Sawstop Cartriges Bad Deal #1: Replacing Cartridges Constantly

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Blog entry by Glassgirl posted 10-31-2013 04:51 PM 3202 reads 0 times favorited 29 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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Please know that we bought a SawStop Saw to save lives in our shop. Yet in the 1/12 since we had it we have replaced 5 Cartridges at $70 each and 3 Saw Blades at $200+ each. BUT we have yet to SAVE A LIFE…
We only cut Plastic sheets no metal ever and they are saying it is because of the metal. But we do not have metal in our shop. Then they tell us because it needs cleaned…we are cleaning now every day. But still problems. We are a small business and cannot afford to continue to purchase brakes and blades for no reason. The last time we were sawing for 30 days on the same blade and cartdrige and we only turned off and on and then it tripped.
They tell you to send it in to evaluate and you pay for the shipping. This is really a sad deal for a company that is supposed to save lives.
They are ripping off their customers. I recommend to all to beware of these saws. Very expensive and then you replace parts. Not good is what I say!!

29 comments so far

View ajosephg's profile


1891 posts in 4528 days

#1 posted 10-31-2013 04:56 PM

BUT we have yet to SAVE A LIFE

So how many people have died?

-- Joe

View Mike Lingenfelter's profile

Mike Lingenfelter

503 posts in 5081 days

#2 posted 10-31-2013 05:12 PM

I’ve had my saw for 3 years now and have only tripped it once. I ran my miter gauge into the blade, so it was kind of my fault. I love my SawStop.

View byerbyer's profile


241 posts in 2939 days

#3 posted 10-31-2013 06:13 PM

We’ve replaced 2 cartridges in 2 years in our commercial shop. Once when when they were cutting metal laminate and did not deactivate the sensor, and once when for the advertised reason… We’ve been lucky and haven’t ruined a blade yet.

-- Byer-- "Comparison is the thief of joy" -- T.R. Roosevelt

View woodsmithshop's profile


1416 posts in 4512 days

#4 posted 10-31-2013 08:00 PM

if you are only cutting plastic, could it be that enough static electricity is developed to cause the cartridge to fire?
just a thought.

-- Smitty!!!

View Freakazoid's profile


72 posts in 3745 days

#5 posted 10-31-2013 08:39 PM

I would say that woodsmithshop is on to something – the safety on the SawStop works by detecting change in a minor current that is in the blade.

-- I can complicate anything

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30578 posts in 3305 days

#6 posted 10-31-2013 08:43 PM

I like smitty’s explanation as well. Something is it’s source for tripping.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Heavy's profile


118 posts in 3555 days

#7 posted 10-31-2013 08:49 PM

This is a real pain in the a** when you are cutting MDF as there are some small metal particles in it. What woodsmithshop said it is maybe triggered by the static electricity as it only needs a very small amount to be activated. SawStop should have tested this.

View Manitario's profile


2816 posts in 3850 days

#8 posted 10-31-2013 09:08 PM

I’ve had my SS for 2 years and only had to replace 1 cartridge; it was when I ran the blade into my mitre gauge b/c I wasn’t being careful.

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View IrreverentJack's profile


728 posts in 3810 days

#9 posted 10-31-2013 11:46 PM

3 Saw Blades at $200+ each

Wow Glassgirl those are pricey blades. What kind are they? Any pics of your saw and shop or are you a one hit wonder?

View GOOD LUCK TO ALL's profile


418 posts in 2694 days

#10 posted 11-01-2013 01:13 AM

Blades made for Plexi are called triple chip “No Melt” Blades. These are from Forrest, If your cutting plexi every day you need a good blade. I worked as a plexiglass fabricator for 3 years and thats all we used, although we ran 14” blades.

200 bucks a blade is common.

View StumpyNubs's profile


7837 posts in 3767 days

#11 posted 11-01-2013 02:00 AM

It has to be the static electricity from the plastic, it must somehow build up. I have found mine to be a fantastic saw. I have triggered it by accident, with the miter gauge. But even small brad nails won’t set it off. I call BS on the idea of MDF setting it off- I cut it all the time with no problems.

I don’t know what Sawstop has told you, maybe you got a raw deal. But I can personally attest to the fact that they are NOT ripping off their customers. I have spoken to them personally and they’ve been nothing but gracious and helpful to me. I am a BIG fan!

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

View jasonR's profile


19 posts in 3594 days

#12 posted 11-01-2013 03:14 AM

I’m sorry you have had so much trouble. Your frustration is evident. I’m going with something special about the plastic.

Personally, several years without a single trip of the brake. I’ve cut through staples (I try to avoid this but …) and pretty green wood.

Does it happen more in the colder/drier months than in the warmer/wetter months?

-- Jason

View GOOD LUCK TO ALL's profile


418 posts in 2694 days

#13 posted 11-01-2013 03:31 AM

”It has to be the static electricity from the plastic”

It could be an over sensitive electrostamatic condensator.

View Heavy's profile


118 posts in 3555 days

#14 posted 11-01-2013 08:10 PM

StumpyNubs – I call BS on the idea of MDF setting it off

You can call BS as much as you want but when you cut about 1000 square meters a month it can happen. MDF sometimes is not as pure as it should be and it does contain metal particles. I found a metal “grain” as big as 1.5mm. Doesn’t happen often but it can.

View pintodeluxe's profile


6290 posts in 3780 days

#15 posted 11-01-2013 08:14 PM

That’s my fear, if I had a sawstop I might just turn the sensor off to avoid tripping the cartridge. That, and setup for a dado blade has to be a hassle.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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