circular saws and Skilsaw

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I have a Hitachie circular saw, it was a good saw for what it cost and lasted several years of hard use, but the brushes have give up the ghost and due to its age, I'll replace it rather than repair it.
Faced with a job away from home, my son generously offered the use of his Skilsaw HD5687, what a piece of crap. I needed to rip a long board, clamped a straight edge to it for a guide, began the cut and the saw bound up within a foot. On further inspection the saw foot is 1/8 inch out of square with the saw blade, making it useless for practically everything. It is all riveted together with no way to adjust the alignment of the foot to blade. Reminds me of an old AMC car, where the body and chassis were never quite in line with each other and the whole mess went down the road like a dog with its ass end off to one side.
I have never owned any "Skilsaw brand tools" and this pretty much guarantees I never will.
basilisk (done bitching about cheap tools)
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On 3/2/2013 8:20 AM, basilisk wrote:

SKIL does make a good worm drive saw but IMHO discounting that saw SKIL is an entery lever tool.
For a view at the other end of the spectrum, may I recomend a Festool track saw? ;~)
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On Sat, 02 Mar 2013 08:49:29 -0600, Leon wrote:

I do have a need for a track saw.
I am doing a good bit of volunteer work for an equine assisted therapy barn, and some additional portability in my tools would make the work faster and better. Still pondering the wisdom of dropping dollars to augment volunteer work, and how much I would use it for other stuff.
basilisk
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On 3/2/2013 10:22 AM, basilisk wrote:

If that work entails much sheetgoods work, a plunge track saw may be something to think about. Being "cost effective", generally a function of use/time, is another matter.
Also to consider, since portability is a factor in your decision, is security ... being expensive makes them targets.
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On 3/2/2013 10:22 AM, basilisk wrote:

If doing volunteer work, all the more reason to get the track saw. Make it easier on yourself, these thing are a breeze to operate and can replace a table saw for many operations.
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wrote:

Virtually all "consumer" level saws, from any manufacturer, are dodgy at best. You only get what you pay for (if you are lucky). The same companies usually also make "trade" and "professional" level tools.
You need to know what to look for - and lowest price is NOT it!!!!
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Who would of guessed that you'd suggest a Festool?
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On 3/2/2013 10:30 AM, Dave wrote:

Had a laugh at that also ... you gotta love watching your drug dealer hooking another.
(Financial) misery loves company.
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It's even funnier watching the drug dealer sitting in the wings just waiting to pounce.
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On Saturday, March 2, 2013 10:30:27 AM UTC-6, Upscale wrote:
at the other end of the spectrum, may I recomend a Festool >track saw? ;~) Who would of guessed that you'd suggest a Festool?
Festool? Phooyie! Try this one, it's only $149.88
http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-ANTIQUE-DRILL-DRIVEN-CIRCULAR-SAW-HOME-MADE-/330605772781?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4cf9a3bfed
Sonny
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On 3/2/2013 10:41 AM, Sonny wrote:

at the other end of the spectrum, may I recomend a Festool >track saw? ;~) Who would of guessed that you'd suggest a Festool?

http://www.ebay.com/itm/VINTAGE-ANTIQUE-DRILL-DRIVEN-CIRCULAR-SAW-HOME-MADE-/330605772781?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4cf9a3bfed

LOL...You've got to wonder when the handle/knob is almost as big as the blade.
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On 3/2/2013 10:30 AM, Dave wrote:

Yeah! Who'da thunk it? LOL
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On 3/2/2013 10:30 AM, Dave wrote:

Never, ever underestimate the power of a Craigslist search.
Looky, looky!
$450 for what appears to be a like new Festool TS55 with the rail and systainer. Prefers pickup but will ship.
<http://chicago.craigslist.org/nwc/tls/3650665254.html
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On 3/2/2013 5:13 PM, Unquestionably Confused wrote:

Oops, it's $425, not $450. Anyone interested, go for it. I have no intention (actually, with SWMBO watching, I don't have the guts) of going for it. Sweet deal though!

