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What is best portable table saw to purchase for garage wood shop?

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Forum topic by jnovak posted 09-21-2019 09:57 PM 1115 views 0 times favorited 18 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jnovak

4 posts in 192 days


09-21-2019 09:57 PM

Topic tags/keywords: table saw table saw

Hello,
I’ve moved my wood shop from my basement out to my 2 car garage to give me more room to make bigger projects. However, I found that my Jet Contractor’s table saw didn’t fit real well in my garage so I decided to sell it and downsize my table saw.

I’ve been looking at jobsite portable table saws so that I can break down the saw stand and roll it into a corner of the garage. I don’t use my table saw a huge amount but hope to in the future now that I’ve got a heated garage (the other reason I moved my shop to the garage). I’m also planning on purchasing a track saw (either Kreg or Festool) that will help me cut down huge sheets of plywood…so not sure I’ll need to use my table saw for breaking down big sheet goods.

I’ve been looking at a couple different Dewalt table saws but if anybody has some good recommendations I’d appreciate some feedback.

Thanks,
Jeff


18 replies so far

View Holbs's profile

Holbs

2246 posts in 2542 days


#1 posted 09-22-2019 05:15 AM

my vote is for the good ‘ol Bosch 4100 and the gravity stand. As it’s the only contractor/jobsite saw I’ve ever owned and did it’s job. I liked it so much that when I finally got around to owning a true Unisaw cabinet saw, I kept it :) Handy to wheel outfront and cut MDF or so.

-- The Carpenter Bee is derived from the Ancient Greek word wood-cutter "xylokopos/ξυλοκὀπος"

View controlfreak's profile

controlfreak

222 posts in 115 days


#2 posted 09-22-2019 10:49 AM

I have been looking at getting a track saw for sheet good too. Most comments that I see from people that went for the huge TS extensions regret having to walk around them and rarely need them. I don’t know if you like your Jet TS but it sounds like you have enough room to use a mobile base to move it out of the way. If you go to a jobsite saw it is most likely going to be things like the fence and size of dado stack you can fit on it. I bought one (Kobalt)with a crappy fence that needs to be adjusted with a square each time I move it. I have less than $300 in it so its not the worst mistake I have made. I have a 10’x16’ shop so a portable folding saw is a must for me. I will follow to see what others are thinking.

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Eric

108 posts in 751 days


#3 posted 09-22-2019 01:02 PM

For small shops the Shopsmith is a great choice. Always lots of used product available.

-- Eric

View wildwoodbybrianjohns's profile

wildwoodbybrianjohns

333 posts in 60 days


#4 posted 09-22-2019 01:28 PM

Ive got a bosch gts10xc, its a notch above the 4100. It really purrs. Gravity stand is a huge plus. Soft start also nice.
Because of the sliding table feature, mitre slots are not standard! Does not take dado stacks(not the european version anyway). Theres some play in the mitre gauge, like the makita and dewalt equivalents, not huge but annoying. The fence is good but not great, sometimes it doesnt lock square to the blade, so have to keep an eye on that. The rack and pinion fence on the dewalt is better, IMO. The makita looks real nice, but theres alot of plastic.

-- Wildwood by Brian Johns: It is wiser to find out, than to suppose (S. Clemens)

View Snipes's profile

Snipes

432 posts in 2758 days


#5 posted 09-22-2019 02:16 PM

DeWalt.. 4sure

-- if it is to be it is up to me

View Woodbum's profile

Woodbum

892 posts in 3579 days


#6 posted 09-22-2019 02:42 PM

”_Jet Contractor’s table saw didn’t fit real well in my garage” How so? Have you thought of putting your Jet on a Mobile base? You will, IMHO be taking a huge step backwards by going from the Jet contractor saw to a jobsite saw. Just my 2 cents worth

-- "Now I'm just another old guy wearing funny clothes"

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bilyo

856 posts in 1616 days


#7 posted 09-22-2019 03:43 PM

If it were me, I would go to almost any length to keep the Jet; even if I had to build on an addition to the garage. Having said that, I might consider what Eric said, Shopsmith.

