table saw left or right tilt

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Forum topic by daddywoofdawg posted 03-12-2015 01:34 PM 1025 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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1028 posts in 1600 days

03-12-2015 01:34 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tablesaw

I have been looking at table saws and see table saw left or right tilt.which is the preferred?what does it mean other than the blade tilts one way or the other,does that mean the direction the top of the blade leans when tilted I.E / right tilt, \left tilt?

4 replies so far

View WoodNSawdust's profile


1417 posts in 1202 days

#1 posted 03-12-2015 01:40 PM

Most people consider a saw blade that tilts toward the fence as more dangerous and it is harder to make certain type of cuts.

-- "I love it when a plan comes together" John "Hannibal" Smith

View knotscott's profile


8057 posts in 3401 days

#2 posted 03-12-2015 01:47 PM

FWIW, most of the newer saws are left tilt. There are pros and cons to both which many feel are minor concerns, and it really boils down to a matter of preference. On Left tilt saws the blade bevels away from the fence with the fence on the right of the blade (standard location), which is considered safer. Right tilt bevels toward the fence on a standard bevel cut, which is considered less safe than if it beveled away from the fence. You can move the fence to the left of the blade for safer bevel cuts, but that makes it a non-standard operation, which is still not quite as safe as a bevel cut on a left tilt saw.

The downside of a left tilt saw is that any changes in blade thickness will skew the zero reference on the tape measure because the left side of the blade registers on the right side of the flange (the same direction as the tape measure reads). This can be adjusted by recalibrating the cursor, always using blades of the same thickness, using shims as spacers, or just measuring by hand. Blade thickness changes make no difference with a right tilt saw because the right side of the blade registers against the left side of the flange, so changes in blade thickness don’t impact the tape measure.

Here’s another difference that will also be a matter of preference. The arbor nut on a right tilt saw gets applied from the left side of the blade and uses a reverse thread orientation, which is typically done with your left hand. The arbor nut on a left tilt saw goes on from the right side (easy for right handers) and uses a normal thread orientation.

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View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4999 posts in 2519 days

#3 posted 03-12-2015 02:40 PM

It’s strictly a matter of personal preference, and Scott’s comments are right on. There was a time when left tilt saws weren’t all that common, but they have caught fire over the last 10-15 years.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View BurlyBob's profile


5551 posts in 2291 days

#4 posted 03-12-2015 03:51 PM

Scott has nailed it down for you. One thing I had overlooked was the blade thickness issues. A very valuable point to remember in the future. Thanks Scott!

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