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Forum topic by JarodMorris posted 05-22-2013 03:01 AM 1500 views 0 times favorited 52 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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JarodMorris

165 posts in 1033 days


05-22-2013 03:01 AM

I’m trying to figure out which table saw is best in the $500 – $600 range. The only 3 that I’m really considering are:

1) Porter Cable (Link here)

2) Rigid R4512 (Link here)

3) Craftsman 21833 (Link here)

These all seem to be good saws, but I’m thinking the PC table is better. Plus, I called Lowes and they’ll give me a 10% discount so that $599 is really $540. HD would give me a 10% discount on the Rigid 4512 as well so that puts it around $480. But I like the PC being 120/240 V and 15 amp. The Rigid is 13A motor and the Craftsman says 1-3/4 hp motor (which I’d rather know amps).

Any advice / feedback on these saws is greatly appreciated. I’m a mere mortal so it’s not like I need a professional-grade Powermatic, Jet, or similar.

jarod

-- Dad: Someone was supposed to pick up his toys! Son: My name isn't "Someone".


52 replies so far

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Rick M.

3978 posts in 1038 days


#1 posted 05-22-2013 03:10 AM

Amps do not equate directly to HP since HP includes the efficiency of the motor. A 12 amp motor might be more powerful than a 15 amp motor if the 12 is more efficient. Then there is the matter of truthfulness in rating and Sears doesn’t have a very good track record in that regard. For example, yesterday I was reading a machine review in Wood magazine, a Craftsman lathe had a 2HP motor yet the Delta lathe with 3/4HP motor was the most powerful in the test.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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JarodMorris

165 posts in 1033 days


#2 posted 05-22-2013 03:21 AM

Rick, Thanks for the comment. I hadn’t heard that about Craftsman, but I’m not terribly surprised.

What I mean is to have the variables that go into figuring HP. Hz and Amps and maybe there’s something I’m forgetting but there is a formula and in my opinion, it levels the playing field to compare apples to apples, at least closer than apples and oranges.

-- Dad: Someone was supposed to pick up his toys! Son: My name isn't "Someone".

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Rick M.

3978 posts in 1038 days


#3 posted 05-22-2013 03:31 AM

You can’t calculate electrical HP without the efficiency and it’s rarely available. A 5% difference in efficiency can equal 10% difference in HP so it’s a critical number. So a motor listing only amps but not horsepower is really telling you nothing.
HP = (Voltage x Amps x Efficiency)/746

(edit: made a correction)

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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kdc68

1980 posts in 934 days


#4 posted 05-22-2013 03:33 AM

I was in your shoes not too long ago. I didn’t want to spend $$ for a new saw. I’m a hobbyist. I was looking at those same three. All three have issues, so inevitably my choice ended up being none of the above.

I’m sure you will get a lot of responses to this question. Knotscott and Toolie are the table saw guys here. Let them fill in the blanks from what I could not answer

Reasons I avoided these three.

Porter Cable…
1) Plastic elevation gear
2) Fence alignment and split fence rail issues

Ridgid and Craftsman (clones)
1) Blade elevation issues
2) Fence alignment and split fence rail issues

I was left with two other choices
1) Look on Craigslist for a “good” used saw
2) Spend more $$ for a new (better than those three) saw

I chose to spend more and got a good saw IMO

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

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Rick M.

3978 posts in 1038 days


#5 posted 05-22-2013 03:40 AM

I agree. If buying new I think you should be prepared to spend $800-900 minimum for a decent saw. It’s a tough thing but many of us have been through it. For me it meant I had to put off a tablesaw purchase for another year but waiting paid off because I’ve had the same saw for over 15 years without feeling the desire to upgrade.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

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JarodMorris

165 posts in 1033 days


#6 posted 05-22-2013 03:48 AM

$800 – $900 even in a year from now just isn’t an option. I can’t go over $600, ever. I’ve been watching CL for months and months and months and it’s all junk or overpriced. I just spoke with a guy today selling a Craftsman and he wanted $500 until I sent him a link of a brand new Craftsman similar to his for $555 on sears.com.

I know it’s not going to be a $1,000 saw, but keep in mind, I’m basically working with one that is worth about $150, but it doesn’t even have a working motor. So I essentially have NO table saw at this point.

kdc68 – that looks like a grizzly in your shop, is that right?

-- Dad: Someone was supposed to pick up his toys! Son: My name isn't "Someone".

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lepelerin

321 posts in 982 days


#7 posted 05-22-2013 03:50 AM

I do have the Ridgid, very pleased with it. Never had any issues, Took my time to finely tune it and the saw is very accurate. I wired mine in 220V. Very pleased. I cannot comment on the PC or Craftman. Ridgid has a lifetime warranty too!
The fence on the Ridgid has T-track, a plus if you want to attach an auxiliary fence of other things to it.
Ha and the blade that came with the Ridgid was total crap. I replaced it with a better blade. Made a big difference.

However if you can afford $500-600 on a saw, I would consider a second hand cabinet saw (check craigslist, kijiji, ...). Just a thought as I never had the chance to use a real cabinet saw.

