Grizzly 1023RLW or 1023RLWX?

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Forum topic by WilsonNWA posted 12-17-2013 09:30 PM 2973 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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8 posts in 1043 days

12-17-2013 09:30 PM

This question will be short and sweet. I’m very seriously considering one of two saws before the end of the 2013 calendar year. Its between the 1023RLW and the 1023RLWX from Grizzly. The only differences between the two of them that I can see on their comparison charts is the RLW has a 3HP motor and the RLWX is 5HP. Normally these two saws run about $50 difference and right now, through the end of the year, they are the same price $1325. I need this saw to be the last saw I purchase, as my first born is due in May and this will likely be my last tool purchase for a while. From what I read, I see that this can be the case with these Grizzly saws (and many other brands).

In my mind its seems that the difference is like pulling a plow with one horse or two. I have inherited, along with the shop I work in, many feet of rough sawn 2×8x10 walnut and intend to make misc. projects from it. So it may seem logical to go with a 5hp if I can get my hands on it, but I also don’t want to buy myself into a Mercedes and then not be able to afford replacing the brakes should they go out.

Any suggestions would be much appreciated!

22 replies so far

View knotscott's profile


7146 posts in 2797 days

#1 posted 12-17-2013 09:47 PM

If you’ve got a circuit that will supply the 5hp, I’d go for it at even money. I can honestly that I’ve never bogged my 3hp saw, but the bigger motor will never work as hard as a smaller motor. Please follow up and let us know what you get and how you like it.

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

View darthford's profile


532 posts in 1346 days

#2 posted 12-17-2013 09:55 PM

The 3HP comes with a oddball 15 amp 240v NEMA 6-15 plug so that circuit will probably be useless for other machines.

The 5HP is a puzzle, the Grizzly manual says the 5HP must be hard wired to a switch box then the service panel to a 30 amp breaker. That seems extreme, my larger Grizzly G0696X 12” 5HP came designed for attaching a power cord and specified a NEMA 6L-30 plug.

If you have room for a 30 amp breaker in your panel I say just go with the 5HP and NEMA 6L-30 plug on a cord.

View darthford's profile


532 posts in 1346 days

#3 posted 12-17-2013 09:57 PM

I’d like to know how one 5HP motor is rated 14 amps 240v when the 3HP motor is also rated 14 amps 240v when my 5HP motor is rated 18 amps 240 volts. Something fishy there, check with Grizzly I smell a misprint in the specs. Case in point I was looking at two other machines today, both 2HP 240v one was rated 8 amps the other 12 amps, when I had Grizzly look up the motor its the exact same motor. lol

View WilsonNWA's profile


8 posts in 1043 days

#4 posted 12-17-2013 10:46 PM

A person might think that since I hold an electrical license, I would have looked at what Grizzly was saying the full load amps of a 3HP motor was the same as a 5HP motor…. I in fact never even thought about that because the voltage requirements were right and I can install the circuit per amperage requirements with out Grizzly’s help…

So I called and asked them at Grizzly. The lady I talked to said that was not a typo and that they were both full load rated, or Full-Load Current Rating as Grizzly puts it, at 14 amps each. I seem to remember my dad telling me there was no such thing as a free lunch. Some of their other 12” saws on their site are also listed as having a 5HP and are being shown at 18A and 19A.

That’s a bunch of dull boring electrical facts. I’m leaning towards 5HP since its the same money and I’ll just size and install the circuit when the saw is actually sitting in the shop and I can read the name plate and do all my own math.

View darthford's profile


532 posts in 1346 days

#5 posted 12-17-2013 11:59 PM

One other little tip just in case you are interested. I was looking at this saw before I purchased the G0696X and read where one guy purchased the 1023RL which comes with a normal extension wing, then purchased the router table extension wing separately and added it giving him one nice wide all cast iron table. I think he had to drill 2-3 holes and add a support leg or something. Just thought I would toss it out there.

View HorizontalMike's profile


7064 posts in 2336 days

#6 posted 12-18-2013 01:18 AM

I also have never bogged down my 3hp Grizzly 690. That said, just why do you think that you “actually” need 5hp? Inflated ego? Commercial shop? Only you can answer these questions, but it does go to the heart of the matter of what kind of woodworking you are planning on doing. Personally, I would think you would be impressed with either, though the 3hp would be easier to wire and install service for (considering that you might actually move again at sometime during ownership). Sure, I understand that you have the talent to do the wiring, but is that worth the inconvenience now and in the future? Only you know…

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Ltwud's profile


24 posts in 1365 days

#7 posted 12-18-2013 01:53 AM

I have a grizzly tablesaw with the 5 horse and love it. I have a couple grizzly bandsaw with a 3 horse and love it. I have a 30 amp “dryer” circuit for the 5 horse and a “normal” 20 amp for the 3 hp. I’ve never regretted getting the biggest motor I can and if you have the outlets you won’t regret the 5 horse.

View Grandpa's profile


3256 posts in 2097 days

#8 posted 12-18-2013 02:04 AM

Why plow with a Shetland pony when there is a Clydesdale in the barn for the same amount of hay. I always say go with the largest tool you can afford and get into your space.

