Table saws have a lot of uses and can be a really useful equipment to have at home. You can attach much more saw blades and accessories to work different purposes. If you know how to make the most out of it. And of course, if you have the best table saw under $1000 for your projects.
However, to make this possible, there are several things you must look out for first before buying your table saw. Aside from the price, the size of your workplace and durability among all others, here are some more factors to consider.
Explaining the Table Saw
Before the table saw was invented, many carpenters used a simple hacksaw to cut wood. They simply took a plank of wood and clamped it to a hard surface, sometimes even using their foot for clamping.
Nowadays, technology has evolved to meet the growing demands of efficiency for carpentry. Although you can still cut wood traditionally, there are a lot of faster ways such as using a table saw.
Table saws are high-powered blades that are built in a working table. These saws are circular blades that almost resembles that of meat saw in a butcher shop. The point of using a table saw is to cut cleaner, faster, and more wood.
Although a table saw can be easily imagined as a table top with a saw in the middle, it’s not a walk in the park to use. Unlike a stationary hacksaw, the table saw, once in motion, is a highly dangerous equipment. Thus, research carefully on how to use it.
Although it has a reputation for being a scary equipment, which is further worsened by Hollywood, every aspiring artisan should try using it. It’ll save you hours of sawing wood, and it can make your projects look professional with ease.
Advantages with a Table Saw
The table saw has a lot of benefits, and the first thing that comes to your mind is that it’s perfect for businesses. Even though you’re not exactly running a factory, it’ll still be a worthy investment.
For example, say you’re running a wood shop, then you can quickly benefit from this because the time in cutting wood will be as quick as a few seconds.
Thanks to the saw’s incredible power and overall design, it swiftly cuts through wood without any problem. The best thing here is that there are a few nifty tricks that you can use to cut blocks of wood at the same time.
Dual purposeThe table saw doesn’t only saw wood. If it’s not being used, then it’ll still be useful because of the wide surface of the table. You can do many things with the table saw’s top. An example would be measuring your wood works or even using it to nail wood joints.
Minimal work required
Besides reducing the cutting work, using a table saw can save you the effort of polishing the wood. If you’re using a hacksaw, there will be a lot of rough sawdust and wood shavings present on the surface of the newly cut wood.
This is the result of the hacksaw’s grinding teeth along with the inconsistent pressure from your hands. Since the table saw has a consistent motor and an extremely sharp blade, you’ll have a cleaner cut that doesn’t need sanding.
Tips and Tricks When Using a Table Saw
Here are some tips that you can further look into when using a table saw:
- Know the cut you’re doing – This is the first and simplest step. There are two cuts. These are the rip cut and the cross cut. The rip cut goes along with the grain of the wood, while the cross cut cuts through the grain.
- Always use a square before cutting – Alignment is essential when getting the best cuts through a table saw. Hence, always use a square to check if the wood is aligned with the saw. There are other things to check, such as the alignment of the fence to the wood, the blade’s alignment to the table, and the alignment of the blade guard.
- Use a push stick – A push stick or a drive board is probably the most important tip. This pushes the wood towards the blade while distancing your hand away from the blade. It’s a must if you’re looking to play it safe, which you always should.
- Cut flat wood – The table saw isn’t the best at cutting irregular shapes and spheres. Hence, always use your table saw for flat wood only. It’s typically best when you’re at the beginning of your project, not when you’re trimming wood sculptures.
- Use a clamp with a miter gauge for faster work – If you’re looking to do cross cuts for a lot of timber boards, using a clamp is key. Attach the C-clamp to the miter gauge and clamp the wood boards together. Afterward, only run it through the blade.
Some More Things To Look Out For
1. Types of table saw
There are three main types of table saw: cabinet saw, the contractor saw, and the hybrid saw. The cabinet saw would be the biggest and the heaviest type of table saw among the three categories. It also very, if not the most, expensive type of table saw.
A cabinet saw’s motor range is usually between the 3HP to the 5HP range. The motor is located underneath the saw table, enclosed with a cabinet. The contractors saw on the other hand, significantly lighter than the cabinet saw.It is designed to be easily portable for contractors who need to bring the equipment to construction sites, just as the name suggests. Unlike the cabinet saw which happens to be made mostly of cast iron, the contractor is made from aluminum.
