Bench saws are indispensable power tools in any workshop. They can cut and polish wood, as well as any other soft material such as plastic or metal sheets of aluminum or brass. These saws offer a wide selection of models with specifications that meet all the needs of professionals and amateurs.
Bench saws are models for normally professional use, since they must be stable and installed on a flat space. For manual work, there are circular, saber or jig saws. In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about bench saws in order to choose the best one for you.
Bench saws are often the first tool present in any carpentry shop. We could say that it is the basic tool for any carpenter.
Unlike manual circular saws, in which the user handles the saw on the material, here the cutting disc remains fixed and it is the material that slides towards it, facilitating the user’s work.
Bench saws are specialized tools and ideal for professional work.
With them you will achieve very precise cuts, miter and even at an angle, something impossible to achieve with other equipment.
The best bench saws on the market: our recommendations
Bench or table saws are the backbone of any woodworking shop. They are high precision equipment, perfect for performing a wide variety of cutting tasks. To help you select the best saw, your friends at MONEDEROSMART have prepared the following list for you. Get comfortable and take note.
DEWALT DW745 10-Inch Table Saw, 20-Inch Rip Capacity
The most portable table saw on the market is DEWALT’s DW745 unit, which has a unit weight of 22 kilograms and an optimized footprint. Its steel roll cage protects the saw against falls and impacts on the construction site.
The machine has a powerful 1850 watt motor for high performance in all uses. Its maximum cut to the right of the blade is 20 inches, while to the left it is 12 inches.
Rockwell BladeRunner X2 Portable Tabletop Saw with Steel Rip Fence, Miter Gauge, and 7 Accessories – RK7323
Can you imagine being able to have a saw with which you can work quickly and give it multiple uses? Then the Rockwell Brand BladeRunner is for you. Contains 5 T-handle blades for cutting wood, ceramic, aluminum, and metal tile. It will only take 3 seconds to move to another material.
It’s compact, portable, and weighs less than 15 pounds. Its speed is 3000 rpm. Make rip, angle and miter cuts.
DEWALT (DWE7491RS) 10-Inch Table Saw, 32-1 / 2-Inch Rip Capacity
DEWALT has a special product for you, a product made in Mexico called DWE7491RS. This machine offers a depth of cut of 3-1 / 8 inches at 90 degrees and 2-1 / 4 inches at 45 degrees.
Its rolling stand has been designed to facilitate installation and disassembly without damaging stability. It features heavy-duty wheels that easily tip over steps, edges, and debris.
The most comfortable bench saw
Enjoy the great comfort offered by the DEWALT brand DW7440RS bench saw, weighing only 33 pounds and 20% less weight than other mobile stands. You can transport it to your workshop with ease, either by rolling it or loading it.
Its coated surface reduces friction and improves the quality of cut throughout the board. Its 10-inch blade rotates at a no-load speed of 3,850 rpm.
Shopping Guide: What You Should Know About Bench Saws
The bench saw is one of those tools that cannot be missing in any workshop. These machines are considered to be the best cutting tools out there. In the following buying guide we will show you its main characteristics and solve some of the most common questions about its use.
What is a bench saw?
Table saws are power cutting tools. It consists of a disk or circular saw that is fixed on a table and has cutting guides. The saw is activated and rotates at high speed while the user pushes the piece to be cut on the guides, ideal for professional tasks.
They are very powerful and extremely precise equipment.
Although they are usually found mainly in carpentry and mechanical workshops, today there are table saws at very affordable prices, so it is normal to find them in DIY hobbyists’ homes, since they are the perfect instrument for projects in a certain area.
What is a bench saw?
Bench saws are primarily made up of a cutting disc protruding from the center of a horizontal table. In this table is most of the tool (motor or axes, among others). The saw is in a fixed position and the operator pushes the workpieces through the blade to make the cut quickly and accurately.
As we have already mentioned, table saws are usually the first tools present in a carpentry workshop and become the center of activity of the same, since the pieces return again and again to the cutting table, due to the different options available to you. Table saws allow you to make cuts:
- In a straight line in the direction of the wood grain.
