About ready to pull the trigger on my first table saw (Delta TS350)


I recently decided to buy a table saw. Initially, it will be used for ripping lumber and various other small projects. I'm not looking to spend a lot of money since it's not something I'll be using every day. In fact, it will be living 1100 miles away from me in my parents garage and I'll only use it when I vacation back home until I buy a house. I've been doing research, and it looks like the TS350 has quite a few positive features for its price, but a smallish motor. I did a search on this saw, but haven't found a lot of info on it, except for the reviews at amazon.com. I thought it would be a good idea to see if any hobbyists have experience with this particular model.
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I have not used it but...
It seems like a pretty good value
Are you looking for a small saw. If the undersized top is a specific benefit to you, I'd say go for it. If not, maybe look for a for a full-sized contractor saw.
Plan on cobbling together some kind of outfeed support.
Steve

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The HTC roller stand works well for me. Obviates need for outfeed space killer.
On Sun, 13 Nov 2005 05:34:46 -0500, "C & S"

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Here is a link to the TS350: (Amazon.com product link shortened)"8013&%5Fencoding=UTF8&v=glance
It has a 1HP Induction motor, so hopefully it doesn't have the reliability problems.
The size of the table with the extension wings is: 22 1/4" x 38 3/8" (has cast iron wings) Looking at Delta's entry level contractor saw, its table is: 40"x27" (has steel wings) Do you think that the few extra inches will make that much of a difference?
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Mears wrote:

<snip>
IMHO, save your money unless you enjoy buying something that when it grows up, wants to be a table saw.
Lew
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Since you don't really need it now, save your $$$. Then get a cabinet saw (when you're ready for the committment of living together) You'll be glad you did.
If you want a new tool, get a router instead.
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I never met a guy that would not appreciate a few more inches.
I stated out with a cheap benchtop saw, about the same table size. I made a lot of nice stuff, but I was constantly frustrated with the limits I could safely cross cut. No problem with a 1 x 4, but it was not safe to do a 1 x 8. Sure, you can build and use a sled, but there is no real substitute for the real deal.
IMO, save up and buy a full size model. You won't be sorry six months from now.
--
Ed
http://pages.cthome.net/edhome/



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the motor is the Achille's heel of the saw. The universal motor is not as reliable as those on the more expensive saws (no surprise, I suppose). In addition, if the motor ever burns out, a new motor can easily cost as much as the entire saw.
However, given the usage you expect to see, the saw should last long enough for you to be able to afford at least a contractor saw. Everybody has a budget; yours just won't admit to buying a contractor saw (which could easily outlast you) at this time. Don't push hardwood through very fast though. Jim
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Nope. Direct drive, induction motor.

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Why is it that many people recommend the Ryobi BT3100? I can' t find a single feature on that saw that is better than the Delta TS350 and they are close in price.
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Mears wrote:

Frankly, IMHO, they are both a waste of time and money.
Lew
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I have the TS300, stamped steel wings, the 350 is cast wings. It is about the bottom of the line of usable tablesaws. Have had mine two years now. Did a lot of learning with it. A whole new kitchen. Just got the floor grouted today. Anyway, it served me well! It's not exactly a direct drive, does have a cog belt, enclosed in the motor housing. But I'm thinking about an upgrade. If you don't know how you'll like WWing, or very light use, the TS300/350 is a good start.
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I purchased this exact saw about 1 yr ago. I specifically purchased it because of the table size. I wanted to be able to build it into a mobile bench and store it on the side of my 2 car garage, allowing me to still get both cars in.
For me, it has been perfect!!! The induction motor is wonderfully quiet, about all I really hear is the blade whirring. The saw weighs in at about 185 lbs. (with stand), and there was virtually no vibration. The stock fence was pretty good, but I have since upgraded to a Vega Utility 50". The original fence served me well for about 5 months. Not perfect...it could deflect with enough pressure, but once lined up, it worked well for what I asked of it.
I built a 6' bench to put the saw in, and placed a router in the extension wing. This has been GREAT! Gives me a huge router table, with a long fence when needed. The extra weight of the bench brings the total unit's weight to close to 400 lbs, probably more with the stuff in the bench, so vibration has not been an issue at all.
I built the bench along the same lines as the Ultimate Workbench, with a little of the Little Shop - Mark II from Popular Woodworking thown in (torsion box bottom, upper cabinets to hold saw & drawers, small dust bin below saw with hose hookup). I used the locking 4" casters from Woodcraft on one end, and non-swivel casters on the other end. When I need the saw, I just pull it away from the wall, plug it in, and off I go. When I lock the casters, it does NOT move. Lots of storage in the bench for power handtools and other misc items.
The only "issue" I had was when I put Vega fence on...the power switch for the saw interfeared with one of the mounting brackets. But, I just moved the power switch to the bottom of the base and all is well.
The motor on mine came virtually perfectly aligned out of the box. If you do have to align it, it may be difficult because all four trunion bolts are near the front of the saw. I bought a TS Aligner kit for it, but never installed it. When I checked the alignment, it was within 0.005", and was angled away from the fence. I aligned the Vega fence within 0.002" of the miter slot (away from the blade), and I have not had any issues with the setup at all. The only real issue I've had is that sometimes the vega fence will slip if I forget to really clamp it down when cutting large panels.
The blade insert is not a "standard" Delta size (a little short), so you will need to make your own zero-clearance insert. The standard ones look to be about 1/2"-3/4" thick. This one comes with a pressed steel insert, and the lip arount the opening is about 1/8"-3/16" thick, and only about 1/8" wide. I made my insert out of 1/4" ply, and rabbited the edge to get a good fit with the table surface. So far it has worked like a champ. I also installed an MJ Splitter. Unfortunately, since the insert is a little short, you have to be careful not to raise the blade to full height or you will end up cutting the splitter.
Overall, I have been VERY pleased with the saw, but then again, it is only my 2nd saw, my first being a small Delta TS200 bench top. I've cut plenty of 2" oak on it, and used it to swing an 8" stacked dado set to cut 1-1/4" deep dados for the cross members for the torsion box bases for my mobile workbenches. Granted, with the dado blade, you need to run the stock SLOWLY so you don't bog down the motor, but it made the cuts beautifully. Also, the max depth of cut is a little shallow (2-7/16 if I remember correctly), but that's enough for anything I expect to be doing in the foreseeable future.
Would I recommend this saw for a professional...no. But for an at home hobbiest, I personally think it's a great saw. The smaller table can be a little bit of a pain, but since I put on the extension wing, I end up with a 49" cut to the right of the blade. For outfeed, I built a second mobile bench that I roll around to the back of the saw. The blade seems to be centered in the depth of the table, and it would be nice to have a little more room in front of the blade, but it hasn't boon too big a problem yet.
I won't say it's the best, but for me it has been a great saw!!
Good luck,
Trace Wilson
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Correction: It's wasn't the TS Aligner, but the PALS product that I bought (but didn't use).
Cheers,
Trace Wilson
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Trace,
Thanks for the detailed post.
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