What the motor of a contractor table saw is mounted outside, and the blade is belt-driven. Its engine power usually ranges from 1HP to ¾ HP. And lastly, is the hybrid saw. A hybrid table saw is a hybrid combination of the first two types.
However, the material of the hybrid table saw, its other features and gears among all others might slightly differ, depending on the manufacturer and the brand.
2. Dust collection
Its dust collection is also another important function and feature. Using a table saw on any project would produce a lot of wood shavings. It is essential that your table saw has a good dust collection system.
There are a lot of table saws out there that come with a dust cabinet or some “capture system” to funnel out any dust wood shavings accumulated during the project.
3. Safety Features
This is one of the most important factors to consider. Especially to those who are not professional users of a table saw. There are a lot of brands out there that offer some safety features in their table saws such as a paddle style switch, anti-kickback pawls, riving knife, blade guards and blade breaks.
So do not be afraid to ask the salesperson which safety features do the table saw you’re planning to buy have.
Although these might not be all of the factors you must consider, these are some of the basics covered. But then again, no particular feature beats a good maintenance in prolonging the lifespan of your table saw.
Our Top 5 Picks
#1 DEWALT DW745
The DW745 starts at a low price. It comes with one 24-tooth saw blade, but if you want an extra blade combo, you can buy the whole set for $330.78. In addition, it weighs 53 lbs and boasts accurate cutting, ideal for large home projects and professionals.
It includes a steel roll cage, rack and pinion fence system, Mitre fence, two blade spanners, parallel fence, push stick, and a dust port reducer for easy cleanup. Comes with a 3-year warranty, one year of service, and a 90-day guarantee.
#2 SKIL 3410-02
The 3410-02 is priced similarly to the DEWALT and comes with both a table saw and a folding stand. The table measures 20” x 26” but can stretch up to 20” x 36”. The stand is made of heavy-duty steel and provides easy and fast setup for projects around the house.
It has a maximum cut depth of up to 3.5in, depending on the material being cut, and has a self-aligning rip fence for accurate measurement and cutting. It also has a three-year warranty and a 30-day Money Back Guarantee.
#3 Craftsman Evolv
The Craftsman is at the lower end of table saws, suitable for the DIY home projects. The sheer 25” x 17” die cast aluminum table offers support for significant materials, with a maximum cut depth of 3”, promoted by a durable steel stand at the height of 36”.
You’ll be getting a table saw, stand, blade wrenches, 24T blade, hex keys, blade guard assembly, push stick, miter gauge, and rip fence, as well as a one-year general warranty. Some assembly is required, however.
#4 Bosch 4100-09
The 4100-09 is known to be one of the most expensive in this list but is worth the many features it offers. Its gravity-rise wheels make it roll around with ease. Its 29” x 21.5” tabletop has a 25” rip capacity and a saw blade, which is easily and quickly changeable.
The 4100-09 offers a 1-year manufacturer warranty and a 30-day money back guarantee. The set includes a Gravity-Rise Table Stand; a 40-tooth carbide tipped saw blade, a miter gauge, push stick, and both a blade and hex adjustment wrench. Ideal for home and commercial use.
#5 Rockwell Blade
Runner X2The Bladerunner X2 is one of the most affordable tables saw on this list. It uses a jigsaw blade instead of a circular blade and is perfect for those doing small and low-budget projects with necessary hardware materials.
Its feature includes a large steel rip fence, a miter gauge, a 5-piece starter blade set, and a vacuum port for easy cleanup. The Bladerunner provides a compartment for your blades. Rockwell also offers a manufacturer’s three-year warranty.
For table saws under $1000, expect smaller, portable models more appropriate for small projects at home than ones you can use commercially for purposes like construction.
The Bosch 4100-09 is the choice if you’re looking for the closest to budget heavy-duty commercial models, while the Dewalt DW745 if you already have a spare table saw stand or sturdy workbench at home.
But if you want an all-around table saw at a budget, the SKIL 3410-02 is the best table saw under $1000. It has its stand and has self-aligning features. While its blade is lacking, this is easily fixed by purchasing other modules in your local hardware store.
Whichever you choose, always remember to practice safety and be aware of how to properly operate sharp cutting tools before using them. Read up on your table saw’s manual and avoid attempting to use it beyond its prescribed usage and limits.