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Table Saws : Ratings of Sources

By: Amy Livingston on June 12, 2017

Table Saws: Ratings of Sources

Kenny Koehler, Dec. 28, 2016

Three professional carpenters test ten portable table saws, including one now discontinued. They outfit them all with Diablo 40-tooth general-purpose blades and test them on both 3/4-inch plywood and pressure-treated 2x pine. Each saw earns points for safety features, fence quality, stability, weight, stand design, ease of adjustment, cutting power, and dust collection. Totaling up these scores determines the saws' overall ranking, as well as their "class ranking" against comparably priced brands.

Chris Marshall, Aug. 1, 2013

Editor and "serious woodworker" Chris Marshall tests five "premium" portable table saws. After equipping each saw with a new Freud thin-kerf blade, he uses them to rip lengths of medium-density fiberboard (MDF) and yellow pine, as well as making long dado cuts in MDF. Marshall considers the saws' stability, cutting accuracy, efficiency, dust collection, and general ease of use to choose his top picks. Unfortunately, two of his three favorites are discontinued.

Roy Berendsohn, Mar. 13, 2015

This detailed, well-illustrated comparison review reports on tests of 11 portable table saws, all from different brands, including three budget table saws priced at $250 or less. Testers run each saw through 2X lumber, plywood and oak before giving it a rating on a five-point scale. Each saw also gets a brief write-up summarizing pros and cons. A few of the saws, including one top pick, are no longer on the market.

Editors of Tool Box Buzz, As of June 2017

Tool Box Buzz offers a variety of hands-on reviews of tools, but only six table saws are covered, all portable models. The reviews are detailed and hands-on, but only some of them provide actual ratings or recommendations, and none directly compares different saws.

Editors of Tools of the Trade, As of June 2017

Finding useful reviews on this site is a challenge. A search for "table saw review" turned up a few relevant articles, but they're mixed in with news, tips, and coverage for other types of cutting tools. Most of the reviews that do focus on table saws are old, and many of the products are discontinued. However, we turned up a few in-depth reviews for products that are still on the market.

Kevin Ireton, 2010

Kevin Ireton, an experienced builder, evaluates five portable table saws based on how easy they are to move and operate, as well as their safety features. Four of the five table saws "make the cut," but two of these are now discontinued. This woodworking site also features a newer review in which Ireton tests the SawStop portable table saw.

Editors of the Woodworkers Guild of America, Last updated March 2013

This woodworking website has tons of information about how to use a table saw: choosing blades, cutting joints, safety features, and more. However, we found only five actual product reviews, none more recent than 2013. Although these individual reviews are hands-on, they don't put saws through any specific, detailed tests. There's also no direct comparison between saws and no formal rating system.

Contributors to HomeDepot.com, As of June 2017

HomeDepot.com sells around 60 models of table saws, and the top models get hundreds of reviews from users. We found three portable saws with ratings of 4.5 stars or better from 150 users or more, and one contractor saw gets ratings just shy of 4.5 stars overall from more than 650 owners. Individual reviews are fairly short and include ratings for quality and value.

Editors of Wood Magazine, May 2010

The only (somewhat) recent review of table saws at Wood Magazine pits nine 3-HP cabinet saws against various sizes of wood and plywood, fed both by hand and with a power feeder. The short version of the review available on the website names the top picks and notes areas in which all nine saws performed adequately. For full details, however, you need to check out the printed magazine.

Contributors to Amazon.com, As of June 2017

Amazon.com offers more than 200 table saws for sale, including portable, contractor, and cabinet saws. Portable table saws get the lion's share of feedback; we found four models that earn ratings of 4.5 stars out of 5 from 100 users or more. However, we also found a couple of cabinet saws with strong ratings from 25 users or more.

Contributors to Lowes.com, As of June 2017

Lowes.com has a limited selection of table saws, and there are fewer user-posted reviews here than at Amazon.com or HomeDepot.com. Only one portable model receives a rating of at least 4.5 stars from 100 users or more. We didn't find any contractor or cabinet saws with enough feedback to be meaningful.

Editors of Popular Woodworking, Last updated October 2013

The Popular Woodworking site hasn't published many reviews of table saws recently; the newest one we found was from 2013. There are no comparison reviews and no ratings or recommendations to help you compare different models. Nonetheless, this site is useful because it's one of the few places to find detailed coverage of larger contractor and cabinet saws.

Contributors to Sears.com, As of July 2016

Sears is the only store that sells Craftsman tools, and Sears.com is the only place to find reviews of Craftsman table saws. This brand gets more feedback from owners than any other, but even so, only two models get good overall ratings from 100 users or more.

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