Table Saw Question...

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Many folks in the world don't like the USA. And as such, get offended by almost anything anerican. Maybe it is envy. Whatever. You just can't please most people.
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There seems to be more and more people out there that think it's their "duty" to find something to be offended by. When I find one of these, I make it my "duty" to offend them. Keeps them happy.

of
may
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wrote:

Just be careful not to spell it "Merkin". :-)
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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Rob Fargher wrote:

Y'all know what a merkin is?
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Sure. It covers yer gherkin...
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Hey, Hax... Who pissed in your Corn Flakes this morning?
I'm just sayin'...
djb
--
~ Stay Calm... Be Brave... Wait for the Signs ~
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The Ryobi BT3100 is in incredible 'bang for the buck' bargain. It doesn't take kindly to being 'beat up on', but with merely 'reasonable' care, it will do a fine job.
Beyond that, you will _not_ go badly wrong with *any* of the major-brand full-size "Contractor" saws: General, (separate from "General International") Grizzly, DeWalt, Delta, Jet, etc. are all quality tools.
A 'benchtop', or a 'job-site' saw will give increasing amounts of frustration, as you pass the 'beginner' level. You _can_ do quality work with one of those saws, but you spend a lot more time "adjusting" the tool, vs one of the 'better' saws.
At _equivalent_ loading, there really isn't a whole lot of difference in cutting between a good 'cabinet' saw, and a good 'contractor'. The big difference is you _can_get_ bigger power capacity in the cabinet saw. *IF* you need it. A distant second consideration is that cabinet saws tend to be heavier / more massive than contractor saws. more mass is better -- the stability is improved. They're somewhat easier to tune/tweak/adjust, and tend to hold the settings longer than a contractor type -- as in 'lifetime' vs. merely 'years'. :) And there _is_ the 'convenience factor' of better dust-collection or at least "containment" (if you're not using an actual Dust Collector).
The *best* advice: find a way to get 'hands on' with as many of the 'candidates' as you can. You'll discover "little" things that make a significant difference _to_you_. Then buy accordingly.
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Buster wrote:

I see a lot of people recommend Jet saws: Jet makes great table saws, but when you are looking at a General, I cannot understand the reason for such a recommendation. General tools are among the best on the market. Their web site, though, is not good. The hybrid saw will probably outlast you, and the two HP rating means it will have enough power for anything almost any hobbyist will ever need. I don't know what kind of fence it has, but look for some kind of Biesemeyer clone for best results. The pulley system doesn't determine HP. It does determine the transfer efficiency of what HP is produced.
Check out the Jet saws, of course, and check out Delta and whatever else is available in Canada, but in the meantime, keep an eye on that General. The odds are good you'll be very happy with it.
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good
Don't know what prices you've found on General tablesaws, but General's web page has some specials going on.
http://www.general.ca/images/circulaire/an/P.2ANG.CAN.gif
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Buster,
I was in the exact same position as you were only 1 year ago. I aksed questions, read informaiton and reread the same information. However, I didn't have enough experience to use the information was receiving. I eventually settled on the General 185. Why...because someone I knew told me it was a good saw, I was able to get a good price and I was under the impresion it was the best saw I could afford. I have only built three projects, but I have not been disappointed yet.
I knew nothing, but putting it together by myself in a couple of hours.
I under estimated how important it was to take the time to do proper set-up (I eyeballed most things), paid the price (bad cuts, burnt edges) until I took the time to do proper set-up. I guess there really is no teacher like experience. The manual won't help much with this but there is lot's of documentaiton on the net. I used "The Accurate Table Saw" from LV and it helped a great deal.
I have never used the 220 so I can't comment. But I do like my 185.
Forgive me if this information is below your current abilities. Sean
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I have the Jet "Hybrid" for some of the same reasons - shop wasn't wired for 220V back then. It is now. The Jet and DeWalt claim 1 3/4HP - but seems to me so many other factors would kick in before you noticed a difference between 1,75 and 2HP.
Yeah - I think you could expect vibration to be less on this. Dust collection should be better too. Nota Bene: I have an early Jet hybrid and the dust collection is **awful**.
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If you can locate one of the more recent issues of "Workbench" magazine there was a review of these types of saws that I believe included the General. I don't recall that it was a particularly in-depth ariticle but at least it has some information.
--

Larry Wasserman Baltimore, Maryland
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snipped-for-privacy@fellspt.charm.net (Lawrence Wasserman) wrote in

Seemed a series of paid advertisements, and beneath the normal standards of August Home.
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Buster,
I own the 185, and have used it for about a year now. As a newbie woodworker, it is certainly my own limitations, not the saw's, "holding me back" at this point. And it will be that way for a long time I imagine, even as my skills grow. I can't think I'll "outgrow" this saw in 6 years time.
I had a friend help me with setup. He owns a PM-66, and he was quite impressed with the fit and substansiveness of the 185. And I don't think you'll find a better stock miter gauge on ANY other contractor's saw; cast iron, solid, and spring-loaded bearings in the "T" make for a rock-solid fit in the track.
I did get the 52" rails with it. There was some hole-misalignment on the front of the TS top where the front rail was to attach; I had to simply enlarge two of the predrilled holes on the TS to get proper alignment. Otherwise, the saw went together easily. The owner's manual sucks. Not that you couldn't figure it out yourself, but if you have any woodworker friends who have setup a saw before, try to lure them over for an afternoon!
Regarding the General 220, while I haven't used one I'll just make two points: it is certainly better in dust "retention" than the 185, but you'll want a DC just the same; so don't go thinking that it'll make any difference in your DC needs. If you do opt for it for other reasons, get the "C" version with the General "T" fence - not the base model w/ the aluminum fence. The General "T" is a good Bies clone (some will disparage it because it doesn't have easily removable faces, but you can build a carriage that rides over it / clamps on with all the fancy t-track / holddowns you want...). I can't speak to better vibration dampening on the 220 either; I have yet to put on the link belt I bought for my 185; one of these days...
... again, a year ago (when I bought), here in the States, the GI 185 was definitely the best bang for the buck. Things might be different for you up there.
Regards, Chris
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