Help with outfitting my garage workshop...

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Forum topic by TheLarc posted 06-27-2013 08:19 AM 2223 views 0 times favorited 25 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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10 posts in 1808 days

06-27-2013 08:19 AM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw jet dust collector garage workshop question

Hello everyone,

I have begun to outfit my garage workshop in my new house and have been doing considerable research and reading of posts on here on how you all outfitted your shops and which tools, new or used you purchased. I was hoping for some help in regards to a table saw, I am looking in the used market to try to maximize the quality of saw I can get for my dollar. For now I have been making do with a compound sliding miter saw and a circular saw with guide for most of my projects around the house such as building wainscoting etc… but I would like the ability to add a table saw to run dados, rabbits and rip boards down quicker then using a circular saw, guide and saw horses.

I have seen quite a few contractors saws posted for sale around me and I was hoping for some advice on the model below. I know it is an older Jet, but I was having a hard time finding out some of the pros / cons of it and whether it was a good deal or not.

I am aware of the steel wings etc…and other basic short comings of a contractor saw, but I am only a hobby wood worker and will be using the saw to build some built in cabinets, basic furniture and my honey do list. Maybe one day I’ll be able to have a larger shop and entertain a cabinet saw, but for now the cost and room are tow big of factors to do so.

Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated. The saw model is listed below and it also comes with a jet dust collector.

Jet table saw with dust collector – $550
Model JWTS—10 10” with 30” fence. Dust collector attachment included. Rolling base included.

25 replies so far

View UpstateNYdude's profile


917 posts in 1981 days

#1 posted 06-27-2013 12:04 PM

You’d be better off getting the rigid from HD the school I work at (me and the shop teacher are buddies, I help him out from time to time) has that exact saw and blade changes are a pain and it has no riving knife and the fence is a POS.

Grab a 20% off coupon from Harbor Freight and bring it with you to HD and see if they will take it on the rigid saw should bring it down near the $400 mark and you can find those reliant/old jet DC’s for like $75-100 all the time on CL near me anyway, or for a little bit more you can get the HF DC and have a brand new 2hp unit.

Just my 2 cents but I’ve used this exact saw and its not worth the price this person is asking I’d say maybe $200-250 at most and then you’d need a different fence.

-- Nick, ā€œI am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it.ā€ ā€“ Vincent Van Gogh

View ScottKaye's profile


643 posts in 1951 days

#2 posted 06-27-2013 12:06 PM

For a couple hundred more you could move up to a cabinet quality saw. I bought my mid 80’s unisaw for $700 last fall, though I admit these opportunities dont pop up daily on Craigs List, at least around here! My advice, check CL daily and pick up a decent cabinet saw.

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View crank49's profile


4030 posts in 2969 days

#3 posted 06-27-2013 01:13 PM

The Ridgid 4512 hybrid contractor saw is a crap shoot, IMHO.
A fair percentage of these saws have a defect in the blade tilt/elevate mechanism that can’t be fixed as far as I have been able to find out.
IF you get a good one, you will have a great saw at a fantastic price.
BUT, if you get one with the “blade alignment shift” disease, then you have to lug a 300 lb machine back to the store and exchange it. And maybe do this again and again till you get a good one; or just give up.
I have one that I didn’t exchange before the 90 day time limit expired and it is extremely frustrating.
If I was starting over I might prefer to get a good portable jobsite saw like the Ridgid 4510 or Bosch 4100. These are aluminum top, universal motor saws, but at the top end of their class. About the same money as the Ridgid 4512 hybrid, which is at the very bottom of its class.

View NiteWalker's profile


2737 posts in 2575 days

#4 posted 06-27-2013 01:24 PM

What Michael said; the 4512 has a shoddy track record. To much risk.
If you get a good one, it’s a very good saw. Big if though…

I’m on saw #4 now (bosch 4100), and it won’t be my last.
I wish I had spent the extra for a lifetime saw from the beginning.
I recommend doing that.

BTW, a cabinet saw takes up less space than a traditional contractor saw.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View TheLarc's profile


10 posts in 1808 days

#5 posted 06-27-2013 02:42 PM

Thanks for all the great advice everyone. I have had mixed thoughts on the Rigid 4512 – it seems like people either get a great one or a shoddy one, and it isn’t the easiest thing to pack up and return at 300lbs. I think I am leaning towards just holding out for either a good deal on a cabinet saw, or possibly spending a bit more and getting the Grizzly Hybrid Cabinet saw.

My biggest pet peave is buying the same piece of equipment or anything really more then once, I prefer when able, to purchase a quality product and have it last years. Though it is getting harder and hard to find quality made anything.

I think if I wait to go that route, and install a router table in the wing as well, it may just be the best thing and I can have a long term solution.

View toolie's profile


2121 posts in 2627 days

#6 posted 06-27-2013 03:37 PM

the 4512 has a shoddy track record. To much risk.

with a 90 day satisfaction guaranty, i’m having a hard time figuring out where the risk is. if the saw’s a lemon, return it. try returning a CL purchase within 90 days.

+1 on UNYD’s comments. that jet combo isn’t a terribly bad price, maybe just $100 too high. but that saw’s a right tilt, which would kill it for me. i prefer left tilts, where the blade tilts AWAY from the fence when it’s positioned to the right of the blade where most of the fence’s rip capacity exists.

