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Circular Saw Recommendations

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Forum topic by JIMMIEM posted 07-03-2020 07:24 PM 497 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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JIMMIEM

71 posts in 1647 days


07-03-2020 07:24 PM

Topic tags/keywords: circular saw

I would appreciate some recommendations for 7 1/4″ sidewinder corded circular saws.
I have an under powered Craftsman circular saw which I bought years ago so I’m not really up-to-date on the better brands and models. I won’t be using the saw a lot…..mostly for breaking down plywood and 2 X lumber.
I’ve been using my old saw to do this, but even with new/good blades it’s a chore to use.
Thank You


11 replies so far

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nickbatz

527 posts in 885 days


#1 posted 07-03-2020 08:05 PM

I don’t know what a sidewinder is, but I really like the Makita 5007MG I’ve had for about three years. They also make one with a brake, but I don’t think that’s necessary for a circular saw, especially if you’re not going to use it much.

Now, this saw is priced on the higher side for circular saws, and it may be more than you need if you’re just breaking down wood. I use it for precision cuts (with straight and right-angle jigs) for things that are too large for my table saw.

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John Smith

2511 posts in 968 days


#2 posted 07-03-2020 08:35 PM

I tour my local Pawn Shops regularly to see what tools and other goodies
I can find that “I just can’t live without”. in these hard times, construction workers
are pawning their tools and equipment. sad state we are in these days.
but, you can find some good deals at the pawn shops.

to me, there is nothing special about this model ~ it’s just another circular saw.

15 Amp 7-1/4 in. Corded Lightweight Sidewinder

everyone has their favorites – and some are Brand Loyal.
I like my old Porter Cable that also cuts concrete and asphalt when needed.

.

-- there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks. --

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JIMMIEM

71 posts in 1647 days


#3 posted 07-03-2020 09:16 PM

@nickbatz


I don t know what a sidewinder is, but I really like the Makita 5007MG I ve had for about three years. They also make one with a brake, but I don t think that s necessary for a circular saw, especially if you re not going to use it much.

Now, this saw is priced on the higher side for circular saws, and it may be more than you need if you re just breaking down wood. I use it for precision cuts (with straight and right-angle jigs) for things that are too large for my table saw.

The Makita 5007MG gets good reviews….it is a sidewinder…..the other type is a worm drive. From what I have read it’s a regional thing….Easterners typically use sidewinders and Westerners typically use worm drives.
I will use it for cuts that are too large for the table saw or miter saw.
- nickbatz


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JIMMIEM

71 posts in 1647 days


#4 posted 07-03-2020 09:19 PM

There aren’t any pawn shops in my area.

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CaptainKlutz

3352 posts in 2299 days


#5 posted 07-03-2020 10:07 PM

I bought a Milwaukee 6390 model about 8-10 years ago when my Dads hand me down Crapsman died one day cutting expanded metal sheet. The 6390 has been a great circular saw. The offer both left and right blade models, so you can get configuration you are used to using. The 6390 has been around a while, and had decent reviews when I was shopping.
It was recommended to me by a contractor friend whose employee’s destroy most tools. The Milwaukee has lasted the longest for his staff. I really like the power to weight and the ease of changing the cut depth. Considering they still make the model, and price has reduced since i bought one; they must be popular to others as well? lol
YMMV

-- If it wasn't for bad luck, I wouldn't have no luck at all, - Albert King - Born Under a Bad Sign released 1967

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CWWoodworking

871 posts in 984 days


#6 posted 07-04-2020 12:09 AM

Whatever battery system you have. I wouldn’t own a corded model.

View William_D's profile

William_D

36 posts in 1274 days


#7 posted 07-04-2020 04:31 AM

Milwaukee cord lock and brake.

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ChefHDAN

1700 posts in 3654 days


#8 posted 07-04-2020 11:03 AM

When I moved away from the proximity of my Father, he wanted his Makita saw back. When I got to the new house and needed a Circ saw,I bought the Milwaukee tilt-lok circular saw because of the brand name and it was the best saw I could afford. I have been suprised many time over the past 18 years how handy the tilting handle has been and it has also been a super accurate and reliable saw.

-- I've decided 1 mistake is really 2 opportunities to learn.. learn how to fix it... and learn how to not repeat it

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runswithscissors

3107 posts in 2830 days


#9 posted 07-05-2020 04:54 AM

A sidewinder has the blade offset to either left or right side of the saw. That means you are pushing the blade through the work with your hand off to either side of it, which tends to twist either the blade or your wrist. They are the most popular saw because they are cheap to make and to buy. But they are fine for the kinds of uses you are describing. Post #2 shows a couple of sidewinders.

The alternative is the worm drive saw, invented (as far as I know) by Skil back in the ‘30s. They are the best tool Skil ever made (way better than their sidewinders). Others, such as Milwaukee and Bosch have made similar saws. Dewalt made a worm drive saw with the motor tilted up at the back, so the grip was below the back of the motor. Don’t know if they still make that. It always looked, and felt, awkward to me. Crapsman sold one too, but somebody else made it for them. Probably Skil.

The advantage is that the blade is out in front of you, so you can steer the saw easily from behind, and with great control. Makes a long rip in 2by material much easier.

The old Skil worm drive was a workhorse. Some of them lasted well over 50 years, though you might have to change bearings eventually. And you had to keep the worm mechanism lubed. Some guys collect them.

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

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JIMMIEM

71 posts in 1647 days


#10 posted 08-06-2020 05:00 PM

Based on your advice and a trip to a couple of retailers to touch the tools, I had it narrowed down to the Makita and Milwaukee. While trying to decide I watched some youtube videos and read some more reviews. The left blade worm drives and all the left blade cordless saws got me curious about the pros of a left blade saw. The Skilsaw Southpaw, left blade, caught my attention and the reviews were really good. Right handed users (I’m right handed) spoke highly of the benefit of being able to see the cut line. The left blade makes it really easy to rip strips off of a sheet of plywood…...one of the things I do a lot.
I bought the Skilsaw Southpaw (SPT67M8). Works really well, not too heavy, good power, and the plywood ripping a lot easier than with a right blade saw. Cross cutting was good too…..I put cut marks on a board and being able to see the cut line made it easy to do the crosscuts without a guide.
I now see what the blade left proponents like.

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William_D

36 posts in 1274 days


#11 posted 08-08-2020 04:09 AM

I have a Milwaukee tilt lock? removable plug with brake. I have a festool 55 something as well, but the milwaukee is my workhorse. i think it was around $200 max. May be able to find a refurb.

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