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Thread: What are the best contractor / hybrid saws in the $500 - $1K range?

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Indianapolis, IN
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    You'll get a lot of opinions here I am sure. If you can find a General International 50-185 used somewhere in good shape snatch it up. Great contractor saw. I had one I bought used for several years before I bought my SawStop and gave it to my dad. It's still in use today and very precise.

    I think I've seen that saw highly coveted on this forum and others. 2hp that can be wired for 110 or 220 volt operation.

    My 2 cents.

  2. #17
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    Jul 2003
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    Any progress on your decision Josh?
    Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
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    East Virginia
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    Powermatic 64A is a nice contractor's saw. I've been real happy with mine...

  4. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by scott spencer View Post
    Any progress on your decision Josh?
    Yes, I am interested as well. I'm about to purchase the Grizzly g0771, and I am interested in hearing what you decided. The fence does look a little weak, but I have a beis on my current saw that I think I could retro fit. Looking for more opinions on the g0771, as well as the ability to retro fit a beis fence.
    Last edited by Scott Cenicola; 03-29-2015 at 3:54 PM. Reason: can't spell on my phone

  5. #20
    After a few weeks, I'm still very much on the fence about what to buy. I've been set on the Grizzly 0771 for a while, but to be very honest, the shipping just seems extremely annoying. Any time I've ever had something delivered via freight, it's been a huge hassle. And there's no way to know if the driver who shows up will be helpful, or the type who resents the fact that he even had to get out of the truck. Paying an extra $130 dollars for this "service" (including the "liftgate" upcharge, which as far as I can tell guarantees you nothing as far as getting your saw any further than the curb goes) is a borderline deal breaker for me. Which is a shame, because the Grizz looks like a lot of saw for the money, with the 1.5 hp motor, cabinet mounted trunnions and cast iron wings. But then I keep thinking, maybe it only looks like "a lot of saw for the money" because what amounts to $130 hidden cost. Sorry, I like "all in" pricing with my consumer goods.

    In the past couple of days, I've started to look hard at the Delta options that I can get at Lowe's - the 36-725 and the 36-5000. I know there's a lot of Delta hate here, but the 725 in particular has been very well reviewed by lots of people in a lot of woodworking corners of the web. There's the split on the fence rail on the 725, but I actually have an uninstalled T3 fence system sitting around, so I could use the solid rail from that. What I really worry about with the Delta models is power. I want to be able to reliably rip 5/4 hardwood (to make something like, say, a dining room table) without it being a struggle for the saw. I don't want to be constantly working at the edges of the saw's limitations.

    Also, I'm seeing that Amazon sells the Grizzly GO715P, and I happen to be a Prime member. I've had good luck with big purchases like this from Amazon (even the ones delivered freight, for the most part).

    So, where do you guys come down on these options?

  6. #21
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    You can rule out a new Steel City. The company is done.
    Grant
    Ottawa ON

  7. #22
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    Location
    Indianapolis, IN
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    I too have had good luck with Amazon Prime and freight. In fact I love ordering large items from Amazon to get the most out of my prime membership

  8. #23
    Can anyone speak to the power I can expect to get from either of these Delta saws?

