If you're currently looking for a cabinet table saw and it's the first time you actually need to buy one, then you should know that they come in a wide range of types, from the larger contractor saws to the portable table saws that most people seem to own. However, buying the right model for you depends on your needs and how you're going to use it.
If you are new in this industry, it’s important to know that Makita is one of the most reputable power tool companies out there. For this reason, in our comparison table, you will find one of their top-of-the-line modes, the Makita 2705. It comes with a 15-amp motor which has 4800 rpm. This is more than enough power to cut almost any wood. Despite its large table, the unit has a compact design. The blade guard system has a cam lock, so it can be easily adjusted while the dual guards allow you to cut any wood any size and shape. As far as the safety goes, it is everything okay. Although that some important features are lacking, it still has two independent anti-kickback mechanisms and a blade guard that is designed great. After testing this incredible tool, we can honestly say that it can cut wood with incredible accuracy.
Though this table saw will arrive in multiple pieces, Jet includes all the instructions and help that you need to assemble the cabinet and all other parts. The cabinet itself has an enclosed design that keeps the motor and all other components safe from the dust in your workshop and any debris flying around. You also get four legs that attach to the base of the cabinet, which lifts the saw higher in the air to reduce back pain caused by bending over the table.
There were really two major performance considerations we wanted to look at to help determine the best portable jobsite table saw: cutting power and dust collection. Power is an obvious choice. We want to make clean, straight cuts, but we don’t want to spend all day making them. Any saw can be calibrated to be straight and accurate, but some have to be babied more than others to get professional results.
In a direct drive, the blade is directly connected to the motor. So the motor can transfer all its power to the blade directly. There is practically no loss of power in this process. It produces much less vibration and noise in comparison to a belt drive. They are relatively small and lightweight. They are also safer! It also costs less so generally it is a winner. However, there are reasons to go for a belt drive for bigger jobs.
TBB used an iGauging 35-125-4 digital dial indicator to measure the accuracy of the blade position to the table miter slot. This instrument has an accuracy of .0005 inches. As part of the table saw set-up, TBB installed a new Diablo blade in each saw and these never-before-used blades were used in the measurement test. To ensure that any wobble in the blade did not enter into the test results, TBB marked a single tooth as the reference point for the measurement. The blade position was moved to the front of the saw to allow the iGauging dial indicator to hit the tooth immediately behind the carbide tooth, The iGauging dial indicator was calibrated and the indicator had a reading of zero.
Below is a graph showing the average measured decibels for the saws (for each of the materials we tested). As you can see the saws range from 93.7 db to 97.9 db. OSHA allows 8 hours of exposure for up to 90 db, from 95 db up the exposure limits start dropping quickly starting at 4 hrs for 95 db so clearly these saws all need hearing protection. The Makita was given the best score of 1 as it was considerably quieter than the remaining. DEWALT and Delta were ranked worse with a score of 3, while the remaining were ranked as a 2.
Self-Aligning Accuracy – As well as power in your table saw, you’re also going to want it to be as accurate as possible. We can comfortably say that this table saw from Bosch achieves that formidably with its self-aligning accuracy. This basically means that the square lock rip fence aligns itself for accurate performance. If you’re going to be using your table saw regularly and know that you need to get the job done correctly, this will provide it.
In addition to its cutting versatility, the PM1000 also features a blade surround and collection hose for dust extraction. This method of collecting dust while the saw is in operation improves both blade visibility and air quality in the shop. Best of all, the 50-inch fence provides exceptional control when ripping lengthy sections of wood, and the extended geometry of the table allows for easier manipulation of longer workpieces.
To prevent the work piece from trapping the blade as it cuts, the W1819 sports a riving knife and splitter to keep the cut sections of the work piece separated. Anti-kickback pawls keep material moving in one direction, allowing for safe and consistent cuts. A 4-inch dust collection slot keeps saw dust from contaminating the air in your work space, and the control switch is magnetic with thermal overload protection.
Depending on how often you work with wood and the type of wood that you use, you may find that this SawStop PCS175-PFA30 1.75-HP Professional Cabinet Saw Assembly is better suited to your needs than some of the company’s more expensive models are. This saw features a smaller base and a shorter extension table that take up less space, but you can use the fencing system to extend the size of the table working with your boards.
For this portion of the testing and evaluation we used three different materials (3/4″ AC Plywood, 5/4 Mahogany Decking, and 5/4 Pressure Treated Southern Yellow Pine Decking) while measuring the saw blade RPM, and the saw motor AMP draw. To compare the saws we’re looking for how much blade speed each saw has under load, and also how much the amp draw increases under load. Think about it like driving a car, a more powerful car will not drop as much speed going up a hill and the engine won’t work as hard.
