No direct experience w/ either but either would be decent choice imo.
My catalog is a little out of date but it appears the G0490 is the G0586
w/ the spiral cutterhead instead of knives and the other chief
difference between the two above is the parallelogram as opposed to the
dovetailed ways design.
For a school shop I can see advantages in either -- the higher fence and
parallelogram may be slight advantages for students but I'd think the
prime choice between the two would be dictated by your experience w/
knife life and treatment and make the selection on which of those you
think better for a longterm cost and maintenance issue.
The spiral head is about a $400 premium I imagine on initial cost, but
you might get sufficiently longer life from the carbide inserts over HSS
knives. But, if damage from "kids are kids" type vandalism has been a
problem, the cost of the inserts could be more of an expense.
I'll withhold comment on bureaucratic budgetary policy... :)
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