- Cross through the grain of the wood.
- Miter and bevel, that is, at an angle.
Did you know that the circular saw was invented in 1923? The creator of this tool so widely used around the world was Edmond Michel.
What types of bench saws are there?
It is important to explain the different types of bench saws that exist, especially since there is some discrepancy in the names, which can cause confusion among the inexperienced user. Many people refer to circular and table saws by the same expression when they are very different tools.
It is also common to associate the bench saw with certain semi-portable models. Actually, table saws are divided into several types and, as we have just indicated, they cover static and semi-portable models. This confusion is normal, even among manufacturers, and is due to the fact that most incorporate a table that can be installed in several places.
Next, we will explain what the different types of table saws are:
- It is the lightest and most accessible table saw.
- It has no wheels or support.
- It is installed on a workbench.
- It has been constructed of aluminum, plastic, and other lightweight materials.
- For DIY and home use.
- Soft and multi-laminated wood cut.
- More powerful and with better precision than the bench saw.
- It has a support to lean on.
- It has a connection for dust removal.
- The table is usually made of cast iron.
- It is activated by a universal motor.
- Make straight and angled cuts in solid wood and fibreboard.
- It works for light and DIY jobs .
- It is the most robust and heavy semi-portable saw.
- It has anodized aluminum surfaces.
- It has a stand that can be folded to save space.
- It has wheels for easy transport.
- Cuts wood, solid wood, parquet, laminate boards, and plastic.
- It is the ideal for construction professionals.
Contractor, Hybrid, or Cabinet Saw:
- It is a high-end machine. They are expensive, heavy, bulky and very durable.
- They are used in large workshops, industries and specialized schools.
- They can process all types of work on hardwood, pine, plywood, pressure-treated wood, or thick sheet metal.
What components does a bench saw have?
Now that you know what they are, what they consist of and how many types of table saws exist on the market, it is time to delve a little into their main components. Knowing them is essential, since the operation of the tool will largely depend on them. Next, we will detail the components of these teams:
- Table for the saw: it is made of anodized aluminum or wrought iron. Some models include cutting guides to facilitate work.
- Saw blade guard: essential for safety, this element covers the cutting disc when the machine is stopped.
- Dust extraction hose: this element is not present in all, as it is an additional element. It serves to absorb the dust as it is cut.
- Guide for parallel cuts: another extra accessory. It is used to mark the cut.
- Folding table extension : an extension, equipped with hinges and secure to increase the cutting space, ideal for long pieces.
- Miter gauge: system for tilting the saw blade or material and making miter cuts.
- Eccentric Lever – Used to adjust cutting settings. Its adjusting and holding handle are another safety element that hold the cutting materials.
- Crank to regulate the cutting height: allows to regulate the cut.
- On and off switch: it is the one that powers the motor and starts the saw.
- Push rod: used to push the material to be cut. It is essential, as the material should never be pushed with your fingers.
- Base legs: serve to hold the tool. Most have some adjustment system to calibrate the height and level.
- Cutting blade: they are circular toothed discs that are attached to a shaft that rotates at high speed.
There are a variety of circular table saws, we recommend choosing the one that best suits your needs. (Source: Citalliance: 93322030 / 123rf.com)
How many types of bench saw accessories are there?
Some of the components that we have described in the previous section are actually accessories. These accessories are very important when working with table saws, as they perform safety tasks or make your work easier. Knowing these extra features and their functions guarantees you quality cuts and better working conditions.
Here are the main accessories for a bench saw:
Saw blade or disc:
- It is the most important part of the machine.
- There are different types of discs depending on your teeth.
- The type of disc chosen will depend on the material that we are going to cut.
Guide for parallel cuts:
- Guide to make basic cuts.
- Essential accessory for angular and transversal cuts.
- They have resistant guides.
- The angles should be easy to read.
- Easily fits into the miter.
- It consists of a piece that is used to push the material through the cutting blade.
- It is an essential accessory, especially when working with slats of 120mm or less.
- It is important to have more than one pushrod.
- For cutting materials less than 30mm wide.
