BTW - For practical woodworking most benchtops fall in the "toy" category.
Too little power, capacity, quality, etc. They are generally considered
I Agree with others. You need to increase you budget a little, or shop
used. Local classifieds list them fairly often.
Assuming you want a stand alone saw (not a bench top which is probably not
worth your time), you are probably looking for either used or a
Taiwan/Chinese saw. I personally have the Grizzly G0555 and have been
happy with it. I haven't checked the price lately but it should be close
to your budget.
Minimum you want is a 14". At $400 you are short for a Delta orJet, but
maybe a Ridgid. or Grizzly If you can find a decent used one, that would
be good. IMO, anything less than a 14" is asking for a problem. You won't
be happy with it after a few months and wish you had gone to the 14" right
from the start.
Avoid the 3 wheel models too; can be difficult to set up and track properly.
If you buy used, chances are it will need a little work, like new tires, but
that is minor stuff if in good condition.
I live in the Atlanta area near Lake Lanier. and am building adirondack
chairs right now but plan to build my own bedroom suite, along with
some other furniture.
After all I have more time than money.
After shopping for a new BS in the same price range, I chose on the
Craftsman 14" model 22401. I *believe* it's actually made by Rikon --
even the stickers on the doors are the same. With a cast iron table
and wheels (reduced vibration, increased stability), 8" resaw
capability (thickness), a 1HP induction motor (very quiet), and roller
guide bearings (instead of blocks), you'd have to spend a lot more for
anything else that's comparable. I've used mine quite a bit to make
veneers, bent laminations and panels. A *lot* nicer than the $99 Delta
9" wobble-monster I was using.
What the...?!?! I just checked the Sears web site and it appears that
they're no longer selling it. I really was too good to be true. They
must have been losing money on it, or perhaps the agreement with Rikon
ended. Hmph. Maybe you could get the floor model.
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