Paralyzing search for a Table Saw

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Forum topic by mlipps posted 05-14-2015 01:30 AM 2057 views 0 times favorited 52 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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115 posts in 1144 days

05-14-2015 01:30 AM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw powermatic search ebay craigslist new york ny hobby single phase horsepower hp

Hi All,

New to the forum and in dire straights. I want a table saw. I have about $1200 to spend. I could push it to $1500 but that might be it. It’s for a small one car garage, hobby work mostly. Cabinets and closets will be made with this (the folks just moved to a new house). I’ve spent the last few months searching and aching for a PM2000 but can’t drop the 2-3k needed. I ended up buying the Delta 36-5000 which is not quite good enough (plastic parts that break, narrow throat plate shoulder making it difficult to create ZCI, and barely any dust control). Returned it and now am in the market for a used PM66. I’m not to keen on not having a riving knife, but I’ve come to terms with having to fashion some splitters or purchasing an aftermarket riving knife-esque (like the Shark) type of device. Ideally the saw would be 3hp, 1ph. Been scouring craigslist and ebay everyday, but haven’t found anything really worth jumping on in the tri-state area.(closest I found was an ‘86 PM66 with a 3ph motor…I could replace the motor I guess, but the asking price was too much). BTW, I’m located in NY.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


52 replies so far

View MrUnix's profile (online now)


6770 posts in 2228 days

#1 posted 05-14-2015 02:29 AM

Been scouring craigslist and ebay everyday, but haven t found anything really worth jumping on in the tri-state area.

Great location… lots of good machines up there – but it might not happen ‘right now’... patience will pay off.


-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View ElChe's profile


630 posts in 1365 days

#2 posted 05-14-2015 03:40 AM

Grizzly has a left tilt cabinet saw for right around 1500. Have you looked for older unisaws? I have a circa 2000 unisaw that has been reliable. Mine was pre-X5 made in USA. It is a beast.

-- Tom - Measure twice cut once. Then measure again. Curse. Fudge.

View Shadowrider's profile


183 posts in 1238 days

#3 posted 05-14-2015 04:02 AM

My Unisaw is a beast too. I had already made up my mind to buy a new Grizzly G1023 when I lucked onto this Unisaw.

I’d go with a Grizzly if you can’t wait anymore. They are good saws, basically a straight on copy of the saw you are looking for, can get (or make) ZCIs and WILL have a riving knife. Pretty easy choice…

View esmthin's profile


77 posts in 1210 days

#4 posted 05-14-2015 04:43 AM

I have seen some Unisaws in my area for around $750, they need a little bit of clean up, but they could be a great saw.

-- Ethan,

View TheFridge's profile


9608 posts in 1515 days

#5 posted 05-14-2015 05:23 AM


-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Woodknack's profile (online now)


11829 posts in 2409 days

#6 posted 05-14-2015 06:00 AM

Pretend like it’s 1995 and you don’t have the internet … what would you buy based on reputation alone?

-- Rick M,

View TheWoodenOyster's profile


1317 posts in 1964 days

#7 posted 05-14-2015 11:44 AM

I got my Unisaw used for about $900 in great condition. You can buy a great saw with that much money. When you see one you like that is in your price range, jump on it. Otherwise you’ll wait forever. There is no perfect toll, so don’t get stuck in tool purgatory.

-- The Wood Is Your Oyster

View knotscott's profile


8057 posts in 3405 days

#8 posted 05-14-2015 12:20 PM

Where in NY?

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

View KellyB's profile


77 posts in 1211 days

#9 posted 05-14-2015 01:00 PM

I just got the Grizzly 1023RL and so far am quite please with it. It replaced my Jet JCS10. Having only had it for less than a month, I can’t comment on long term use. I did try the nickel on its edge and it passed with flying colors!

Their G0715P did not get high marks from their own tech support, so I would avoid it.

View Redoak49's profile (online now)


3292 posts in 2018 days

#10 posted 05-14-2015 01:35 PM

I think old iron is great but for a hobbyist the riving knife is a very important safety item. I think the Grizzly is a great option.

