The piece of basic woodworking equipment that probably gets used more than any other is the table saw. Table saws come in a variety of sizes and designs that can handle a multitude of different projects. It is hard to imagine any woodworker’s shop that would be without such a basic tool. Here are some of the different types of table saws that you can choose from and how you might be able to use them in your woodworking projects.
Let’s find out what table saw is the best for your need.
Portable Table Saws
Of all of the different types of tools that you have to choose from, portable table saws are probably one of the most common tools that are found in a woodworkers tool shop. This is because they can do a lot of different jobs for you, not only in your shop but also in the field. Not only do home woodworkers find a use for portable table saws, many contractors also carry them because of the convenience of having a small tool to haul in their truck. Here are some of the options for portable table saws that you have to choose from that can help you to make the most of your buying decision.
Portable table saws, although they are portable, come in a wide variety of sizes. Not only do they come in different dimensions, the blade size is a consideration that you are going to need to decide on. For most applications, a 10 inch blade will be something that will take care of you. Sometimes, however, as is the case when you are cutting larger crown molding, you might need a 12 inch blade. I find that by purchasing a blade that is one size larger than what you think you will need you will generally always be happy with your purchase.
Another thing to consider with portable table saws is the brand name. Although most lower end portable table saws will be generally the same from manufacturer to manufacturer, many people that enjoy working on wood or contractors like to have tools that are all from the same manufacturer. For this reason, you might need to look into the type of portable table saws that your own manufacturer offers. For example, some may come with their own stands while other models might simply sit on top of the table.
Portable table saws are such a handy thing to have that it is hard to imagine any good woodworking shop being without one. Shop for yours by size, price and manufacturer in order to get the one that will give you years of service whether you are in the shop or in the field.
Contractor Table Saws
If you work in the construction industry, a contractors table saw is something that you really should have in your tool shop. Most people who do contracting tend to use portable table saws and take them from the shop to the job on a regular basis. Not only is it easier to haul one of the smaller saws, they are also less expensive which is a plus whenever you have them on the job site around a lot of other people that are working. If you need such things as a larger table, tighter cutting tolerance and a little more power then choosing one of the contractors table saws available for your shop is a must.
There are several things to consider when you’re looking at contractor table saws. These would include motor size, tabletop size, ease of setup and operation and other available options. Even though contractor table saws are going to sit in your shop without being moved, it is still a good idea to have one that is portable if necessary. If you are going to be working on a large job and need to have the saw present in order to cut things to a tight tolerance, a smaller carried table saw will not do.
Motor size is a large consideration for many people who are looking at contractor table saw. The horse power will range anywhere from 1 to 2 hp or more and you should choose according to the type of work that you do. If you will be cutting things to a tight tolerance but are working with a softer wood than it would be fine to go with a lower horsepower saw. Many people go with the higher horsepower simply because they do not like their work the bog down at all while they were cutting.
Most contractors table saws will sit in the same position in your shop for as long as you use them. You should still look for one that has the ability to break down and be moved if necessary. If you get a large job that would make it necessary for you to have your table saw on-site, breaking it down and moving it could be a real pain if you don’t get one that is easily disassembled. So look at all of your different options so you can aim a little higher than you need and you will be happy for the life of the tool.
Sliding Table Saws
For some projects, sliding table saws offer you the ability to make a more accurate cut than can be used on a traditional tabletop saw. For this reason, they are an essential part of any trim craftsman’s workshop. They also have a place in many home woodworking shops, especially if that person works on smaller pieces of wood and needs accurate cross cuts on a regular basis. Here are some tips that will help you to make the most of your sliding table saws and to get the most accurate cuts possible.
For the most part, you do not need quite as much room to set up one of the sliding table saws as you would a traditional tabletop saw. This is because the wood that you will be cutting tends to stay stationary and the blade is what moves. You may need to have some space if you’re working on a longer pieces of trim. It is just a good idea, however, if your sliding table saw has wheels on the stand so that you can move it around to compensate.
In order to get the most accurate cuts possible with any of the sliding table saws that are available, you will need to take the following steps. The first thing that you need to do is make sure that the cartridge is parallel in relation with the blade trunion. Then you need to make sure that the cross cut fence is square with the material that is going to be cut. You will also need to make sure that the rip fence is parallel to the blade. There can be a little bit of variation and that’s what he should be kept to an absolute minimum in order to get the most accuracy possible.
Sliding table saws can take care of a lot of projects for you that will not get accurate cuts from regular table saws. For this reason, you may need to get one in order to cut trim or smaller pieces of wood accurately. Because sliding table saws are expensive and are not generally needed by most home woodworkers, renting one at your local hardware store is an option that you might want to consider.
