Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Posted: 3/21/2006 7:28:14 AM EDT
I'm getting ready to buy a few power tools, and need to know who is currently considered the best in terms of quality, and where is the best place to buy. I'm buying a miter saw, a table saw, and possibly a router. The first thing will be the miter saw - looking to buy a 12" compound saw and am overwhelmed by the number of manufacturers!! DeWalt, Delta, Makita, Milwaukee, Bosche, among others.

I know enough about automotive tools but have only passing experience with wood working tools. I plan on doing some home improvements, and want good enough quality so if woodworking becomes a hobby (and it could too) they will last for years.

The floor is open.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:35:11 AM EDT

While most of my older tools are DeWalt... I have heard that DeWalt has gone down a little compare to Milwaukee. The only problem I have with my DeWalt is that the battery doesn't go for more than 1-1.5 years before going bye-bye.

I'm personally is in the process of upgrading all my older tools to Hitachi. Hitachi is actually a big brand in outside US and have a solid reviews. You may not see too much of them here in the US because they are just getting their brand name started here... but they are good tools.

~nb
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:36:53 AM EDT
I'm not really looking at battery powered tools (I already have a selection).
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:42:16 AM EDT
I've remodled my whole house with Black and Decker Classic tools. Fair price and they work.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:44:01 AM EDT
DeWalt for the miter saw.

Delta or Ridgid for the table saw, DeWalt if you want a portable.

Porter-Cable for the router.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:46:24 AM EDT
here is a board that to me compares to this board for woodworking.

this is a direct link to the tools forum.
www.forums.woodnet.net/ubbthreads/postlist.php?Cat=&Board=UBB2
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:51:19 AM EDT
Miter saw =DeWalt
Table saw=Craftsmen
Router=Porter Cable
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:54:45 AM EDT
For the compound saw, make sure you buy the sliding compound mitre saw. I wish I had.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:55:04 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2006 7:56:13 AM EDT by hanau]
Miter saw =DeWalt,ridge
Table saw=delta unisaw if wanting it non-portable, ridge or dewalt if portable
Router=Porter Cable,bosch
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:55:28 AM EDT
Miter saw=DeWalt
Table saw=Delta or Jet
Router=Porter Cable
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 7:59:23 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Q3131A:
For the compound saw, make sure you buy the sliding compound mitre saw. I wish I had.



+1
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 8:05:15 AM EDT
Can't go wrong with a Milwaukee. As far as miter saws go my father's company has had great work out of Hitachi.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 8:06:16 AM EDT
Not sure why you need a miter saw if you are getting a table saw unless you need the portability. Spend your money on a GOOD table saw with a GOOD fence - Jet or Delta are two good brands, and you won't find them at Home Depot or Lowes.


As far as hand power tools, I prefer the heavy duty DeWalt drills, Makita 13 amp circular saw, and Milwaukee Sawzall.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 8:08:42 AM EDT
If you don't mind a trip to the library before spending your money, look up the equipment reviews in "Fine Woodworking" magazine. They do a SUPER job at reviewing the gear. For example, they always give a "Best" and a "Best Value". The best is sometimes a pricey tool but not always. The reviews and the reviewers are really quite good.

I have the magazines here but don't have time right now to research it for you.

I will say I love my Porter Cable router. It's well made, smooth operating and quiet (as routers go). In true AR15.com fashion, I bought both the fixed base and the plunge base.

Personally, I would stay away from Craftsman tools. They tend to have crappy (induction?) motors. They tend to be direct drive. The motors are so loud I hate to use them. Look for a cap-start motors. They are quieter, have more torque,...

Same thing about Delta - unless you are buying a top of the line Unisaw. The Unisaws are good.

Spend your money wisely - read the reviews first.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 8:11:19 AM EDT
I love my Porter Cable router, and Laminate Trimmer, both have tons of power to do the job.

Milwaulkee is a great brand that has always worked for me.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 8:35:05 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 9:35:33 AM EDT
Are the new Rigid power tools as good as the old ones? I thought they got bought by someone and are now made in China.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 9:44:49 AM EDT
I don't think Milwaukee makes any of the 3 items you asked about. Maybe the router.

I have had great luck with Milwaukee power tools. My drills is 20 years old. It is a Milwaukee 1/2" right angle. I also have a 25 year old Milwaukee sawsall that still works. After going through Craftsman, Dewalt and other brands I only buy Milwaukee now.

