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There’s no doubting SawStop’s technology and its ability to keep your fingers attached to your hands — especially after watching the “hot dog demo” video — but a big question remains: would you shell out the cash to own one?  And if you did, are you pleased with the quality of the saw besides the brake?

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We’ve seen lots of words about the SawStop — both good and bad — but we wanted to put it before our most trusted group: Toolmongers.  Have some experience with one — or opinions on the price/quality balance?  Let us know in comments.

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72 Responses to Hot or Not? SawStop’s “Safe” Table Saw

  1. Rob says:

    I’ve heard the quality on the saw is pretty good. If I were setting up a shop where multiple people would be using the saw, I’d definitely get one of these. Just for me, it seems a little pricey but I figure the first time it saves a finger or the like, it’s paid for itself.

  2. Scott says:

    It’s always irked me that the SawStop guys couldn’t (or wouldn’t) negotiate to make this technology more widely available. It’s something that ought to be on every table saw out there. If Congress can legislate safety equipment for cars they could certainly do it for table saws.

    “Woodworking equipment produces approximately 720,000 injuries per year often causing severe psychologic and functional impairment. Responses from 1000 injured woodworkers to a demographic survey revealed that 60.5% of injuries occurred to amateur woodworkers; 42% of injuries were caused by the table saw and 37% of respondents reported amputation of one or more digits.”

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=3498745&dopt=Abstract

    • gary sciascia says:

      the more you read about sawstop and the history of the legislative efforts by manufacturers of power tools, the more you’ll find the industry is the reason they malkers of sawstop went into to begin with. if they could have sold their technology they would have but there were no buyers for it.

  3. John Laur says:

    I understand it’s a top notch high quality saw, but the guy that makes it is a jerk (he tried to get legislation passed to force his safety device onto sawmakers when they wouldn’t buy his overpriced technology). It’s also an expensive machine to make a mistake on as a false trigger of the device (damp wood, etc) will require you to replace both the blade and the sawstop mechanism at high cost. Also, kickback is a far bigger danger on table saws than cutting off your finger and the saw doesn’t do anything special to avoid that.

    I’d say NOT hot. You shouldnt be doing anything on a table saw that even remotely puts your fingers near the blade anyway. Plus there doesnt seem to be any admission that the capacitance trigger might actually fail — which it might easily do if you are wearing rubber soled boots and not touching anything grounded.

    This might be a good investment for a high school shop class where you could reasonably expect carelessness, but it doesn’t have much use in a professional shop unless you can get it to lower your insurance or something.

    • Joel says:

      This is the most uneducated comment I’ve read. Please tell me you’re not serious.

      Even professional woodworkers can have their hands sucked into the table during kickback. Obviously people aren’t careful enough, with ten people losing their fingers A DAY in the U.S.A. alone.

      Also, that inventor fought hard to get manufacturers to even look at his invention. When they wouldn’t buy it, he built it himself. A great story of determination, not being a jerk.

      Also, it doesn’t trigger on damp wood, go watch some youtube videos that specifically tested that if you’d like to be informed.

      Or just stay uninformed.

  4. Brian W says:

    It is HOT!

    The reason it is not on other people’s saws is they didn’t want to license it because it would admit that their other saws are dangerous, and would make them liable.

    If I had the money I would get one. And might when they come out with the contractor’s model.

  5. John says:

    Not. I’ve ‘kicked the tires’ on one of these at the local woodcraft store. Build quality looks good, and on par with the Powermatic. The problem I have with it is the cost of replacement of the brake assembly. I know, what’s a couple hundred dollars compared to the loss of a finger or worse. But the saw hasn’t been around long enough to have a track record of not having false positives. Until that time, the cost seems a bit high. And the attempt to have this tech legislated into all saws bugs me. If it’s good tech, works and fills a need in the market, the manufactures will license it due to market forces. Trying to make a buck by having it legislated into use when it doesn’t have a solid track record of use in the field seems wrong.

    • Andrew says:

      Do you have any data suggesting there are false positives? I’ve looked up quite a few reviews on the SawStop Table Saw. There are always people such as yourself claiming they won’t get it because of false positives but that is a logical fallacy. You’re saying you won’t use it until there is more evidence you shouldn’t use it.

