Saws Table Saw

DEWALT DW745 Table Saw Review

According to many, a table saw is the heart of any woodshop. It does anything a circular saw, and miter saw can do and offers a ton of support for handling large pieces of lumber. Table saws can be portable, allowing you to take them from place to place while still providing ample power for cutting through thick boards.

DEWALT DW745 10-Inch Compact Job-Site Table Saw Review

The DW745 from DeWalt is one of these table saws that is compact enough to transport without a hitch. However, apart from being portable, what other features make this tool worthy of purchasingIn this article, we’re going to take a close look at the DW745 to find out whether it’s as good as numerous customers say it is.

Weight and Portability

Since the biggest selling point of the DW745 is its portability, we’d like to find out just how portable it really is. The weight of the DW745, fully assembled but not including the stand (sold separately), is roughly 55 pounds which, by table standards, is rightfully classified as lightweight. Loading and unloading the DW745 does not require helping hand, and it’s compact enough to not take too much space in the bed of a truck.

DEWALT DW745 10-Inch Compact Job-Site Table Saw

Motor Power

The DW745 comes with a large 15-amp motor that provides extreme effectiveness and efficiency in cutting through thick lumber. The tool is fitted with a 10-inch 24-tooth carbide blade that spins at a maximum speed of 3,850 RPM, giving you nice, clean cuts on the edges of your work. The motor generates enough torque to saw through sopping wet to frozen stiff boards when working in the field.

Cutting Capacities

The DW745’s 10-inch carbide blade has the ability to cut boards up to 3-1/8 inches thick in a single pass. The blade can bevel up to 45° and cut at depths of up to 2-1/4 inches. For an on-site table saw, we found that these cutting depths are just about the industry average, so it’s not exactly jaw-droppingly amazing, but you can still get a ton of work with minimal passes over the saw blade.

DEWALT DW745 Table Saw Review

Massive Worktable

At first glance, you can tell that the worktable on the DW745 is huge. In fact, it can support rip-cuts through boards as wide as 20 inches. For a portable table saw, this is a tremendous amount of space and support, especially if you’re ripping huge boards down to a more manageable size.

Lackluster Dust Collection System

Now, the one area where the DW745 doesn’t fare so well is the dust management. Anyone who’s ever used a table saw knows just how much sawdust this tool produces, portable or not. Even though the DW745 comes with a 2-1/2 dust collection port, it won’t be of much use out in the field or in any spot away from a shop vac. Furthermore, more often than not, dust falls away from the blade and on the ground, making the dust port somewhat irrelevant.

DEWALT DW745 Table Saw

Not Fit for Dado Blades

You may be wondering why we bothered to mention the DW745’s lack of support for dado blades, stacked sets or wobbly ones. However, it’s an important thing to address if you plan on using this table saw to make joints and grooves. There are ways to get around using dado sets to cut grooves along the length of a board, which this tool can do, but it can be dangerous if you don’t pay attention the safety warnings before doing so.

Great Guarding System

The guarding system that comes in place in the DW745 is pretty decent. Firstly, all adjustments can be made without the use of external tools. Next, the table is anti-friction to allow the smooth movement of passing boards.

However, one thing buyers should be aware of is the plastic top plate which may not seem like a big deal, but the material used to make the top plate is quite crucial to the overall durability of the tool. As time goes on, plastic components are more prone to warping, especially when exposed to the elements of nature which is likely to happen to portable table saws. With proper care and storage, you can significantly reduce the extent of damage to the plastic top plate, but we would have much preferred if it were made of metal.



We hope the plastic top plate didn’t send you running in the opposite direction of the DeWalt DW745 since it is, in our opinion, a fine portable table saw. The powerful 15-amp motor paired with the large 10-inch carbide blade makes it a great tool to have to cut huge boards down to length and width. Keep in mind that the only safe way to use this tool out in the open is if you purchase any compatible saw stand.

DEWALT DW745 10-Inch Compact Job-Site Table Saw

Saws Table Saw

Table Saw vs Band Saw: What’s the Difference?

Chances are, you’ve probably seen, or at least heard of, both table and band saws. Both of these saws are incredibly popular and incredibly useful. You can find them in just about any hardware shop, and many, many people use them for a variety of purposes.

This, of course, begs the question: What, exactly, distinguishes these two saws from each other?

Table Saw vs Band Saw

Table Saw

In this article, we’re going to be answering that exact question. You’re going to learn what features make these saws different from one another. As well as which of the power tools is right for you, based on the purposes and intentions you have.

What Is A Table Saw?

When comparing table saws to band saws, it becomes apparent that table saws are far more popular than band saws. Part of this is because of their overall popularity, which has lead to lower costs and a wide variety of different models being produced.

When you use a table saw, you’ll quickly discover that it is meant for a very specific kind of cut. Straight cuts, to be specific. More often than not, these cuts are meant to take place on thin boards. Boards that are around four-to-six inches thick. These cuts can be as long, or as short, as necessary.

Making these cuts is easy for a table saw, due to the long circular blade. Most table saws support various extensions that enable you to cut wider boards.

One thing to note, however, is that table saws come with blades that only work for cutting lumber. Lumber that isn’t particularly thick, as mentioned earlier.

Band Saw vs Table Saw

Band Saw

If you own a table saw and want to cut things like plastics or specific metals, you’ll need a separate blade, for one very specific reason. The teeth on the average table saws blade aren’t very fine, or close together. This makes working with those materials a much greater challenge.

Now, while table saws don’t have as much flexibility when it comes to what materials they cut, they do cut more. Table saws have large blades that enable cutting to take place quickly and efficiently. It also ensures that more material is cut.

What Is A Band Saw?

With a band saw, the first thing you’ll notice is just how flexible your choice of angles is. You can cut rips, curves, angles, bevels, among others. With a table saw, you don’t have anywhere near this level of versatility and flexibility.

Along with that, most table saws come with blades that offer a similar amount of flexibility. Using a band saw, you can cut a variety of different materials such as plastics, various metals, wood, as well as a variety of other materials.

Band Saw vs. Table Saw: Which is Better for You?

