Maybe. I recently needed a 2x5' piece of 3/4" plywood for a kitchen sink
I could have putzed around building supports for my admittedly tiny table
saw, or I could have spent some moderately serious bucks for a used,
substantial, table saw.
Instead I opted for the "Free two cuts" policy at Home Depot. I got my 2x5'
counter top and some nice sized scraps for the cost of the plywood sheet
So, one's choice of a table saw might depend on a) How often a project
involving a 4x8 sheet comes up and b) Whether one has alternatives
And, speaking of Home Depot's board cutting policy, does anyone own one of
those saws HD uses? The kind where the circular saw blade moves up and down
on a stationary, vertical piece of wood? I'd think that machine would take
up considerable less space than a table saw ('course you'd lose wall
You have a good HD. The ones here have a saw that rotates and they shove
the panel through horizontally for rips. Nothing holds the top piece up as
it is going along, so accuracy isn't its forte.
I had a friend in Honolulu with a vertical one...set up the panel, position
things, push button, full length cushioned clams on both sides of the cut
line clamp down, saw travels down on steel tubes, returns to top after cut,
clamps unclamp. A *wonderful* machine. No idea of the cost, several
thousand I am sure.
Don't own one, but I've thought of building one-
If I was in the OP's shoes I might consider building one for the big
stuff- and getting that miter saw for the fine things.
Takes up room- but as someone mentioned above, it lends itself to
being one side of a wood rack.
We have a Ryobi table saw with a built in folding stand that we purchased at
HD about 5 years ago that we use for a jobsite saw. I would not call it a
quality saw but it does the job. We paid about $200 for it. If you want
quality look for a used contractor style table saw on craigslist. You can
get them for $300 - $350 around here. It would probably last you the rest of
your life. Make sure you buy a good blade $50 - $100.
First your price limit is low, so it will be hard to find one that is
quality at that price. In fact, hard to find anything at that price.
Consider good used! With today's economy used tools are going for
pennys on the dollar, so a reasonable saw can easily be gotten for
Also consider seriously a radial arm saw instead of a table saw. Much
more versitle and will do (with some practice) everythign that a table
saw will do, and much, much more. Even a better Sears Crapsman radial
arm saw can be gotten used for virtually nothing. Try Craig's list and
eBay. If eBay, only bid on local items so you can inspect it first,
and pick it up to avoid shipping. These can be big and heavy so
shipping can be a PITA...
I ship 100 to 150 lb packages motor freight all the time, and for a
run from Virginia to NH (about 600 miles) we pay about $100 for the
shipment. UPS Freight and FedEx freight, if you have an account, can
be cheaper, we ship 200+ lb shipments from TX to NH monthly for about
$150 using UPS Freight.
I always use a Makita or a De Walt for mobile use in my construction
business. I would suggest the same for you. You can get leg stand for
these saws also. they work fine, rip plywood, 2x and much more. they are
light weight, and easy to use.
these are the small job table saws.....
The most important part of a saw is a "sharp blade" and one made for the
type of wood you are ripping. I see too many homeowners with fine saws and
dull blades burning through a piece of wood......
You can get a good Black and Decker table saw for $99.00 good enough for
your use. Also handy is a miter saw. I bought a Ryobi 10 inch compound
miter saw for $59.00 before Christmas.
Watch the sales and you might get a table saw with stand for 50 bucks.
Odds are what you have been using and calling a skill saw is really a
wretched sidewinder 7 1/4" circular saw. What pros use is the genuine
worm drive circular saw and the difference in following a straight
line is like night and day. The balance of the right tool and the
blade visibility make the all the difference. The famous model 77
SkilSaw worm drive is now made by Bosch and marketed as well under
their name with a different color and a Twistlock cord. The 77 design
has been made with few changes for around 80 years I'm told. It's
easily worth the $50 premium over all the other direct drive saws. My
DeWalt direct drive saw now sits in the corner covered with dust along
with some other purchasing mistakes destined for the village auction
while the 77 gets a workout.
One of the neat things about the 77 design is that the blade offset is
1 1/2" on one side and 3 1/2" on the other, perfect for framing. There
is also a hook to hang it on a rafter. With a smooth 2 x 4 and a pair
of clamps (and sawhorses) accurate cutting of full plywood panels is a
breeze. Try one out from a rental place and see if it will work for
BS , I've used my 10 inch Ryobi table saw that came with a stand for $99 to
rip plywood , 1X pine , 2X4's , ect. and it works just fine as long as you
don't force it...It might not be as fast as the big dollar ones but it gets
the job done..We aren't talking about using it for everyday construction use
or ripping 3/4 Birch plywood all day in a cabinett making shop..IT IS FOR
OCCASIONAL HOMEOWNER USE which is what this thread is SUPPOSED to be
about....I have a Ryobi 10 compound miter saw that I paid $75 for that
worked just fine trimming out my new windows as well...When not in use I set
the miter saw on top of the table saw and put them in the corner of my
garage and they don't take up much space and you don't need 3 people to move
them around either...They're perfect for what they were designed to do...
If the saw worked for you great. That does not mean it is as good as the
bigger, more expensive saws. I had a cheap Craftsman saw and built some
nice projects with it. After a time I found the shortcomings and bought a
Delta contractors with a Beisemeyer fence. saw. It is a vast improvement.
It comes down to your needs and expectations. And the blade.
I'm out of corners! The one nook in my garage where a non-folded-up
table saw could be parked, is where I have to park the snow blower 5
months a year. (Unless I wanna traipse through drifts out to the garden
shed every time I want to use it.)
Not to mention, damp garages are hell on table saws, even if you keep
the table well-waxed.
Heh! Use the saw to build a shed into which you can put the snow-blower, the
lawn-mower, the auxilary generator, and other assorted things. That will
free up space for the tools.
Don't forget to include a cat-door so the critters can get out of the
James I use a speed square a a sawguide to cross-cut boards and a long
saw guide for plywood. I have a table saw but most often use these. I
think the circular saw with a saw guilde works better than the table
Trim pieces would best be cut with a miter saw. Cutting a 2x4 is best done
with a miter saw, ripping with a table saw. Plywood with a table saw.
However, from your description I would not consider a table saw as you do
not seem to have the skills to safely use a table saw. Table saws are not
good for cutting trim pieces to length. Table saws are for cutting widths,
Before buying something I would seriously consider taking a shop class at
your local community college to learn what the different saws are for and
how to safely use them.
What's to know?
1. Don't put soft things in the blade.
2. Stand to the side so kick-backs don't de-nut you.
3. If you're a wimp, wear eye protection.
4. If you're a pussy, wear ear protection.
Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, you need to know about safety can be
found in the 52-page safety instructions that come with the saw.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.