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Thread: Some Sawstop Questions

  1. #1

    Some Sawstop Questions

    My old Jet 1.5 hp is dead and parts are obsolete...I have to make a move. Budget is $3500..maybe $4000, but that's pushing it. I've researched a TON and seems all roads lead to a SS. I'm 99% sure I'm going for PCS 1.75 hp with 36" side. I'm coming off a 1.5hp.....I'd be gaining .25 hp (prob a wash) but 1.5 has been fine for 25 yrs. Also, the TS has it's own 20 circuit which according to SS's tech support has tested out sufficient for their 1.75hp

    I have a few questions but to give an idea what I do etc: I typically build smaller furniture and rarely do sheet goods. I have an outfeed w/ integrated downdraft a floating overarm dc, and a CC sled...all shop made and excellent so I'm hoping to use them all on the new saw. Also, I have a decent ShopFox mobile base....I have room but I will on occasion move the saw a few inches. I don't need a side router table. I don't see where I need the sliding cross-cut table accessary but I'm not sure on that.

    To the SS owners, any gotchas and/or thoughts? Any accessories you wish you have added from jump? Other thoughts?

    I should add, I'm good with regard to info on the false activations....I won't beat that dead horse lol.
    Thanks,
    Fred

    Seasoned professional possessing unremarkable proficiency at innumerable skills.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Edmonton, Canada
    Posts
    2,401
    I have the ICS for about 12 years now with 3HP (original version). Great saw all around and from what I have heard the PCS is equally good. You may have to rebuild some of your jigs (e.g. cc sled as miter slots might not match) but that's not a big deal. I have the saw on a non-SS mobile base. I rarely need to move the saw (maybe done it twice in 10 years) and it's Ok. I know you said you want to get the 1.75HP but the only single change I would seriously (seriously) consider is stepping up to 3HP. I had a 1.5HP before. I think you will be glad you did that. Enjoy your saw regardless.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    60,582
    I don't see any issues with your plan, Fred. Even a 1.75hp table saw has a lot of power in general and for those few times that you have a more difficult task, going slow with the correct blade format will get the job done. But that would be rare for most woodworkers. If you were using a LOT of thick, heavy stock all the time, then it would be a different conversation.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Kapolei Hawaii
    Posts
    3,229
    As a spoiled 5 hp ICS owner I would say to push your finances beyond the limit and get the 3hp. The extra hp is always nice to have. It will probably be safe to assume that you will not say darn, I wish I would have gone for less hp. I don't think you'll outgrow more hp. The saw can expand your limits. You can cut thick stock without problems.

    It's a good saw no matter which motor is in it....

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Location
    Lancaster, Ohio
    Posts
    987
    I have the ICS 5hp, 36 fence, SS mobile base
    Buy all the hp you can, the mobile base is great IF you move the saw a lot like I do
    I don't care for the over arm dust collection, does better if it is piped on its own, not to the tee that comes with it. Have plugged it up too many times ripping with it
    It is a great saw for its intended market
    Ron

  6. #6
    I prefer 220v and 3hp, but if you made it 25 years with 1.5 I doubt you’ll need more.

    Get an extra brake.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Cedar Park, TX (NW Austin)
    Posts
    529
    Having a dedicated 120 volt outlet is a big plus if you want to upgrade to a 3HP saw. It should be very easy to convert a dedicated 20 amp 120 volt outlet to a 240 outlet. If you have one extra slot in your panel all you need is a new breaker and an outlet with the correct plug configuration. With the power off the neutral is disconnected from the bus bar and secured under the second lug as a hot. The new hot should be marked with a band of electrical tape to designate it as such.

    I went from a 1.5HP to a 3HP and have enjoyed the difference, particularly the ability to use full-kerf blades with no issues whatsoever.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Lebanon, TN
    Posts
    1,535
    I initially bought the 1.75 PCS 110V, used it for 3 years and then did the 220v 3Hp upgrade ($600). I wouldn't go back.

    I love this saw. I initially had to move it on a daily basis, as it used the same bay as my wife's car. The Industrial base makes this super simple and easy. I did get the freebie overarm dust collector, the 1/25" one, used that a little, but as soon as I made my first crosscut sled, that dust arm go ditched.

    While my saw was mobile, I made a fold down out feed table.

    Now where I live, my saw is pretty much in a permanent position and I have build a detachable outfeed and a left side tool storage and support table.

    I swapped out the fence for an Incra LS-TS system and put a router in the right end, although that doesn't get used too much.

    I use Forrest WWII combo and rip blades and did swap out the insert for the Infinity ZCI Inserts.


  9. #9
    Unless you don’t have the ability to run at 220, for $500 more I would go with more HP. Plus I think the resale would be better if you had to sell in a few years.

  10. #10
    I lost my earlier post.

    I got the 3 hp PCS 36" 4 years ago. I would do it again tomorrow if I needed to. I had a Jet 52" and it was too big. I would not consider the 1.75, as the times I'm cutting 8/4 it cuts without slowing down (but it did burn 8/4 Wenge, as I didn't push fast enough). The saw will outlast me. I use a track saw for sheet goods. I won't go back to trying to cut a 4x8 on a table saw.

    I got a dado brake, a regular brake and the mobile base when I bought the saw. I disliked the PCS mobile base, as it goes side to side.