Band Saw

The thickness of the wood is another factor to take note of. With a band saw, you can cut thin wood and thick wood. Table saws don’t give you the ability to cut wood that is thicker than six inches.

Unlike table saws, though, band saws don’t cut as much material. The blades are far more narrow and tight. They are making it a lot harder for more efficient and quick cutting to take place. However, the cutting is always precise, even when cutting at strange or unusual angles.

Which One Is The Right Saw For Me?

Let’s get this out of the way first. A table saw is generally considered the “main fixture” of any hardware space. There’s a reason for this: it’s a great tool.

While it is basic, it remains a great tool that offers you some basic, but completely necessary, features. If you want to make clean, and precise straight cuts, then you cannot go wrong with a table saw. A good table saw is an absolute necessity for any hardware space or worksite.

Band Saw Vs. Table Saw Comparison

Table Saw

But, it does offer less overall versatility than a band saw. You can’t cut particularly thick wood. You can only cut in straight angles. And, unless you purchase special blades, you can only cut wood.

Now, if you don’t need any of those things, then you can stick with a basic table saw. It will be more than enough for your needs.

A band saw, on the other hand, gives you a lot more flexibility.

Band Saw vs Table Saw: Which One to Choose?

Band Saw

You can cut thick wood and thin wood. You can cut in many different angles. And you don’t always need to purchase special blades to cut different kinds of materials.

Ultimately, the choice comes down to whether this is flexibility is something that you need or want. If you don’t need it, then a table saw is more than enough. If you do need it, or want the option, then a band saw is ideal.

The Band Saw Vs. Table Saw Debate

Table Saw

Saws Table Saw

Table Saw or Circular Saw: What to Pick?

When it comes to woodworking, picking the right tool for the job can be a bit confusing. Looking at the numerous types of saws and their cutting capacities, it can be confusing deciding which of them can actually be the “right” tool for your collection.

Circular Saw or Table Saw

One of the greatest dilemmas for aspiring woodworkers is picking between a table saw, and a circular saw. Comparing the benefits of the large supports on a table saw to the compactness of a circular saw can be a head-scratcher. In this article, we’re going to take a look at the benefits and drawbacks of both of these types of saws and give you our opinion of which would be the better saw to start off with.

What is a Table Saw?

A table saw is a large variety of circular saws in which the blade protrudes upward from the work table. The blade is driven by an electric motor and belts or gears to give it the cutting power and speed needed to rip through long, thick boards.

You slice and dice your work by pushing wooden boards through the blade with a push stick while lined it is up against the support fence. The fence can be shifted to either the left or right side of the blade depending on which part of the board you wish to cut.

A number of different jigs can be used to assist in making angled cuts while spinning a wheel or lever can tilt the blade to make beveled cuts. Cutting on both planes – angled and beveled – is possible with the right jig, a tilted blade, and a steady hand.

Table Saw or Circular Saw

The greatest benefit that a table saw offers is the ability to make repeated cuts on several pieces. You simply need to adjust the cutting depth of the blade, the tilt of the blade, and the distance from the fence to the blade. After everything is locked in place, you can cut boards to an identical size in no time at all.

Types of Table Saws?

Table saw models range from large, stationary units to light, portable ones. Although there are several types of table saws out there, for first-time buyers and aspiring woodworkers, the two that you should consider are cabinet and benchtop table saws.

A cabinet table saw is a heavy-duty machine that’s used in professional woodshops. It comes with a beefy motor, a huge work table, and a large blade for cutting through large wooden boards. This is the type you need if you plan on establishing a home business.

If you’re more of a hobbyist, then take a look at benchtop table saws. These are the lightest, most compact type of table saw available. As the name suggests, this tool is mounted onto a workbench or table to give it stability and height. It works just like any other table saw, but the supports to the left and right are small, limiting how large a board you can cut with this tool.

Circular Saw

Drawbacks of a Table Saw

Many people would argue that the table saw is the heart and soul of any woodshop. We feel that it can be, but this doesn’t mean it doesn’t have disadvantages. For starters, even a compact benchtop table saw can be pretty heavy, and transporting it from place to place can be troublesome if you don’t have the right cushioning for both your truck and the tool.

Second, the only way to make use of this tool is by lifting your boards onto the table saw’s work table. If you need to cut huge boards down to size, you can skip the gym since lifting and positioning the board onto your table saw will be enough of a workout.

What is a Circular Saw?

The term “circular saw” can refer to any saw that uses a circular blade, such as a table saw. However, the tool that’s generally called a circular saw is a portable, handheld saw that’s driven by an electric motor. The size of the blade ranges from 4-1/2 inches to 7-1/2 inches, but there are several models with huge 10-inch blades for heavy-duty cutting.

This saw solves the problem of carrying huge lumber onto a work surface. Instead of lifting and building muscle mass, you simply need to carry the tool to where it’s needed and do your cutting there.

Essentially, there’s nothing that a table saw can do that a circular saw can’t. Miter cuts, beveled cuts, cuts on both planes, rip cuts, crosscuts – a circular saw can do it all.

Table Saw

Types of Circular Saws

Circular saws can be gas-powered, corded-electric, or cordless. Gas-powered circular saws are the most portable type since you don’t need to deal with power cords or recharging batteries. They’re also the most powerful type of circular saw. But just like any gas-powered tool, it’s not safe to use indoors even with ventilation.

Cordless or battery-powered circular saws, like a gas-powered saw, won’t tie you down with long power cords. However, they’re the weakest of the three and typically come with smaller blades and shallower cutting capacities.

Corded-electric circular saws are in the middle-ground between cordless and gas models in terms of power. They generally come with 7-1/2-inch blades for slicing through 2-inch thick boards in a single pass. Their power cords will tie you down, but you can solve the problem of limited movability by utilizing a long extension cord.

Drawbacks of a Circular Saw

Even though a circular saw can do everything that a table saw can, it does have some drawbacks. First of all, using a circular saw requires a lot of extra measuring and double-checking in order to get the right cuts every time, unlike a table saw which just needs to be adjusted once. There’s also no fence to help ensure that you make straight cuts using a circular saw, but you can purchase an aluminum rail which guides the blade in a straight trajectory across the surface of your board.

