come with the same rail options at the same prices.
I looked at both today and a new Delta for comparison. While the dealer might disagree, for reference I thought the Delta was a bit smoother (although all were very smooth) and more completely thought out; details like front mounted bevel wheel and a 360° bevel gauge. That said, the Delta had a visible machining error on the bevel on one of its cast iron wings; an error large enough the wing should have been sold as a second.
On the contractor model the steel wings are optional. That may actually reduce the de facto price $100 if I replace the left side wing with a cast iron router table top. The motor hangs out the rear, the tunnions and arbor assembly are substantial, but visibly lighter than the PCS models. The model was introduced in 2008. Price with wheels and two cast iron wings is $1958. The store’s owner has the contractor model.
The PCS cabinet models look substantial. The motors are left side mount eliminating the option of a left side router wing. The assembly with the motor and arbor looks substantial but less so than the Delta. SawStop and the dealer say dust collection is significantly better on the cabinet models. It weighs about 20# more than the contractor saw with cast iron wings. The model was introduced in 2009 and costs $2498.
The 3hp model adds a 3hp 220v only motor. It also adds $430 at $2928, which is also $960 more than the contractor model. The shop’s woodworking expert has 3hp non-SawStop saw, has always had 3hp saws, and said he would get a SawStop if he was buying one today.
In relative pricing the contractor model is slightly more expensive than Powermatic’s contractor saw; the 3hp cabinet model is slightly less expensive than Powermatic’s 3hp PM2000. However, if the safety feature wasn’t an issue would I wouldn’t even be considering a saw in this price range.
All of the models have a “mobility” kit included in the price. unlike other cabinet saws, the SawStop mobility kit is integrated with the cabinet which sits on the ground when not in motion.
The price’s listed include their bottom of the line fence. This isn’t an issue since I will be installing a 52” Incra fence. I’ve described this purchase as the search for a table saw to go with an Incra fence.
Is the contractor model sufficient and acceptable, or is it just over priced?
Is a cabinet saw worth $530, about 25%, over a contractor saw?
Is a 3hp model worth $430 over a 1.75hp model? Will the extra power make a difference? Will cutting 5/4 oak ever be an issue? Is it worth $960 more than the contractor saw, about 50% mode?
Since this is a long term purchase, should it be viewed as may be 1/10th the difference per year, or $100 a year more for a 3hp cabinet over a 1.75hp contractor model?
Thanks for your opinions and valued experience,