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Reply by EdDantes

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Posted on Beginner Question - Tool Acquisition

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EdDantes

62 posts in 269 days


#1 posted 10-20-2018 05:23 PM



Thanks – I ve seen a few hybrid saws in my area CL recently that could be a good place to start. One is a Grizzly G0661 the other is a Delta 36-725. A riving knife is a must for me and I m not very handy so I don t want to get into an older saw that might need some work.

Appreciate all the advice – thank you!

Matt

- jotrocks

Just for clarity, the G0661 or 36-725 would both be nice choices. The riving knife is nice, but even on older saws you can use a splitter. While the riving knife is theoretically “better”, when used properly I think the difference is negligible. There are also after market plastic splitters that can be used.

Even if you’re not handy, it will do you well to really take some time to figure out how to troubleshoot and tune your saw. That’s going to be what’s going to let you go from just “cutting wood” to doing solid work. They’re actually pretty simple machines, and once you take some time you’ll have no problem. If you do end up with a hybrid/contractor saw, I highly recommend the PALS system to align the blade. Just infinitely easier than tapping away with a wooden block for an hour.

Finally, try not to be nervous about the saw. A healthy amount of respect and caution is certainly warranted, but any tool can hurt you if you’re not paying attention and doing things safely…not just the table saw. Keep the guard on with splitter/riving knife, use push sticks and feather boards, build a sled for cross cuts, make sure you have adequate infeed/outfeed support, etc. Then if you find this is something you really enjoy, you can always upgrade to a SawStop cabinet saw. There are going to be arguments about whether it’s actually safer which aren’t material to this conversation, but it may at least give you some piece of mind.


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