A professional contractor should have all the power equipment and tools necessary to handle all kinds of woodcutting duties. In some jobs, a portable table saw might not be enough to complete the job in hand in an effective fashion and that is where a contractor table saw comes in handy. Contractors tend to handle a lot of different woodcutting jobs and it becomes vital for them to choose the best contractor table saw. Even if you are a highly skilled and talented professional, you won’t be able to complete a job without the help of all the right set of tools.
Just like any other power equipment that is sold in the market, there are hundreds of these table saws as well. There are saws sold specifically for residential purposes, which may not be a suitable option for a contractor. This type of saw is the one capable of delivering both performance and convenience and is the best combination of both portable and cabinet type of table saws. The best of these saws should be able to give you the option of using it literally for any major cutting job you throw at it. To help you make the best and right decision, we have coined together this discussion, where you can find all the information regarding a contractor table saw, valuable buying guide and product reviews as well.
Top 7 Best Contractor Table Saw 2020
1. Delta 36-5052 Left Tilt Contractor Table Saw
Delta Power Tools have been known for their 5000 series contractor type table saws, and here we have the 36-5052 model that comes with a left tilt feature. This is one of the perfect heavy-duty models for professional contractors. It weighs around 233 pounds, which is perfect even for a professional who might want to move the saw at some point in time. It uses a 10-inch blade and the depth of cut delivered by this model is 2-1/4” at 45º and 3-1/2” at 90º. It has a single-piece heavy duty rail, which lets you make precise cuts on a consistent basis. The tubular stand used in this model is one of its trademarks and this delivers excellent stability.
The blade brake is a great safety feature to have, especially when you are going to be running the motor day in and day out. Accidents can be prevented considerably with the use of this feature. The power switch is larger and is placed in easy to reach position. There is an extension board, which is also made of heavy-duty material and this extension lets you have the option of handing larger cutting jobs. The wheels are sturdy which lets you move it easily. And just like most of the top contractor type table saws, even this one is expensive.
2. DEWALT DWE7491RS Contractor Tablesaw
DWE7491RS is one of the best and much sought after models by professional contractors since it is a job site contractor table saw perfectly suited for those who have a cramped job site to work on or are going to work in multiple job sites always. The most attractive prospect of this model is its attractive price tag. The plates are computer balanced hence they act in attenuating vibrations. The dust port is 2-1/2 inches and can be connected quickly and easily with a vacuum for efficient dust removal. The 15A motor powering this contractor saw delivers a rip cutting capacity of 32-1/2 inches.
The 10-inch blade is made of tungsten carbide, hence delivers consistent cuts and stays sharp even after long periods of usage. The 2HP capacity delivers 4800 RPM. Bevel cut you can achieve at 45º is 2-1/4 inches and at 90º is 3-1/8 inches. There is enough storage space onboard, so you have plenty of space to store your accessories, additional blades, and so on. It uses pinion fence gauge, hence lets you make multiple adjustments without any fuss. The convenience of setting up quickly on your job site and the 3-year limited manufacturer warranty, all make it the number one choice for professionals.
3. SawStop CNS175-TGP36 Contractor Table Saw
Next on our list is the most well-built and feature-packed contractor table saw of all the models we have on our list here. The CNS175-TGP36 uses the advanced SawStop feature, which automatically stops the blade from running when your hands come closer. It uses a 36º fence gauge which ensures precise cutting. The extendable table is suitable for cutting large-sized materials and it also comes with a sturdy stand. The table saw and all its components put together weighs around 360 pounds, which is not the lightest but its main purpose is to deliver precision cutting so portability is not one of its strengths.
The motor delivers a power output of 1.75HP. The maximum cutting depth that can be made at 45º is 2-1/4 inches and at 0º is 3-1/8 inches. It uses a cast-iron tabletop, so durability is not compromised even a bit. The brake system used in the SawStop technology is the safest and most reliable of them all. The dust port is 4 inches in diameter and can be connected to any vacuum extractor to remove all the dust formed during woodwork. Considering all these factors, this is one of the most convenient and safest table saws in the market. The only bummer is the hefty price tag, but for long term working professionals, this should not be of an issue.
4. Makita 2705X1 – Best Contractor Table Saw
Makita is one of the leading power tool manufacturers and the model 2705X1 delivers great performance, thanks to the large cutting capacity that it has to offer. It uses a 15A motor delivering a max speed of 4800 RPM. The 10-inch 32T carbide-tipped blade is capable of delivering a maximum cutting depth of 2-1/2” at 45º and 3-5/8” at 90º. The entire saw, with the portable stand that you get with the product, weighs only 14.7 pounds, so this is the most portable product we have discussed so far.
