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Thread: Honesty from General about 50-220 Hybrid

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Hilo, HI

    Honesty from General about 50-220 Hybrid

    New to this group, howdy.

    I posted this on another discussion group and thought folks here would be interested.

    I recieved an incredible response from General about their new hybrid saw 50-220 and thought other woodworkers would be interested.

    This saw was on the short list of upgrades but I'm leery of buying too light. But I am of a mind that while I know heavy cabinet saws will do what I need, a saw doesn't need to be heavy to do what I need. Just accurate, reliable, and enough power to cut occasional 12/4 stock. But no power feeds and a fairly light duty cycle in a one person shop.

    So I posed some questions to General and this was their response:


    "Thank you for your inquiry and for your interest in General and General International products.

    To be frank and up front, as a professional furniture maker I feel your interest in what is basically a home hobbyist type saw is somewhat misplaced. If your concern about down time is an indication of the importance a table saw holds in your shop then I would seriously recommend you consider paying the price now and investing in a full 3 hp cabinet saw. My personal belief is that if you are purchasing this saw as an inexpensive alternative to a full 3 hp cabinet saw and expecting the same performance, features and adjustability - then your expectations are not realistic and you may be disappointed, and this regardless of whether you choose our "hybrid" type saw or someone else's. But if you are purchasing this saw knowing full well that it will give you cutting power similar to a contractors style saw but with better vibration dampening and better dust containment, then you like many others will be very satisfied with your purchase.

    Now to your specific questions about the saw:

    With the pulley system that is used to drive the arbor we've been able to get as good, if not better output while using a slightly smaller sized motor than that of the typical contractors saws. Not necessarily better or worse, it’s just a different design.

    As for parts availability, to my knowledge there are no wearing parts that are proprietary or that could not be obtained from other sources if need be. From our end we certainly try to stock an adequate supply of replacement parts for all products in our catalog and strongly encourage (with varying degrees of success) our dealers to do the same.

    Unless I have misinterpreted your words, I keep looking at your last sentence “I am not a hobbyist so need to minimize down time”, and I can’t help but wonder if you are really looking at the right saw for your needs? This is a question that only you can answer for sure.

    I hope this adequately addresses your concerns. If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to contact us again.


    Amazing! No BS, just an honest evaluation from a manufacturer. Frankly I can hardly believe it, I'm so used to having things "sold" to me. Maybe its just Canadian capitalism but its refreshing.

    It appears a reliable, accurate saw with enough power is going to be a cabinet saw. Knew I couldn't go wrong with a big cab saw but prefer a scalpel to a cleaver. But old USA PM 66's are very nice cleavers so I'll keep looking for one.

    (I'll add here that I've looked at the new Craftsman hybrid and they didn't fix the issue with contractor design of carriage twist when you heel the blade over for bevels, this is from an owner who checked his 92114)

    But great integrity from General, if I could budget the Canadian made cab saw I would. Their General International cab is a unicopy and if I buy a new import it lean to the Bridgewood which uses a Powermatic/General carriage and trunnion design.

    But I will seriously consider General when the time comes, I would just like to do business with them based on that response.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Fort Payne, AL
    I agree with them. I think they were trying to give you some sound business advice versus trying to steer you away from the Hybrid.

    If you are doing this is as a business, it is my opinion that you do need atleast a 3hp durable cabinet saw- for several reasons:

    1. Maintain alignment for much longer than a contractor's saw.
    2. Capable of ripping thick or dense hardwoods all day without worry of overloading the motor.
    3. The wear and tear components are heavier.

    There are more reasons, but these are some of mine.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Houston, Texas
    It's refreshing to see that there are still some ethical people in the business world. My opinion of business may be colored by living in Houston, home of Enron.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Bedminster, NJ
    Isn't honesty refreshing?!!!

    In all likelyhood, the responder to your inquiry was a person secure in his or her position within the company and truly interested in providing sound advice - this was not a marketing response.

    As consumers, we need to adopt a similar outlook by not being so overly critical of designs that seek to offer a better product without the expense of a full blown industrial model. As an example, in this case the design was tweeked to allow a smaller, ie less expensive, motor. We should continue to complain, however, when cheap or poorly designed machines are dressed up and marketed to look like a big brother or that good designs are bastardized by using cheap materials.

    Semper Fi

  5. #5
    Looks like a good accurate response. I have at least one supplier who I will no longer deal with because when I asked a similar question (about a different machine) they outright mislead me. General (or at least this agent) clearly understand that todays sale of an unsuitable product will simply cost them tomorrows sale. More power to their elbow.

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