View bonesbr549's profile


1561 posts in 3096 days

#11 posted 05-14-2015 01:45 PM

You have a great budget. I’d keep saving a bit for a sawstop PCS, but I understand the want to have it now. I had a grizzly 1023slx for 10+ years and it was still performing well when I sold it. And the only reason I got rid of it was to upgrade to a SS.

You could look for a used “OLD” Unisaw those are great tools as well.

Use and that will search all the surrounding craiglists based on your zip and your willingness to travel (distance wise).

Good luck on your quest!

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

View mlipps's profile


115 posts in 1144 days

#12 posted 05-14-2015 01:56 PM

I’d love to save for a sawstop…but I don’t think I’ll be happy with a contractor saw. I’ve heard (and learned from experience) buying the wrong tool first is more expensive than buying the right tool…and I tend to agree. So as for the sawstop…which I’d love…is probably out of my price range. I want a saw I can grow with if that makes sense.

@knotscott – I have a place in Long Island—but I’m willing to travel a bit for a good deal on a saw.

I also agree about the riving knife. If I had my druthers, I’d buy a SawStop or a PM2000. No amount of “saw” is worth even a pinky. There’s no “ego” in my cuts. Just safety and caution.

As for the Grizzly debate. I’m glad people are recommending them. I’ve heard too many questionable things about them. I was going to avoid them because there seems to be much better options for minor increases in price. I will have to take a look.

I’d also prefer a left tilting saw for those who have been suggesting old Deltas. I think they’re phenomenal saws…but after using the left tilt (I know how heated right vs. left tilting debate can get) I’d prefer to stay with left tilt. Older Deltas – and please correct me if I’m wrong – don’t seem to offer this feature.

Also to note, THANK YOU ALL for your detailed responses. You have no idea what a great tool (pun intended) you’ve all been.

View MT_Stringer's profile


3172 posts in 3260 days

#13 posted 05-14-2015 02:13 PM

I can’t help you with your decision one way or the other. However, I did replace my old Craftsman (circa 1977) with a new Grizzly 1023RLW two years ago. It hasn’t given me any problems and works great.

Cabinets, you say? Why yes I have built some cabinets…about 50 so far. A complete kitchen for my sister in law’s rent house, some lower cabinets for my mom’s house, a wet bar for some friends…and our complete kitchen remodel.

It’s the last saw I will own in my lifetime, and probably someone elses’s also after I am gone.

Which saw to buy?

New Table saw

Table saw fence rail mod

Mom’s Kitchen Cabinets

Our kitchen remodel

Good luck in your search.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View rwe2156's profile


2970 posts in 1510 days

#14 posted 05-14-2015 02:14 PM

You have a decent budget and I think you’ve got your head on straight, so its just a matter of time before you find what you want.

You’re dead right about buying the wrong tool first. Like you been there, done that. I remember going from an old Parks planer (no DC at all) to the cheaper DeWalt (which came broken) to a Ridgid (which I returned) at which time I said “the heck with it” I’m buying one tool for life, so I ended up with 20” beast. In retrospect, I would have been better with a 15” spiral head for about the same $$.

You’re wise not to eliminate Grizzly to quickly. I have several Grizzly tools: 8” jointer, 20” planer, and 16” drum sander. The only one I’ve really been a little frustrated with is the drum sander (but I suspect its my own ineptitude at installing the belts).

I don’t know about the TS’s but my 20” planer is virtually identical to a PM.

Most all the stuff is made in Taiwan now, so some of the yellow stuff may not be too much diff than the green stuff.

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View BroncoBrian's profile


559 posts in 1987 days

#15 posted 05-14-2015 03:00 PM

Over a PM or Saw Stop, I would not consider Grizzly. You sound like you know what you want and you should work to get it.

Agree about the contractor saw from SS though. PCS at a minimum. Laguna has a nice cabinet saw in that range as well. Might be very similar to a Jet.

-- I think foosball is a combination of soccer and shish kabobs.

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