I heard that Ridgid used to make Craftsman tables saw before Sears went overseas.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 9:51:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By GunLvrPHD:
Are the new Rigid power tools as good as the old ones? I thought they got bought by someone and are now made in China.



The motors, at least in their stationary tools, are still Emerson.

Ridge Tool is a subsidiary of Emerson of St. Louis, Missouri
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 9:51:56 AM EDT
For a table saw, get a delta.
built very well, excellent tool.
cost me a bit of money, but it has more than paid for itself.
be aware, it is not a very portable table saw, so figure that into your plans.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 9:53:11 AM EDT
Thanks for the replies so far.

Ikor - The first thing I'm going to build is a bunch of work benches for the garage. I should only need a miter saw for now - I can build excellent benches just with it and a drill. At that point I'll decide whether to build cabinets and stuff, which was why I was thinking table saw and router. The more I think about it the more I think I don't even need such a top end miter saw. But I've always bought tools with the intent on keeping them, and try to only buy the best.
I already have all the hand tools I need, that's for sure! I guess I need to think this over for a bit...
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 11:50:26 AM EDT
I have a Ryobi variable speed drill and orbital sander. I think the quality is similar to Craftsmen power tools but I don't do a lot of carpentry.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 3:44:17 PM EDT
for a miter saw for sure get a dewalt...... I have used craftsman, junk if useing alot. I have also used hitachi, good but I think dewalt is a better tool.
I have used dewalts beat to hell and the motors still start up and sound good... the job I am on now has a hitachi that has been taken pretty good care of and the motor sounds like its going to launch every time you switch it on.
jim
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 3:50:43 PM EDT
If you're not making a living with these tools, go to Sears, and check out Craftsman.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 3:51:48 PM EDT
I just bought a 12" radial miter saw from Hitachi and couldn't love it any more than I already do. I also bought a Hitachi router and have had a Hitachi cordless drill and saw for a couple years now. You can't beat the bang for the buck. They are heavy duty tools for a great price. I beleive I may go with the Craftsman table saw though. The fence seems to be the best in my price range.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 3:58:34 PM EDT
I have a ton of woodworking tools and make fine furniture as a hobby. The best advise given so far is to get a decent table saw and skip the miter unless you require portability. Jet makes a fine saw and they have a model with a sliding miter section. It's pretty awesome. I love mine and it has held up to some commercial jobs I have done.

If you do get a sliding miter stay away from Makita. I have their 10" compound sliding miter and it will not cut a smooth edge. As far as Routers go, stay away from Sears unless you like buying twice. I have had good luck with my Ryobi RE600 which is permanently mounted in a router table. For a portable one, I have a Dewalt which works fine. Porter Cable is also a good bet.


Bomber
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 4:00:52 PM EDT

Originally Posted By gus:
I'm getting ready to buy a few power tools, and need to know who is currently considered the best in terms of quality, and where is the best place to buy. I'm buying a miter saw, a table saw, and possibly a router. The first thing will be the miter saw - looking to buy a 12" compound saw and am overwhelmed by the number of manufacturers!! DeWalt, Delta, Makita, Milwaukee, Bosche, among others.

I know enough about automotive tools but have only passing experience with wood working tools. I plan on doing some home improvements, and want good enough quality so if woodworking becomes a hobby (and it could too) they will last for years.

The floor is open.




Talk about "opening a can of worms!"


This question is as bad as asking "I want to buy a gun, what do you reccomend?"

Travis



Link Posted: 3/21/2006 4:09:08 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 4:20:42 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2006 4:35:16 PM EDT by TRW]
You didn't say what your budget or usage was going to be so here goes:

Miter saw: The best one by far is the DeWalt 708 12" slider. They can be had for as little as $400 if you want to go with a factory refurb (I would). They are being superseded by the I think the DW716 but they are new on the market, pricey, and haven't yet proved their worth with the woodworking community yet. Street price on the DW 716 runs between 600-800$ so you can see why the DW708 is still popular.

Table saw: For a contractor saw I would go with the Grizzly G0444Z. 2HP, 110/220, with a great fence, cast iron wings, and good price. Delta, Jet, Powermatic, Shop Fox and General contractor saws are also as good or better. You can't really go wrong with any of them. Just ensure you get at least 1.5 HP and cast iron wings.

Cabinet saw: Delta Unisaw or Grizzly 1023 series depending on your budget. Again, Powermatic, Jet, Shop Fox and General also make good cabinet saws, but, like the contractors saws, prices and features vary widely.

