Well I guess you better be careful for what you wish for.... Just picked up
the Delta TS300 from Lowes today. It was the last one and discounted to
$220. I have it sitting in the garage until I read through the manual.
Most of the reviews appeared to be good. I bought it because I needed a
hobby/home type saw and couldn't pass up the price.
I do realize that this saw is not to be confused with one of the great table
saws but hope it is adequate enought for what I need. Any comments from
owners would be appreciated. Think I also will need to get a mobile base
for it too.... Any good sources??
-Thanks for any help!
I guess the first question is what do you need it for? I have a
similar, but older model 36-600, which I believe is what the TS300
replaced. Are you going to be able to cut through 6' of 8/4 maple
without trip the circuit breaker? Probably not, but I've managed to
use mine for 4 years now and have turned out some decent projects.
First piece of advice (and this only goes for this saw) is drop the
blade guard/splitter (if that's what you can call it) in the trash can.
It only attaches to the shaft coming out the back of the saw unlike
better TS that also bolt through the table insert. At best is useless
junk, but more likely an accident waiting to happen. Because it
doesn't attach through the table insert, it flexes as you push the wood
through the blade. A few times, the wood got caught in the prawl and
if you don't notice it right away you end up bend the prawls into the
I would strongly recommend making some zero clearence table inserts and
try to incorporate a homemade splitter. I bought some plastic on from
Woodcraft but have not had a chance to try it yet. The problem is the
table inserts on these saws are only 1/8" thick, which someone please
correct me if I'm wrong, is much different on a better saw. So
anything you buy off the shelf needs to be modified.
The table itself is smaller than a normal contractors saw. I built an
oversize sled for cross-cutting and have some supports for ripping down
sheets (still mostly use a cirular saw and guide though) or long
As long as I watch your feedrate and have sharp blades, even the
tougher woods (oak, maple, walnut) cut fine. Haven't had any problems
with dado blades or the fence. I don't recall the setup being too bad,
but it was a while ago.
Feel free to drop me a line. You could probably DAGS on WoodChuck34
and 36-600, I think I did some back and forth with some people in the
And this is if you really want to tweak this thing later. I ordered
replacement fence parts and that I'm planning to install after I build
an extended table to the right of the saw. I'll let you know how it
works, and even if it is only a marginal cut to break down those
sheets, it only cost me something like $60.
For the past 3 years I've owned one of the older Delta benchtop saws that
is now discontinued. I'll be looking to upgrade in the next year, but my
current saw has far exceeded my expectations. I recently completed a pair
of Stickley nightstands in solid walnut and a third in cherry. They
turned out excellent. The joints are tight, the casings are square, and
the drawers slide well (on wooden slides on grooves in the drawer sides).
My point is that you can do good work with your inexpensive saw.
Here are a few pointers that should definately make things easier.
First, pitch the blade that came with the saw and buy something good. I
have a Freud combo blade on mine. I think I payed about $50 for the blade
Second, build yourself a crosscut sled. This will allow you to basically
pitch the miter gauge. The gauge that came with mine was a piece of junk.
I constructed my sled with a 3/4" plywood base and 8/4 pine scraps for
the fences. I used steel bars that are sold at HD and Lowes for the
runners. The runners were a royal PITA, but well worth the trouble once
they were square. I don't know what kind of miter slots your bed has, but
my saw has non-standard T-slots. I had to stack two steel bars to make
each runner - one for the narrow part of the slot and one for the wide
part. Most plans for sleds that I've seen use hardwood runners, but I
could not get those to work well with the smaller slots.
Third, don't buy a mobile base. I built a platform for the saw to sit on
out of two layers of plywood, and used my circular saw to cut out a hole
in the middle. The saw is bolted to the platform, and the platform gets
bolted to a couple of sturdy sawhorses. I find this arrangement to be
plenty stable. The only time it doesn't work is when I'm doing something I
shouldn't be doing (like trying to rip a board with twist, which causes
the whole contraption to wobble a bit).
