Choosing the best portable jobsite table saw wasn’t an easy task but we’re confident we’ve done a thorough evaluation. In a very close race for the best table saw Hitachi beat out the DEWALT which came in second place followed by Skilsaw in third and Makita in fourth. It’s very interesting that the Hitachi and DEWALT look extremely similar. Hitachi edged out the DEWALT in performance and price resulting in the final scores. Skilsaw beat out Makita for the 3rd place only slightly and that result is really a function of pricing.
The Bosch 4100-09 offers many advanced features, making it a very capable table saw for woodworking. The air-filled wheels and gravity rising stand makes this table saw functional and lightweight. Set up and tear down of the table saw is a breeze. This technology allows the table saw to be moved from place to place, even over the most rough and challenging areas of the work site. The 4100-09 weighs 39 pounds, making it the perfect portable table saw. Although it is lightweight, it is very durable and stable.
Contractor saws weigh quite a bit more than portable saws, averaging between 150 and 350 pounds, but are still somewhat portable. They have a heavier, cast-iron table top, and a motor that is usually more powerful than a jobsite saw. Even so, they’re within prices affordable for more committed hobbyists. Contractor saws can range between $800 and $2,000. They’re good for basic cutting tasks, as well as making home furniture and cabinetry work.
These table saws are all probably made in China where there’s apparently no meaningful out-going quality control. While the *average* quality from a given manufacturer might be great, you could also be unlucky get a piece of junk because *everything* made on the production line ships out. It’s a preferred business model these days – the prices are much cheaper but the manufacturers trade that off against dealing with significantly increased returns and the need for much more customer service.
The final brand that’s definitely worth a mention when it comes to evaluating the brands we’ll be featuring in our table saw reviews is Ryobi. They’re largely known for manufacturing components for use in the automobile, electronics and telecommunications industry. However, they’ve more recently branched out into their own range of power tools and other hardware related tools, including table saws. With that taken into consideration, from our experience of Ryobi’s products, we’d definitely say that they’re a brand well worth keeping your eye on.
Goggles are yet another thing people simply don’t like wearing. However, it’s not about comfort but saving your eyesight. As you can assume, there is a lot of sawdust flying around while you’re cutting a piece of wood. In order to prevent it from flying straight into your eyes, you have to wear safety glasses. There are hundreds of models you can choose from, but make sure they are certified as safe. In simpler words, you cannot use the first ones you stumble upon, don’t be afraid to invest in high-quality safety glasses, you’ll be thankful for them.
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.
All of these great features, combined with the cast iron table top make this saw a tool to be reckoned with. The SKIL 3410-02 10 Inch Table Saw has a 32 inch rip capacity. You’ll be able to easily and efficiently make cuts by implementing their EZ measurement system. All you have to do is line up your wood and focus on doing the work you love. It’s easily transportable, easily adjustable, and easy on your bank account - and really, what more can you ask for in a tool?
The miter gauge is a part of the unit that moves into the slot. With a miter gauge, you can make a square cross-cut. You just have to set it at 90 degrees and push the board toward the blade. Also, by setting it at 45 degrees, you can make angled cuts. However, when using the miter gauge, make sure the wood is not moving. Secure it to the gauge using a clamp. With a miter gauge, you can also make compound cuts. You just have to set the miter gauge and the level of the blade at the same desired angle.
Even though the trunnion mechanism from Powermatic has been known to be the best there is, further refinements have been made to it in order to make it even better. The conically shaped worm gear drive with better surface area, the high end bearings, but also the cast iron, box style construction combine with the solid and smooth feel of the height and tilt adjustments. Thanks to the adjustable backlash, it’s very easy for users to adjust the mechanism back to the factory fresh feel and clearances.
The cabinet itself is 19-3/8-inches deep by 19-3/8-inches wide, which makes it the same size as the last SawStop model we looked at on our list of the best products. Included with this cabinet is a 20-inch by 27-inch cast iron table that extends out from the cabinet. This table is durable enough for regular use and will give you more space for working.
When using the side extension, a tape moves along so you won’t have to remember what measurement to lock the fence on or read a double marked measurement guide. It’s an innovation we like, but there are questions as to the long term durability of the tape itself. Like Ryobi, Ridgid uses a magnetic throat plate to secure it while leaving access simple.
Best of all, this cabinet saw features a cast iron base and trunnions, eliminating vibration while cutting. Combined with the tool-free riving knife, splitter guard and anti-kickback pawls, this is a formidable cabinet saw that doesn’t take up much floor space in the shop. It’s a great value option for the craftsman who is looking to conserve floor space and still have a powerful, high quality cabinet table saw in their shop.