      I haven’t found any cases of false positives on this machine. It boils down to cognitive dissonance and the refusal to switch brands. Even more so, SawStop is fighting against Wood Workers that are too proud and stubborn to admit they would be better off with a safe table saw.

      Would you drive a car without a seat belt? Without an air bag? The cars air bag is likely to break your nose during an accident. Does this mean you want to get a car that doesn’t have one?

      The argument you’ve made is invalid and of no substance.

    • Joel says:

      Now in 2017 it’s sixty bucks for a replacement assembly. How much is your finger worth dude..

  6. Joel Wires says:

    Wood magazine did a pretty thorough review on the saw, including testing for “a false trigger of the device (damp wood, etc)” and could not make it trigger on anything but flesh, hotdog or finger.

    http://woodmagazine.com/wood/story.jhtml?storyid=/templatedata/wood/story/data/sawstop_highspeed.xml

    I agree that you shouldn’t have your fingers anywhere near the blade, but If I had a full production shop, I would have one.

    Sawstop safety: HOT
    Sawstop price: NOT

  7. If congress did mandate the technology, they might invalidate the patent or establish compulsory licensing based on the “overwhelming public interest” doctrine — if it’s important enough to mandate, maybe it’s important enough to override traditional patent law. This is invoked sometimes for pharmaceuticals in an epidemic (see Brazil’s Kaletra move) or war materiel. It’s also why things like seatbelts aren’t patentable in the first place, supposedly.

    I’m not a lawyer, patent or otherwise, but I’ve read that such things are possible. I think it’d be sweet irony if SawStop’s claims of public health and safety were validated at the same time their patent was eviscerated. Food for thought, anyway.

    As for the SawStop’s behavior on damp wood, am I crazy in thinking that a “hey, I almost tripped on that!” beeper or indicator would help woodworkers realize that their workpiece is damper than normal and should perhaps be let to dry a while longer? Obviously if the resistance is low enough to fire the mechanism, it should do so, but in marginal cases it would be helpful to have some feedback and a chance to reconsider before destroying a blade and cartridge. Just my two cents’ worth.

  8. Scraper says:

    Probably hot, but I think it needs some more time in the field. And if I could afford a saw like that, I could probably afford the replacement cartridge and blade (as long as it only happened once in a great while).

  9. Roger Davis says:

    People often comment harshly on the inventor’s attempts to pass legislation requiring the use of this technology. Some say that market forces would drive the adoption by the major manufacturers and that should be good enough. But the truth is the manufacturers won’t touch it for any amount of licensing loot. The reasons are many and some have been mentioned, but mainly you are including a feature which if it fails is a huge lawsuit waiting to happen.

    It’s a shame really – the man has invented a technology that even it it does fail, the failures will certainly be lower in number than the amount of people who harm themselves yearly from tablesaw misuse. I’m glad he came to market with his own saw, and although I have not used it, if I was in the market I would certainly buy this machine over any other. I like my fingers right where they are.

  10. Ben says:

    SawStop is HOT by far…

    True, the brake mechanism is expensive to replace. But has anyone actually HEARD about a false positive or is that just a fear based in speculation?

    You should think of the braking mechanism like a car airbag (which, if I’m not mistaken, are also very expensive to replace). It’s a safety measure that you hope you will never have to use, but if you do, you’ll be seriously glad you have it.

    Really, what it comes down to is this: if you don’t buy this saw and the day comes where you do slip up and come in contact with the spinning blade, you’re going to probably regret not having purchased this saw for the rest of your life.

  11. Michael W. says:

    Not Hot.

    I’d rather not pay the extra money for the saw. I think it’s a decent saw, but not for the cost. When I build my new shop I will be buying a new table saw, just not a SawStop.

    Part of my reasoning is the fact that I don’t need the safety feature. It would be a waste of my money. I am very careful around my saw (I do it for a living). I know better than to let my finger get that close to the blade.

    The other part is the inventor. He is a jerk IMO. I’ve read several articles where he comes across as a stereotypical lawyer (doesn’t help that he is one). The fact that he tried to ram through the legislation before he tried to manufacture the saw himself after he was rebuffed is enough of a character statement for me.

