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Looking for a new table saw

1048 Views 16 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  Unknowncraftsman
I'm starting to look for a new table saw and am wanting a little input. My wife is in the, "get a saw stop" camp. I have looked at the PCS with a 3hp motor and overarm dust collection but feel like I can get the same or close to the same quality for a lot less money if I don't worry about the safety feature of the saw stop. I keep my digits well away from a spinning blade and feel like distractions, sloppy work, and kickback are greater threats. I am currently considering the Harvey Alpha HW110TC-52P at $2,799 or the Harvey Alpha HW110S-52P at $2,599. My questions are first, does anyone have first hand experience with either of these saws? How is the quality control? And second, the 110TC has a 3 hp motor and worm gear trunion while the 110S has a 4hp motor and a dovetail trunion for $200 less. 3 hp is plenty for me as I'm currently working with a 1 1/2 hp, 75 year old Craftsman saw. Would the dovetail or worm drive be the better system? Looks like that is the only difference between the two models unless I am missing something…..

Thanks for any input!
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Just about everyone "keeps their digits well away from a spinning blade" the same way most everyone drives their car reasonably safely. That doesn't mean airbags are a bad thing, and it also doesn't mean a brake is a bad thing on a table saw.

I don't have any experience with either Harvey saw, but I can say from experience (though not ownership) that Sawstop saws are top quality.
I hear ya Jonah. So a little more background, my wife is a defense attorney that practices worker's compensation so she has handled many cases involving lost fingers through the years (that is what is driving her opinion). I don't dislike the saw stop. And I do intend on this being the last saw I buy.
The one nice thing about a SawStop is that you don't necessarily have to worry about sacrificing quality to get the safety feature.

That being said, I've seen a few posts/reviews elsewhere about the Harvey saws and they look great. From a performance standpoint, I don't know that'd you go wrong either way. Probably going to come down to whether the piece of mind (or your wife's piece of mind) is worth the extra cash.

You could always look to add the Harvey sliding table which arguably adds to the safety profile…but also adds $1200.
Best bang for the buck would be used. For around 1/3rd (or less) of what you are looking at spending, you can get a US made beast of a saw that would be the last you ever purchased, and it will most likely come with lots of extra goodies that you would otherwise have to spend extra on (mobile base, blades and dado sets, jigs, etc..).

Do as SWMBO says. She wants SS, STFU and BUY it before she changes her mind!
From what I understand the quality of a saw stop saw is very good + the safety feature. I would compare whatever saw stop saw and its non saw stop equivalent and determine the price difference. If the safety feature in your opinion is worth the difference buy it if not get the other TS and maybe a few extras. It really doesn't matter what we say because at the end of the day its your call. I did the math after an employee cut part of three fingers off (not work related) costing $80,000 and missed 3 months of work. I decided if I am stupid enough to say at some point in the future "it happed so fast" it was worth it to me.
Make the wife happy. Buy the Saw stop. If I was shopping, it would be a no brainer. You don't want an injury, but the I told you so could be worse than the pain, and will certainly last longer.
if my wife told me to buy a saw stop it would be in my shop the next week for sure :<)))))))))))))))))))))
Whats the backorder on them? I assume they're on backorder like everything else.
Hey Car16, first off, I will say that the SawStop's are great saws. But if you are interested in non-saw stop options, I have the Harvey ALPHA HW110S-36. I've had it for about 5 months now and love it. There are definitely issues, but I think every tool as some issue. You can read my post about it here, which has some other links you may find useful. There are also some great video's on YT with reviews on the Harvey's. If you have any specific questions, let me know.
The most important thing is to do what your CFO says. A number of years ago, I mentioned to my wife about the Sawstop and that I thought it was really good. The wife/CFO took one second and told me to get it now.

It is a great saw in terms of quality fit and finish plus the safety. .I have heard good things about the Harvey.but the wife wanted the safety.
I needed a new saw about 6 or 7 years ago and looked at all that was out there, I decided on the Saw Stop because the way I saw it if I ever had an accident and lost fingers or worse I would never forgive myself for not getting the safety feature. I don't even remember what the extra cost was and it wasn't that much for a comparable saw, I just like the saw. Remember fingers don't grow back.
I can't talk to the risk tolerance for anybody but me.

I bought the SawStop 10 years ago when I was upgrading to a cabinet saw. I evaluated the price delta for the safety system against the cost of one trip to the emergency room and a greatly reduced risk of long term impact of a potential event. I was also reading about superior quality and ease of setup. When put all together, my decision was made.

I keep an extra blade brake cartridge on hand "just in case." I've had one trigger event, and that was my fault as I failed to ensure my metal miter gauge fence was clear of the blade when I made a cut. I've never touched the spinning blade with a finger or skin.

I think the price premium for the SawStop in 2012 was about $1200 compared to other saws of similar quality in the same class (I looked at the Powermatic.) Ten years down the road, that price delta is not even a thought. I think the price deltas between SawStop and PM are largely closed now.
I have been happy with my Alpha 110 from Harvey, but I also did not have the money to spend on a Sawstop. Harvey made saws for Grizzly and others before using the same designs with their own nameplate.

But if your wife tells you to spend her hard earned lawyer money on a Sawstop… no brainer.
Look at the resale value also if you ever decide to sell down the road. Chances are the SawStop will hold a higher % of it's value because of the safety factor. Who decides to buy a SS and doesn't look for a used one first because of the price? I have purchased 4 table saws in my life. I never considered a used one until #4 when I was looking for a SawStop. Two reasons - the price of a new one, and secondly they never produced a poorly made economy model. They have been top quality from the start. People don't pick one up at a local DIY store, beat the crap out of it, then try to dump it on CL. The high price point mostly weeds those types out.
I'm with Car16 on this one.
It's a awful lot of money for a tablesaw that only accepts a 10 inch blade.
As far a safety goes that's left up to the individual.
The sawstop has too much electronic sorcery for me. I just want and have a on off switch on my tablesaw.
Good Luck
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