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Thread: table sawless shop

  1. #1
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    table sawless shop

    Just curious here...how many of you guys have gone to a guided saw system shop and no longer have a table saw? I am going to be blunt here...I DO NOT WANT TO HEAR ABOUT WHAT GUIDED SAW SYSTEM YOU OWN just if it is your saw.

    Next question: If you only have a Guided saw system do you use other means to rip/crosscut soild stock (bandsaw, miter saw, etc....) ?

    Next question: Any regrets in making the change? Advantages? Drawbacks?

    Now for you guys that do not know me I have owned a lot of machinery (contractor saws, cabinets saws, european sliders, guided saw system), and have done/do this professionally. My questions are from the actual use of a guided saw shop with no other cabinet saw or european slider in use in your shop. I have had both but have never only a guided saw system.

  2. #2
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    Use of the saw

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul B. Cresti View Post
    Just curious here...how many of you guys have gone to a guided saw system shop and no longer have a table saw?
    [snip]
    Next question: If you only have a Guided saw system do you use other means to rip/crosscut soild stock (bandsaw, miter saw, etc....) ?
    Next question: Any regrets in making the change? Advantages? Drawbacks?
    [snip]
    I only have the guided saw. I sold my table saw off.

    BUT

    (Here's where I think you have to have more information from the people who respond)

    I am a hobby woodworker. And I don't do many projects, most of the stuff I work with I can rip/resaw with the bandsaw (borrowing one, but I intend to buy eventually). I also use a miter saw, jointer (6"), lunch box planer, and many routers I don't regret dropping the tablesaw, but I normally only used it for sheet goods and ripping boards.


    If I did this for a living? I'd base it on what operations I had to perform the most and the speed and ease I can do it with the different systems.

  3. #3
    How could a guided saw system replace a table saw for ripping hardwood boards ? Seems like it would be kinda awkward, and with band saw drift etc. it seems like it would be harder to get a nice parallel edge after jointing the other edge...Just my thoughts, never used a guided saw system.

  4. #4
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    I use the guided circ saw for sheet goods. For hardwoods, I use my bandsaw for ripping (no problem getting a parallel edge) and handsaws for crosscutting. I have no tablesaw and have no intention on getting one. But I'm also more of a hand tool guy, so, that may be one of the reasons.
    Last edited by Randy Klein; 01-23-2008 at 4:53 PM.
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  5. #5
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    I do this professionally and I don't understand why anyone would want to do without a tablesaw in a pro shop. It seems set-up time on the guided saws would take more time and effort. Heck, I've got two tablesaws in my one man shop. One is set-up to do nothing but crosscuts to keep from loosing time changing blades. With that said, I am entertaining the thought of building my own stationary bridge/panel cutter using a guided circular saw but not as a replacement for my other saws. This would be used to break sheet goods and crosscut butcher block counter tops since I don't have a panel saw. I just can't imagine making finish cuts for furniture on a guided saw, bandsaw and router. Paul if you do go this route, I'd be interested in feed back after you've done it for awhile.
    Rob

  6. #6
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    Paul - I'm just a serious hobbyist, but, I recently bought a circular saw guide system for sheet goods to compliment my TS. Once I set up the guide system I used it exclusively to make an aquarium canopy for my son. This project included crosscutting and ripping red oak for the face frames and shaker doors. I even used it to make a few miter cuts for the internal stiffening members. I was very impressed with the capabilities of the system. If I did woodworking professionally I would probably have two or three of the guide rail systems set up optimized for different functions.





    Mike

  7. #7
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    In my current shop I only have a guided saw system and it's a minor pain. Where a TS insures parallel rip cuts, the GSS can only be adjusted close. If you want six pieces ripped all the same width you have to move the GSS every time and hope they are all close. On the TS all parts would be ripped identically with no sweat.

    I think the GSS are great for breaking down large sheet goods but after that I really miss having a table saw, any table saw. Would somebody give me a table saw please!
    Alan T. Thank God for every pain free day you live.

  8. #8
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    I am currently building out my shop and do not intend to get a table saw. For very long rips the guided circular saw is not ideal but the bandsaw should cover that. Most people have jointers for edges in that case as well. For shorter cuts my circular saw cuts as accurately and cleanly as a a tablesaw many times its price. I have a dedicated setup with fences and squaring stops, etc, so it is pretty fast, if not as fast as a table saw, although when gang cutting it can surpass the speed of a tablesaw. Getting consistent sizes is a non-issue also since I set my fence just like on a table saw. For sheet goods, guided saws excel.