    Not everybody needs or wants this technology. If it truly is the “Best Thing Going” it will prove itself in the marketplace. Trying to ram it down everybody’s throat is a little arrogant.

    The number of people injured by sawblades each year is much smaller than people injured by kickbacks. Forcing consumers to buy “safety” features they don’t want or need would be poor legislation. The very people most likely to be injured while using a tablesaw will still be under risk from kickbacks.

    Tablesaws can never truly be safe, nor should we try to make them appear so. They are dangerous and should be approached with caution. Casual use by uneducated users is about as safe as giving guns to three year olds or letting blind people prone to seizures fly jets.

    • cliff says:

      I was considerering buying a saw stop for a new hobby woodshop I am plannig in my new home. I made all the aguemtns for it- that safety is paramount and this is caution that is necessary,. And then I read these and other posts and looked back on my own life expereinces. Not all technology works 100% of the time. Having a saw staop may provide a sense of security that actually makes people elss cautious when using a table asaw. As of now, I am using fear to keep my fingers and hands a long way from the table saw blade. Just as I do a band saw blade, and miter saw blade, When I was young my father, who worked in construction, almost but his thumb of using a circular saw when he hit a know- cut went three quarters through the thumb from the back of the hand to the front- it was repaired so he didn’t lost it. He was cautious. Having a safety device such as a saw stop may actually give a false sense of security no different t from people not wearing seat belts because they have air bags. I certainly like the idea, but am not willing to pay an extra $10000 for it. $200 maybe.

    • patdee says:

      Michael W said, on June 12, 2007

      “Not everybody needs or wants this technology. If it truly is the “Best Thing Going” it will prove itself in the marketplace. Trying to ram it down everybody’s throat is a little arrogant.”

      I agree!

      Today, the “Saw Stop” is one of THE most popular table saws EVER built. At least in the US.

      I have not bought one of these, because I am pleased with my Powermatic 66. But if I was in the market for one, I WOULD buy the “Saw Stop” hands down; over ANY other saw in the world. I mean that.

      Even a Felder or Martin!

      They have engineering features NO other manufacturer of table saws has ever equaled, not to mention “exceeded”.

      IE: It’s raising and lowering engineering is exemplary.

      It’s dust collection engineering is almost 100% effective. The quality of its table top and extension wings is very fine and engineered extremely well. The ease of raising or tilting the blade is amongst the best ever.

      It’s “Riving knife install/uninstall” is second to none. Takes less than 5 seconds. It’s extension table tops are as smooth as glass and quite attractive.

      It’s handles and other items are well designed and feel as good as any ever.

      Compare this:

      If I had to change belts on my “66″, I would HAVE to remove the dadgum TOP of the saw. That is ridiculous. It only takes moments on the SS.

      Do ya realize what it takes to remove and replace the top of a cast iron table on a tables saw; AND it must be realigned for “parallel with the miter slot” when you get it back on?

      Talk about dumb!

      To boot; it takes a very strong man to lift that top single handedly.

      The SS mobile stand is also exemplary.

      Adding grease is via industry standard “grease fittings”. NOT hit and miss with a rag, brush or fingers, etc.

      The owner’s manual is THE best I have EVER seen by any manufacturer of any product.

      The “STOP” button was and is for most: the largest of all. They set the “standard” in most every way; when it comes to the way they tackle an engineering problem and/or design features.

      The speed of the blade lowering below the top and stopping the blade is unbelievably quick AND designed to be as fool-proof as possible.

      It’s blade “guard” and “riving” knife follows the “excelled” European format with one exception; which I believe SS needs to change.

      It should be equal to what Felder, Format and Hammer saws do.

      The standard way that Delta, Powermatic and others engineered the very important blade guards was archaic and still is, not to mention “aggravating”; and I believe one of the main reasons most simply did not want to fuss with it.

      Etc, etc, and etc.

      Unlike at first: the replacement expended “Stop” (if is ever needed-Jesus forbid) is now less than 80 bucks; at least where I shop.

      Again, a “safety” minded woodworker should not trade in their saws to own the SS. But if you need a new saw, I could recommend NO other 10″ table saw in the world; as apposed to this one.