Something else that you should be aware of is that a circular saw will leave a messy finish on the newly cut edge. The only way to make a board usable after cutting it with this tool is if you have a sheet of sandpaper or a power sander on hand.

Circular Saw

Table Saw vs. Circular Saw – Which to Get

Looking at these tools and what they can do, their range of use is just about equal to each other. So if you were to ask us whether your first saw should be a table saw or a circular saw, we’d have to say it depends. We know, this non-committal answer isn’t exactly what you’re looking for, but the right tool really depends on what you’re doing.

If you need a heavy-duty saw for dimensioning numerous boards and you have the space for it, then a table saw can be the most time-efficient tool to do it. If you need to simply rip and/or straight cut through boards, then a circular saw would be the most cost-effective tool to have.

A benchtop table saw, and a circular saw would be an excellent combo to have. One will give you the ability to produce identical, precise cuts across several boards while the other will let you reduce the size of your boards where they lay.

Table Saw

A-Check Saws Table Saw

Best Table Saw with Dust Collection

Any woodworker knows that a table saw is one of the most vital tools to have in their shop. There are even some excellent portable models that you can take with you to the job site if needed. However, despite being a woodshop’s heart and soul, they’re notorious for not being as clean as you’d like.

We’re talking about the table saw’s dust management system or lack thereof. You see, sawing lumber is prone to produce a ton of sawdust, and it’s definitely not something you want lying around. It’s a fire hazard when it becomes trapped in and around heat-producing power tools. It can also become a slipping hazard when it falls haphazardly onto the shop floor. Worst of all, it’s a known carcinogen. These should be reason enough to try and get rid of sawdust by any means necessary.

Of course, you can install a shop vacuum system in your workshop, but if you’re a simple DIY-er who does woodworking as a weekend hobby out of your garage, you may not have the space to leave a large vacuum in the corner. After all, the size of a table saw can consume the majority of your garage workshop. Instead, you should get rid of the waste from the source. You need a table saw with a good dust collection system.

Table Saw Buying Guide

Shopping around for the right table saw can be a daunting task. You’re basically tying up hundreds if not thousands of dollars on a single tool. It’s important that you find a model with the right specs and features, especially an effective dust management system, to ensure that you’re getting your money’s worth. Let’s go over the most important details of a table saw.

Motor Power

The first thing to consider is how powerful the table saw is. The motor should be powerful enough to handle whatever tasks you have on hand and to whatever projects you plan on going in the future. A good place to start would be 15 amps, though you may need more or less depending on what you’re doing.

Table Size

There’s no one way to determine the best table saw size. The only thing you can do is determine how large a board you’re working with and ensuring that the table saw can support it. Larger boards obviously require larger tables, but this the tool will take up more floor space. You may need to measure the size of your workshop before purchasing a table saw.


Table saws come in a wide range of sizes. There are stationary models, and there are some that come on bases with wheels. Determine beforehand where you’re going to use the table saw and whether you need it to move around. Just note that stationary models take up a tremendous amount of space mainly due to their large tables, but they also have the beefiest motors.

Safety Features

There are a ton of safety features available in table saws. One of the most important ones is a blade guard. The guard encases the exposed blade even while it’s spinning. The only way to safely retract the guard is by pushing your board into the blade. Its main function is to protect your fingers and limbs from accidentally making contact with the blade when the tool is on.

Another thing to keep an eye out is anti-kickback pawls. These are metal arms located behind the blade which grab onto the workpiece as it passes. The pawls prevent your boards from flying across the room by keeping the piece in place in the event of a kickback.

Dust Management

Table saws typically have a preinstalled dust management system. Older models may not have any effective dust management systems in place, meaning that you’ll either have to look for a more modern table saw or construct your own dust-eliminating mechanism. Here are some things to be on the lookout for to ensure that a table saw can handle dust.

Dust Port

One of the most surefire ways that a table saw can be free of dust is with a dust port. A shop vac’s hose connects to the port to suction up any sawdust that accumulates. The dust falls into a dust container below the table and near the blade where the dust port connects. Make sure that the port is large enough for your shop vac’s hose to connect to or has an adapter that’s the right size.

For those of you buying a second-hand table saw from the 1980s, you may need to install your own dust port. Simply purchase a plastic, see-through tray, and duct tape. Cut the tray to the right size, so it fits the dust container and cut a hole in the middle of the tray. Insert your vac’s hose through the hole and use duct tape to fill any gaps and keep the hose from falling.


One thing that might surprise you is that the main cause of inefficiencies in eliminating dust around table saws is gaps. Basically, the culprit behind improper dust collection are the “holes”. Give the dust container a thorough examination to see whether any gaps exist.

If you ended up purchasing a table saw that has gaps, there’s no need to throw a fit. All you need is some upholstery foam and a roll of duct tape. Push the foam into any gaps and cover it with duct tape. Run your shop vac to check whether there are any remaining gaps. You may need to turn the lights off and illuminate the area with a torch or a flashlight to see the gaps better.

Overarm Collector

You’ll find most of the dust littering the table saw’s work surface and blade. Unfortunately, this is the hardest and most inconvenient place to clean. The most effective way of eliminating dust from the blade is by using an overarm collector and/or hood. If your table saw doesn’t have one of these, you can purchase one or make it yourself.

The problem with purchasing an overarm collector or hood is that it may not be compatible with your table saw. Unless it’s made by the same manufacturer, it’s best to custom-build your own overarm collector or hood. This requires running the hose over the work table and leaving it hanging above the blade.

Final Remarks

Table saws are one of the most important tools in woodworking. It’s sad that until recently, dust management systems in table saws were either nonexistent or ineffective. Even some modern models may suffer from the same problems of their predecessors. The good thing is that there are simple ways to improve the quality of the tool’s existing dust management systems. We recommend finding a model that has an overarm collector that suctions up dust as it appears.