- It is flatter than the rods and has a solid surface with horizontal grip provided by a handle.
- Holds the workpiece firmly against parallel or cross stops.
- Prevents the part from bouncing when sliding next to the saw.
- It has inclined teeth that accompany the passage of the piece.
- They can be used on any type of table saw.
Insert for cutting blade:
- It is a small piece of metal or wood.
- It resembles a mouth that surrounds the cutting blade.
- Forms a gap that protects the user and prevents chips from flying through the internal parts of the saw.
- It is an essential safety accessory.
- Manufacturers have replaced the classic opaque protectors with transparent models.
What type of bench saw is right for me and what level of precision can I expect?
This is a basic question that we all ask ourselves when buying a table saw, regardless of whether you are a professional carpenter or a hobbyist . If you are a professional and are looking for a machine for intensive use, you will have to choose a stationary model with high functions, which can cut all types of wood, even the thickest.
On the other hand, if you are a DIY fan or are going to use it for light work, it is best to buy a semi-portable model, particularly a bench saw model. The precision of these saws is very good and they are also compact, so you can put them on a workbench and store them after you have used them.
What type of cutting disc should I choose?
This is the next question to ask yourself. In this case, the cutting discs must be purchased separately, although it is important that you understand how they work. To decide, you will have to know in advance the type of materials that you will cut, the type of machine in which you will install them and also the type of cut that you are going to make, as well as the degree of finish.
Next, we present a table with the types of cutting discs that exist on the market and their characteristics.
Its blades are made entirely of tempered carbon steel.
They’re inexpensive and work well for cutting softwood, but they dull quickly on hardwoods.
They cut soft wood.
Its steel tubes are thin.
They work on non-ferrous materials.
High speed steel (HSS)
Its blades are made of tempered carbon steel with cobalt, chromium, molybdenum and vanadium alloy tips.
Good surface finishes are obtained, but it is not good to use them on abrasive woods or chipboards.
They cut soft and semi-hard wood.
They are made of steel and stainless steel.
Its materials are ferrous and cast iron.
Its blades are made of tempered carbon steel, generally they are provided with an expansion slot to reduce heating and prevent deformation.
They have sintered metal carbide teeth (tungsten carbide powder and cobalt carbide).
They have teeth with HM carbide inserts, which allow to obtain optimal finishes and improve durability.
They cut soft, medium hard and hard wood.
Copper and non-ferrous metals.
Its blades are made of tempered carbon steel with a continuous or segmented polycrystalline diamond (PCD) edge.
They generally do not have teeth.
They are exceptionally tough.
Its performance is far superior to carbide inserts.
They are ideal for highly abrasive materials.
They present an excellent performance in solid woods without knots.
They cut abrasive and hard woods.
Chipboards and multilaminates.
How to use a bench saw?
Now you know everything you need to know about table saws. However, unless you are a skilled carpenter, you may have questions before using these tools. It is normal, they are powerful equipment and if you are going to work with them for the first time, they may scare you a bit. To help you, we are going to explain step by step how to use them:
- Before using it. The first thing you should do is familiarize yourself with the use, its functions and all the controls of the machine. You must know very well how to turn it on and off. These computers have safety devices, so it is a good idea to learn how to use them.
- Protection and security. Do not remove the protection elements of the table saw. Wear appropriate clothing and follow the manufacturer’s safety instructions.
- A workspace. Place the bench saw in a space dedicated to your work. It should be a suitable place where you can work comfortably without risk to yourself or those around you.
- A firm surface. If you don’t have legs, you should place the saw on a workbench or a firm surface. Before working, use a level to make sure the machine is level.
- Fix the wood. To work with it, you must first fix the wood you are going to cut against the table and the guides.
- Position. Always face the machine so that you have the on / off button in front of you.
- Push the cutting material. Never use your hands to push the cutting material onto the blade. Use the rods or guides. Push the material in little by little, without applying pressure.
- Turn off the machine. Every time you stop cutting, please turn off the machine to avoid accidents.