      For the money overall, it is the best IMO.

      Note: I know nothing of “lawsuits” and the owner being a “jerk”. I just love the SS. I did meet him when they FIRST came out with it; at the by-annual “IWF’ in Atlanta years ago.

      I found them to be extremely knowledgeable, friendly and professional.

      I STILL love my Powermatic; albeit the aforementioned aggravations. It’s dust port is worthless; as are most all others over these many years. Another dumb act on companies.

      It’s like my Delta 14″ band saw. It has got to have THE most inefficient dust port EVER put on any piece of equipment. And would you believe this: EVEN today on MOST band saws they put the 4″ dust port on the “back” side of the blade.

      Hear me manufacturers: The dust comes off the FRONT of the blade dummies! NOT off the back of the blade! The DC port (no smaller than 4″ and preferably 5″) should be on the FRONT of the BS! I have seen it done and it is awesome.

      One of these days I am going to cut a 5 inch hole on the FRONT of that 14″ boat anchor; connect a 5″ DC hose to it; and take that factory installed 1″ port “joke” off…….. Then mail it to Delta and say. “Put it where tha sun don’ shine!” ‘Cuz I got one now that works. No more coughing my head off all night after using that beast.

      And “THAT goes for the Jackass ya rode in on TOO! HeeHee.”

      I’ll guaranteed ya that if SS came out with a BS, they would engineer it right. Bless their hearts.

      They did it right when they FIRST built it; and they are still making it almost impossible to improve upon.

      By the way: I am NOT affiliated with ANY one at SS company. And this includes evenly indirectly; in the most remotest of scenarios.

      But I am a mechanical engineer and I have found this saw to be engineered better “overall” than any saw I have ever “drooled” over.

      My hat is off to its engineers (mostly), it’s management and marketing personnel.

      May Jesus bless them for what they have done.

      pat

  12. Michael W. says:

    Not that I have strong feelings about this ;)

  13. > Wood magazine … could not make it trigger on anything but flesh, hotdog or finger

    Except, once again, they didn’t actually try it with a finger. Nobody who reviews one of these things ever has the stones to actually try sticking their hand in it :-) .

    Not that I think it wouldn’t WORK, then – I’d just like to see someone, even from the manufacturing company, who has enough faith in the system to test it COMPLETELY.

    (I think the ball of one’s thumb would be a good hand-part to try it with; that way you wouldn’t get a nicked bone. Use of a MythBusters-Approved Pig Part would also, I suppose, be acceptable.)

    • Al says:

      There is a video on youtube that shows the inventor demonstrating SawStop using his own finger. It doesn’t even bleed.

  14. Jim says:

    Based upon the above threads:

    - Has anybody documented a false positive? This concern is similar to the airbag test video that showed in an airbag going off while being driven on the test track during the early product development phase and the driver losing control. This was used repeatedly to delay the industry adoption and cast a cloud of uncertainty of the design. If an option, I would not buy a new car without an airbag installed.

    - Has anybody documented a serious flesh injury on a Sawstop saw? No need to find a subject to ‘test’ it on, just let time be your test. Did they put unbelted people into cars and crash them into objects to test airbags effectiveness?

    - With the cost of a tablesaw related insurance claims, the cost can be justified with reduced insurance rates. Of course this is of concern only for the business owner, which this saw’s price point and features are targeted to.

  15. Simon says:

    Lots of actual info here: http://www.sawstop.com/why-sawstop-testimonials.htm

    The bottom line, it works, it works well, it’s expensive, it’s worth it.

  16. James says:

    John Laur: The Sawstop has a riving knife, which is one of the best anti-kickback features you can get on a table saw.

  17. Roscoe says:

    It’s easy to pick on the guy who had an AMAZING invention and tried to market it, but you’ve got to feel for the guy getting blackballed by an entire industry. Clearly this is one of the best things to come along for shop safety in a long time. I personally hope that he is able to develop an aftermarket kit for big-name saws. I bet manufacturers would license it if could consumers started converting their own saws.

  18. David says:

    how about a sign that says “DO NOT TOUCH BLADE”

    my kids are respectfully afraid of the table saw. I need a device for a band saw or a power miter box.