Saws Table Saw

Angle Cutting Jig for Table Saw: Buyer’s Guide

The table saw is one of the most versatile tools you could own in your workshop. Whether you’re making cross cuts, rip cuts, or dimensioning boards, or angled cuts, a table saw can do it all.

Angle Cutting Jig for Table Saw:

However, when it comes to making angled cuts, there will be times when a table saw’s fence just can’t cut it. A good table saw fence is one that sits perpendicular to the machine’s table and parallel to a 90°-standing blade. As is, the fence doesn’t allow you to produce angled rip cuts on boards, leaving you to either “eye it” (DANGEROUS! NOT RECOMMENDED) or get a handy angle cutting jig.

An angle-cutting jig often referred to as a taper jig, is an accessory to the table saw which allows you to cut at a specific angle through your board. This accessory attaches to the fence and has a mitering arm which can be locked to a specific angle, giving you the ability to produce consistently straight and properly angled cuts. If you’re making a table and want to give it legs that are tapered towards the center of the table, then your best bet is to use a table saw with an angle cutting jig fitted onto the unit’s fence.

Adjustable Taper Jig for Table Saw

How to use an Angle-Cutting Jig

The main purpose of an angle-cutting jig is obviously to produce angled cuts on your boards. Your fence, since it is perpendicular and to the work table, will not give you the ability to make flawless, angled cuts without an angle-cutting accessory.

An angle-cutting jig looks like a large compass (the circle-drawing tool, not the where-is-north tool). The locking mechanism locks the angle in which each bar is set.

After you’ve determined at what angle you want to cut and have locked the jig in place, you simply need to push one side of the jig against the fence. Your board is placed on alongside the other bar, placing it at an angle as it passes through the table saw’s blade.

One common misconception about the angle-cutting jig is that it needs to be locked to the rip fence in order to give it stability. This isn’t true in most cases unless you make your own jig using your own creativity and specifications. However, a pre-made angle-cutting jig simply needs to rest on the fence while the user applies a slight pressure on the board, forcing it flush against the fence while passing the board over the saw’s blade.

Tapering Jig For Table Saws

Benefits of Having an Angle-Cutting Jig

The main purpose of an angle-cutting jig is to give you precision when making angled cuts through your boards. With one of these fixed onto your table saw’s fence, you don’t need to worry about cutting at the wrong angle since the mitering gauge will give you an exact reading of how tapered the cut will become.

In addition, an angle-cutting jig for your table saw will let you produce repeated tapered cuts on numerous boards. If you’re making four tapered legs for your table, you’ll want the legs to be identical, and an angle-cutting jig can ensure that you do.

Angle-Cutting Jig for Table Saws Buying Guide

When it comes to using an angle-cutting jig for your table saw, there are two options available to you. First, you can make your own using whatever scrap boards you have. However, if you don’t know what you’re doing or you incorrectly follow instructions found on YouTube, it could end up pretty badly.

The second option is buying a pre-made angle-cutting jig. They’re not hard to find, but the numerous models for sale can be overwhelming, especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for. To help you in your endeavor, we’ve compiled a list of the most important factors to consider when purchasing an angle-cutting jig for your table saw.

Build a Taper Jig for the Table Saw


One benefit of getting a pre-made angle-cutting jig from a large manufacturer is that the jig is made of durable materials. The most common of which is aluminum, but stainless steel jigs are also available if you have the moola.

Your angle-cutting jig should be durable and built to last. Corrosion and rust should be no match against the construction of your jig, especially if you’re working in moist environments like in your garage, basement, or construction sites. In addition to being able to withstand all sorts of damage, the material used to make the jig will ultimately affect how effective it is at making tapered cuts.


Most angle-cutting jigs are designed in the same fashion, but there are some key factors in the jig’s overall design that you need to consider. First of all, take a look at the handle. It should be comfortable to hold and be placed in a spot on the angle jig that won’t endanger your hand or fingers as you pass the board over the saw’s blade. You also need to consider whether the jig was designed for lefties or righties (position of the handle), but there are models that can accommodate both.

Cutting Angles on a Table Saw

Dimensions and Capacity

The size of the jig is of the utmost importance. The jig cannot be too big or too small to use on your table saw. This means you’ll need to measure the length of the rip fence on your table saw and the maximum distance between the blade and fence.

The size of the jig also plays a role in determining how large a board it can hold. If you have a 24-inch jig, it can hold almost any-sized board firmly as it passes through the blade. Smaller jigs mean less stability as the size of the board increases.

Mitering Gauge

The mitering gauge will be your one way of determining the angle of the tapered cut. Most models have a maximum mitering capacity of 15° or about 3 inches per foot, so cutting at small angles will not be a problem at all.

How to Make Safe Taper Cuts Using a Table Saw

Final Remarks

A table saw’s rip fence doesn’t allow you to produce angled cuts since it sits perpendicular to the table and cannot be mitered in any direction. If you want to rip your boards at an angle, you need to have an angle-cutting jig.

This is the only surefire way to produce identical tapers across several similar-sized boards. This is especially useful if you want to make tapered legs for furniture without the risk of cutting too much or too little out of each leg.

Angle Cutting Jig

Saws Table Saw

Dust Collection on Table Saw: Info Guide

Woodworking can be a relaxing activity if you know what you’re doing. Even with the loud noises coming from your power tools, there’s nothing that takes the tension off your shoulders more than building wood-based art for your home.

Dust Collection on Table Saw

However, arguably one of the most annoying and time-consuming activities is cleaning up when you’re all one. Look at the mess your tools left for you to sweep and dispose of. It angers up the blood, but there’s absolutely no way you can cut remove materials from wooden pieces without producing a ton or two of wood dust.

The table saw – the saw with an upward-facing blade that protrudes from an aluminum table – is famous for being one of the biggest pains in the neck to clean up after. All the dust falling into every nook and cranny, potentially clogging the blade or arbor hole, or falling carelessly to the floor, can become a slipping, fire, and health hazard if inhaled.

Thankfully newer table saw models come with more reliable dust-collection systems, but what if you have one of the older models without built-in dust-collecting portsWell, you don’t need to worry since we’re going to show you a few ways how you can upgrade your table saw’s dust-collection capabilities.