Fourth, don't forget about your delta warrenty. I burned up the motor in
my saw right at the end of my two year warrenty. I took the thing to the
nearest delta service center and they replaced the moter, no charge, and
no questions asked about what I had done (actually, I started to explain,
and the guy cut me off and said it didn't matter).
I hope that give you a place to start. If you've got more questions,
One suggestion for a zero clearance insert, since it is so thin. Take it
off of the saw and put some saran wrap on the bench. Place the insert top
down and fill the hole with some epoxy. Works prety damn good. I have to
refill it every couple months or so but it's cheap and easy. Other than
that, good saw for the money.
CW2 Ken Gunter
CH-47D Pilot in Command &
Chad and Chuck..... What great info and suggestions. I will follow both of
your advice and get a different splitter and possible a different blade. I
will get a mobile base since I need to move it around inside the garage.
From what you guys have said there is a lot of replacing and tweaking going
on here. The way I look at it is to compare the TS300 to the El Cheapo
$100-200 bench models in the marketplace (flimsy, tinny, sloppy) and all of
a sudden this saw doesn't look too bad. I looked for used saws as suggested
by others, but to be truthful they can be pretty hard to find (especially
when you really need one). Shoot, reading in the woodworking forum, users
are always complaining and tweaking their $1000 saws. Seems like nobody is
ever happy with their saws LOL! I almost bought a Ryobi BTS20 for $210 the
other day but after seeing the playing with the Delta TS300 at the
discounted price, I thought the Delta was much much superior. I guess time
will tell. I suppose you can get good and bad in anything. Thanks again
for your help.
Coincidentally, I'm helping a neighbor make an end-grain butcher block
island and last night we had to rip some 8/4 stock into 1 3/4" strips.
I probably tripped the circuit breaker about 8 times. This is really
where is becomes strikingly obvious that a better saw comes in
Forgot to mention before that I also use the Frued blades exclusively,
but the ones they sell at the Borg are not of the same quality that you
would buy online or at a woodworker's store.
I started out with Delta's universal base (the one where you make the
wooden rails). I have a Shop Fox for my jointer and I hate it. I
found that Delta's design made is a lot easier to move the TS around.
Chuck..... Are you talking about your saw tripping? Are you sure you don't
have some electrical problems. Maybe too much on same circuit, too long
power cord, etc. Seems to me you need some dedicated line or something.
Some time ago I was cutting quite a bit of 8/4 maple, walnut, red oak on a
cheapo 15 amp saw, but did have a new blade, and never had a bit of
electrical problem. I like Frued blades also and didn't know that the
borg's were not as good.... will check that out.
. I like Frued blades also and didn't know that the
not carry the enitre line of Frued blades.....
I like Frued Bl;ades also...BUT the Borg does not carry any of the
specific Frued Blades I normally use... NONE....
With Frued I think I get a blade that is about 90 percent as good as a
WW11 at half the price... that kind of trade off is fine for my
You've got a better saw than the POS I started out on, FWIW. You've got
good advice so far about building a sled, and about ditching the total junk
blade guard/splitter. If it hasn't been suggested already, I recommend
either a combined crosscut/miter sled, or dedicated sleds for each. You
probably need both. You don't really ever want to use the supplied miter
gauge for anything where the results matter at all.
I haven't bought one, but I've got my eye on these:
There's also some guy with a nifty little pin splitter delivered to you for
something like $8. I lost track of that. Maybe my mentioning it will
prompt someone else to refresh our collective memory.
Another thing... I haven't seen anyone mention the fence yet. I haven't
used that particular model, but I've used fences similar to that in design.
They're prone to alignment problems. Usable, yes, but you should pay
particular attention that it hasn't locked down skewed to the blade, and
that it has, in fact, locked down. They are prone to deflect at the back
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < firstname.lastname@example.org>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
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