If you really want some power out of your table saw choice then the cabinet saw is what you want. These offer all of the conveniences of the contractors table saw along with a more powerful motor and increased accuracy. The price for one of these contractors Cabinet saws, however, will be much pricier than the other two models. If you need the accuracy that comes with one of the saws, however, then the cabinets saw is the choice for you.
The cabinet saw is the typical class that you would find in a professional shop or in a school. They are much more substantial than any of the other classifications, made of much more steel and cast iron, and possess much more powerful motors than their counterparts.
The motor is in a cabinet base, making it much quieter than others of this ilk, and they are designed to withstand long use with the ability to cut through heavy stock for hours on end with less noise and vibration and more accuracy.
Hybrid saws are a more recent addition to the technology. The marketplaces revealed a need for capturing some of the features of the cabinet version yet still have the portability and affordability of the contractor saw.
These hybrids seek to combine the best features of the two types, providing a base similar to that found in the cabinet style to give the sturdiness and stability that is sought but in a smaller, more portable size.
Buy The Best Table Saws For Your Need
When it comes to purchasing a table saw you want the best table saw for the money you have to spend. All table saws should have a guard, a miter gauge, a ripping fence, a blade height adjustment wheel, a blade 0 to 45 degree angle tilt wheel, a motor and a table top. A stand is sometimes optional on smaller models. Some hobbyists will mount a table saw to the end of their workbench. That is because they are only cutting small pieces of wood, plastic etc.
A 10 inch table saw refers to the diameter of the saw blade not the size of the table. 10 inch table saws are the most common.
Your main concern when purchasing a table saw should be the size of the table top, the weight of the saw, the motor and what type of projects you plan on using the table saw for.
A large table top will give you more stability when cutting large pieces of wood. An example would be if you are cutting a four foot by eight foot sheet of plywood or paneling. Some table tops look small but have slide out extenders to give your wood more support when cutting.
If you will be using your table saw for indoor and outdoor projects you should consider the weight and portability of the table saw. It is sometimes easier to take the table saw to your project. If your workshop is in your basement and you have an outdoor project you may want to bring the table saw up and down stairs. Portable table saws with wheels are available. Although moving a small 90 pound table saw up and down stairs is not too difficult.
The motor on the table saw should be powerful enough to cut the types of wood or materials that you will be cutting. There are two types of motors. direct drive and belt driven. Some people prefer one over the other. Most smaller table saws come with direct drive motors. I have never had any problems with direct drive motors. Overall the type of motor should not be a concern. Any namebrand table saw should have a motor powerful enough to cut all types and thicknesses of wood.
Before purchasing a table saw think about what future cutting projects you may have. You may be purchasing a table saw for small projects and a few years later be doing big remodeling projects and discover that you should have purchased a saw with a larger table top. Of course you could always build a table extension out of wood with the saw you already own.
Consider a Used Table Saw
It is not always necessary to buy something that is brand-new and ordered to get quality. If you purchase table saw used, for example, you can not only end up with a quality piece of equipment but you can spend a lot less money than if you were to purchase it new. For most people, purchasing power tools is something that they do in order to work around the house on the weekend. Quality table saws can get very expensive if they are purchased brand-new. For this reason, most people are looking for table saws used or reconditioned so that they can have more money to spend on additional power tools. Here are some things to look for whenever you are in the market for a used table saw.
Used table saws can be purchased easily through classified ads or on the Internet at a variety of locations. Some of the things that you should consider whenever purchasing anything used is the condition that the piece of equipment is it when you purchase it. This is especially true with table saws, as they are a piece of equipment that can easily injure you if all of the safety precautions are not in place. For this reason, it is necessary for you to understand what the manufacturer originally had in place on the equipment and then to thoroughly check it to make sure it is up to manufacturer specifications.
Another thing about table saws used or remanufactured is that many times they are of higher quality than the new product itself. Most remanufactured table saws have to go through a rigorous testing process before they are allowed to be sold. If you purchase something straight off the line, it may not have been tested at all. For this reason, you can usually be confident that you’re getting a quality piece of equipment, although used, whenever you purchase a table saw used that has been remanufactured. Just make sure that all of the safety features are in place and that it comes with the manufacturer’s guidebook and you should be set with a tool for life.
Safety Tip #1
Always wear safety goggles —- Do Not Remove the safety guard from the saw —- Always use a push stick when cutting small pieces of wood
Safety Tip #2
Wear a dust mask when necessary —- Consider wearing ear protection —- Stand to the side of the saw blade when cutting wood —- Never leave the table saw running unattended