There is a lever on the machine to make spreader height adjustments and there are 3 different settings to make certain specific cuts, such as dado, through, and non-through. The riving knife you get with this model has the capacity to make high precision cuts even on some hardwood materials. The blade guard can be adjusted without the need of any tool. Cam lock protection on the blade guard is another safety feature. The speed and precision of the blade can be adjusted safely using the cam lock. The dual side guard can be adjusted from blade to rip fence according to your cutting range, thereby making sure that you get precision cuts. It also features anti-kickback pawls, which is also an important safety feature.
5. Shop Fox W1837 Table Saw
Shop Fox W1837 is one of those hybrid models where you get the contractor table saw features combined with the cutting abilities of a cabinet saw. The 15A motor in this model has a power rating of 2HP and delivers a maximum speed of 3450 RPM. The 10-inch blade is left tilt oriented and this blade is capable of delivering a cutting depth of 2-1/4” at 45º and 3-/4” at 90º. The rip capacity of this blade is 15 inches to the left and 30 inches to the right. The tabletop is made of cast iron, hence it offers great durability and stability, capable of handling different cutting requirements without any hassle.
The miter gauge is a T-slot design and helps make precision cuts every single time. The mobility system on this saw is operated via foot. Some of the key security features that you get in this Shop Fox W1837 include anti-kickback pawls and clear blade guard. The dust port lets you collect all the dust efficiently. You also get some of the standard features, such as a riving knife, spreader, and others. The cabinet trunnions are made of cast iron and they help in enhancing absorption. The setup of this saw is quite simple, but it has quite a few hiccups as mentioned by some of its users.
6. Powermatic PM1000 1791001K Contractor Tablesaw
Powermatic is not a well-known brand like some of the top-selling brands in the market, but this particular model of a contractor table saw has all the elements necessary to make it part of our best list. This particular saw uses some of the modern safety technologies and features that put the unit at par with the SawStop model we discussed earlier. In terms of pricing, it is somewhat expensive than that model. The motor powering this saw has a power rating of 1-3/4 HP which should be enough for handling most of the cutting jobs.
Powermatic PM1000 1791001K is widely known in the market for its quiet and smooth operation even after years. This is because of the innovative poly-v belt used to drive the motor. This particular motor is capable of delivering the same level of power in an efficient manner without causing vibrations or noise. You can power this saw with just a 115V power socket, which tells you how convenient it is to use anywhere you are. The dust collector is positioned around the blade, unlike any other model so far, and this feature eliminates dust in a much better fashion than others. Miter gauge can be used to cut at both sides up to 60º. The fence gauge is 30º, which along with the extendable table lets you cut even larger wooden blocks with precision. Lack of a riving knife and the innovative SawStop safety mechanism does lower the product rating overall.
7. RIDGID R4512
RIDGID might not be the brand that comes to your mind when you are planning on buying a contractor table saw, but the R4512 is definitely one of the best priced feature-loaded models you can buy. This saw is made of iron, which has a lot of benefits in the power tool industry, such as delivering durability, stability, control, and precision even after years of usage. The 13A motor delivers a maximum speed of 3000 RPM, which is ample enough to complete most tasks. The 10-inch blade on the R4512 can deliver a maximum depth of cut of 2-1/4” at 45º and 3-1/4” at 90º.
It has an aluminum rip fence that comes with both the front and rear clamping mechanism. The glide is extra-large, thereby allowing you to make quick adjustments on the rails. If you want to install additional fences, then there are slots built-in to support exactly that. Some of you might find this extremely useful. Blade guard provides all the protection your hands need while working. The table extensions do not come as standard, but if you need them you must purchase it separately. The roller casters fitted in this product help in easy maneuverability. This is not the spacious contractor type table saw you can find, neither it is easier to assemble, both of which are its drawbacks.
Contractor table saw is nothing but a heavy-duty table saw used specifically by contractors to complete their day-to-day jobs. Professional contractors have their livelihood depending on their work, so it is crucial to understand some of the basics of the saw, which should help them make the right choice. As mentioned earlier, it is essential to make the right decision because your earnings are totally dependent on this investment, so buying a below standard product is only going to tarnish it. Let us discuss some of the key factors you need to evaluate to determine which is the best brand and product that best fits your requirements.
The size of the table will determine the job you could handle. Larger the size of the table, larger would be your working range, which means you can cut large wooden materials easily. Make sure to determine your work requirements and then get the one that best fits your job. There are hundreds of contractor saw models with many different table size configurations, so you are sure to find the one that best fits your job.
If you are going to work on small, medium and large scale projects, then a table extension is an excellent feature to have, as you can chop and change your table size according to the job requirements. Some models come with table extensions, whereas in others, you need to purchase the same as an add-on.
Type of Blade Material
The blade is one of the key components of a contractor table saw. You need to get to the core of it when understanding more about it. Blades come in different materials and they serve different cutting purposes i.e. a particular material based saw will specialize in cutting a specific material. For cutting wood, you might need a steel blade. For cutting through steel, diamond tip tungsten blades are perfect. Tungsten carbide blades can be used to cut PVC and plastic.