  9. #9
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    I have a table saw, but it's over in the corner. I haven't used it in a couple of months. It's the only "stationary" tool in my shop on wheels. I use a guided saw for knocking down sheet goods, but admittedly I don't use alot of sheet goods. I use bandsaw/jointer/SCMS/routers for everything else. Cutting long miters is the only reason I kept the tablesaw at all.

    I use the bandsaw in lieu of a tablesaw when ripping. Leave it a shade proud, and clean it up with a pass or two on the jointer. It's what works for me.

  10. #10
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    I think I could do without the TS except that repetitive work is much faster on the TS and if you wanted to make a bavel on a board that is past 45 you are out of oluck with the GSS (like making raised panel cut on the TS with board standing up resulting in 10 degree bevelled edge).

    As a carpenter I have and use both and would not be without either. A fence is accurate when set up. The GSS's require a mark to cut to and there is a lot of room for error when measuring is introduced (I have festool stuff- sorry for telling you Paul)

    Ben
    Strive for perfection...Settle for completion

  11. #11
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    Hi, Paul. I own a guided circular saw system that will remain nameless.
    I bought it three years ago with the hope of ditching the table saw, but I have kept it for ripping and cove cutting.
    I'm trying to do more ripping with the GCSS by adopting two standard operating procedures: (1) standardizing the thicknesses of the stock I use (that way I always have some stock of the correct thickness on hand to support the guide while ripping); and (2) for rips less than ~6" wide, using the GCSS to rip about 1-2mm wider than finished dimension, then running through the planer on edge. However, for right now, I would not get rid of the TS. My mind might change when I upgrade to a planer with a Shelix head that will eliminate tearout.

    The "other brand" if GCSS that I do not own may be "easier" for rip cuts, although I have never used it.

    As far as cross-cuts go, the GCSS is a little slower than the TS, but I prefer it much for its accuracy, safety and improved dust collection compared to the TS. I haven't use the TS for cross cutting since getting the GCSS.
    Hope this helps.

    Regards,

    John
    What this world needs is a good retreat.
    --Captain Beefheart

  12. #12
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    I tried it and gave up. Luckily I didn't sell my tablesaw when I tried. My newer guided saw is better from a usability point of view, but I still can't imagine regularly using it for ripping stock for the reason Ben mentioned. There are positioning systems available, but in my experience a lightweight system isn't going to have the ridgidity of a good solid table saw fence. My fence stays put, the positioning aid I used flexed up to 1/8" with reasonable pressure. My tablesaw fence locks down square every time. The positioning aid I used relied heavily on you making sure you were square every time. I use my tablesaw for joinery as much as cutting stuff to size. I'd rather run a bunch of dados and/or rabbets with the table saw than a router any day. For one thing the table saw is going to spit a lot less stuff into the air and onto the floor than the router and for another it is a lot quieter. Another issue--there are only a couple places to go for technique on the guided saw systems. With a table saw there's hundreds of books, magazine articles, etc. on technique.


  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Tolchinsky View Post
    Where a TS insures parallel rip cuts, the GSS can only be adjusted close. If you want six pieces ripped all the same width you have to move the GSS every time and hope they are all close. On the TS all parts would be ripped identically with no sweat.
    Many of the nameless guided saw systems are now designed so the saw rail remains stationary and the wood is moved against a fence to make the next cut. This method increases speen and gives consistent width accuracy similar to a TS.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Goetzke View Post
    Many of the nameless guided saw systems are now designed so the saw rail remains stationary and the wood is moved against a fence to make the next cut. This method increases speen and gives consistent width accuracy similar to a TS.
    Interesting. So you build a TS like mechanism around the wood and then move the wood kinda like on a tablesaw. I could see this being a benfit in some circumstances.
    She said “How many woodworking tools do you need?”
    I said “Why? Do you know someone who is selling some?”


  15. #15
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    Depending on the nature of your work a table saw is not absolutely necessary. I wouldn't want to be without it or a straight-edge-guide and my circ-saw. But, for me square legs, aprons, side-panels, tabletops, etc. are the bulk of my work. Lots of straight, square shapes. If I built provincial furniture or pieces with lots of curves and finals I could do without it better than if I were a kitchen cabinet maker or did custom pool tables or some such. Consider what you want to do and then tool-up accordingly.
    She said “How many woodworking tools do you need?”
    I said “Why? Do you know someone who is selling some?”


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