The Kapex, First Use Impressions

Well some of you probably know that I received a Kapex and stand and side extensions for Christmas. Thank you again my darling wife.
Unpacking was straight forward and darn little assembly was required. I think I had to attach one section to the base stand and maybe the handle..... Oh and the base attachments to the saw itself so that it would attach to the stand. Quick and easy.
The stand, right and left extensions could not be any simpler to set up and take down. Tightening 2 thumb screws and it is ready to go from complete storage to ready to use.
The stand has a foot print of about 24" x 24". The saw and pretty much the left and right extensions fit within that foot print when being stored. EXACTLY what I was looking for. I have wanted to replace my 20 year old Delta CMS for years but really did not want to dedicate the space in my shop for a miter saw station, so I did with out.
The saw/station and left and right extensions take about a minute to set up, another big plus for me. I did not want something that I would rather not use if I it was going to take much effort to set up. This set up can be ready to cut stock repeatedly to 94.5" left or right of the saw blade in about a minute.
Simply rotate a retainer lever on the stand to release the handle. Then push the handle out of its friction retainers and then life/swing the Kapex up and let the handle swing down and lock in the up right position. That is about a 3~7 second maneuver, reversing is takes about the same amount of time.
Left and right extensions have a cool little storage container that fits on each end of the pair and hold them together when not in use. Once out of the container you simply fold down a single leg one each and sit the opposite end of the extension on to the v-grove on either side of the Kapex. Reach under the extension and slide a lever about 1/2" and tighten the thumb screw, done. Repeat for the other side.
Each side of the extensions can be adjusted to the same plane as the saw table by simply twisting a thumb screw to adjust the angle of the leg. Once you are close you probably do not have to make this adjustment very often but this adjustment too only takes a few seconds for each side. Each extension has a slide stop and rule, IN INCHES, for repeated cuts up to about 58 inches. If you need longer cuts you loosen a thumb screw on the back side of the extension and slide out another telescoping extension up to 94.5" on both sides. One of my issues with cutting to length accurately and repeatedly on the TS was the long lengths. Any thing past 42" IIRC was tough to do. I had ways to do it but it was time consuming.
While the stand and side extensions seem to have a minimal amount of support it is quite sturdy. I watched a couple of Youtube videos where the users climbed up on top of the side extension rails and stood or sat on them.
The saw is relatively quiet, thank goodness, I'm certain that is because of the soft start feature. It obviously cuts silky smooth, I would expect this out of any new saw and blade. Miter and bevel settings are quick and accurate. Setting the miter angle accurately is not tough on most miter saws but setting the bevel angle can be tricky unless the setting falls on a predetermined detent. With most miter saws the bevel scale is relative small and the resolution of the scale is coarse. Add to that, once the bevel lock is released you are having to hold the weight of the saw motor assembly in position while you adjust and tighten the locking lever. With detents this is not too bad but go for 40 degrees and test cuts will likely be needed to insure it ended up at that setting. With the Kapex the saw motor assembly is counter balanced. You lift the bevel lock lever and push the assembly to the bevel angle you want, it stays there with out having to hold the saw assembly even before you lower the lock lever. Then on top of that feature you can rotate the handle on the right side of the slide and you can dial in the bevel angle with a higher degree of accuracy. The bevel scale is LARGE and on both sides of the saw. The scale is approximately 8" out from the pivot point. Each degree marking on the scale is approximately 1/8" from the next degree marking. On many miter saws this scale is approximately 2~3 inches from the pivot point and you can hardly tell where the pointer is pointing. Both the miter and bevel settings are spot on from the factory.
Another feature I like is the hold down clamp. Typically you get a clamp that you need to screw several revolutions to adjust, tighten or loosen. The Kapex clamp has a rod to push down or lift up and then a lock down lever. When adjusting the clamp the hold down piston stays at the height that you lift it whether the lock is engaged or not. Basically when you unlock and lift the hold down piston and remove the work it does not fall to the table surface when you let go. It easily moves from one side to the other of the saw with out using any locking screws to hold it into position.
The Kapex uses 2 lasers. Properly adjusted the blade removes the material between the 2 laser lines. I doubt that I will use this very much since I have the accurate fence stops on both sides for repeatable cuts but if I were doing rough carpentry I would probably use this feature more. Mine seemed to be set correctly for the right side of the cut but appears to be about 1/32" off on the left side of the cut. There are 3 adjustment screws for each laser line.
Dado's can be cut with this saw and this might come in handy when I need to cut another and I have already removed the dado set from the TS. This might even be handy for the single odd dado or notch that needs to be cut.
Dust collection is pretty good and I did not really realize this until I forgot to attach the vac and I had a rooster tail of dust come flying out of the exhaust port. With the vac it certainly keeps the dust, that it does not catch, to a minimum and a close radius to the saw.
For narrow stock, like base board moldings, the saw will cut 6.875" deep. For normal 3/4" thick stock it appears it can cross cut 10" wide at 90 degrees.
The saw actually has cord storage that also acts as a lift handle and tool storage. The saw weighs in at about 47 lbs. It and the stand probably weigh about 69 lbs. Because of the small foot print when in the closed position it should be relatively easy to load in the back of my truck if I need to work on site some where else.
Soooooo will this saw every pay for itself? For me I don't see that happening, but maybe. Because it is so easy and quick to set up and take down perhaps it will. I will probably not give it a second thought to pull it out to make even a single cut. For an every day pro, I can see it paying for it self providing it does not walk off. ;~) There is a Youtube video of a pro that is giving a review of his Kapex. IIRC he has been using it on job sites for 7 years. I will add that the saw looks less than pristine, the guard is long gone and a lot of the paint is gone. He still swears by it.
I like it, a lot.
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wrote:

Happy mitering ! Just for a giggle, I checked the Canadian prices at Lee Valley : : Kapex KS 120 EB saw            1920. : mobile stand with extensions        1210.     13 % Ontario sales tax         407.
... plus new locks on the workshop ! :-) John T.         
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On 1/12/2018 5:49 PM, snipped-for-privacy@ccanoemail.ca wrote:

WOW! that is almost 40% more. Drive out for me $2586.
How much for the locks? ;~)
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On 1/12/18 4:41 PM, Leon wrote:

I hate you.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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On 1/12/2018 6:23 PM, -MIKE- wrote:

I get that a lot from you...... ;~)
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wrote:

Nice review. Thanks! I'll probably put it on my short list. I like my Bosch but it just takes too much floor space (too far from the wall). I'd put it in a miter station with at least a clear 8' on either end. I have a perfect place for it.
Leon! Look over there! ;-)

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On 1/12/2018 6:24 PM, snipped-for-privacy@notreal.com wrote:

Where? ;~)
Looks like you are able to sit up in bed and take nourishment!
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On Friday, January 12, 2018 at 5:41:55 PM UTC-5, Leon wrote:
...First part of a great review snipped...

Have you tried the dado feature yet? My Bosch glider has a dado feature but it didn't impress me. I know I'm going way out on a limb comparing any single feature of a Bosch saw to the same feature of a Kapex, but I'm curious about the quality of the dado. As you said, the laser might be OK for rough work, so I wonder if the dado feature is in the same realm.
...Second part of a great review snipped...

Mike may hate you, I'm just jealous.
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On Fri, 12 Jan 2018 17:45:27 -0800 (PST), DerbyDad03

The "laser" on my Bosch works really well. It's on the hub, so it really has to be aligned.

No, Leon definitely sucks. ;-)
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I have not used it yet. I will say that it requires an auxiliary fence so that the blade will go through the cut. Because the depth stop prevents the blade from plunging fully the back side of the dado will be rounded with out an aux. fence to position the work forward.
There is a screw/lever that you pull forward to engage the depth stop. You turn the lever to adjust stop depth. Returning the lever to the neutral position allows a full depth cut and does not disturb the previously set cutting depth.
Accuracy of the dado cut will depend on placement of the outer cuts. I think with the adjustable stops on the left and right extensions coupled with the "Kerf Maker" repeatable dados can be cut.
I know I'm going way out on a limb comparing

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On 1/12/18 11:17 PM, Leon wrote:

That is an important feature.

It also comes with that Miterfast angle transfer thingie. Seeing that in the store is what inspired me to buy the Bora MiteriX.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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wrote:

Same here. Have you used it yet? I was disappointed that it didn't do an outside angle of more than about 120-degrees (though I've only played with it for a few minutes). I was hoping it would extend to at least 80-degrees.
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On 1/13/18 11:28 AM, snipped-for-privacy@notreal.com wrote:

It has helped me out greatly in a few critical situations.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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On 1/13/2018 10:55 AM, -MIKE- wrote:

Yeah I left that out. I have not used that yet either. The Bora looks pretty good too. I also see that Bora is getting into the Bessy K-Body clone camp.
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On Friday, January 12, 2018 at 4:41:55 PM UTC-6, Leon wrote:

: Kapex KS 120 EB saw 1920. : mobile stand with extensions 1210. 13 % Ontario sales tax 407.
I'm gonna spray paint my 30 yr old sawbuck green, $5.45.
Good for you, Leon. And ^5 for the Mrs.
Sonny
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Thanks Sonny. She is good to me. :-)
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On Friday, January 12, 2018 at 11:20:20 PM UTC-6, Leon wrote:

Hah! That's an understatement!
OTOH, it's not like you haven't used all those great tools to build a house full of artisan furniture...!! And sold another house full along the way. Meh... she might see you as a good investment.
LOL!!!
I saw the saw when I visited Leon and his lovely this last Christmas. From a practical standpoint, I have to say Festool didn't miss a trick on this saw. I put Leon on the spot to set it up like he would if the saw went int o the field. He had only assembled it once or twice, but with my watch set , it still took less than two minutes to lift the saw, pull out the extensi ons on both sides, and extend their feet. Pretty unbelievable when you see in person how solid it is when set up. Cuts? Smooth as glass, even on cra ppy, splintery plywood scraps.
Hey... come to think of it, may I don't like Leon either... nah.
I think it's just the green eyed Festool monster.
Robert
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replying to nailshooter41, Marlow wrote: Wipe your chin, Bobby, you have a little Leon on it.
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On 1/13/2018 2:04 AM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Probably 3~4 houses of furniture extra. ;~)

Dayum!

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