Apart from some short reviews, we’ve also covered some other aspects such as safety and proper use of these tools. Make sure you thoroughly read our articles because they could save your life. The tips we offered are well-known among the professionals, but beginners are always susceptible to various risks, especially if they don’t know how to handle these tools properly.
Bosch’s 4100-10 work site table saw is a sure win. Bosch never fails to impress us, and this table saw is no exception. It’s a 10 in. saw with a 25 in (right) rip capacity and a 47 degree left bevel. This Bosch table saw is powered by a 15A motor that reaches top speeds up to 3,650 RPM. Another feature we appreciate: its constant response circuits which continuously adapt the speed under load, giving you a continuous blade speed.
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.
Hybrid saws will often match in terms of power but very rarely have the stability and durability of a cabinet saw, so often they work well in a home work shop where you can add extra stands etc to help. One thing to think about though is that because they won’t be as stable this can often compromise on the quality of the cuts, this is something you must think about when deciding. Read More
The old designs of table saws did not have the angled capability that newer models have now with their ability to have the blades angled at 45 and 90 degrees. Before these upgraded styles, the table itself had to be tilted which made cutting extremely unsafe. The new styles that accommodate angling the blade for the beveled cuts make things much easier and safer for the user.
Another saw that earns good marks from both professionals and users is the DeWalt DWE7491RS (Est. $500). Todd Fratzel of ToolBoxBuzz.com, who says he's normally a "huge fan" of Bosch table saws, nonetheless declares this DeWalt "the best overall job site + mobile stand option out there." He praises the power and accuracy of the table saw, adding that it had no trouble dealing with various materials he tested (3/4-inch plywood, 2x framing material, and 1x maple lumber). He also notes that its rip capacity of 32-1/2 inches is bigger than any other portable saw's – a full 7-1/2 inches bigger than the Bosch 4100-09's. Fratzel loves the wheeled mobile stand, which makes it easy for one person to move this fairly heavy saw (roughly 90 pounds). He says the stand is very easy to set up and allows for the saw to be stored on end, taking up less space.
The first measurements we looked at with the performance testing was blade speed cutting all three of the test materials. This tests gives us a relative comparison of how much blade speed reduction the motors have under different loading conditions. In our opinion this gives us an idea of how strong the motor/gear box combination is for each saw. For each test we also recorded the “no-load” speed to capture the relative drop in rpm in the blade speed while cutting wood. We used our as-measured no-load speeds instead of the published values from the manufacturers.
Bosch’s Gravity Rise Stand was the best portable design of the group. While several stands share the basic principles, Bosch stood out with large diameter tubing that improves durability, the ease of set up/take down, and the larger pneumatic wheels that helps over less than ideal terrain. SawStop was right behind with slightly narrower wheels while Ridgid wrapped up the top 3 most impressive.
This is the smallest of all the table saws, typically weighing about 50 pounds or so and designed to sit on top of a table or workbench. Bench style table saws are usually made of steel, plastic and aluminum. They are good for light to medium duty cutting and would not be a good choice if you do a lot of cutting or if you have a professional business. Because it can be lifted by one person and moved around with relative ease, this type of saw is often called a portable table saw. Due to the size of these saws which measure approximately 19” x 27”, they are not designed to rip large pieces of wood. It is also not easy to make mitered cuts. You will notice that there might be more vibration when using this saw as compared to other, larger models. This is due to the lighter weight of the saw. Unfortunately, the vibration can affect the accuracy of the cuts you’re making.
Another good table saw from Powermatic is its 1792006K Model PM2000 5 HP 3-Phase Table Saw with 50-Inch Accu-Fence System and Rout-R-Lift. The dust collection port moves much of the debris you produce away from your work area, but the cabinet itself has a sloped design that makes it easier to get under the cabinet cleaning. Its quick release riving knife not only reduces kickbacks but also reduces the risk of the knife binding.
Continuing our discussion into the power of table saws, there’s another key contributing factor to that power and that’s the blade size. You should find that this blade size determines what you’re able to cut through using your table saw and the thickness of the materials that you’re able to cut through. In all, if you’re looking for a good all round blade size that just works comfortably, you’ll find anything within the 12 inch range to do the job. In fact, most table saws that we’ve seen for commercial sale feature this blade size.