Type of Blade
The two common types of blade include rip and crosscut blades. Both these blades have a large number of teeth but the difference mainly lies in the gap or distance between each of those. Rip blades are used to cut at high speeds since they have large gullets. In the case of crosscut blades, the gap between the teeth is smaller hence the time taken to make the cut will be more, but the finished product will have a fine quality. Different types of blade are needed for different cutting purposes, so buy a blade according to your requirements.
The number of teeth in a blade will determine the quality and speed of the cut. If you are looking for speed more than anything else, then opt for a blade with low TPI. If a blade has a higher TPI, then it will cut slower but you could achieve a fine quality of cut at the end, which is what some of the contractors need the most.
Size of the Blade
Blade size will determine the cutting capacity and depth of cut you can achieve using the contractor table saw. Most of the saws come with blades that lie in the size range of 8 to 12 inches. Heavy-duty blades come in large size to handle large scale cutting duties. Different models come in different blade sizes, so knowing them will help you buy a compatible blade for all your cutting needs.
The cutting capacity of the saw is one of the most important aspects you must check for in the product. The bevel angle cuts and depth of cuts delivered by the saw will determine the workload you could handle. Most of the models have a bevel angle cut range of 0 to 45º. Dado width cutting range offered by most of the standard models are 13/15 inches. Some of the expensive models even deliver a dado width range of 2/4 or 3/8 inch.
As most of you are aware, this type of table saw is usually considerably heavier and looks industrial. You need a minimum of two people to carry this thing around, so know your job site and find out which model of the saw will be your best bet. If you are cramped for room, then make sure to select the one that is lighter in weight, so you could move it around easily. A lighter model of a contractor saw should weigh less than 300 pounds. Some of the heavier models are double this weight or even more and are best suitable for those who are going to use them in their workshop without moving them. There are lighter and heavier models in the market and this weight will be entirely based on the type of material that the saw is built on.
Most of the contractor table saw models are heavier because of the cast iron material construction, and it is this material that is also responsible for making it wear- and tear-resistant and durable. Some models are even manufactured using stamped metal, stainless steel, etc. These material-based models are not only lighter but are equally durable.
Miter and Fence Gauge
Contractors should have both these accessories in hand in order to make special cuts on a consistent basis without any error. Miter gauge helps you make angled cuts, whereas fence gauge lets you make precise straight cuts consistently. Most of the models you get in the market come with these accessories as standard.
The power delivered by the motor running the contractor table saw can be determined by the HP rating of the motor. The common range of HP delivered by most of the saws is 1 to 3HP. Some of the heavier models even deliver a power output of 5HP, which is super powerful and might be more than sufficient for professionals.
The revolutions per minute rating offered by the contractor type of table saw will be lower compared to a cabinet saw. The RPM range offered is 3000 to 6000. Saws equipped with a motor that has 20A or more power ratings tend to deliver high RPMs, but that might not be necessary in case of contractor saws since they are used mainly for achieving precision cuts.
This feature not only lets you collect and dispose of all the specks of dust collected during work but, also helps keep the dust away from your face, which is a great safety feature. A lot of time can be saved with the help of a dust collector since there is no need to collect the waste after completing a project.
This table saw type tends to take up more space than other types of table saws since their main purpose is commercial and large scale operations. Few models even come with storage space underneath the saw where you could store multiple blades, accessories, and so on for handling specific cutting duties. Added storage space is always better when you are working on a regular basis and most of the professional contractors would agree with it.
Vibration Protector or Attenuator
These saws are used extensively for commercial purposes; hence, they are supposed to work long hours. Power equipment tends to vibrate a lot since they have complex moving parts, and over time, these vibrations tend to increase, which results in user fatigue. A vibration protector or attenuator will help reduce such vibrations and allows the user to hold and work on the saw without feeling much of the vibrations and getting tired.
Most of us often do not consider the safety features offered by the saw seriously, but as a contractor, it is your responsibility to make sure that the saw offers multiple safety features. Some of the key must-have safety features on these saws include blade guard, anti-kickback pawls, splitters, magnetic OFF switch, riving knives, etc. Some of the modern-day saws even come with automatic SawStop technology, which shuts off the blade from running automatically as your hands come closer to it.
Contractor type of table saws are expensive compared to other types of saws, so it is necessary to make sure that you are covered in terms of product warranty. Regular service and maintenance are also essential because these saws are complex and prone to breakages. A brand warranty should give you all the help you might need.
We have tried our level best to give you all the information you should need to make your investment well worth it. The best contractor table saw models these days are the modern SawStop technology-based ones, so it is highly recommended to buy one such product for ultimate safety and quality. We know that making a decision is not going to be easy, but read through our discussion and give some serious thought before buying a saw.