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Table Saws: Purchase recommendations

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CaptainBudget

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Hi all,

The Mrs is looking at sorting out my 30th birthday present for later on this year, and what I think I am really missing from my shop is a table saw. Minor issue is that we are fairly skint .

My workshop is predominantly used for cabinet making (using hand tools as far as practical, with an emphasis on fine furniture making), often from reclaimed timber. At work we get various dimensions of 3m long batons from pallets (big ones for 3x1.5m steel plates), and the company pays to have them taken away and recycled so I scavenge what I can use (I'm doing them a favour really). Having a table saw to rip these to my required dimensions would be exceptionally useful, and save me a lot of time in prep work, and I could actually use some of the thicker batons by ripping them into multiple thinner pieces and glue them together to form boards.

My tool collection consists of:
4.1/2 +7 Axminster Rider planes
various TCT Hand Saws
various measuring bits + bats
1/2" collet router +DIY table
bargain bucket mitre saw
Basic 160 DIA Circular saw
assortment of decent bench +mortise chisels (kirschens, Sorbys, etc.)

We are unlikely to be able to spend more than £200.00; my first thought was a second hand Axminster one from Ebay but they seem to be few and far between (or somewhere I'm going to struggle to collect from)

I have done some google trawling and this has been suggested repeatedly:
Evolution Power Tools FURY 5s (circa. £150.00; won't let me post the link)

Is this worth buying? Or is there a better option? I am extremely unlikely to use it for anything other than timber so the multi-material aspect is of little interest to me; really it needs to produce clean and accurate cuts consistently, any external faces would have a couple of fine passes with a hand plane (I love my hand planes...)

Main question really is, in light of the sort of work I do/want to do is this good purchase? Or do I need to spend £400+ to get one worth having and I should really be looking for something else entirely?
 

Ttrees

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Is space an issue?
With that budget and what you plan on doing, and you have the space,
I would be looking at three phase machines like the Startrite 275.
I run my 3 phase Startrite using an inverter/VFD from a 13a domestic plug.
You should be able to pick one locally on gumtree or ebay for cheap, as second hand is often half the price of new, and three phase second hand is half the price that again.

Tom
 

Steve Maskery

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I know cost is an issue, but spending on a machine that is inadequate is false economy (I'm am NOT saying that you should not buy this saw, just making a general point).

Try working backwards and see what drops out.

£150 is 125 +VAT.

I don't know what markup the retailers make on machines like this, but 100% markup is not uncommon in retail generally. If that applies, we are down to £63. Even at 50% we are down to £80 or so.

The cost of getting it here from China, along with associated insurance, taxes and duties come off that, and the manufacturer will have his profit. The latter may only be 5% or so, not huge, they rely on quantity.

What are we down to now? No idea, TBH, but it's not much, is it? That is the amount of money spent on manpower and materials to make that saw.

As I say, I am NOT saying don't buy it. I have an Evolution SCMS and I love it, but I use it only for firewood and the like. I've just put a diamond blade on it for cutting slates tomorrow. Is it a precision saw? No. Does it do what I need? Absolutely, it does, without risking my big Bosch.

Just be very clear in your own mind what your needs and expectations are before deciding that this is the right choice.
 

Rich C

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Is it worth considering a bandsaw instead since you mainly want to resaw batons? Would give more depth capacity and the ability to do curved cuts should you wish to.
 

CaptainBudget

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Thank you all for your suggestions.

RE: budget. I would happily buy a decent one but we don't have the money, otherwise I'd just order one from Axminster. However if your suggesting this one really isn't fit for my purposes then fair enough.

RE: bandsaw. I had initially thought about that, but having googled it initially I came to the conclusion that a bandsaw would have a rougher finish and was not really suited for dimensioning timber.

Space is s bit of an issue, but I reckon I can make a smaller machine work (or one with foldable extensions. Ttrees suggested a 2nd hand startrite or similar 3 phase machine. I will be honest I don't know what brands to look for. Is anyone able to suggest a few machines I could go scrounging for please?
 

Ttrees

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Anything three phase should be grand. I wouldnt be absolutely set on one or two machines only, the startrite 275 was used in many schools I believe so should be easy to find. These can fit easily into a hatchback with table off and seats down. The most important things I would want is a riving knife which is standard on all I've seen. Left Tilting arbor is preferred. Tilt arbor meaning the blade rather than tilting fence, a mitre slot each side of the blade for simpler sled designs. The 12" startrite has a decent depth of cut compared to some 10" machines you might see. I would not be too bothered about some of the smaller things like dual trunnions or a single mitre slot on the sedgewicks or if the motor was dual voltage so a bit less faff to get working, these things might be a niggle for you depending if your in a rush or whatever. The startrite worst features are the single trunnion and the fence could be a bit better, but is grand for me
 

sunnybob

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A bandsaw CAN produce fine flat surfaces, but its difficult and painfully slow.

If you have space for an older machine, then seriously consider one. But bear in mind older machines usually need a makeover to get them back to best condition. Are you mechanical and do you have the tools to refurb?

New cheap table saws, as Steve says, are VERY cheap, and it would be difficult to apply the words "cut accurately" to them.

I went through this situation at the start of this year, and ended up with a DeWalt 745 table saw. Its small enough to be packed away if space is a problem, but its got the ability to produce very good quality cuts.
Shop around and it can be had for around 400, and for that money, to be able to just unpack it and start cutting, I feel its a very good deal.
 

