Best table saw for first-time user - how and what to choose? I'm a girl who has never used a table saw but want to buy one and get started doing my own home-improvement carpentry projects. Where should I start? (I've thought also of buying a miter saw but think I should start with a table saw. Yes, I'd like to do some trimwork or other projects requiring some mitre cuts.) With the table saw I want to cut small boards, build shelves, and do a few creative things. Should I go for the cheapest portable/table saw out there? or look for one with a laser guide?, etc. etc. I don't even know what questions to ask. All I know is I want to get started ASAP. Any recommendations from other DIY novices and hobbyists?
asked by V. Hendricks on November 21, 2009
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I think you might try going to Lowe's or Home Depot and see when they might have instruction days when they show you how to use tools or make things. They have some projects on their website. I learned how to do things gradually, first with a circular saw and router and an old Hirsh saw table. I just bought a table saw on Black Friday, the Dewalt portable, you have to know what you are doing or you can get hurt, but if you are handy, careful and thoughtful about these tools you should be ok. You can get some combo tool kits to save money. Protect your hearing with good ear plugs or protectors. A circular saw with an edge guide can do a lot that a table saw can do. I like to buy good tools, the cheapest will not last.
So i would recommend starting simple and work up to more complex. Get a combo kit with a drill, circular saw. Maybe a sander of some sort. You'll need bits. A Dremel rotary tool is very useful. So is a multi-tool like a Dremel MultiMax. Next maybe a sliding miter saw. I got the Sears 7 1/4 inch sliding compound miter saw with laser guide, and it's only $150, works well and takes up a lot less space than a 10" saw. Less intimidating. Then if you find you are learning a lot and find a use for it, get the table saw, but again not the cheapest because they are cheap for a reason. Good luck!
Outdoor cook answered on November 28, 2009
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I mostly agree with outdoor cook. I've been doing carpentry since I was 10 or 12. I definitely would not start with a table saw. They are expensive and dangerous. I would highly recommend getting a circular saw, which is cheaper and safer. Get comfortable with that tool, and then decide if you want to move up to a table saw. I would also get a miter saw before a table saw. The suggestion to go to HD for some instruction is good. Certainly do not try to figure these tools out as you go. Get some instruction from somewhere. Finally, as for price vs. quality, I would go somewhere in the middle. Very cheap tools are much more dangerous, but the brand name ones, like DeWalt etc., are charging in large part for reliability and durability, features you don't really need in abundance if you're a hobbyist.
A. Barnett answered on December 26, 2009
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You can find a zillion videos on yuotube .com on how to use any kind of power tools. Just do a search for what kind of saw, brand of tool or job that you want to do and you"ll find plenty of good info. As far as buying power tools read the reviews before buying. Dewalt, Bosch, Craftsman are the better brands. Ryobi builds some decent lower priced tools. stay away from Skil power saws. They are junk. Always buy the best that you can afford because remember you get what you pay for. As far as table saws for the beginner the Dewalt DW745 is your best choice. Its a great saw with all the features you need now and down the road. You"ll probably never need to replace it with a more expensive saw. At $300.00 you"" be hard pressed to find a better all-around saw.
R. Stewart answered on November 27, 2012
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Just wondering what you decided on. I'm also new to woodworking (and a woman), I did start with a miter saw (and a scroll saw though I consider that more crafty then woodworking)... next was a router & table, and now I'm ready for a table saw myself. While I respect the opinion of these experienced woodworkers I'm personally staying clear of circular saws. My father said it best when I discussed it with him. With a table saw you see the blade at all times, it isn't moving and you're using both hands to control the wood vs trying to potentially control the wood & the saw. Have you seen the GRR Ripper? I just learned about it yesterday (check youtube videos) and plan to purchase one or two along with my saw for increased safety. I'm leaning towards this Dewalt myself (both my scroll saw, sander, and router are Dewalt and I've been happy with them) but I'm still finalizing my choice.
@homemom answered on January 18, 2013
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yes its exciting how much stuff you can do with these things but as a A. Barnet said start better by using a miter saw the reason being its because on a table saw the blade its expossed and if you are a newbie it can be real dangerous they come with attachments but still if u dont have experience at all cutting stuff a little mistake cant cause a bad injury . i hoope this helped good luck!
giorgiohiro answered on December 10, 2012
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