Table Saw Dust Collection

1. Installing a dust port

The simplest way to suction any residual dust away from your table saw is by installing a dust collector. Newer models should have these built-in already, but older models may require a little bit of tinkering in order to get the dust port installed correctly.

The dust port should be placed anywhere beneath the blade on the under portion of the table. This works best if the there is an open bottom under the blade (the original “dust-management system” which simply lefts dust fall to the floor). With a plastic tray, MDF filler, and duct tape, you can customize your own budget-friendly dust port. Be sure that the port is large enough to accommodate the size of your shop vac’s hose.

Small Shop Dust Collection

2. Filling any gaps

You might be surprised to learn that most dust-collection inefficiencies are caused by gaps, whether you’ve installed your own dust port or rely on the built-in port for dust cleanup. Since the shop vac’s suction hose relies heavily on there being no holes or gaps where air can seep through, it only makes sense that you keep the dust-collection port as airtight as possible.

Luckily, in most cases, it’s an easy fix. All you need is a bit of upholstery foam that you can cut to custom sizes and a bit of duct tape. Place the foam where you find any gaps and cover the exterior surface with duct tape. Run your shop vac to see if there are any remaining gaps.
To see if you missed any gaps, turn the lights off in your workshop and direct a flashlight’s beam through the dust-collection port and other nearby spaces.

3. Installing a hood and overarm collector

The dust that comes shooting from the blade is the hardest to collect. If your model doesn’t have a built-in overarm collector and/or hood, even running a small piece of wood through the saw’s blade could blast copious amounts of dust into your beard and hair, making you look 50 years older. It’s also important to eliminate airborne wood dust since, if inhales, it could wreak havoc on your lungs and overall health.

There are several pre-built overarm collectors and hoods available for older table saw models. However, you need to check the measurements of both your tool (fence, blade, table, clearance to the left and right) and the overarm collector to ensure a perfect fit. Another option would be to build your own hood and overarm collector using whatever scrap pieces of wood you have and a flexible hose which connects to your shop vac. Be sure to include a port that’s large enough to fit the dust-collecting hose that connects to your shop vac.

Table Saw Dust Collection Tips

4. Closing up the back

If you have a contractor-style table saw or portable table saw, take a look at the under portion of the table to see where the blade is located. Most of these models are designed with open-ended containers which house the blade. This lets you better see what’s going on under the table, but it’s also a huge contributor to ineffective dust management.

There are several ways you can close the back, but they all require that you custom-make your own panels. If the housing is made of metal, we recommend using an MDF panel cut to the size of the open area and attached using magnets. This will allow you easy access to gauge what’s happening with the blade if speed and cutting power are reduced (most likely due to sawdust).

Another way is by using the same MDF panel and drilling through the housing. After you’ve drilled a hole through the housing, lock the panel in place using screws or wing nuts. We recommend using wing nuts since they’re easier to remove than tightly wound screws.

Contractor Table Saw Dust Collection

Final Remarks

Older and/or contractor-style table saws are notorious for having poor dust-management systems. Common problems that affect how well your shop vac can suction away sawdust from your table saw include gaps in and around the dust-collection port and an open-ended house which contains the blade, drive belt, and motor. Or, if you’re rocking an ancient table saw, there just might be a lack of a dust-collection port altogether.

Depending on your model and what factors contribute to poor dust collection, you’ll need to implement the right methods and attach the correct accessories. In our opinion, an overall solution to many people’s table saw problems is an overarm collector and hood. Since most of the dust that their shop vacs don’t pick up is airborne, you’ll want a system which catches dust coming directly from the blade.

Just make sure that, if you’re opting for a pre-made model, you get a system that fits perfectly on your table saw. If one isn’t available, then you either need to build your own or get one professionally made.

table saw dust collection ideas

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Table Saw Buying Guide – ToolPowers

If you’re an aspiring carpenter, then you should know that a table saw is arguably one of the most valuable tools you can own. A table saw can perform a wide range of cuts – rip cuts, crosscuts, mitered cuts, beveled cuts, and even compounds cuts. Furthermore, there are a ton of different accessories you can use to increase the usefulness of your table saw.

Table Saw Buying Guide

What separates a table saw from circular saws, track saws, and many other types of saws, is that you move the material towards the blade and not the other way around. This produces a much more accurate and cleaner cut since you’re being assisted by a miter gauge and fence.

Types of Table Saws

There are three main types of table saws to choose from – cabinet, contractor, and hybrid.

Cabinet Saw

The cabinet saw is most likely the table saw that you’re familiar with the most. It’s the largest type of table saw and weighs roughly 600 pounds or more. They are the heaviest-duty type of saw that typically come with motors of between 3 and 5 HP, though there are some models that come with even more powerful motors. They are often made of heavy cast iron with smooth-surface tables and heavy fences. This table saw gets its name from the cabinet that encases the motor under the table.

Buying Tips for Table Saws

Contractor Saw

This is the portable type of table saw that contractors can take to the job site. To keep the table saw lightweight, many of its components are made of aluminum and may not be able to withstand heavy blows during transport. The motor is found on the exterior of the table saw, and the blade is belt driven.

It also has very limited cutting capacities since the table is considerably smaller than a cabinet model. Most contractor table saws come with motors of less than 1 HP and up to 1-3/4 HP. You will only need this type of table saw if portability is a high priority since it has significantly reduced accuracy and power.

Hybrid Saw

Manufacturers try to incorporate the best of both a cabinet and contractor table saw into a single model, though the hybrid saw’s features can vary between models. Many hybrid saws come with heavy-duty cast iron tables and fences, but to keep weight to a minimum, they come equipped with motors of a maximum of 2 HP.

Get the Right Table Saw for You

Table Saw Buying Guide

After deciding which type of table saw you need, now it’s time to look at their features and specs. Note that not every model is the same and performs similarly, so it’s extremely important that you know what you’re looking for, especially if you’re thinking of dropping a couple hundred or even thousands of bucks on a tool.

Motor Power

The first thing to pay attention to is the size and capacity of the motor. A more power motor translates into increased precision and cleaner edges.