- Maintenance. Once you’re done working on it, clean the upper and lower frames. Also check the condition of the saw teeth after each use and if it is properly fixed. Change discs when necessary.
Circular saw has a variety of blades depending on the work to be done.
If you have followed our buying guide, you should already know everything you need to know about circular table saws. However, before launching to buy one, we advise you to read the following section in which we explain the most important criteria and factors that you should look at when buying a bench saw:
- Material to be cut
- Frequency of use
- Type of cuts to be made
Since each material has its own hardness and resistance, power will be a fundamental element in the purchase of a table saw. This power is what establishes the speed of rotation of the available blade with which we will be able to work, as well as the size and type of materials on which we can cut safely.
The depth of cut is also determined by power.
The power should be at least 1000 watts (W) and it will always be better if it includes some type of speed regulator that allows you to adjust the power to the type of material you are cutting. Remember that materials like plastics and acrylics require less speed to avoid cracks.
You must verify that the table provides the correct resistance and support for each job. The table must be made of stainless steel or other high-strength material that guarantees the correct support. It is also necessary that the table is stable and has resistant rubber supports, which help to prevent the table from moving.
On the other hand, it is important to verify that the saw table is easy to install and secure. This factor will allow you to start working as quickly as possible, with the total guarantee that your cutting operations will not be affected by the installation of the saw. These aspects are fundamental and you should pay attention to them, even ahead of their price.
Before using the saw, we recommend that you familiarize yourself with the tool. (Source: Mavoimage: 54601239 / 123rf.com)
Material to be cut
The material to be cut will determine the power and type of machine you will need. It is very important that you determine the thickness capacity that you will require for your bench saw. For this you must bear in mind that the most common thicknesses in wood are 25.4 mm, 31.7 mm, 38.1 mm, 63.5 mm and 76.2 mm.
If you plan to cut planks or multilaminate boards, you will need a machine with a stop for parallel cuts, and if you have extensions better, since these sheets are usually very long and wide. The extensions will allow you to work more comfortably.
Frequency of use
The frequency of use of the machine will determine the power, in horsepower or watts, of the bench saw that is best for you. For example, if you are going to use the machine for occasional DIY tasks in your spare time, it is best to buy a low-power machine, perhaps a bench saw.
In general, the most powerful saws are ideal for professional work. These machines are much more expensive, but they are prepared to work without rest throughout a whole work day. If this is what you are looking for, choose a strong saw, with a lot of power, that has good height and depth adjustment, in the same way, it must have received good comments.
They are versatile tools that allow you to cut materials in a single pass, quickly, effectively and effortlessly.
Table saws are tools that come with a wide variety of accessories, many of which are essential for efficient and safe use. One of these systems will allow you to tilt or turn the saw blade to achieve miter or angled cuts.
Guards prevent chips from flying out.
Among the accessories that can not be missing, you should look for elements such as push rods or guides, which help you move the cutting materials on the table. If the table has extensions or additional supports, which allow you to place longer materials on it, much better.
Type of cuts to be made
In the event that you want to handle very thick cutting pieces or that you intend to make bevel cuts, you should choose a bench saw with cutting disc adjustment, both in height and inclination. Generally, this function is located on the front of the machine, in the form of a crank that moves along a graduated scale, as shown in the figure.
This eccentric lever will allow you to adjust the height of the cutting disc to work on much thicker pieces than normal. Another function of this type of accessory is usually the ease of bevel or angle cutting. Typically, these cranks allow you to set the cut at angles ranging from 0 to 45 degrees.
It is advisable to wear protective glasses, hearing protection and particle masks when handling these types of tools.
Bench saws are the star tools in any carpentry shop in the world. Thanks to the new models, which are more compact and accessible, they are also succeeding among DIYers. They are very versatile tools that allow you to cut materials in a single pass, quickly, effectively and effortlessly.
There is a wide variety of bench saws on the market, so choosing the best one for you can be difficult. However, if you have followed our recommendations up to here, surely you already know how to choose the saw that best suits your needs and what you should look at to achieve it.
If you liked the article, leave us your comment or share this guide with your friends and family. Together let’s spread knowledge!