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Forum topic by Don K. posted 05-08-2009 08:42 AM 3487 views 0 times favorited 36 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Don K.

1075 posts in 2792 days


05-08-2009 08:42 AM

I was looking at some of the saw stop reviews and a question started to bounce around in the empty cave on my shoulders.

Before I start, this is NOT a slam against Saw Stop or anyone who has bought one, I wish I could buy one myself, but I just can’t make myself let go of the extra $$$$. I mean I know the old question is “How much is a finger/hand worth” etc.

Have you noticed how the “Newest” trend from tool company’s is the granite tops ? Again, not a slam toward granite tops or their owners, just talking about how they seem to be everywhere almost over night.

But the question is this…do you think Saw Stop, is the next thing everyone is going to go to ? You all know how the government gets involved in things when it comes to safety (All new saws designed after Feb 2009 must have riving knives) Do you think in time the Gov. will make all saws/woodworking tools have some type of a saw stop system on them in the future ? And if so, what do you think it will do to tool prices ?

-- Don S.E. OK


36 replies so far

View 's profile

593 posts in 3437 days


#1 posted 05-08-2009 09:14 AM

Hmm. Can’t see how they could pull it. In two words: patented technology. They can and are regulating other standard features (i.e. free) like riving knives though. And in this case I can’t help but agree.

Anyway, given the bonus insurance companies are offering, I think the market will tell by the way of self-regulation.

Me? Once the time for a real shop comes, I’ll wait if necessary but get a Sawstop. Overall quality and service reviews are great plus the brake and the insurance make it a no-brainer.

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Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 3287 days


#2 posted 05-08-2009 01:14 PM

I have to agree with Jojo. Once the patent rights run out on the Sawstop braking system I would expect the other manufacturers to move in this direction as well. Manufacturers are limited in what can be done with price cuts alone to make their product more competitive and increase profits. Adding new features and technology to existing product lines is one route to go in order to increase sales. Another is simply to add new product lines.

But, as far as government involvement goes, I don’t think that this will be an issue with routine purchases and situations. The insurance companies may force this technology in certain situations such as in schools and large workshops due to liability concerns. But, for the small shops and hobbyists I really do not see any government involvement in their daily operations. And, of course, with any addition of new technology it will undoubtedly raise the price of tools.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

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pickles

68 posts in 2879 days


#3 posted 05-08-2009 01:34 PM

The owner of Sawstop approached other toolmakers with his idea. All of them turned him down claiming it was to much of a liability. He then set out to make his own saw. He actually caused such a stir with regulatory agancies about how unsafe saws were and the need for his product that they put the riving knife rule in to place. Or so I’ve read

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northwoodsman

242 posts in 3212 days


#4 posted 05-08-2009 03:28 PM

Disclaimer: I am not an expert on this subject, I am just reporting what I was told in a casual conversation and this is not my personal opinion.

I was told buy a rep for another saw manufacturer that if the other manufacturers produced a saw with this sort of safety feature on it, that they would open themselves up to lawsuits by anyone who was to be injured on a saw that they made without this feature. They are afraid that they would be forced to go back and retrofit every saw they have made in the last 50+ years at their expense because obviously “there was a design flaw related to safe operation of that piece of equipment”. In other words if company XYZ makes a saw with these safety features on it today, and someone purchased a saw from XYZ last year (or 25 years ago), and all of a sudden cuts a finger off while using it, they may attempt to sue XYZ because XYZ re-designed the saw with an added safety feature. They can change the trunnion system, the fence system, the color, the table material or just about anything because it can be construed as a marketing feature, an upgrade or something similar. Once they make a major change in the safety aspect, it may be construed as addressing an existing design flaw.

Now this is my personal opinion – I find this interesting because of all the re-design being done by the other manufacturers today (Delta totally changed the Unisaw), nobody is coming up with this type of safety system. There is always ways to get around patents, you just need to change it a little. The only significant change any of them are making is adding a riving knife vs. a “splitter”. This is not a major design change, it’s more of a convenience factor. They are easier to remove if needed, have a smaller profile and move with the blade. Personally if someone made a saw that could eliminate the risk of a kick-back, 100% guaranteed, I’d purchase one this afternoon. I worry more about cutting an extremity off on a band saw, router or circular saw than on a table saw. However with that said, if I ever purchased a new table saw I would get a Saw-Stop. It appears to be just as well made as most others, if not better in many cases, and why not protect yourself with an available safety feature. I’m teaching my teenage boys woodworking skills, I would love to have a Saw Stop for their benefit.

-- NorthWoodsMan

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pickles

68 posts in 2879 days


#5 posted 05-08-2009 04:29 PM

the riving knife is mandated by the Underwriters Laboratory now for any table saw manufactured as of january 2009

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Woodchuck1957

944 posts in 3229 days


#6 posted 05-08-2009 04:38 PM

And where does it end ? SawStop table saw, SawStop bandsaw, SawStop Router, SawStop jointer, and on and on and on. It would eventually get to the point that an average consumer couldn’t afford to setup shop for even just personal use, and would kill off the woodworking hobby industry as we know it. According to the Federal job outlook in cabinet and furniture jobs, woodworking has allready become a sinking ship.

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Don K.