View WilsonNWA's profile


8 posts in 1043 days

#9 posted 12-18-2013 04:25 AM

Well it looks like I’ll be going with the 5hp. Not because its an ego thing, but because its the same price as the 3hp unit. I cant imagine needing anything more than 3hp, but again, its the same price as the smaller saw.

On a second note, I noticed that the weight of the 3hp unit is 550lbs and the 5hp unit is 547lbs. (I find that just as interesting as the two motors having the same full load amps = 2 free HP!). So I guess if I had to move one, I would prefer the 5hp. I think we can conclude that some of the smaller details on Grizzly’s site might be a little odd, but they still make great machines.

Thanks fellas

View darthford's profile


532 posts in 1346 days

#10 posted 12-18-2013 05:09 PM

lol there you go Wilson the 5HP is more mobile at 3 lbs less.

View Sweetchuck's profile


6 posts in 931 days

#11 posted 04-11-2014 03:02 PM

Hi guys, I’m brand new to lumberjocks and just thought I might be able to get the info I’ve been looking for here. I am looking at buying either the RLW or the RLWX. For the price difference, I’d rather just get the RLWX. I really don’t want to hard wire my saw as I’m going to have to have it on a mobile base. Did anybody put a plug on their RLWX? Any problems? Also did anybody have any regrets with this saw? I’ve really liked the reviews I’ve read so far. I’m just a hobbyist, but I’d rather have too much saw than too little. Buying now for the future. This is at the max end of my budget, I’d also be open to any other suggestions. The craigslist / ebay route hasn’t worked for me. I’ve been looking for 8 months and haven’t found anything even close that is worth looking at.

View WilsonNWA's profile


8 posts in 1043 days

#12 posted 04-12-2014 02:49 AM

Sweetchuck, I’ll try and give my two cents by updating on my purchase since I last posted. I went ahead and purchased the the RLW instead of the RLWX. My decision was based on repare/replace cost of motor and/or capacitors and overall necessity of a 5hp saw. I have been extremely pleased with this saws power and out of box performance. I literally had nothing to adjust. So far I have milled about 150 board feet of rough sawn walnut through this saw in making our new stair case at the house; not a single problem. I would give this saw 4.5 stars out of 5. The other half star would be in some features that are in hind site.

Router extension wing: it does not have a miter track, so making cope and stick cuts or other cabinet style parts is a little tricky. Using it for making it to make nice clean dado cuts is pretty sweet, but again would probably only be that much easier and “sweeter” with a miter track. My suggestion would be to get the G0690 and then purchase the T10222 router extension. It has a nice split fence and lots of miter tracks. Once that part is installed you would have a table saw with lots of right side cutting width.

Also, the RL series has an internal blade shroud with what looks like a 2” dust hose. It also collects from the bottom of the cabinet for all the stray dust. I straight-lined a lot of material and the thin pieces would fall down into the shroud area and immediately clog it. You can tell because it will start spewing a lot of dust on top of the table. Another wood chip at some point came off the blade like a rocket and blasted a hole clean through the plastic shroud. Sometimes the 2” hose will clog as well. All in all, I have to clean out the bottom of the cabinet more than I expected with the shroud fixture, so just skip all the and go with the G0690.

I didnt look back at the old posts, but I thinking another member mentioning that the 3hp would be sufficient, they were correct. Like I said with all that walnut I milled down. None of it bogged this machine at all. It looks like currently the G0690 is slightly cheaper anyways. I will try and post some cuurent pics now that I have it set up and get a picture of the shroud with a “bullet hole” in it. (Wear safety glasses!) Hope that helps! Good luck

View bonesbr549's profile


1137 posts in 2489 days

#13 posted 04-12-2014 03:00 AM

I had the 1023slx for almost 10 years 3hp and it was a great saw. I upgraded to the sawstop to get the 5hp. Get the 5hp you won’t regret it.

-- Sooner or later Liberals run out of other people's money.

View WilsonNWA's profile


8 posts in 1043 days

#14 posted 04-12-2014 04:19 AM

Well I’m not sure why you would upgrade to a Saw Stop to get 5hp. Seems like you would upgrade to a Saw Stop for the saw stopping features. Get what ever HP rating you want, Grizzly prices them pretty close. The second part of the questions you asked from before Sweetchuck were in regards to connection of the 5hp from cord and plug style instead of hard wired and the mobility concerns. Like I said before, I purchased the 3hp RLW and bought 6’ of SO cord and put male and female ends on it. That and the receptacle for the wall (250v) ran me over $60 in parts. The higher ampacity devices needed for the 5hp should only be more ($70 or $80 I’m not sure). I would save the money on the HP difference and get the shop fox mobile base. I put one under mine and it makes moving 500+ lbs of saw around very doable.

Let us know what you purchase and how you like it!

View WilsonNWA's profile


8 posts in 1043 days

#15 posted 04-12-2014 05:31 AM

Out feed table. (yes, we are a Razorback family)

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