Are you in the market for a table saw? With so many options available, it’s important to make an informed decision. In this article, we will explore the most popular job site table saws. These portable and affordable saws are perfect for draftsmen, job site carpenters, and DIY enthusiasts.
Choosing the Right Table Saw for the Job Site
When it comes to table saws, power is key. For job site use, a 15-amp motor is essential. With ample tearing power and just 120V AC power, you’ll be able to tackle any cutting task. While cordless table saws are emerging, corded power sources still offer the best performance for 10″ saws.
Belt Drive vs. Direct Drive Motors
Most construction site table saws utilize direct drive motors, while belt drives are typically found in high-powered cabinet saws. However, Skilsaw offers a twist with their worm drive motors. Their models, the Skilsaw SPT70WT-22 and SPT99-12, provide both light and heavy-duty options.
Table Saw Blade
The table saw blade plays a crucial role in achieving quality cuts. A standard blade is 10 inches in diameter, allowing for approximately 3-1/2 inches of cutting power at 90°. Cordless saws often have smaller blades, sacrificing depth for portability. If maximum depth is a priority, opt for a table saw with a 10-inch blade.
The blade speed of a table saw is typically determined by the motor speed. For direct drive motors, the motor speed equals the blade speed. Contractor or cabinet saws may operate differently. Professional table saw blades usually spin between 4000-5000 RPM. Remember that higher speeds don’t necessarily equate to better performance. Lower RPM settings can actually be advantageous for woodworking, reducing burn and allowing for smoother cuts.
The arbor, which holds the blade in place, is an important consideration. Construction table saws often have a 5/8-inch arbor. Double-check the size before purchasing a blade.
Table and Fence
For job site table saws, opt for aluminum tables as they are lightweight and portable. A high-quality table saw requires a fence system that maintains perfect alignment with the table, ensuring precise cuts parallel to the edges. Avoid saws with fences that easily move out of square, as they will compromise the quality of your work. Look for fence systems that are easy to adjust and keep square with the blades.
Tear and Discharge Capability
When selecting a table saw for your job site, consider the cutting capacity. A capacity of over 24 inches is ideal, allowing for versatility in handling different materials. Additionally, check for outfeed support, as it can greatly assist in guiding the cut. While construction site table saws offer forgiveness in work, having ample capacity is always beneficial.
Throat Plate and Dado Stack Capacity
The throat plate is the removable part surrounding the blade, providing support and reducing tear-out. A narrower blade gap is preferable, preventing material from falling into the blade area. If you frequently require dados for custom builds, ensure that the saw can accommodate a dado stack.
Although miter cuts are predominantly done on miter saws, a table saw miter gauge comes in handy for cutting larger materials. While not always precise, some manufacturers offer more robust and well-thought-out miter gauges. If you frequently make long miter cuts, pay attention to the quality of this accessory.
Considering Dust Extraction
Dust removal is an essential aspect of table saws, particularly when working indoors or in occupied spaces. Minimizing dust not only protects your lungs but also simplifies cleanup. Even a standard shop vacuum can effectively control the mess.
Prioritizing safety is crucial when working with table saws. Modern table saws come with safety features like a riving knife to prevent kickback and a push stick to keep hands away from the blade. Properly using these tools can significantly reduce the risk of injury. Blade brakes are also advantageous, providing an extra layer of protection.
In conclusion, buying a table saw requires careful consideration of various factors. Job site table saws offer portability and affordability, making them ideal for professionals and DIY enthusiasts alike. Remember to choose a saw with the appropriate motor power, blade size, and safety features for your needs. So, go ahead and make your purchase, and don’t forget to share your experience with us in the comments below!