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Camas, Wa
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    3,638
    I wouldn't pay extra to have Amazon get their hands in it. The long distance shipper is not always the local deliver so it could be that the same local guy that is delivering from Amazon is the same as Grizzly. If the delivery is bothering you that much drive down to the warehouse and have them load it in your truck and unload it yourself. I have unloaded many machines much heavier than a hybrid saw myself. They just came out 100 lbs at a time. Don't settle for a lesser saw because of shipping.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Josh Saul View Post
    After a few weeks, I'm still very much on the fence about what to buy. I've been set on the Grizzly 0771 for a while, but to be very honest, the shipping just seems extremely annoying. Any time I've ever had something delivered via freight, it's been a huge hassle. And there's no way to know if the driver who shows up will be helpful, or the type who resents the fact that he even had to get out of the truck. Paying an extra $130 dollars for this "service" (including the "liftgate" upcharge, which as far as I can tell guarantees you nothing as far as getting your saw any further than the curb goes) is a borderline deal breaker for me. Which is a shame, because the Grizz looks like a lot of saw for the money, with the 1.5 hp motor, cabinet mounted trunnions and cast iron wings. But then I keep thinking, maybe it only looks like "a lot of saw for the money" because what amounts to $130 hidden cost. Sorry, I like "all in" pricing with my consumer goods. In the past couple of days, I've started to look hard at the Delta options that I can get at Lowe's - the 36-725 and the 36-5000. I know there's a lot of Delta hate here, but the 725 in particular has been very well reviewed by lots of people in a lot of woodworking corners of the web. There's the split on the fence rail on the 725, but I actually have an uninstalled T3 fence system sitting around, so I could use the solid rail from that. What I really worry about with the Delta models is power. I want to be able to reliably rip 5/4 hardwood (to make something like, say, a dining room table) without it being a struggle for the saw. I don't want to be constantly working at the edges of the saw's limitations. Also, I'm seeing that Amazon sells the Grizzly GO715P, and I happen to be a Prime member. I've had good luck with big purchases like this from Amazon (even the ones delivered freight, for the most part). So, where do you guys come down on these options?
    It seems to me you are more of a buy it from a brick and mortar shop person, then no hassles with freight, etc. do you have any woodworking shops within driving range? Rockler, Woodcraft, others? Might be nice to kick the tires before you buy. You might be able to try Shop Fox, Jet, General Internationnal... Some of the Craftsman might also be an option.

  11. #26
    Josh-
    If it were me, I'd get the Grizzly. 1) It's on sale now, so you'll save $50. 2) When I have a budget that is hard fixed - as is yours - it's really hard to beat Grizzly for big tool bang for that fixed buck. Their table saws and bandsaws are perfectly respectable. Ironically, despite their lower price point, I actually find their support on par with the higher priced tool manufacturers. And I would not put Delta in there, sadly. I have a Delta lathe that was the best thing since sliced bread 5 years ago, but now it's hard to find parts or answers to some questions when I've had little failures. Personally, I find Grizzly takes reasonable pride in their big products.

    For a hybrid saw drawing < 2hp on 110v then expect that you'll be able to rip 2-2.5" on all but the hardest woods, provided you have the right blade and a reasonable feed rate. North of that, you'll probably want to rip in passes or use a thinner kerf blade for the harder woods.

  12. #27
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    May 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Sanford View Post
    I would recommend the SawStop Contractor's Saw, but even buying it without a fence will put you about $300 over your budget.
    I second this recommendation. $300 isn't that much more than you were wanting to spend and when you consider that this is the most used tool in the shop it's money well spent.

    The Sawstop is far better made than anything Grizzly or Delta offers in this range.

    My local Woodcraft keeps SawStop in stock, they come in 6 boxes with the heaviest being about 150 lbs. You could have it assembled and start using it within 2 hours!

  13. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill ThompsonNM View Post
    It seems to me you are more of a buy it from a brick and mortar shop person, then no hassles with freight, etc. do you have any woodworking shops within driving range? Rockler, Woodcraft, others? Might be nice to kick the tires before you buy. You might be able to try Shop Fox, Jet, General Internationnal... Some of the Craftsman might also be an option.
    Woodcraft's headquarters just so happens to be about 90 minutes up the road from me (I'm in Charleston, WV) but most of their options start in the $1000+ range, which just isn't in the cards for me right now.
    Last edited by Josh Saul; 04-23-2015 at 4:14 PM.

  14. #29
    I would drive the 3 hours each way to pick up the G0771 from Grizzly's warehouse in PA. As far as how heavy it is, I was able to get it out of my Jeep by myself without taking anything out of the box. I just slid it out and down onto the ground while one end was resting on the bumper still. Then you just stand it up. Leave it on the pallet and drop it onto a mobile base from there. The G0715 still has the alignment issues that plagues lower end saws. The G0771 does not. You won't have an issue with power at all. I really like the Grizzly saw, crappy fence and all.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Josh Saul View Post
    Can anyone speak to the power I can expect to get from either of these Delta saws?
    There's only a 15% difference in motor power between the two, so it shouldn't be huge. Saw blade selection and setup of the saw are big factors in perceived cutting power, and what it'll handle. So is the density and moisture content of the wood, and whether or not the wood is flat and straight. I've had two saws with 15 amp belt drive induction motors, and both were reasonably capable of cutting 10/4" in less dense materials that were flat and straight....pine, oak, ash, walnut, cherry, poplar, etc....I think they'd struggle in hard maple or mequite of that range, but would get through it.
    Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

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