First impression--this ain't no toy saw. It's not a particularly large
box but for the size it's a heavy one, almost 300 pounds. Took two Sears
guys to get it into the truck. This ain't no lightweight toy saw.
Getting it downstairs was fun.
Stand went together fine. After trying to hoist the saw onto the stand, I
finally laid it down and bolted it to the stand then stood the whole thing
up, that worked much better than trying to lift it. Note, put the table
on last, the effing table feels like it weighs as much as the saw.
Structure is steel weldment except for the table and wheels that are cast
iron and the trunnion which appears to be cast aluminum. No provision for
a riser block of course but I don't anticipate resawing anything wider
than 8 inches so it's not an issue.
Went through the adjustment procedure, did fine until I fired it up to set
the tracking. Had it plugged into a power strip (need to put in an outlet
for it) with a breaker, turned it on, it started to spin up and popped the
breaker. First time that's happened--that power strip has run every other
tool I have--the only time it's ever popped before was when I was running
the 3 HP router and the "6 HP" shop vac off it at the same time. That
motor's drawing some serious current. Got an exension cord and plugged it
into the wall and it spun right up, a little bit of vibration during spin
up but quite steady once it's up to speed. Anyway, once that was done, it
turned out that the factory tracking was right on.
Finished going through the setup, and then tried it out.
Had a project that had been hanging fire for a while because I needed a
piece of 1/4 inch stock, and I never felt like either planing 4/4 down to
that dimension or springing for "microwood" from Woodcraft. So set fence
on 5/16 and resawed a piece of 6 inch wide 4/4 maple--went fine, no going
off at odd directions, cut was reasonably smooth, two passes throgh the
planer and I have a nice piece of 1/4 inch maple with enough left over to
make at least one and maybe two more.
On 4/4 maple it cuts (through the thickness, not the width) as fast as I'm
comfortable feeding. Cut isn't smooth like a WWII on the RAS (or the Bosch
jigsaw with the right blade) but it's better than I expected for a band
saw, and certainly adequate for many purposes.
The fence is OK, not great--you can adjust it for both horizontal and
vertical perpendicularity, but the degree to which you tighten the
positioning screw alters the horizontal alignment. Still, it'll do and
for anything critical the table's big enough that I should be able to
attach the Incra.
The thing I find interesting though is how much I enjoy working with it.
On balance I'm liking it a lot. When it's on sale it's definitely good
value. Geez, just looked at the clock, it's 10 PM, I had no idea that it
was this late, I guess I really do like it a lot.
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