As we mentioned earlier, a contractor table saw’s somewhat weak motor will mean you’ll have plenty of sanding to do after running your boards through the table saw. This isn’t exactly a deal-breaker since many times even powerful 3-plus-HP table saws can require a bit of finishing touches.

Also, note that a larger motor means you can load larger blades onto the machine. This gives you the ability to make deeper cuts through thicker boards per pass. Using a smaller blade on thick boards can be a pain in the neck since you need to flip the board over the repeat the same pass on the other side. It’s a lot easier than it sounds, especially when you’re dimensioning large boards on your own.

Buying a Table Saw?


When looking at table saws, you need to consider both the size of and materials used to make the table. The size of the table matters depending on the size of the boards you plan on ripping/crosscutting. A larger table offers better support for bigger, thicker boards, but it comes at the cost of reduced portability.

The material, between aluminum and cast iron, also plays a role in how the table saw performs. You want something stable that won’t warp or bend since that could affect how your board glides across the table. Remember that cast iron, though more durable, isn’t as lightweight, so portability is sacrificed for increased stability.


Another part of the table saw that requires careful consideration is the fence. The fence needs to be able to lock in place without the slightest budge in order for the blade to make perfectly straight cuts every time. If the fence flexes or moves even a fraction of an inch while your board has made contact with the blade, it could lead to a painful kickback.

Be sure that you’re spending enough time studying how well the fence moves, locks, and remains parallel to the blade at all times. If the fence fails in any of these regards, you’ll most likely end up sorely disappointed in your table saw.

Choosing a Table Saw

Blade Tilt and Miter Gauge

A table saw, as a compound miter saw, can cut on two planes, thanks to the beveling and mitering systems that come with the saw. To make accurate angled cuts, you need to ensure that these systems are sturdy and can lock in place without any give (remember kickback). Most table saw blades can bevel up to 45° to the right, but some contractor models accommodate tilting to the left. The miter gauge should swing to the left and right with little resistance and lock in place perfectly.

Dust Collection

It doesn’t matter which type of table saw you’re getting; they’re going to produce a heck of a lot of sawdust. Even when working outdoors, you’ll still want a proper dust collection system to pick up most, if not all, of the dust before it has a chance to accumulate and clog the blade.

Cabinet models usually drop the dust directly into the cabinet, which is a fire hazard since the motor can easily ignite the dust if overworked. Contractor models simply let the dust fall and collect onto the ground. Dust collection systems include simple dust ports and a hood and overarm collector which suctions up dust as the blade makes contact with the board.

The Best Table Saw

Final Remarks

A table saw can be one of the most valuable and versatile tools in your workshop. Finding the right model isn’t difficult as long as you know what to look for. First, decide whether you need a portable model (contractor), a model for your workshop only (cabinet), or something in between (hybrid). After that, check out the most important specs, namely: the motor, the table, and the fence. The table saw is only as good as these three components.

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Table Saw Blade Thickness: Info Guide

For serious woodworkers or people just starting to get in the furniture-building game, a table saw can be an invaluable tool to own. When you need to dimension large boards to the right proportions, a table saw offers a ton of stability and speed that you just can’t find in other types of saws.

Table Saw Blade Thickness

However, your table saw, or any saw for that matter, is only as good as its blades, and when it comes to the quality of the blade, the old saying “you get what you pay for” proves to be true.

We’re not here to discuss the price of each table saw blade (though it’s an important factor), but instead, we want to talk to you about whether the thickness of the blade matters. We also feel it necessary to talk about other important factors to consider when picking up a blade at the hardware store.

Blade Thickness: Does it matter?

The blade’s thickness oftentimes referred to as the width or kerf, is an important consideration to make when deciding which blade to get for your table saw.

First of all, the thickness determines how much material is removed with each pass over the table saw’s blade. Obviously, a thicker blade removes more material than a thinner blade, but there are actually more aspects of blade thickness to take into account.

The full-kerf blade is 1/8 of an inch thick, so if you want to cut out slots 3/16 of an inch wide then you’ll need to make multiple passes with a slight overlap between each pass. There are thinner and thicker table saw blades for you to consider.

Choosing The Right Saw Blade

Another way the thickness of a table saw’s blade plays a role in overall performance is by knowing what your table saw can and cannot do. For instance, if you have an under-3-HP table saw, then a full-kerf, 1/8-inch thick blade will draw too much power from your tool’s motor. What happens is that the motor can’t supply enough power to spin the blade properly, causing a dramatic decrease in speed and friction. To your board, this can leave burn marks and/or large tears. The potential damage it can cause to your tool is significantly greater – the blade can warp, or the motor can burn.

Other Considerations

So we’ve determined that the thickness of the blade mounted into your table saw plays an important role in not just dimensioning boards but also cutting slots of particular widths. However, if you’re looking for a new blade for your table saw, width is only a small paint stroke in the overall picture. Take a look at our list of the most important things to consider when looking for a table saw blade.

Blade Thickness for Table Saw

What do you plan to do?

Before you beginning slicing up your boards, you need to make sure that you know what you’re doing. Since table saws aren’t really designed for cutting through metal or plastic, we can eliminate those materials out of the equation. However, you also need to pay careful attention to your boards; particularly the direction of their grain, the thickness of the board, and the outcome after the cut.

Number of teeth

The total number of teeth on a table saw blade indicates its cutting action. The more teeth there are, the smoother the cut. As for blades with fewer teeth, the more material they’re able to remove.

If you plan on crosscutting your wood boards (slicing across the grain), then it’s advised that you install a blade with a higher tooth count since it’ll produce smoother results when going against the grain. When slicing with the grain (rip cuts), look for a blade with fewer teeth.

Also, be aware that the higher the tooth count, the more heat will be produced due to greater amounts of friction. Keep that in mind the next time you try to rip cut ten 4x4s in a row non-stop.

What is the purpose of the kerf on a saw blade?


The gullet is the empty space between each tooth. The wider the gap, the more material the blade is able to remove with each rotation. Incidentally, the wider the gap between each tooth, the fewer teeth there are, ultimately making it more appropriate for rip cuts.