Durable Steel Design – With this being such a portable product from Bosch, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s pretty flimsy when it comes to design. However, that couldn’t be further from the case with the Bosch GTS1031’s durable and unique all-steel base. This is a design that’s clearly built to take on abuse. That’s definitely peace of mind that you’ll want to have when it comes to using this table saw in a working environment. Not that you shouldn’t be careful where possible when it comes to using your new table saw.
Reviewers recommend these models for easy transport to jobsites and for easy storage in a small workshop. Portable table saws come in two types. Benchtop saws sit on top of a workbench and are light enough to pick up and carry; jobsite saws are mounted on folding stands, usually with wheels for easier transport. The main drawbacks of a portable saw are its lower power and smaller table, which makes it tricky to cut larger lumber and sheet material such as plywood. Prices for portable saws start at less than $200, but the best-rated models typically cost $300 or more.
The Porter-Cable looks like a beefed-up version of the Craftsman, with the same blade guard and anti-kickback pawls. This is the only saw in our test with a blade-tilting handwheel, which makes it easier to dial in a precise bevel angle. The motor mount and blade controls on this saw are very sturdy, without much play, which translates to a good-quality cut. Extending the fence for a wide rip requires a bit of effort on this saw, since the rails are stiff. All in all, this is a great saw for the price.
Table saws can be tougher to evaluate on paper since they don’t include torque measurements. Each of the table saws we tested have 15 amp motors, but vary widely on no load speed. The ones with lower RPM values are bleeding off speed in exchange for torque. While the right balance is always tough to achieve (and is a moving target with every new motor development), here’s where each saw prioritizes speed.
The 50-inc rip fence that comes with this JET 708675PK XACTASAW Deluxe 3-Horsepower is perfect making rip cuts without worrying about your boards slipping out of the place. This fence system has a lock down feature that will actually lock the board down at the right angle and at the measurement that you choose. It comes with an arbor lock changing the blade and a poly-v drive belt system too.
Jeffery – As Rob explained things we had the RPM measurements running on that meter, and had to watch our video playback to evaluate the numbers (no recording of the numbers digitally). So we tried to take the average no load speed watching the video play back. Is it perfect? No….is a 10% difference a big deal? In this application I doubt it. If we were a full blown testing lab we’d have the data recorded digitally and take full blow averages, but alas we are not.
We hear the term accuracy tossed around when it comes to finding the best portable jobsite table saw, but we really have to narrow down what that means. Every saw we tested has the capability of being calibrated and it should be the first thing you do after setting it up. Like a new miter saw, blade calibration is simply part of delivering professional results.
The best portable table saw is going to depend largely on what you need the saw for, however, there are three main types of portable table saws; bench top, compact, and job site table saws. These machines vary in their capabilities, but they are all easy to maneuver and move around compared to their stationary counterparts. If you only need a small saw that will be good for your DIY projects, you can likely get by with just a benchtop table saw.
With a single cast iron trunnion system, the Delta UNISAW offers dependable accuracy, smooth and continuous operation, but also vibration free control. Thanks to the fact that it features a fifty-two inch fence system, it’s the perfect choice for woodworking pros, but also people who are just starting out in the woodworking industry, such as hobbyists. Since it also comes with an upfront bevel dial to easily fine tune the blade level, you get a striking accuracy within a quarter of a degree, ensuring precision setups cut after cut.
In terms of the safety features that you’re going to want to look for in your table saw, one of the most prominent includes a flesh sensor. This is basically designed so that the table saw will immediately stop operating after 0.01 seconds of coming into contact with flesh. This means that if the worst should happen and you come into danger as a result of using a table saw, the damage will be kept to a minimal. As you can likely imagine, this particular safety feature will push up the price of the table saw by a small amount, but it’s definitely a feature that’s worth happening if you value your safety whilst using power tools.
One thing you must be aware of with a contractor saw is the fact that they can be a lot more difficult to move from job to job, this is something that must be considered before purchasing. For thicker and harder type woods a cabinet table saw maybe the best way to go, especially for the long-term benefits, but for the average mid-sized contractor it’s still a great option. Read More
Our biggest surprise while running the best table saw review tests was in the cutting power and the quality of cut: There wasn’t much difference among them. All these saws ripped through 3-in.-thick oak without hesitating. We tried this test with the stock blades that came on the saws. Then we repeated the test using a top-quality blade in each saw.