View OleGrump's profile

OleGrump

500 posts in 858 days


#8 posted 09-22-2019 06:19 PM

IF, and I say “IF” you decide to forgo the Jet for some reason, IMHO, you cannot beat the Dewalt 745 or it’s siblings. I’ve had my 745 for a number of years now and LOVE it. While it IS true the included miter gauge is substandard, and I have replaced mine, the fence system is fantastic! There are those who whine that there is no dado capability, but good God! Don’t you own a ROUTER??? I’ve built a rolling cart with locking casters for the saw, on which I have included onboard storage for the rip fence, push sticks, a tape, an adjustable square, a blade depth gauge, a hook for a three outlet plug extension cord and shop made zero clearance insert. All KINDS a cart designs on You Tube for the Dewalt. Ya gotta find SOMETHING you can either use or modify to your needs.
I’ve had other, stationary 10” table saws, in shops where there was room to dedicate for that purpose. In a small shop, the 745 on it’s rolling cart is a dream. Easy to roll out and use when desired, easy to push back out of the way when no longer needed. Takes up only a small footprint when rolled off to the side.

-- OleGrump

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

3916 posts in 1087 days


#9 posted 09-22-2019 07:36 PM

In past comparisons the Bosch 4100 kicked buttocks against all comers.

Today Sawstop is all the rage. They just offered up The Sawstop portable PRO?? Plenty of video on them

Ron Paulk is a respected handyman woodworker who made a table design famous, here is a video of his thoughts about the older sawstop jobsite saw.

-- Think safe, be safe

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

8339 posts in 3889 days


#10 posted 09-22-2019 07:46 PM

With that much space, there’s no way I’d give up a full size saw for a portable. You just give up to many advantages for the sake of weight. I’d rethink that decision and your layout.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View wildwoodbybrianjohns's profile

wildwoodbybrianjohns

333 posts in 60 days


#11 posted 09-22-2019 09:14 PM



In past comparisons the “Bosch 4100” kicked buttocks against all comers.

- therealSteveN

Respectfully, the gts10xc has some notable upgrades, the kill switch, for example(though this may be standard on all bosch saws now); and the extension support aft of the blade for long stock support. The sliding table I could do without, I rarely use it, though it does stabilize the wonky mitre gauge when used in tandem.

Couple other details about the bosch saws: Easy to Adjust riving knife, higher/lower, cool. Single wrench blade change also cool.

-- Wildwood by Brian Johns: It is wiser to find out, than to suppose (S. Clemens)

View fuigb's profile

fuigb

563 posts in 3471 days


#12 posted 09-23-2019 12:05 AM

My Bosch 4100 has been like a second right hand BUT the current version seems to have cheaper components than my 10+ year version. For example the gears for raising and lowering the blade are now plastic: maybe this is ok but it worries me enough that I’d look for a gently-used older 4100 before buying new.

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

View Andybb's profile

Andybb

2113 posts in 1117 days


#13 posted 09-23-2019 12:27 AM

+1 Bosch

I had a Bosch 4000 for almost 20 years until I bought my Grizzly hybrid. Really loved it.

-- Andy - Seattle USA

View jnovak's profile

jnovak

4 posts in 192 days


#14 posted 09-23-2019 03:24 AM

Thanks folks for all your inputs. I sold my Jet contractors table saw a couple of days ago…and as much as I’d have like to have kept it….it wasn’t a priority in my new shop (for the little that I used it). A couple of you posted about the Shopsmith….been there, done that and I didn’t like having to constantly change up configurations.

I’m still undecided on what I’ll do…but it sounds like one of the Dewalt or Bosch portable saws is the way to go for my situation….and then either the Kreg Adaptive Cutting system…or the Festool track saw to do a majority of my crosscutting and/or ripping.

Layout in my garage is pretty basic…I have some limited room along the sides and some in the front so having everything set up on portable bases is critical…and, Yes, my Jet tablesaw was mounted on a mobile base. I will be building some mobile bases for some of my other tools as well.

Thanks again for all your inputs. If anybody has used or is familiar with either the Kreg ACS or Festool Tracksaw systems please let me know because I’d like to get as much real life information on these tools rather than trusting all the marketing hoopla on these.

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runswithscissors

3072 posts in 2538 days


#15 posted 09-23-2019 10:59 PM

Well, the OP has resolved his problem, but for newbies looking at this, I want to vent about the Shop Smith. First of all, it doesn’t have a small footprint, though its versatility might let you get rid of several large tools, such as lathe and drill press. But my main objection to SS is the crappy table saw. The table looks tinier than any job site saw, and it is tilting table, not tilting arbor (admittedly, sometimes that may not be a problem, or even an asset).

Anyhow, if it is a table saw I’m looking for, Shop Smith is the last thing I’d consider.

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

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