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Table Saw buying advice

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Neocleous

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Hi everyone,

I am setting up a home workshop and I need some table saw buying advice. I currently have an Evolution Rage job site saw that is great for what I paid but it has its limitations and the dust collection is almost none existent which really annoyed me. I quite fancy getting the Incra fence system but I don’t think this saw is really worth an upgrade like that. I have a Festool MFT and track saw and that great for cross cutting but recently I find my self needing to make full board rip cuts too and I find them better with a table saw.

With that in mind what would be a good single phase saw for cabinet making (cutting materials like plywood and veneered MDF boards) that gives me a little room to grow if I decide to start on hardwood projects?
 

sunnybob

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Never mind the budget, whats the space available?
If you want to lay a full panel down flat and then pass it across a table saw, thats an entire single car garage taken care of. :shock:
 

ScaredyCat

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Forgive me but wouldn't you be much better off buying the 2.7m or 3m track for your festool and using that? Or, given the festool track price, buying a circular saw and making a guide for it to sit on? Man handling a full sheet of ply over a table saw isn't something I'd want to do often, if at all. You'll need a big out feed table and lots of support etc.

imho unless you're going to buy a big table saw, a track/circular saw, is far better and safer way to rip a full sheet down. All you'd reasonably need to do is buy some foam for the sheet to rest on, measure and line the track / rail up. If you're doing it a lot then build a simple frame for cutting on.
 

deema

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Probably the most compact table saw that is excellent for joinery as well as having some sheet material capabilities is the Startrite DS275 with all the extension bars. It’s best to break the sheets down to more manageable lumps and then cut to precise size with the TS. They are small enough for a single garage, will cut 9 degree shoulders for mortice & tenon joints on external stuff and can take a dado if you want it. It doesn’t have a scribe blade however.

The smallest sheet material saw that’s truly practical needs 50” of travel on the sliding table and a scribe blade. For a compact saw that fits in a double garage Felder / Hammer / SCM have suitable saws in their range.

Although I have a large workshop I bought a SCM SI 15F which IMO is probably the very best saw of its size with huge capability. I have a friend who bought one after ‘playing’ with mine and has it in a single garage....and it fits! They are very rare, very under valued and not made anymore but built to be used 24/7 for decades of abuse.
 

Neocleous

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ScaredyCat":1qi1kxy2 said:
Forgive me but wouldn't you be much better off buying the 2.7m or 3m track for your festool and using that? Or, given the festool track price, buying a circular saw and making a guide for it to sit on? Man handling a full sheet of ply over a table saw isn't something I'd want to do often, if at all. You'll need a big out feed table and lots of support etc.

imho unless you're going to buy a big table saw, a track/circular saw, is far better and safer way to rip a full sheet down. All you'd reasonably need to do is buy some foam for the sheet to rest on, measure and line the track / rail up. If you're doing it a lot then build a simple frame for cutting on.
Thanks for the responses guys, I missed the tool buying section when I posted this so apologies as I guess it is in the wrong place.

I have two 1.4m tracks and the TSO joining bars that Axminster sells, It all works fine I bought some cheap parallel guides from a seller on eBay (Stans tools if any one is familiar with them) It works fine but I don't fully trust the setup to give accurate results especially when doing narrow rips which I have had to quite a bit of recently. It's really difficult at the edge of the board. This frustration has lead me to looking at a table saw really otherwise the track saw and MFT works well for me.

I could invest more into this system but I thought before I spend any more I would see if it made more sense to go for a table saw.

Space wise I have a tandem double garage so it's long and narrow about 2.5/3m wide. Budget say up to £1000 max including any upgrades or add on's that may be needed/wanted.

I can see your point about the track saw, I could build a big table for the track saw like Matt Estlea and use that or I could build the same table and put a table saw and a router in it also.

Just looking for ideas and advice.
 

Lonsdale73

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Neocleous":27wl2h1h said:
...especially when doing narrow rips which I have had to quite a bit of recently. It's really difficult at the edge of the board...
If you mean ripping sections thinner then the tracksaw rail then I know just what you mean. Even using another piece of the same thickness to support the rail can be a bit hairy and accuracy goes out the window. However, to rip uniformly thin strips off a wider board, I found measuring and marking up the first one hen tusing a stop block worked well. after cutting the first striip, the sheet is slid along to the stop block and the next cut made. Repeat till you have the required number of strips.

I sold my tablesaw when I got a tracksaw and soon found there were some cuts I couldn't achieve with a track and mitre saw combination alone.
 

TomGW

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My requirements were almost exactly like the OP's and I ended up buying a lightly used SIP 01332 locally via Gumtree for £500. This was complete with the two cast iron extensions and the wheel/transport kit. I then added a Delta T2, Biesemeyer style fence (from the US via ebay) and I find this an excellent, accurate saw, for a total outlay of approx £700.
The Biesemeyer type fence is the most stable and accurate fence arrangement that I have come across and this Delta T2 has a 36"(900mm) fence with a 30" (750mm) rip capacity, to the right of the blade. The rails could be shortened and capacity reduced accordingly if space is an issue. Very popular in the US and almost unheard of here.
 

Westwood

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Interesting: I had a similar choice to make last year and went for the table saw option for two reasons - firstly, price: bought a SIP 1332 ten inch saw for £50 at an auction - that made the choice easy; and because it provides a useful sturdy work table in my small shop.
TomGW, I'd be really interested to know why you chose the Delta fence over SIP's own fence and rails ? I'm at the stage of restoring the saw - it was missing its rails, fence, mitre set up, blade guard, 16 amp socket and a modern NVR switch, so I'm open to any advice which helps me make decisions when buying those essential bits. Think the cost of those parts works out as about £370, so I think I still got a bargain.....
 

TomGW

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Hi Westwood, good catch with the SIP. Sounds like a bargain. I had actually decided to go with the Delta T2 fence and rails before I even bought the SIP.
This all started out with me having a small Rexon bench saw with the most pathetic fence and wondering how to improve it. The saw was reasonable but the fence total rubbish. Much research later I decided that the Biesemeyer style 'T' square fence is the ultimate for stability and accuracy.
At that point it became obvious that the Rexon wouldn't be up to the standard of the intended fence and indeed wouldn't be sturdy enough to support it. That's when the SIP 01332 came on the scene. In other words, the SIP was bought to attach to the new fence system, which at that point was on its way to me. It was never the case that I decided to ditch the SIP fence and rails. Indeed, I didn't ever refit the standard items when I brought the saw home. I still have the SIP fence and rails sitting unused.
 

TomGW

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And would those be available by chance?

Mmmmm, possibly.
I had intended to keep them so that the saw would be complete if I decided to sell and upgrade to a different saw, keeping the Delta T2 for the replacement. However, I'm happy with this setup and unlikely to change it. Send me a message if you want to discuss.
 

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