The fence on this system is easily the winner. With clamping on just the front side, it self-aligns better than any other in the group and offers excellent stability. While SawStop didn’t have the most powerful feel to the cuts, it was very smooth with little vibration. Feature preferences aside, the only (slight) negative we agreed on was that the bevel lock stuck a little bit compared to others.
Replacing the hugely popular outgoing W1824, the W1851 is a brand-new Shop Fox hybrid with the same enclosed cabinet as you’ll find on the W1819 alongside features more in line with a contractor’s saw. We chose to review the W1851 as it’s a more flexible option than the W1819 and appeals to a broader range of woodworkers. We rarely review brand new products but in this case we made an exception… With a brand like Shop Fox, it’s not a case of taking a chance but of betting on a winning team.
Though this SawStop ICS53230-52 5 HP 230V 60 Hz Cabinet Saw with 52-Inch Industrial T-Glide Fence System is the most expensive model made by the company, we moved it to the bottom of our list because other cabinet saws received better reviews from customers. This saw comes with a 52-inch T-Glide fence system that helps you set the size and angle of each cut, and this system has a lockdown feature to keep the wood from moving.
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.
As you probably might think a quality model must have some safety feature. This is not a toy; this is a powerful tool which can cause serious injury. That’s why, safety features like splitters, anti-kickback or riving knives are there to minimize these risks. When you have your fingers inches away from the blades that spin with a power hard to imagine, you need to be very careful. Therefore, safety features like the ones above will help you keep your hand intact.
The scales that indicate the width of cut fall into one of two categories: continuous and separate. Of the seven we’re reviewing, DeWalt, Ridgid and Rockwell are continuous. You simply line up the fence with the desired measurement. The other four best table saw options—Bosch, Craftsman, Ryobi and Porter-Cable—require you to lock the fence in a specific position on fully extended rails, and read the dimension on a separate scale. We prefer the continuous scales and really like the tape measure–type scale on the Ridgid.
The fencing should be perfectly straight and parallel to the blade in order to maintain a safe environment and achieve the best results. As soon as the fencing is taken care of, turn your attention to the blade itself. Is it properly adjusted and sitting at a perfect 90 degree angle? If not, you could encounter some issues while trying to work. You’ll need to find an accurate measuring tool to make sure your table saw blade is resting at a perfect 90 degree angle if you want to see the best results.
It’s tough to be completely objective when choosing the best portable jobsite table saw since the stock blades vary so widely. Skilsaw comes with a 30-tooth Diablo blade and Makita’s stock 32-tooth blade are both excellent while others could use some help. To make this shootout about the saws and not the blades, we turned to Diablo to outfit each saw with the same accessory.
One of our favorite features, however, would have to be the built-in safety system. The safety system quickly detects when human contact has been made with the blade by reading the electrical signals that are sent throughout the blade and locks down on the cabinet within milliseconds.The whole process only takes about 1/200th of a second and helps to save craftsmen from devastating injuries every day.
DeWalt DWE7490X table saw is a pretty cool portable table saw. It’s a great blend of accuracy, portability, and power. Weighing only 58 lbs, this table saw might be pint-sized, but it’s not lacking power. It has an impressive 15 A motor, 28.5 in. rip capacity, 47-degree bevel capacity, and cut depth of 3-1/8 in (at 90 degrees). Not bad for a portable table saw. Other features we appreciate are its tool-free fence adjustments for convenience and its metal roll cage for extra durability. This package also includes a scissor style stand, which allows you to easily pack up this table saw and bring it with you anywhere the job takes you!
As you can tell, this particular type is in the middle between portable and contractor. Some people can finish their projects with bench top saws, but the ones who can’t usually opt for hybrid saws because they are cheaper than contractor ones. One cannot say they are cheap per se, but it’s a significantly smaller investment in comparison to contractor models.
Kenny Koehler An avid endurance athlete, Kenny has competed in triathlons (he's an Ironman) and various other fitness activities. Still, his passions lie with his faith, family, friends, and his love for well-designed power tools. With a background in science, you'll often find Kenny chatting up engineers at media events to get caught up on the latest tool technology.