Chicago Electric Power Tools - 93211-1VGA 4" Mighty-Mite Table Saw - Harbor Freight (Rating: 2)

I was looking for a cheap but effective option for cutting pen blanks since I don't really have a workshop setup yet for the space nor the money for a large band-saw or table-saw even. So searching around on the internet I found this tiny little table-saw at Harbor Freight.

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem.taf?Itemnumber=93211

Listed at $39.99 it didn't seem like to bad a deal. It claims it can cut 3/4" and cuts at 14,000rpm which should be just fine for pen blanks.

After getting it home I was excited to open it up and try it out. Well first thing is the blade on the arbor wasn't secure all the way, I had to tighten that myself. Starting up the unit it sounded good wasn't to loud and seem to run just fine. After putting a pen blank down against the blade while it was off I could see that it was still about 1/8th or so off from being to cut all the way through the top of the blank. This required me to do 1 pass flip it and run another.

My second issue with it was the fact that even while going slow the motor ended up getting bogged down on me. That required me to go in for small passes back out a bit and proceed forward a few times.

The third issue I have is the miter gauge knob was not very comfortable on my fingers and whole gauge didn't slide very well in the track. I felt a little uneasy having my hands that close to the blade with something that didn't slide with ease.

Lastly the fourth issue is with the plastic guard. First time I turned it on it had scraped the side of the guard a little until I tweak the position of that. Also the rectangle guard on the top where you tighten the screw had cracked a little to easy.

I know most woodworkers probably would overlook or not even use something like this. I was personally looking for a cheap, simple option with a small footprint and I feel I wasted my time and money buying this item. I will be returning it to the store in the next few days.

It looked like a cute and neat little saw at a good price but with it's deficiencies it wasn't worth the time and concern of my safety and quality of work.

My bottom line with it is save your money and find something else. If it was able to cut one pass all the way through the pen blank and not bog down at all I would be happy with this item. It did not deliver on that unfortunately.

Pros: Cheap Cost
Small Design

Cons: Cheap Design
Unable to cut 3/4" or above

Product Description from website.

For quick and easy cutting operations. Perfect for picture frames, molding, and plastics.

  • Maximum depth of cut at 90°: 3/4''
  • Includes blade guard and adjustable angle plate
  • Blade capacity: 4''
  • Comes with one 4" diamond blade and one 4" maganese steel saw blade

Motor: 0.9 amps @ 110 volts, 14,000 RPM
Power cord: 6 ft
Table: 7-5/8'' x 5-5/8'' x 6-1/2''; includes two miter slots
Weight: 6 lbs.