  19. Hank says:

    I have done some reading on this saw. I even saw a weiner demo. I value the opinions given today.

    However, it seems for the money they ask for, one should determine first if the unit is a good unit, or a mediocre unit. (Since I have never split a board with one, I don’t know if the quality is there.) I would want to compare it’s performance with the top Powermatic or some good european saws before I shelled out that much bread. If the saw checked out, and I was in the market for a big saw, then the brake technology would be tasty topping for a quality cake.

    On lawsuits, with all the promo, if the brake failed and you lost a couple of digits as you can with any other saw when you don’t pay attention,(but unlike other saws on the market where no recovery can be had) the monetary recovery would allow you to buy a bionic hand for your woodworking, should you so choose.

    I agree with the men who say time will be the true tester. Of course, if the price of the “announced” and coming contractor’s saw is decent, I would look at it with the same analysis, but more personal interest.

  20. Brau says:

    I know that my brother ( a highschool shop teacher) would love to have these because he spends most of his time keeping a keen eye on careless teens. However, the brake replacement is an issue because kids would naturally test it for fun thereby costing the already stressed school budget some dearly needed money.

    As for lawsuits, I can foresee a school being sued after a child loses a finger simply because they did NOT have one of these saws.

    Lastly, I believe people need to have a deep respect for tools and not rely on complicated safety mechanisms that can ultimately fail; therefore I would suggest the users should not be told the safety devices are on any machine they might use.

  21. Ivan says:

    Sad to say but last weekend my friends’ son cut off half of his hand, yep 4 fingers + a good chunk of his thumb while working on a stage cutting 2″ FOAM of all sake. I was told that the foam got stuck and than suddenly jerked forward where his hand was thrown on the blade!

    Well, it shows that no matter professional or amateur school grads, this would be a very wise investment. Though I agree with most of the people here that the little money should be made on this invention but rather serve the safety of the people. At the same time, there has to be a way to re-engage the safety after it goes off.

    There are some serious manufactures out there that must have the R&D to make this happen.

  22. Kurt Schwind says:

    This saw interests me and I’ve been reading the comments. And I see some ‘hots’ and some ‘nots’ but what I haven’t seen is an actual /OWNER/ of the saw. Tech aside, how is this as a table saw? Does anyone have any first-hand experience?

  23. Brian says:

    Hot. I haven’t used one, but I have fiddled with the floor model at my local woodworker’s supply, and it is a solid machine. I don’t have enough space or money for a big cabinet saw right now, but I am anxiously awaiting pricing information on the contractor model. I’ll be reading Toolmonger for the scoop!

  24. Teacher says:

    I think the inventor should be able to make as much money as he wants to. If someone else wants to make something that serves the same purpose and then give it away, more power to them.

    I also don’t think it should be required on all table saws. I know many people, myself included, that bought saws costing under $200 because that was what we could afford. I suspect having this on a saw would put it out of price reach for me and a lot of other floks.

  25. Elaine says:

    I’m currently a Cabinetmaking and Furniture Technician student at Algonquin College. Personally, the table saw is the machine I am most apprehensive of. There’s something unsettling about a 10″ blade with sharp jagged teeth spinning angrily towards you while you slide your hand towards it

    I heard about SawStop at the beginning of the year, and was impressed by the hotdog demo and testimonials. The safety feature is well-designed, and I have yet to hear of a confirmed failure (you can bet the unlucky customer’s maimed digits would be all over the news).

    The riving knife is a great feature, which greatly minimizes kickback. I’ve ripped casehardened mahogany which would have kicked back something fierce — thankfully, it gripped the knife instead of the blade. The stock was warped so badly, I ended up with matching canes…

    The false positives have been reduced thanks to the newer feature which allows the operator to test the moisture content of the wood. If the lights indicate that the wood is too green, you can leave the brake off while the cuts are made. Also, Sawstop will replace accidentally tripped brake cartridges for free (the spent cartridge contains data regarding the incident which they can use for further improvements). Of course, you’ll still have to replace your blade.

    Every review I’ve read of the SawStop has given it top marks for quality of construction and ease of use. Even without the remarkable braking mechanism, the SawStop is a well-designed tablesaw, worthy of the higher price tag. WITH the brake, the SawStop is a bargain.

