I have read dozens of reviews for Dewalt,Bosch,Baileigh,Grizzly and others and from my perspective (regarding Dewalt at least), Black&dDecker/Stanley have turned the product line , for the most part into junk. I have read reviews that indicate outright, that the table is not level, the fence is warped and if you want accurate cuts, then possibly you should look elsewhere.
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A table saw is only as good as its blades. There are a variety of saw blades with varying diameter, arbor size, number of teeth, kerf size, speed, application, and material. Most common table saws use 10 or 12” saw blades with an average number of teeth at24 to 80. And when it comes to the material used, carbide and carbon steel are the most common however you will also find very strong diamond blades.
The shark fin-style riving knife behind the blade keeps cut pieces from binding and causing kickback. The included push stick is useful when using thinner workpieces that don’t allow your hand to be at least 4 inches from the blade. The power button’s flip cover ensures that you only turn the blade on when you mean to, which is a welcome layer of safety.
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I tested both saws and found their performance similar, though thanks to the rolling stand, I was more likely to reach for the DeWalt. If you don’t value the stand, the SKILSAW packs a lot of power in a small form and is the preferred job site saw of several local contractors I know. If you’re a weekend warrior like me, you may value the stand enough to spend the extra money on the DeWalt.
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The built-in stand sets this saw apart from competitors since it is actually quite stable out of the box and doesn’t require a custom stand or supports to combat vibration, which are often necessary with cheaper and lighter units. DeWalt sells a nearly identical saw with a less robust stand, and after viewing it in a big box store, I was glad to have this one.
I only have two minor concerns with this saw but they are so small that this saw still gets a 5 star rating. DEWALT could step up the game on the dust collection if they offer users an effective way of using the dust port on the blade guard. Maybe they offer an accessory splitter and hose package. My other concern is the plastic parts on the fence where it connects to the table. I suspect those parts could break when they are cold if you remove the fence and toss it in the trailer or back of your truck. Again, these are minor in comparison to the rest of the saw (food for thought on the next design).
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Smaller, portable table saw models have direct-drive motors that can operate on 120 V power to produce 2 HP. This is enough motor power to take on thinner materials. Table saws with more powerful motors are usually stationary saws that produce between 3 to 5 HP. Table saws with stronger motors rely on a belt drive to transfer the power from the motor to the blade and these operate on 240 V.
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The DeWalt doesn’t go above and beyond here but has some standard safety equipment as part of its Site-Pro Guarding System. The Blade Guard Assembly is a standard clear plastic set of guards that allows the wood to be fed to the blade but shields you from putting hands on the exposed blade in a slip. The guards will lock in a raised position when you need to see the blade—for example, when adjusting the blade height—which lessens the temptation to remove this safety feature when it’s in your way.