Reply by JayT

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Posted on Rigid R4512 seems too big for me, but I don't need mobility. What to get?

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6413 posts in 3092 days

#1 posted 01-22-2016 04:42 PM

Any decent table saw is going to take up that much space. You need a large top for stability of what you are cutting. The smaller job-site saws just don’t work well for large furniture pieces like you are talking about.

For starting out, how about trying to find a good used contractor style saw? I haven’t seen any part of the country that doesn’t have the ubiquitous Craftsman 113 on Craigslist periodically for under $200 (usually under $150). Capabilities are very similar to the Ridgid and if you decide the hobby is not for you, then you can sell it for the amount you paid. If you decide to stick with the hobby, then you can still sell it and upgrade in the future. You could still use your gift card for blades, clamps and other necessary items.

While the best option is a table saw, there are others. One that may work well for you would be a track saw. Home Depot can get both the Makita and DeWalt, so you could use your gift cards. They have the ability to make very accurate and clean rip and cross cuts and are safer to operate than a table saw. Plus, when you don’t need them, they don’t take up much space.

Last option would be to base the shop around a band saw. A good 14 inch or larger band saw is able to do the ripping, though the surface it leaves is not quite as clean as a good table saw blade. Cross cuts would have to be handled by hand or with a miter saw. Band saws tend to be a bit safer than table saws and take up much less space. There are quite a few professional woodworkers that do not own a table saw and use band saw(s) as the centerpiece of the shop. Michael Fortune is probably the biggest name.

-- - In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is.

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