Tooth Shape and Angle

The design and angle of the teeth are used to determine what the blade is meant to do. Different configurations are optimized for different purposes. The most common shapes are flat tops (made for rip cuts), alternative top bevel (made for crosscutting), and combination tooth (general-purpose cuts).

To add to the already overflowing pot of confusion, you need to be aware of the angle of the teeth as well. There are two angles, each on opposite sides of the tooth-angle spectrum: positive-angled teeth (teeth that lean forward to a particular angle) and negative-angled teeth (angled back and opposite the direction of the blade’s spin). The higher the positive angle of the blade’s teeth, the more aggressive the cut, requiring a quick sanding to produce clean finishes.

Optimal Blades for Certain Jobs

Hopefully, you’re still here and haven’t given up on your aspirations to become a carpenter. If you’re still reading, then you might be glad that the following segment will give you our recommendations for the best blades for ripping, crosscutting, and dimensioning sheet goods. Just remember that you need to be aware of what your table saw can handle in terms of the blades size and thickness.

What type of saw blade to cut wood?


Since ripping means cutting a slightly oversized board to the proper length, there are three viable options to go with. The first is a 24-tooth flat top blade which cuts quickly but leaves a coarse feel across the freshly cut surface. The second and third options are a 40-tooth alternative top bevel blade and a 50-tooth combination tooth blade. They both cut relatively slowly but require little to no sanding afterward.


When cutting boards across the grain (modifying the board’s width), we recommend using any alternative top bevel blade with a tooth count of between 40 and 80. A 50-tooth combination tooth blade might also suffice. However, the quality the blade also plays a role in how well the final product will appear, so it’s better that you get a high-quality 40-tooth blade than an 80-tooth blade of inferior quality.

What does more teeth on a saw blade mean?

Sheet Goods

When cutting sheets of PDF or particleboards down to size, we recommend that you mount a 40- to 80-tooth alternative top bevel blade. Once again, a higher tooth count translates into a finer finish, but anything within this range will suit you just fine.

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Table Saw as Jointer: How to Use and When?

You’d think that high-end retailers would sell lumber that’s ready to use. After all, you’re spending an outrageous amount of cash on pampered pieces of wood. Unfortunately, the truth is that their stock of lumber usually reaches the shelves before they’ve fully dried so by the time you’ve paid, brought it home, and left it to sit for a few days, the boards are warped. Frustrating, we know…

Table Saw as Jointer

Many projects are dependent on wooden boards being perfectly straight without any cups or twists. When dealing with warped boards, the go-to tool would be a jointer. These tools produce perfectly flat faces and edges with only a couple of passes over the cutterhead.

So why not get a Jointer?

Why not, indeedWell, assuming you have space and the funds, feel free to purchase your very own jointer. Unfortunately, most woodworking shops, especially those set up in garages, don’t have space for a large jointer.

You could take a look at benchtop jointers which flatten surfaces and square edges as well as their floor-model counterparts, but their biggest drawback is their lack of support. The “easy” fix is constructing your own work table extensions on the infeed and outfeed sides of the benchtop jointer, but then we’re back at square one: a lack of clearance space in small-scale workshops.

How to use Your Table Saw as a Jointer

How to build a Table Saw Jointer Jig

Fortunately, you don’t have to put an end to your woodworking hobby if you don’t have a jointer. Turning your table saw into a jointer is simple. It doesn’t require modifying the components of your table saw in any way. In fact, all you need to do is construct a jointer jig which pushes your lumber close enough to the saw’s blade to shave off slivers, giving it beautifully flat and squared edges.

As long as you have a table saw – the heart of any woodshop – then you can get by. In this article, we’ll show you our version of a jointer jig.

What You’ll Need

• Melamine, scrap MDF or plywood
• Screws and/or wood glue
• Clamps

• Table saw (obviously)
• Drill
• Tool

Building a Jointer Jig for Your Table Saw

Step 1: Measure the Length and Width of Jointer Jig

Since we’re going to use this jointer jig on a table saw, we need to ensure that we construct a jig that first perfectly on our saw. Take some time to carefully measure the length of the saw’s rip fence, and the clearance width starting from the edge of the saw all the way to the end of the table towards the direction of the blade. The jointer jig doesn’t need to be tremendously wide, but it also shouldn’t be so short that we risk injuring our fingers or the board when attempting to flatten and square rough lumber. The height of the jig shouldn’t surpass the height of the table saw’s rip fence unless you have large enough clamps.

Step 2: Creating the Fence

Now that we have our table saw measured, it’s time to assemble the fence. Using whatever piece of scrap plywood or MDF on hand, create an “L” with a perfect 90° between the two boards. Use whatever type of fastener you prefer. We personally used both screws and wood glue to ensure that neither of the boards will move in the slightest. Even a minor change in angle can ruin the jig, thus wrecking the lumber you want to flatten and square.

Step 4: Attaching the Jointer Jig to the Rip Fence

After the jig is fully assembled, now it’s time to clamp it onto the saw’s rip fence. Use as many clamps as you’d like – the more, the sturdier the jig will be. While doing this, make sure that the table saw is unplugged to avoid the unwanted. Our hands are hovering above the blade at this point, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Table Saw Jointer

Step 5: Making a Relief Cut

While the jointer jig is still clamped to the rip fence, and the table saw is unplugged, pull the rip fence closer to the saw blade until the jig is touching the blade. Using a pencil, draw a mark on the jointer at the approximate back of the saw blade. After doing so, unclamp the jointer jig and realign the rip fence, leaving the jointer jig flush against the fence.

Now is the tricky part. Using your finger, align the fence and jig so that the outside face of the blade is perfectly even with the edge of the fence. When that’s done, lock the fence in place, turn on the machine, and push the jointer jig into the blade. Stop until you’ve reached the pencil mark you left earlier. After making the cut, turn off the table saw and unplug the cord. Test the outside edge of the jig with your finger; it should be flush against the outer edge of the blade. If not, complete the cut until the end of the jig and repeat the setup and relief cutting processes once again.