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View firefighterontheside's profile


18178 posts in 1855 days

#7 posted 06-27-2013 04:01 PM

I don’t know anything about that saw, but contractor saws in general in my opinion will do everything you will ever need. Cabinet saws are better if you’re trying to collect all dust. Offer 400 for that saw and maybe go up to 450. In the future you can upgrade and you will be able to get most fo your money back on this one by selling on Craigslist.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View pintodeluxe's profile


5658 posts in 2811 days

#8 posted 06-27-2013 04:29 PM

I have a newer version of that saw with an Xacta II fence. As far as the saw in general, and the power it has… I have no complaints. The Xacta II fence really makes the saw. I don’t have any experience with that aluminum version of fence. I paid less than the deal you mentioned.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View crank49's profile


4030 posts in 2969 days

#9 posted 06-27-2013 04:45 PM

toolie said, “iā€™m having a hard time figuring out where the risk is.”
The risk is getting a truck to haul it home, in my case 100 mile round trip. (about $20 for gas)
Getting help to get it out of the truck.
Building a winch to upright it since it gets assembled upside down and I can’t lift 300 lbs by myself.
Spending about 4 hours putting it together and aligning it using the worst set of instructions I have ever seen.
Finding the blade shifts sideways about 1/16” every time you change the blade height.
Re-checking everything and re-aligning and having the same problem.
Then spending another 2 hours taking it all back apart and repacking in a box that disintegrated during the unpacking step above.
Getting help to get it back into a truck.
Hauling it back to the store. (another $20 for gas)
Getting another 300 lb box of Chinese made saw looking implement and bringing it home.
Out of the truck and assembled in about 2 hours this time.
Finding this one has the same problem.
Repeating the whole process a third time, with the same results.

Getting pissed off and saying to hell with it. That, my friend, is where the risk is.

View a1Jim's profile


117091 posts in 3575 days

#10 posted 06-27-2013 04:48 PM

There are countless threads on Ljs about what table saw to buy and recommendations for outfitting your shop you might do a search on LJs to view that information also.
Many folks are very happy with their Ridgid 4512 and there has been a percentage of those folks who have had an alignment problem with them but from what I can tell it’s not an over whelming percentage of folks who have had that problem. If your budget is in the $500 range and you want a new saw I think a Ridgid 4512 or it’s sears equivalent is going to be hard to beat. If your ok buying a used saw the much high quality saws are out there in the $400-$750 range then some older cabinet saws like powermatic ,Delta and others sometimes pop up on Craigslist and elsewhere,this may take some longer term shopping to get one of those older models but worth the wait assuming you find the right saw at the right price .

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View toolie's profile


2121 posts in 2627 days

#11 posted 06-27-2013 10:53 PM

That, my friend, is where the risk is.

sounds like it’s not the saw for you. you do, however, make a few fairly specious points, like renting a truck and driving two hours, that most likely wouldn’t apply to those of us who live in metropolitan areas and have suitable vehicles at their disposal.

even with it’s somewhat checkered past, i think the 4512 is a good starting bet. adn if one can be had that raises and lowers it’s blade without it’s miter slot alignment changing, at $400-500, the saw offers a lot of value.

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View DIYaholic's profile


19620 posts in 2673 days

#12 posted 06-28-2013 12:07 AM

There are tons of old Craftsman 113.XXXXXX table saws on CL in the $100 – $200 range. Many of these come with cast iron wings (mobile bases, upgraded fences are often included). If you add an upgraded fence (you WILL need to), you could have a very capable saw for $300 – $400. The only real downfall is that there is no riving knife (splitters & guard are standard). Then when funds are available or the right cabinet saw appears on CL you can upgrade and resell the C’man saw for what you paid for it & if needed put the upgraded fence on the cabinet saw. Just my $0.02!!!

-- 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 Woodknack's profile


11626 posts in 2378 days

#13 posted 06-28-2013 07:30 AM

View toolie's profile


2121 posts in 2627 days

#14 posted 06-28-2013 02:24 PM

not worth it, IMHO, unless 3 phase power is available. valuing the fence @ $300 leaves $675 for a 3 phase unisaw. not exactly a steal in my book. i had a unisaw and sold it. they’re not, IMHO, all that and a bag o’ chips.

-- there's a solution to every just have to be willing to find it.

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2539 posts in 3955 days

#15 posted 06-28-2013 02:55 PM

I started out with a Bosh 4000, and I upgraded to a 2001 Delta Unisaw that I found on Craigslist. The Bosch was a nice saw and the fence locked up nice and parallel to the blade , but had limited power and the fence wasn’t long enough to do the cutting I wanted to do. My Uni has a factory 50” Biesmeyer, 3HP single phase 240, and came with the matching Delta mobile base (at least an extra $250)...I stole it for $1000.00…it was like new! I have a garage workshop like you, and space is a premium..I was originally going to buy a Grizzly with a smaller fence, but this was such a great deal I went with it. I feel that the table saw is the foundation of your workshop, and I would take the time and spend the money( if you have either one) to get the best saw you can afford…cut to the chase and forget working your way up to a better saw…that is just going to cost you money and time…


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