Out of every novice comes a great carpenter or mason. Woodwork is one craft with a steep learning curve. However, with the right tools and attitude, it shouldn’t be as hard as it seems.
One of the tools that rarely miss in any workshop, beginner or seasoned artisan, is the table saw.
It’s a works horse that precisely makes cuts and rips, unlike hand tools. As a beginner, you want to have the most user friendly, affordable, and easy to control power tool.
But where do you start? How do you identify the best fit for your budget? And which beginner table saw would last you in the long run?
In this buying guide, I’ll review the best table saw for beginners, with all the things you need to know before making a decision to buy.
Table of Contents
- 5 Best Beginner Table Saws – Reviews
- Things To Consider When Buying Best Table Saw For Beginner
5 Best Beginner Table Saws – Reviews
When scouring the market for the best table saw for a novice, you need to well aware of what to expect. At times, you could also be looking to replace an already existing saw that’s no longer making the right cuts for you.
When you spend more hours adjusting the saw than working, then it’s time for change. The question that lingers through most people’s minds is where to start the search. Well, these five products in this buying guide should be a great place to set you off.
1. DEWALT DW745 10-Inch Table Saw – Best Overall
In my opinion, the 20-inch rip capacity DEWALT table saw is a great option for beginners. Besides being from a reputable manufacturer, there are lots of reasons to love the DEWALT DW745.
First and foremost, the elegant design is easy to handle for newbies as it adopts ergonomics in most of the aspects.
The whole table saw weighs just about 22 kilograms. This small footprint makes use of the limited space every beginner has in their workshop. In addition, you can move the tool about with relative ease.
A tool of its size is bound to get dropped over a couple of times. To prevent damage in such eventuality, the saw is fitted with a steel roll cage.
As you learn the ropes around the table saw, clearly labeled scales, rack and pinion fence, and rear and front fence lock all combine to create an accurate, yet easy to use table saw.
A powerful 1850 watts’ motor drives the saw blade, enabling a wide range of applications. With a fence system capable of a 610 millimeter rip capacity, this is a great table saw in its class.
Besides the cast iron table top, this power tool has overload protection mechanism against voltage fluctuations. Moreover, frozen, wet, and hard woods can be worked on without motor blowing up.
2. SKIL 3410-02 10-Inch Table Saw With Folding Stand – Most Portable
Apart from providing you with the best value for money, the SKIL 3410 is probably the most portable table saw you can ever find.
I find the unique folding stand ideal for DIY woodworkers who do large projects around the confines of their houses. In as much as it is 10-inch in size, the saw still offers the range of possibilities as other top quality table saws.
Yes, the components are made from high quality materials. For one, the 15-amp motor features an overload protection, making it possible to rip through an array of wood varieties.
One of the stand out features on this table saw is the mounting stand. It crafted from heavy duty steel, resulting is a convenient to store and easy to set up table saw.
The SKIL 3410 has a 3 ½ cut height, allowing a beginner to cut through a piece of woods that’s about four times its size in just a single pass. Therefore, you are able to tackle most woodwork and carpentry jobs. A 10” diameter saw blade cuts through most woods, as the powerful motor drives it.
The working space consists of a 20 x 26” cast aluminum table top, thus supporting all your works. In terms of accuracy of measurements, this table saw is fitted with an EZ View measurement system that helps achieve accurate cuts.
3. Bosch Power Tools 4100-10 Table Saw – Best Value for Money
Sometimes, you need to buy a table saw that will grow with you as your skill levels improve. The Bosch 4100-10 packed with a 10” diameter saw, it also has an array of excellent features, making for an easy learning curve. The blade is driven by a 15A motor, driving the blade to speeds of 3650 rotations per minute.
Measuring about 29 x 21.5 inches, this table saw is large enough to deal with large wood stocks. Plus, the top is made of aluminum, meaning pieces of wood slide off the top with the least effort.
For that reason, it would be a great asset to a beginner looking to handle medium-sized projects comprising of large plywood sheets.
Another standout feature on the Bosch is the square lock rip fence. An aluminum construction aids in sliding, devoid of hitches, for accurate measurements.
On this power tool, safety of the user is enhanced through the incorporation of a number of features like the riving knife to minimize instances of kick back.
In addition, the variable speed drive ensures optimal power consumption. Moreover, a soft start circuitry tones down intense motor start up. In the process, users don’t have to deal with circuit breaker trips.
4. DEWALT DWE7491RS 10-Inch Table Saw – Most Versatile
As a novice, having your table saw running at optimum for the long run should be a priority. To this effect, buyers rarely go wrong with the DEWALT DWE7491RS.
Just like the previous table saws, this one also packs a 15A motor. It produces enough torque to power the 10” diameter blade through hardwoods and pressure treated woods.
A 32.5” rip capability combined with an unrivaled wood processing versatility, the DWE7491RS are some of the reasons why this saw is so popular.
Some of the capabilities range from splitting hardwoods, processing beams among others. Using the 10” blade, this saw does a commendable carpentry work involving 45 degree tilts and 2.25” deep cuts.
No matter the size and shape of your workspace, this product easily adapts to it, thanks to a telescopic fence rail design. Another reason why I find this tool well suited for beginners is the tool-less design. What this means is that most of the adjustments on the table saw do not need the use of additional tools.
Apart from being ideal for beginners, even professionals can still use this table saw when need be. So, it appears you’ll be having this for the long run. Another stand out feature is the dust collection system, which adapts to a vacuum, making cleaning a breeze.