Jonathan S

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As a few have said, cheap table saws can be very frustrating....I've been there!
Many years ago I used to work in the posh part of London as a carpenter cabinet maker mainly doing built ins, site was the workshop so materials where all machined on site. Tried verious table saws that where inaccurate, always ended up with a sheet of 25mm mdf with a router and a circular saw upside down....it worked and was way more accurate than the small table saws.....a economic solutions until you have more cash?

My recommendation is if you do go the table saw route..... cast iron top and a motor that has enough power to cut wood....be careful! I have a lovely looking small Startrite saw, but it won't even rip 25mm thick timber.

Jonathan.


Sent from my SM-J530F using Tapatalk
 

sunnybob

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Not to argue, because this is the only table saw I have ever owned :roll: but my dewalt 745 has just sliced up an 8ft x 2" thick slab of bubinga into enough pieces to make the coffee table base shown here topic119335.html

and theres no harder wood around than bubinga. Using the blade that came with it, the motor barely slowed. =D> =D> =D> =D>
 

marcros

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I don't have one, but there was a thread on a draper one recently. Cast iron top, and got a good review or two.

All very well suggesting things like "old iron", startrites, 3 phase etc. But the budget of 200 is going to be eaten up by swapping motors or buying vhds do make them work.

Secondhand, a kity or Axminster would be a good buy.
 

CaptainBudget

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Hi,

Thank you all for your suggestions. I think on balance I will have to abandon the idea of a table saw. Having done some digging and evaluating space in my shop it won't fly. I don't think I can purchase a second hand three phase in my budget if I need to refurb it at all (and whilst I am mechanically minded I'm not convinced I can do it)

Even then I don't think it'll fit (my workshop is pretty small).

I might have a look at bandsaws and see what's out there. Damn I hate being skint...
 

sunnybob

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This is an ebay link for a classified ad, so theres no problem about a bidding war.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/DeWalt-DW745 ... SwuAVcrMQI

you get a brand new saw and a brand new mobile stand that will allow you to fold it all up and wheel it to anywhere you have room.

All for the price of an old stupendously heavy and large machine that will cost at least half as much again to make work properly.

I had a bandsaw 3 years before i got a table saw, I love both because stuff that cant be done on one can be done on the other.
If you want to cut any wood or panels straight, then you need a table saw.
If you want to cut shapes, or awkward things, then you need a bandsaw.
What are you going to use your new machine for.
 

CaptainBudget

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Thanks, that looks ideal. Shame I don't have £450.00 I can spend on it.

I'm having a serious look at bandsaws at the moment as an alternative. In the future I will have a look at acquiring a decent table saw, but I suspect that may now be a few years down the line..
 

Steve Maskery

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I have both a tablesaw and a bandsaw. I use them both, I love them both. But if I had to choose just the one, I would be heartbroken, but I would choose the bandsaw.
A bandsaw can produce good clean straight cuts. OK, you need to set it up properly, install the correct blade and there is far more to go wrong than with a TS, but once you have leaned to use a BS properly it is a very versatile machine.
My first one was an Elu 4102 (or something like that, the two-wheeler, anyway) and it is still going strong in my brother's workshop.
I now have the big Scheppach. I can rip boards, cut tenons and bridle joints, and they need no finishing with a chisel, they are good straight off the saw.
I've set my bro's saw up and it, too, within its capacity, cuts precise clean cuts.
So my advice would be to set aside the £200 you have now, add £10 or whatever you can afford each month to the pot, any pressies from family go into the jam-jar too, and when you have enough, buy a good second-hand Startrite or Scheppach or Record. Something substantial. Invest in some good blades and some good tuition (ahem) and you will have a machine that you will enjoy using because it does what you want.
Most of us buy a basic machine, learn it shortcomings and end up spending more for a second time. It sounds as if you have at least skipped the first step. Good on you :)
 

Simon_M

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thanos999":2e7wkj55 said:
https://www.charlies.co.uk/draper-cast-iron-table-saw-200mm-1100w-230v.html
I noticed that this has no warranty. Can a retailer really sell a product to a consumer without any comeback (guarantee) if it’s new? Can they get around this by saying it’s old stock, damaged, sold as seen etc. or does a consumer automatically get some rights? Draper Tools no longer lists the product, is it worth asking them about availability of spares and their plans to offer service?
 

Rich C

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If it's a consumer sale (i.e. a business selling to a consumer) then there are always some rights, these cannot be waived regardless of what you sign / click on. These include that the product must work and that you can return it for repair or replacment if it doesn't, unless it's clearly advertised as being sold as damaged. So "sold as seen" generally means nothing if it otherwise looks fine and is working at the time of sale.
 

Woody2Shoes

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Hi,

I have a bandsaw and a circular saw - I've never found the need for a table saw (they seem to be a US thing) - the cheap (sub£4/500) ones are blooming noisy and a bit puny - the most humble one I would consider worth buying (if I could justify it, which I can't) would be the Dewalt DW745.

If I were you, I'd look at getting a good quality circular saw e.g. Makita 5903RK or perhaps Makita HS7601J
plus a straight edge e.g. https://www.toolstation.com/draper-feather-edge/p40959 or the factory edge of a 4X8 sheet of ply , with a couple or three homemade sawhorses.

Cheers, W2S
 

sunnybob

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Woody, its not untill you have one, that you realise how much youve missed by not having one :shock: :lol:
And theres no way in the world that you could use "puny" and "dewalt745" in the same sentence.

Yes, I am a convert, I spent 2 years trying to find a way to get a half ton of old iron to my workshop before finally giving in and buying the 745. Damn I'm a fool... :roll:
 
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