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On Sat, 02 Mar 2013 17:17:26 -0600, Unquestionably Confused wrote:

I would be sorely tempted, but that joyous season is upon us, I had a good year last year(for which I am grateful), having to save all the dead presidents I can, to fork over on 4/15.
basilisk
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Skil was the big dog on the block when I was framing back in the 70s. All the guys from the west coast that passed through here had them.
We all learned on "sidewinders", so we used circular saws. I have the first Milwaukee I ever owned, and it has had too many triggers, brushes, cords and sets of bearings installed to rebuild it to count.
It is so expensive to rebuild one now (bearings, brushes and a cord) that it makes more sense to just buy a new one. And with the poor quality of today's tools if they are used well they seem to stay together long enough to get your money's worth, but it best to trash it if anything goes wrong with it. Nothing there worth rebuilding.
A couple of years ago Karl showed me his Festool track saw. I was hugely impressed. He even made a doodad to make it better and more efficient for the guy that works alone. The cuts it made would rival most table saws.
Came back home and went to Woodcraft thinking I would buy one.
WTF..... a grand? A thousand bucks for that setup? I almost fainted. BUT.... the sales guy told me, it virtually replaces a table saw! (Don't you just love old farts that have no frickin' clue what tools do that work in a tool store? I should have asked him where you attached the tenon jig or the dado set.) I was so surprised at the price that didn't even make a nasty remark to that bonehead.
I could see the track saw if I was making store fixtures on site, or had a need to have a saw that cut long lengths perfectly straight when job conditions preclude a table saw. If I built a lot of cabinets, I would buy that over a table saw. But for occasional use, it is way out of range. And with the latest bunch of those saws, the internet woodworking community doesn't seem to feel they are built as well as the old systems.
If I get the bid on a remodel I just put together, I will have a small set of cabinets to build and finish as part of the overall work. I was trying to justify the price of the Festool track saw, so I went down to see it again to see if I would catch "green fever". They are now a squirt over that one grand number with all the stuff I want to go with it. (Oh yeah.... add $83 in tax, too...).
I contacted a semi retired buddy of mine that is always looking for a way to put his Jet table saw to work. Instead of buying a track saw, I am now going to smoke a brisket and buy the beer for both of us after we take down the sheet goods.
Robert
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On 3/2/2013 1:31 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

It was lot easier to do during this last boom, that ended a couple of years back, but that's basically how I justified all my Festools, and Festool accessories ... I built them into the price of a big job, then Section 179'd them ... legitimate, and makes business sense.
We just need another boom ... but there is always a boom, or a bust, on the horizon, so biding my time, once again, for the opportunity to make some more hay while the sun shines.
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On 3/2/2013 1:31 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Time for the pusher to strike again.... ;~) Oh yeah you have to get the vac too. ;~)
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On 3/2/2013 8:20 AM, basilisk wrote:

Yet the older US made worm drive Skilsaw HD77 is one of the best saws ever made, and they can still be found in pawn shops, garage sales and CraigsList.
Mine, USA made, is only about 20 years old and like new, but damn you gotta be helluva man to hoist that thing all day ... too much of a saw for most of the jockey sized framers these days. ;)
If you appreciate such things, there is nothing that will get your respect more than working with an old time framer who uses a '77, particularly those old union guys. Watched one, working for me a few years back, shave a continuous and dead on 1/4" strip off the height a 20' beam using a '77, with no pencil mark, just using a finger as a guide, AND at a fast walk!
That said, and last I heard, the new ones are now made in China, but are still pretty rugged according to some of my carpenter subs ... whether they will last as long as the old US made model remains to be seen.
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On Sat, 02 Mar 2013 09:07:00 -0600, Swingman wrote:

We have a number of 77's at work that are used to trim sharp ended lumber ahead of high speed planers, to prevent lapping and hang ups, this is heavy duty work and they hold up to it(a straight drive saw won't last a day)

My arthritic shoulders cringe at the thought :)

In the 70's, I had the oppurtunity to work with a builder of that skill set, worked as part of a 3 man crew building from ground up, foundation, framing, roofing, siding, sheetrock, trim etc. It was an education by people that knew the business, no such path to building skills exist this day and time.
Around here in the 70's all the framers kept the guard wedged up on the saws, it was considered a nuisance not to be tolerated.

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