Router: Most serious woodworkers I know have 3-4 routers and set them up for different tasks. If you just want one you could try the tried and true Porter Cable 690 series 1-3/4 HP which can be had for under $125 now. If you want a beefier plunge router you can't go wrong with DeWalt 621 or 625 or the Hitachi M12V.

ETA: Some people have said that you don't really need a MS if you have a TS. I like having both and do most of my cross cutting on the MS and all my ripping on the TS. Reasons are many but mainly because most stock mitre gauges suck azz. Plus, by the time I find my crosscut sled and get the TS set up, I could have already made the cut on the MS and moved on to other tasks. Incra makes some nice aftermarket miter gauges but they will cost you anywhere from $60-200.

Welcome to another expensive hobby.

The nice thing about this one is you don't have to worry about your equipment being pre or post ban or complying with some arcane federal reg that even the feds can't interpret.

Instead of stocking up on ammo, you'll be spending money on cherry, oak, walnut and maple. If you are serious about woodworking you'll also want to think about a jointer, planer and bandsaw.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 4:48:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/21/2006 4:52:50 PM EDT by thebomber]

Some people have said that you don't really need a MS if you have a TS. I like having both and do most of my cross cutting on the MS and all my ripping on the TS. Reasons are many but mainly because most stock mitre gauges suck azz.



I agree with this IF you are talking about one of the miter gauges that slide in a miter groove. I'm one of those who recommended the table saw option but I was not talking about the primative miter guage. My table saw has a section that slides on 3 ball bearing rails and is more accurate, stable and easier to use than my dedicated Makita slider.



Bomber
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 6:14:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By thebomber:

Some people have said that you don't really need a MS if you have a TS. I like having both and do most of my cross cutting on the MS and all my ripping on the TS. Reasons are many but mainly because most stock mitre gauges suck azz.



I agree with this IF you are talking about one of the miter gauges that slide in a miter groove. I'm one of those who recommended the table saw option but I was not talking about the primative miter guage. My table saw has a section that slides on 3 ball bearing rails and is more accurate, stable and easier to use than my dedicated Makita slider.

www.wmhtoolgroup.com/product_images/images/708781K.jpg

Bomber



Yes, I was talking about the stock miter gages that come with the saw. They do suck azz and I just don't trust mine unless I square it before every use. It's a PITA and that's the main reason I use my MS to do as much crosscutting as I can. It's already set up, plugged in and square. Cutting any stock under 8" in width is easy and quick.

Looks like you have a sliding table there, not to be confused with a miter guage. Sliding tables are pretty standard in Europe and catching on fast here in the US.

The Incra aftermarket miter guages are nice because they have wedge shaped stops that lock the slide and fence at various guaranteed angles. Trust factor and accuracy is high and changing angles is easy.

I actually had my MS before I had my TS so I like to use the best features of each to the maximum extent possible.
Link Posted: 3/21/2006 6:37:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By out-a-ammo:

Originally Posted By GunLvrPHD:
Are the new Rigid power tools as good as the old ones? I thought they got bought by someone and are now made in China.



The motors, at least in their stationary tools, are still Emerson.

Ridge Tool is a subsidiary of Emerson of St. Louis, Missouri



Isn't Emerson now Chinese owned??
Link Posted: 3/22/2006 3:12:42 AM EDT
Well, I'm down to the DeWalt DW708 or the Hitachi C12LSH, leaning towards the DeWalt since it's now out of production and can be had for around $450 brand new (not refurb). The Hitachi has some interesting features and gizmos the DeWalt lacks, but I doubt I need them anyway. The new DeWalt DW718 looks good, but it's over $700 everywhere I checked. DeWalt scores extra points since I know some guys at B&D in Towson, Md. that can get me extra help if something goes wrong or breaks.

I'm going to build two or three very heavy duty work benches, mount my grinder, vises, drill press, etc., and then decide on more tools like a table saw if I still want or need one. I'm also going to build a bench in the basement, suitable for reloading in case I ever take the plunge.
Link Posted: 3/22/2006 3:40:30 AM EDT
I've been a professional trim, cabinet and carpenter type for 30 years. Been using a Hitachi 8.5 sliding miter saw for 5+ years and have no complaints. This in spite of the fact that I TRY to buy U.S. made first. The Japs got it right on this one. Hand tools I normally go Milwaukee. My tools get abused regularly and I'm not ashamed of it. Powermatic table saw(Taiwan) has been decent for 15 years. Delta(Taiwan) 6" jointer has been very good, too. Makitra 10" plainer has been beat to death w/ hardwoods for 20 years and just keeps buzzing.
Top Top