1075 posts in 2792 days


#7 posted 05-08-2009 04:43 PM

”the riving knife is mandated by the Underwriters Laboratory now for any table saw manufactured as of january 2009”

Maybe I should not have said “The Gov”, this is what I meant. Again, NOT knocking safety, but every time a manufacture comes up with a good idea that the consumer likes, it always seems to be just a matter of time before everyone else copy’s it, from paddle switches/granite tops/riving knives to ???

This is all I was getting at, and IF the Underwriters Lab. does some day make all saw makers install a forum of saw stop, what will it do to prices ? Will they go up to the same price level of Saw Stop, or will they cut corners in other areas of quality to keep the price down ?

-- Don S.E. OK

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Miket

308 posts in 3237 days


#8 posted 05-08-2009 04:43 PM

Too bad they don’t have a MouthStop for idiots who have diarrhea of the mouth.

Now I’m not naming any names mind you.

-- It's better to have people think you're stupid rather than open your mouth and remove all doubt.

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Woodchuck1957

944 posts in 3229 days


#9 posted 05-08-2009 04:48 PM

Speaking of idiots, Mike, how was your visit with Texas finest ? Or don’t you want to talk about that ? I don’t take threats to my family or self lightly.

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i82much

25 posts in 2852 days


#10 posted 05-08-2009 04:59 PM

this is starting to sound like a yahoo chat room with all the bashing

-- At the end of my life...When I meet my Maker...Will I be seen as...a giver or a taker

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PurpLev

8523 posts in 3114 days


#11 posted 05-08-2009 05:14 PM

it’s hard to tell…

sawstop is the only mfg using that device. granite tops – are only manufactured by 1 facility (and sold only by 2 brands). Delta’s new design is completely different than the other ones….

there doesnt seem to be any conformation towards a certain design or new feature as they have been presented in the last year or 2. riving knives are not a new thing, but just now became mendatory for any NEW MODEL starting Jan 09 – meaning that unless company XYZ changes their current model, it will NOT include a riving knive. but all in all – I think this feature is fantastic, cost effective, and a great addition to any saw.

only time will tell… in the long run, any safery device that can reduce accidents is a blessed one – and once you get over the initial design costs, these devices will become most affordable, and available to the rest of us – hard to tell how long that will take though. but consider this – a computer CONSUMER CD-Writer drive used to cost $3500 when it first hit the market in ~94… now you can get one for free…

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

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Woodchuck1957

944 posts in 3229 days


#12 posted 05-08-2009 05:17 PM

Blades and new cartridges I doubt will ever be free.

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marcb

768 posts in 3139 days


#13 posted 05-08-2009 06:01 PM

But the question is this…do you think Saw Stop, is the next thing everyone is going to go to ? You all know how the government gets involved in things when it comes to safety (All new saws designed after Feb 2009 must to have them) Do you think in time the Gov. will make all saws/woodworking tools have some type of a saw stop system on them in the future ? And if so, what do you think it will do to tool prices ?

That was their original business plan, they petitioned the US Consumer Product Safety Commission to make their (patented) technology mandatory, thus insuring they would be the sole supplier to all tablesaw manufacturers.

They spent more time doing that than anything else.

Interestingly enough their website fails to mention this in their About Us section.

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marcb

768 posts in 3139 days


#14 posted 05-08-2009 06:01 PM

Miket,

The only time I ever see a post of yours its a snarky comment to Woodchuck and fails to add anything. Please shut up.

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DrDirt

4169 posts in 3207 days


#15 posted 05-08-2009 06:09 PM

The argument about liability for other companies old saws is just BS cover for not agreeing to royalties.

Lawyers can sue for anything – remember it is worth 80 million if you pour hot coffee in your own lap at a McDonalds drive through!!

Fact is the sawstop technology was recently invented…They would have a point if the technology was available for the last XXyears but the beancounters avoided it. Fact is products evolve – The automakers didn’t follow the tool makers logic.
Antilock brakes….Not on the old 66 elcamino. How about seatbelts…......Airbags..’Electronic Stability Control’ etc.
These things all became mandatory but initially were sold as upgrades and/or only available on the luxury models.

There is and always will be some inherent dangers—but to hide behind the legal boogeyman as an excuse to do nothing doesn’t save them. When the High school with the PM2000 has an accident and billy looses 3 fingers, both the school and WMH tools will be defendants. and the Saw Stop will be Plaintiff Exibit A. They will say this is now Known and Proven technology (go to the sawstop site and look at the videos of all of the “saves”). So they will ask the school why they chose to skimp and not purchase Saw Stop, but also they will turn to WMH and ask ” why in the face of XX accidents/year and Y saves have you CONTINUED to sell that horribly unsafe machine that cut down Little Billy before his prime.. blah blah blah.”

Having said the above – I have a 5 year old unisaw…I want a Saw Stop, but cannot justify trying to sell the Delta. If I were pro (with employees) or teaching, and allowing others to work in my shop the delta would be gone, even if it meant I donated it to the Church.

As far as the granite tabletops – I think it is a fad. Sure it doesn’t rust and is nice and flat, however I REALLY like magnetic featherboards…and they don’t work with granite.
Someone has an accident without the ‘latest’ technology and you have automatically lost any court battle – because as mentioned above – your decision was based on money – - and so will the court judgement.

-- 'Political correctness is fascism pretending to be manners' ~George Carlin

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