Tricks for truing lumber without a jointer

The purpose of this cut is to produce infeed and outfeed sides of the jointer jig. The infeed section needs to be a width of the blade short while the outfeed side is perfectly even with the blade. When the jig is done and clamped onto the rip fence, as you push a piece of rough lumber against the jig and into the blade, the blade will cut only as much as the blade’s kerf.

Final Remarks

Voila! You now have an inexpensive jointer that takes no additional space in your workshop. If you were to try to make your own jointer jig, we highly recommend using a thin-kerf, 40-tooth alterative top bevel blade. It’ll produce the best jointed edges and corners while removing as little material as possible. There are several ways to construct a jointer jig for your table saw, but in our experience, this is the one that produces perfect results with minimal prep and construction work. Remember to clamp the jig securely against the rip fence, position the rip fence so that the saw blade is touching the jig, and when pushing your workpieces through the saw blade to keep it pressed against the jig.

Table Saw as Jointer: How to Use and When?

Saws Table Saw

Track Saw vs. Table Saw: What’s the Difference

Power saws are magnificent tools. If you need to dimension boards or get them ready for connecting, you can rest assured that there is at least one type of saw that can do the job for you. However, with technological advancements leaving their mark in the tool-manufacturing game, and the influx of producers from all over the world looking for a piece of the market pie, it can be a challenge finding the right tool for a certain job.

Track Saw vs. Table Saw

Perhaps one of the most baffling decisions one needs to make regarding power saws is whether they should get a track saw, a table saw, or both. After all, they can both be used to dimension boards and make mitered cuts. This article aims to clear any misconceptions regarding either of these types of saws, and we’ll give our two cents on which saw you’ll benefit from more.

What is a track saw?

You’ve most likely already seen a track saw but had no idea what it was called. Don’t worry; this is common in many people just learning the names and functions of tools.

A track saw is a saw that runs on rails to produce long rip cuts on boards. There aren’t any infeed, or outfeed tables that limit the range of movement of a track saw, unlike miter saws or table saws. However, what does limit the length of a track saw’s cut is the length of the rail.

Can a Track Saw Can Replace Your Table Saw

Benefits of a track saw

The first main benefit that you get from using a track saw is you can cut boards of almost any length. Even without a rail, you can produce long cuts on your stock, though the straightness of the cut can be affected if you’re going at it by eye.

The next benefit is that you don’t need external clamps or vices to keep your cuts straight. The rail which guides the saw and blade usually has rubber strips fixed to the bottom. This prevents slippage of the rails which could impair the quality of the cut. However, you need to ensure that the rubber slips have a good grip on the surface of your board. This means brushing off any wood dust or chips from both your board’s surface and the rubber slips.

Next, you can use a track saw in tight-fitting spaces. The track saw and rail don’t take much foot space so you can be a little bit more flexible in navigating the saw in small spaces. In fact, you can use the track saw in places where your table saw can’t – i.e., upstairs, between indoors and out, etc.

Another reason why people opt for a track saw over a miter saw, or table saw is that it’s extremely portable. Table saws take up a bunch of space and need a wide area of clearance in every direction of the table. With a track saw, you can lift and carry it with a single hand while you place the lightweight rail under your armpit. It’s essentially a lightweight option for doing a number of different tasks.

festool track saw vs table saw

Another advantage of having a track saw is that it produces almost-perfect edges. Unlike a table saw, there will hardly be any pointy splinters across the edges of a panel, so very minimal sanding or final touches are needed to get the board in tip-top shape for further processing.

What not to like about track saws

The only thing you need to consider when using a track saw is time. To be more specific, you’re going to experience a ton of downtime making measurements, aligning the rail, and making guide plunge cuts before ripping through the stock. Track saws come with a depth gauge, so setting how deep the blade penetrates into the board is not an issue. However, making miter cuts and ripping through long boards requires a bit of setup.

What is a table saw?

Almost everybody is familiar with what a table saw is, and there’s hardly any confusion regarding what it does and what it looks like.
A table saw consists of a motor that is fixed to the under-part of a table while a blade protrudes from the upward-facing surface of the table. The blade can rise and fall past the table’s surface depending on how you set the depth. It is not a handheld tool and takes quite a bit of space in workshops.

What are the pros and cons of a track saw vs a table saw

Benefits of a table saw

There are a couple benefits that people can get from owning and using a table saw. The first of which is the ability to make repetitive cuts. By setting the blade’s depth and the location of the fence, you can cut through boards to produce identical sizes in no time. It’s a real life- and time-saver having different mechanisms in place for making repeated cuts, especially when you need to make and use numerous boards of the same dimensions.

Next, a table saw truly offers a ton of versatility. Whether you’re ripping boards or making crosscuts, a table saw can be the go-to tool. Even though other types of saws can do this, it’s really the time-saving factor that makes a table saw a nice tool to have.

Finally, a table saw’s worktable offers support for cutting through large boards. There’s no need to worry about the board slipping, the blade sliding, or the table from falling out of place. As long as the table saw is set up according to the manufacturer’s standards, you should be good.

Track Saw vs. Table Saw: Which is Better for You?

What not to like about table saws

However, having a ton of uses doesn’t come without a few downsides. The first thing not to like about table saws is that it takes up a ton of floor space. If your workshop has limited space, you might have a tough time making enough clearance space on all sides of the table saw.

The next thing that you need to consider is the tool’s lack of portability. It’s not really a tool that you can take with you to various job sites. If you need to rip through boards at various places, it’s always easier to bring the tool to the material than the other way around. Unfortunately, a table saw’s size and weight doesn’t allow this.

Can you live without a track saw or table saw?

So the final question: which of the two saws should have a higher place on your list of must-own power toolsUltimately, it comes down to what you need and where you need to do it. If you work out of your garage, provided that it has a ton of floor space, a table saw might be the preferable option. A track saw reigns supreme if you’re limited by space or need to dimension boards on-site. Track saws are also considerably less costly than large table saws, so if your wallet does the decision-making for you, a track saw’s versatility and value can really be a cost-effective tool to own.

Table saw vs track saw