5. Hitachi C10RJ 10″ 15-Amp Jobsite Table Saw – Safest
The Hitachi C10RJ has been around for some time, and I believe it is the safest of the lot. Hitachi, the manufacturer has been at the forefront of designing and manufacturing power tools of the highest safety standards.
As such, the C10RJ is no exception. It features an electric brake that halts the blade within seconds after pressing the stop button.
Also, the C10RJ has a soft start function, which reduces the noise emission levels and motor recoil levels when starting up the machine. The 15A motor on board drives the 10” blade to speeds of 4,500 RPM on no load.
Still, when loaded, the speed sufficiently powers the blades through tough wood ripping applications.
The 10” with 40 teeth is suited for high cutting speeds. Hitachi adds carbide to the tips of the blade, keeping it from heating up at high speeds. The bevel cutting ranges from 0-45 degrees.
At 0 degrees, you get a cutting depth of 3 1/8” while at 45 degrees, it reduces to 2 ¼”. A large emergency off switch is at knee level, for an extra safety feature.
The stand onto which the table saw is mounted on a both stable and durable, regardless of the surface on which it is placed on. Less wobble is just the thing a beginner looks for it their power tools. Additionally, the stand has caster wheels, easing movements from one workplace to another.
Things To Consider When Buying Best Table Saw For Beginner
This applies to everybody buying a table saw, and not only a beginner. Striking the right balance between a portability and power generated. The reasoning is that you rarely find any that provides both.
There are those of us who desire a table saw to move around the basement, yard, garage, or any other working space. These requirements differ from the guys who want a powerful power tool to tackle large chunks of wood.
As a beginner, I recommend you opt for a more portable option. At this time, you can sacrifice power for mobility. These power saws are light, weighing less than 50 pounds. In essence, your work will be mostly restricted to cutting small boxes, boards, and other light work.
Getting a bigger sized option is intimating and will most likely be too complex to operate. Portable options such as the DEWALT 745 still handle pretty well for large projects. It has basic functions that beginner woodworkers require to construct something like a table.
Some of the downside of portable table saws is their limited size of wood which can be handled. Also, they aren’t the sturdiest products, so would require careful handling, especially when a project requires precise measurements.
The rule of thumbs is that a beginner ought to operate the safest power tool they can get. Before you get to figure out how to use the tool, bumps and wrong turns would be common. The key to you escaping unscathed is down to the safety features included in the design.
After all, it’s not worth it investing in an asset that’s not as safe as you would wish. Even as you consider the pricing, there shouldn’t be a compromise on any of the safety standards. While all the products I have outlined have safety features, the Hitachi CR10RJ stands out for me.
Of all the dangers newbies face, kickback is the most common. In fact, it is one of the leading causes of ER admissions among power tool users.
Kickback refers to the backward thrust of the piece of wood being worked on be the blade. Without a sufficient kickback pawl, you are likely to suffer torso, head, or chest injuries.
Look out for decent blade guards, emergency stops, anti-kickback pawls, riving knife, etc. These are the features that make you comfortable operating the power saw as you know that no matter the mishap, you are always protected from the dangerous blade.
3. How Easy Is It To Use The Tool?
Arguably, this is the most important aspect of the best table saw for beginners. Without it, the table saw might be too clunky for use by a beginner. As you learn, you need a machine with the most basic features and instructions.
Your ability to adequately and efficiently use your product depends on ease of use. Look for a product that has basic functions such as ripping, as these are the ones you will use most of the time.
Sometimes, it is also good to buy one that’s slightly complex, since you will use it for longer as your skill levels grow.
4. Rip Capacity
All along, you may have been wondering what rip capacity I have been mentioning refers to. Almost all the products have this feature specified. Rip capacity refers to the distance between the saw blade and the fence.
Simply put, ripping a board of wood requires you to make a cut facing the same direction as wood grain. Thus, a table saw with a wider rip capacity would basically accept large boards. While different wood types require varying rip capacities, 24” is still a good option.
Better yet, most of the table saws have the ability to extend the ripping capacity. What you need to do is add extension tables.
5. Other Factors
- Table Space
More table space means larger wood sizes can be held at an instance as it passes through the blade. Most portable saws have a table space of up to 24” x 22”. Depending on the nature of project that you will be working on, choose an appropriate table size.
- Dust Collection Ports
I am one of those who hate the cleaning job that comes after I am done with a project. That’s why I insist on having a table saw with a way of collecting the dust generated as I work. In this way, I don’t have to do any cleaning thereafter.
These dust collection ports are connected directly to a vacuum, thus holding any wood particle generated from the working done. If you have the table saw stationed in your basement, then I think you will appreciate this feature very much.
The listed accessories determine how much value for money you will be getting from your purchase. Consider the Bosch 4100-10 for example, it comes with miter gauge, simple adjustment tools, push stick among others.
Overall, the DEWALT DW745 is the best table saw for beginners if you ask me. It is lightweight which makes it ideal as it only weighs 22 kilos. This makes it easy to be used in confined spaces and jobsites according to the demands of your work schedule.
It is also safe to use because it features an overload protection, a steel roll cage and dust collection ports among others.
Also, the SKIL 3410-02 as the second best product that I would willingly recommend to anyone who still has doubts regarding which one to choose.
I hope that you will choose either of my two recommended products or even the other of the products if they suit your needs.