Reply by _Whitey

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Posted on Table Saw Purchase on a Budget

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17 posts in 2605 days

#1 posted 04-14-2016 09:15 PM

The Craftsman and the Ridgid are exactly the same saw. The split fence rail (Made that way only to save the company on shipping costs) affects accuracy. How much depends on who you talk to. If you are going to buy new and are limiting yourself to these saws I would go for the Griz. You have 2 other options though.
1) Do a couple of side jobs, work a little OT, be patient, wait, save up and go for another 5-600$$. I know it seems like a lot, but the quality difference is HUGE between a 6 and 1200$ saw. That will put you in the Jet, Higher end Griz, Delta X series (well, almost), etc. This purchase will be the centerpiece of your shop. You will NOT regret your patience.
2)If you need something now, check the used market. I would stay away from old Craftsmans, but Delta Unisaws are pretty easy to find if you are willing to drive a little, and are in your price range. From my own experience, don’t rule out a used Ridgid 3560 or 3660. They are stable, great mid-range fence, heavy duty and parts are readily available. In my opinion they were the last good table saws that Ridgid made, and they can be had for around $300-350 which leaves you room for a new blade and a nest egg for a bigger saw when you are ready. I have owned a couple of these and they always sell for the same or a little more than I buy them for, so you won’t loose anything while you are saving up. Their biggest drawback is that the motor sticks out the back, and the blade sits a little further back in the table. Their built-in mobile base is invaluable, at least in my small shop. I agree with the comment about the new blade, and If you do go used, plan on investing 5-6 hours to clean and tune up your saw. You can bring them back to new and the older ones alot of time were built alot sturdier. Good luck! Buying a tablesaw is a very fun adventure.

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