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kdc68

1980 posts in 934 days


#8 posted 05-22-2013 03:53 AM

Jarod...you are correct sir. It’s a Grizzly G0661.

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

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JarodMorris

165 posts in 1033 days


#9 posted 05-22-2013 04:01 AM

I’ve been checking craigslist for any kind of saw and there is either nothing listed or it is way overpriced.

To give you an idea, there is this

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3770906409.html

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3780557219.html

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3747663011.html

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3775031185.html

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3780675388.html

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3755137076.html

http://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/tls/3723723278.html

The last one is the only one with a reasonable price, but who knows what would take for that last one to be rehabilitated.

-- Dad: Someone was supposed to pick up his toys! Son: My name isn't "Someone".

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kdc68

1980 posts in 934 days


#10 posted 05-22-2013 04:10 AM

Jarod...Almost all of those are 3 horsepower or more requiring 220v service…Those options are not a hobbyist saw. More for the professional cabinet shop…The 4th from the top isn’t worth $450 IMO…

Be patient and knowledgeable in order to make the right decision….

Check out Steel City table saws via Lowes or Home Depot… I can’t comment on their quality, but I think they have saws in your price range

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

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KENVO

36 posts in 629 days


#11 posted 05-22-2013 04:13 AM

I feel your pain jarod, I have been using a ryobi $120 table saw for a year and a half and thought I could never get a nice $800 or $900 table saw. I have checked craigs list daily and seen the rigids and craftsman saws come and go for 100 bucks off retail. I was fairly hopeless until Yesterday when I saw a listing for a Grizzly 1022 for $200 bucks ($900 saw). I couldnt believe it and I couldn pass it up. Within hours it was in my shop and set up for work. I think the moral of my story is patience. There are apps that will notify you as soon as someone posts a listing on CL. It’s a great way to get first crack on hand me down tools.

-- Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.-- Jerry Garcia

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TheWoodenOyster

877 posts in 592 days


#12 posted 05-22-2013 04:33 AM

Yeah. I was in your shoes about 3 months ago. I wanted to spend about $500 – $600 on a solid 3 HP saw. I watched CL like a hawk for months. About once every two or three weeks, there would be a killer deal, but by the time I could go look at it (usually the same day), it would be gone. It was driving me insane and literally making me depressed (I plan to write a post on the ill effects of prolonged CL watching on the mental health of woodworkers- this is only sort of a joke).

I finally just sort of said screw it. I found a solid, very clean delta unisaw for a good price. It wasn’t a great price, but it was a good price and it was a great saw. I just drove two hours, gave the guy the money and left with an awesome American saw. The best part was not having to check CL every hour just to be disappointed. In my opinion, I think getting too wrapped up in trying to get the best deal ever just stresses you out and drives you insane. Find a good deal on a good saw and get it over with. This dilemma is worth thinking about. It is not worth raising your blood pressure over.

Just my .02.

And to answer your question, I’d probably go with the ridgid. Seems to me like everyone always says you should never pay more than 1/2 price for used, but most of the used saws I have seen that are in good condition are listed at about 2/3 the new price, and you can probably only talk them down to just over 1/2.

Again, think about this. Please, don’t torture yourself over it.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

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JarodMorris

165 posts in 1033 days


#13 posted 05-22-2013 04:37 AM

The point I mean to make with all of those links is in response to the suggestion that I get a good second-hand cabinet saw for $500 – $600. Those deals just don’t exist around here. People are extremely proud of whatever they are selling.

I’m really leaning towards the Rigid 4512. It seems like a great saw and if I can wire it for 220v, I may just do that. I have a friend who is a general contractor / licensed electrician here who could help me out.

Jarod

-- Dad: Someone was supposed to pick up his toys! Son: My name isn't "Someone".

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JarodMorris

165 posts in 1033 days


#14 posted 05-22-2013 04:44 AM

WoodenOyster,

Thanks for the advice. I guess the other factor that I have is that I’m working out of a 2 car garage at my house so I don’t have a ton of space. I have enough, but not abundant. I have my current (broken) table saw on a mobile base, my jointer on a mobile base, and router table sort of mobile (I need to redo it).

The contractor saw appeals to me for the size and mobility within the shop.

Jarod

-- Dad: Someone was supposed to pick up his toys! Son: My name isn't "Someone".

View RonInOhio's profile

RonInOhio

720 posts in 1522 days


#15 posted 05-22-2013 04:52 AM

I went around and around on my latest table saw purchase. I considered both
the Ridgid and the Porter-Cable.

A few unlucky buyers had some issues with alignment with the Ridgid 4512.

And there were several issues also with the Porter-Cable. One I believe was related to
using a dado stack.

I also considered a new Grizzly hybrid. Very seriously.

As well, I watched CL for over a year. Finally a few months back a Ridgid 4560 came up on CL about 35
minutes away. I inquired and went and took a look. I got it for 275. The seller was asking 350.

Now I have a saw that should serve me well until my next upgrade. My little craftsman contractor direct drive
wasn’t getting it done.

I would suggest to you that you are doing the right thing by asking questions on this forum. Take your time and try to hold off until you are sure the time is right and you have zeroed in on the saw you truly want to own.

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