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)
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.
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.
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!!!!
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
Never, ever underestimate the power of a Craigslist search.
$450 for what appears to be a like new Festool TS55 with the rail and
systainer. Prefers pickup but will ship.
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.
On 3/2/2013 1:31 PM, email@example.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.
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
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.
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
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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