Great features, Horrible Alignment Issues

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Review by bobthebuilderinmichigan posted 02-06-2010 06:46 PM 10592 views 2 times favorited 36 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Great features, Horrible Alignment Issues Great features, Horrible Alignment Issues No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I was very impressed with the Craftsman 21833 Contractors Table Saw when I saw it in the store. It had many features found on more expensive models – i.e. the motor is 1 3/4 hp and is fully enclosed and quiet with good dust collection. However, all of that becomes worthless if you can’t align the blade to the miter slots. Mine came 1/8” out of alignment! Turns out, the trunion bolt holes aren’t drilled precisely because despite loosening them and knocking the trunions in the required direction, there is virtually no movement at all. Sears has ordered new trunions (I’m not sure that will solve the problem, since the bolt holes on the underside of the table top might just as easily be the culprits) and they have been on backorder for weeks. They can’t say when (or even IF) I will get it repaired. As a result, I’ve only used my saw a couple of times and have had to go back to my little Ryobi mobile saw with zero features. I think those people who have been lucky enough to purchase one without these aignment issues have been quite satisfied. Unfortunately, by reading the reviews on Sears own website, I think that there are quite a few people who have had severe alignment problems. I’m not sure it is worth the risk of going through what I’m going through.

-- Bobthebuilderinmichigan

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130 posts in 3840 days

36 comments so far

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3883 days

#1 posted 02-06-2010 07:43 PM

An 1/8th of an inch out of alignment!! That’s a LOT!! That makes the saw worthless unless it can be fixed.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View a1Jim's profile


118104 posts in 4385 days

#2 posted 02-06-2010 07:49 PM

To bad another case not to buy Crapsman


View PineInTheAsh's profile


404 posts in 4076 days

#3 posted 02-06-2010 07:57 PM

I hear the two gentlemen above here, but let me ask a sincere question.
What if this saw listed for $199.00 was on sale at $99.00 and with a super Sears coupon it could be had for $59.00?


View Routerisstillmyname's profile


763 posts in 4317 days

#4 posted 02-06-2010 09:01 PM

You can modify those holes. just re-drill them with slightly larger drill bit and that will give you room to adjust.Or make the holes slightly ellipse as I did on my Ridgid when I first got it . I couldn’t align it at all before that.

-- Router è ancora il mio nome.

View b2rtch's profile


4920 posts in 3857 days

#5 posted 02-06-2010 09:24 PM

I would re-drill the holes larger and alilgn everything.
I know one should not have to do that but “things’ happen.

-- Bert

View Chelios's profile


568 posts in 3874 days

#6 posted 02-06-2010 09:35 PM

Good quality shouldn’t be a matter of luck and or chance. This mentality that getting a lemon from time to time is normal in customers/retailers brought down the auto industry in the US. I refuse to put up with poor quality products. Knowing that a company will give me good quality only on ocasion makes me turn away for good.

Thanks for sharing your take on craftsman.

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3883 days

#7 posted 02-06-2010 10:17 PM

I’d like to respond to PineInTheAsh (neat name). I believe in the fundamental concept that “you get what you pay for” and there is a corollary to that statement, “it always cost more to buy cheap tools”.

In both my photography hobby and my woodworking hobby I have often bought something that was cheap and then later replaced it with a good quality item. This makes buying the cheap item in the first place a waste of money. I don’t need or desire top quality at a super expensive price. I just want good quality at a reasonable price. For example, I think Jet tools are good and I don’t spend the extra for Jet’s high priced sibling, Powermatic.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View Routerisstillmyname's profile


763 posts in 4317 days

#8 posted 02-06-2010 10:36 PM

I do agree with chelios, however sometimes it’s more productive to take the initiative and resolve an issue if it’s slight modification while waiting for new parts to arrive.
Especially with table saw. Not something you can easily drag back to the store.

-- Router è ancora il mio nome.

View GuyK's profile


356 posts in 4888 days

#9 posted 02-06-2010 10:55 PM

Craftsman Table Saw, Craftsman 14” Bandsaw, Craftsman Chop Saw, Craftmans Jointer, Craftsman Router.
Plus other Craftsman tools in my shop along with other brands. Craftsmans works just fine, always has, right out the box.

Sorry for your problems Bob. I hope it gets resolved soon

Seems if you look on the site, you will see a lot of issues with other companies, some issues have gone on for days and weeks talking about bad tools from companies. But good old Craftsman that have been around longer them then all, still gets the crap handed to it everytime someone has a issue. Oh well, mine work just fine and they have provided me with hours of trouble free enjoyment and some nice projects.

glivingston – BRAVO!!!!!!!!

-- Guy Kroll

View cstrang's profile


1832 posts in 3976 days

#10 posted 02-07-2010 01:52 AM

I am not a fan of Craftsman, they used to be really good quality but unfortunately like a few other quality machine companies they have gone bad, hopefully these companies will clean up their act sooner rather than later. And hopefully your problem will be resolved, best of luck.

-- A hammer dangling from a wall will bang and sound like work when the wind blows the right way.

View dmorgantx's profile


70 posts in 3891 days

#11 posted 02-07-2010 06:55 AM

So that won’t take it back at this point or you aren’t ready to give up yet? You spend too much on this to have it not work out, and 1/8” is a safety issue. On the discussion about people with lemons complaining more- I don’t see how this is unfair to Craftsman. If (by your logic) you had more lemons from another company out there- you would have more ‘bad’ reviews for them as well. I’m not jumping on one side or the other but…

View AKWoody's profile


56 posts in 3971 days

#12 posted 02-07-2010 09:22 AM

I almost bought one of these when a sale hit, glad I didnt!

View Enthalpy's profile


44 posts in 3850 days

#13 posted 02-07-2010 03:01 PM

I have the same model…except for some fence adjustment…it was ready to rock and roll right from the box. Even the best have quality issues…....what about Toyota?

View docholladay's profile


1287 posts in 3867 days

#14 posted 02-07-2010 05:29 PM

I noticed that one gentleman noted that he had a similar alignment problem with a Ridgid Table Saw. Has anyone made the connection that Ridgid and Craftsman power tools are made in the same factory. Also Ryobi for that matter. Generally, the lower end of the price and quality spectrum.

In my opinion, if you cannot afford the higher quality tools new, shop for used. You can often find older tools much less expensively than even that Craftsman saw. Often you can find something bigger, more powerful and better quality, all at a lower price. You do have to check it out closely, and you may have to invest some elbow grease to clean it up, but, for a hobbyist such as myself, it is a much better value.

Myself, I purchased a 30 year old Delta Unisaw (probably better quality than a new one would have been before the most recent updates). The motor was sound, the bearings were solid. No runout. Even had a Biesmeyer Fence. I spent about 2 hours cleaning a little bit of rust and aligning everything and it ran great. I only spent $200 for the saw. It was missing the miter gauge so I bought the small Incra gauge for $60.00 when Woodcraft had them on sale. I also invested in new belts. For less than $300, I have a saw I would put against anything that Craftsman offers at any price.

-- Hey, woodworking ain't brain surgery. Just do something and keep trying till you get it. Doc

View MedicKen's profile


1615 posts in 4270 days

#15 posted 02-07-2010 11:43 PM

I would take the saw back. If it cant be adjusted as described it is a manufacturing defect and should be exchanged.

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

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