IMPORTANT REVIEW UPDATE (10/4/2016): After doing some additional testing with pressure-treated lumber and heavier stock, we [initially] found some issues with the Bosch REAXX saw that we couldn’t explain—except to say that it didn’t have the power we expected for cutting through denser wood. The blade exhibited a significant drop in speed during many common ripping cuts, and it even stalled out entirely at other times. We contacted Bosch and worked directly with them to determine the nature of the issue (which appeared to have to do with the saw’s electronic speed control). Here is the initial statement from Bosch on the matter:
The SawStop PCS31230-TGP252 Professional Table Cabinet Saw is our premium choice pick for a reason - it’s one of the best cabinet saws on the market. You’ll be able to tackle nearly anything you can think of with this impressive tool and work like you’d never be able to imagine. The saw is powered by a 13 amp motor that has a 220-volt requirement and saws through material quickly and efficiently. It’s a carpenter’s dream and was built with all of the needs of the craftsman in mind.
Powerful cutting and portable convenience with the Delta Powerful cutting and portable convenience with the Delta 36-6022. The 1-step release stand and large wheels make it easy to move the saw to any jobsite. The 15 Amp commercial grade motor cuts through the toughest materials. UL approved 3-way guarding system with riving knife for safety and excellent dust ... More + Product Details Close
Looking to purchase a portable saw for your DIY projects? Are you interested in funding some quality tool to cut large pieces of wood properly? Then, take a look at this incredible model. When buying this kind of tool is very important to understand several things including its capabilities. When it comes to accurate cuts and quiet operation, the DEWALT DW745 could be exactly what you are looking for. It is a popular model that comes with a lot of impressive features. It comes equipped with a Pro Modular Guarding System for increased accuracy. It is powered by a powerful 15 amp motor and it has a large 20-inch rip capacity. Thanks to its powerful motor, it delivers a no-load speed of 3850 rpm. Also, it should be noted that it uses blade guards. Plus, it comes equipped with a miter gauge, a push stick and a dependable 10-inch, 24-tooth carbide blade. The DW745 is covered by a 3-year limited warranty and 90-day money-back warranty. In addition to this, there is 1-year free service.
Below we’ve included the current pricing (at the time of publishing this article). Pricing includes the cost of the stand and ranges from a low of $349 for the Hitachi to a high of $1,299 for the SawStop. The lowest price isn’t always the best in our opinion, we’re looking for the best value. The Hitachi is an incredible deal at $349 and our top pick for price and value for a saw that has lots of power, a rack & pinion fence, and a solid stand.
If you want to have a quick and accurate cut of wood, look no further than a table saw. When buying a table saw the main thing you put into consideration is its power. A good table saw should have enough power to cut through wet timber as well as hardwood. However, there are certain features which help in foreseeing the overall performance of a table saw.
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First up is the portable table saw. There are two variations in this category, the first of which is the benchtop. As the name implies, the benchtop table saw is designed to be used on top of a table or bench. They’re small, so that it doesn’t matter which table or bench you put them on, and they’re light enough to be carried from place-to-place. This type of saw was originally meant for construction, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get good use out of it in your shop or garage.
What if a contractor uses their job site saw for high quality built-ins or high tolerance finished cuts? In that case, saw accuracy is critical for that work. In this use case, if the saw is immediately put into use, success depends upon the out-of-the-box accuracy from the manufacturer. The quality of the cuts and more importantly the potential safety of the operator is going to be a function of the as-shipped accuracy of the saw from the manufacturer.
Patrick – Thanks for the feedback. Trust me, I wish we could spend more time on every aspect but we spent hundreds of hours as it was. I can tell you that the rack and pinion fences are much better than the standard fences of the past. Our entire group felt strongly that we’d prefer the rack and pinion on all the saws. We felt the Ridgid and Delta fences were the least impressive of the standard type.
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If you already own one or more power tool products in Bosch’s range, then you should find that your table saw works comfortably with that. It’s also worth mentioning that Bosch have clearly targeted their power tool products at the general audience, more so than Dewalt who as we’ve already mentioned have designed their products for professionals. Either way, you’ll find that both brands similarly and comfortably offer a good quality cutting experience through their ranges of table saws.
One term you may hear when reading about table saw accuracy is blade runout. Runout is a term that describes whether or how much the outside edge of a saw blade wobbles while being held by the motor shaft. Sometimes, operators measure runout by using a saw blade. In that case, the very use of a saw blade presumes that the specific blade is perfect or nearly perfect in its flatness. Using a saw blade that has any warping will not give a clear indication of blade runout.
The DeWalt, Bosch and Ridgid saws have strong stands that are easier to set up, sturdy fences that lock down parallel to the blade every time, and smooth-operating blade controls. If you’re a contractor or an avid DIYer who just likes top-quality tools that feel good and last a long time, we think the extra few hundred dollars is a good investment.