    I bought the Industrial mobile base (cry twice), and it's perfect. I can lift the saw an inch and pull it straight towards me by 2" or turn it in place a quarter turn (open the garage door behind me to rip an 8' board), then turn it back a minute later. I have not set off the brake.

    I have a friend that took off the first 1.5" of his index finger a couple of years ago on his table saw, when he turned to look at what the dog was barking at. I gave him an end grained cutting board for Christmas. Walnut, cherry & maple.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Okotoks AB
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Wolfy View Post
    I lost my earlier post.

    I got the 3 hp PCS 36" 4 years ago. I would do it again tomorrow if I needed to. I had a Jet 52" and it was too big. I would not consider the 1.75, as the times I'm cutting 8/4 it cuts without slowing down (but it did burn 8/4 Wenge, as I didn't push fast enough). The saw will outlast me. I use a track saw for sheet goods. I won't go back to trying to cut a 4x8 on a table saw.

    I got a dado brake, a regular brake and the mobile base when I bought the saw. I disliked the PCS mobile base, as it goes side to side.

    I bought the Industrial mobile base (cry twice), and it's perfect. I can lift the saw an inch and pull it straight towards me by 2" or turn it in place a quarter turn (open the garage door behind me to rip an 8' board), then turn it back a minute later.
    This nearly duplicates my experience. That 52" fence was a huge space suck. In the 15 years I had it, I only used the capacity a few times. Using a track saw or just a circ saw & guide are a much better option for breaking down large sheet goods.

    I might only need the extra power once a month, but when you need it, it's very nice to have.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Location
    The old pueblo in el norte.
    Posts
    1,222
    I have both the 50" and 30" fence rails for my unifence. I do mostly use hand tools, but to be honest I agree. I have the 50" mounted on a wall. I can see the wider fence being useful in some production applications, but I really can't say I've needed to use the full with ever. Including when I had a 52" biesemeyer.
    ~mike

    life in a mud hut

  13. #13
    I have the saw you are looking at, PCS with 36 inch fence and 1.75 hp motor. I am very happy with it. No desire for a bigger motor. I also used saws with 110V motors prior to getting the SawStop for over 40 years. I have to use thin kerf blades sometimes including a thin kerf ripping blade but I cut hardwood up to 3 inches thick when I need to. With the right blade that is clean and reasonably sharp it cuts thick wood well - normal feed rate. If the wood pinches the blade, however, that is another way the saw may struggle. The only unusual thing I found is my SS seems to have a thermal overload that is set pretty low. It tripping was a big clue I needed to do something different when I was ripping some glued up softwood 3 inches thick for a bunk bed for my grandkids. The wood was pinching the blade. A switch in blades got the project done. I bought the thinner riving knife, I think it is 2mm thick, to use with thin kerf blades. I think it was only $25 - a pleasant surprise. Sawstop has it with the parts, not the accessories, if you look online.

    I make more big projects than little but I use my track saw to make cuts on bigger pieces of wood. It is not my table saw that limits it's use, it's my small shop.

    I made my own mobile base partially because I wanted it higher. I'm 6'2" and I think it comes 30 inches high. That is TERRIBLY low for me. A real back ache. I have it at 38 inches high and find that to be good for me. If you have outfeed you want to use, I would check heights before committing to a mobile base for the PCS. Raising the PCS may be necessary but that is a lot easier than lowering it.

    It's a good quality saw. I also bought a colliflower throat plate. The inserts are really flimsy but it works well. Dust collection is good, the blade is shrouded so it is not hard to collect.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Central New Jersey
    Posts
    647
    I have a SS PCS 3hp with 36" rails and just upgraded from a 1.5hp JET contractor saw.

    Using your shop made outfeed table would be find, just bare in mind the miter slots are at a different width so if your outfeed top has miter slots, they will be in the wrong place.

    If you can go for the 3hp, it's worth every penny if you cut thick stock. If all you cut is 4/4 and thinner 1.75 should fit the bill.

    Your existing base might or might not fit the saw, you would have to check dimensions and ensure that it can support the weight of the saw vs your old jet.

    The biggest upgrade to do now would be 3hp if you want, the ICS base, so you can put it on before adding more weight to the saw, and of course the 36" fence. Other times, like their outfeed table, extra brakes or a dado brake you can get later if needed.
    Distraction could lead to dismemberment!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    Vancouver Canada
    Posts
    598
    I bought the 3 hp 220v PCS this summer and for the extra few dollars it’s a bargain.
    Your choice on the horsepower, but I have lots of 220 circuits and fewer 120, so that was easy. I also got the grizzly 4 post bear stand instead of the ICS because, come on, how often will I need to move it-again my choice.
    Here’s why I got it instead of a laguna or powermatic.
    The technology to save my body parts.
    My dealer is 5 km away from me.
    It’s powerful; I was using a Rigid granite top with a rated output of 1.5 hp, but I was always unsure about it’s ability to cut oak, what I have a lot of around here.
    My wife agreed with the purchase.
    And I agree that the dust collection system is better than I had but not nearly as good as it could be.
    The bottom line, is that I get the same thrill of the unleashed power as when I use my corded Milwaukee circ. saw. Both to me, are stunning machines.

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