    My college’s Perth Heritage campus has 3 of these fine table saws, and the main Woodroofe campus just ordered their first one earlier this week. There is some concern that students will be less vigilant about safety when using the SawStop, however I’m sure the same argument was raised when Air Bags were first introduced. I certainly don’t drive more carelessly as a result. Safety features like the SawStop and Air Bags provide peace of mind should an accident occur — the main goal is still the *prevention* of accidents.

    In the end, my fingers are worth more to me, my family and my future than the $2200 CAD price difference between a fully loaded SawStop and a Delta Unisaw w/ Biesemeyer fence (which we currently use in the shop). I only wish the SawStop was a decade older so I could find a used one on kijiji.

    - 10″ 3 HP cabinet SawStop, sliding fence, extension table, regular and dado brakes, delivery (Laval to Ottawa) & 14% tax = $5141 CAD

    Definitely HOT!

  26. bmadigan says:

    MEH. Kick back can drive a piece of pine into your gut and kill you. I’ve got a $150 cast iron top craftsman that does the job. $5 grand is a lot of cash to drop on what I’d consider a gimmick.
    Of course now that I said that I’ll cut my hand off tomorrow. Knock on…. formica.. mdf.. damn, theres no wood around here. what kind of place is this?

  27. Scott Whitby says:

    I notice alot of comments about the inventor’s attempt to cram this technology down our throats. Consider the following technologies that have (thankfully) also been forced upon us without our input and at great financial cost:

    in automobiles: seatbelts, airbags, shatterproof glass, antilock brakes, windshield wipers

    on roads: yellow lines, reflective signs, rails on bridges

    in your homes: fireproof materials, toilets, breakerboxes

    in medicine: vaccines, sterile surgical equipment, quality controlled medications

    in lawn equipment: blade guards, automatic shutoff if you fall off your mower

    in the airline industry: luggage xray, metal detectors, flight control towers

    in food: tamper proof packaging, FDA meat inspection

    Surely you nayesayers get the message. Good technology is expensive and if it is good enough, it gets put in place regardless. If you can’t afford this saw, don’t buy it. But don’t let your your opinions about the man that invented it and his entrepeneurial motives sway someone who might need all 10 of their fingers. Woodworking is the greatest hobby in the world. If it can be made safer, and if that safety can let us hobbyists keep making a living for our family, why criticize?

  28. David says:

    SawStop owner here.

    About me:
    I am a professional woodworker and I run my own shop. I have used a table saw just about every day for almost 20 years. I have employees that use the table saw every day. I witnessed a friend cut most of the way through three fingers several years ago. I witnessed the recovery, all the surgeries, the final monetary cost and the final physical cost.

    Using SawStop:
    The saw is better than any Powermatic or Unisaw that I have ever used. Build quality is top notch. The makers started from scratch in just about every respect, and it shows.
    My employee triggered the brake for the first time within a few days of getting the saw. He was cutting aluminum laminate and forgot to engage the bypass. In the year that followed the saw has been triggered four more times: once by a stray tape measure touching a coasting blade, once by an embedded nail, once by a wet piece of cedar (fresh from the lumber yard) and most recently by a finger. The finger required a band-aid only.
    Typical cost of a fired cartridge: $70 plus blade ($50-$80). SawStop replaced the flesh saving cartridge for free. The blade can be extracted from the brake, but it should not be considered safe to use again. The brazing on the teeth that contacted the brake will be weak.

    I have absolutely no regrets about buying this saw. I would have nothing else in my shop.

    About the company: I have spoken to these folks many times. They are passionate people who are on a mission. I know the fellow who started this whole process made much better money and worked fewer hours in his law practice. The powertool industry has case law on its’ side, so they have no need for this invention. The industry as a whole opposes this device for purely financial reasons, just like the auto industry fought seat belts. The majority of folks who are injured on table saws are employees, not saw owners, so I cannot fault the SawStop folks for presenting this technology to the CPSC and OSHA for consideration. Now that this is on the market, case law will come to favor those injured by new saws that do not have this device. That is as it should be.

    My cost:
    SawStop, delivered, without a fence: $4000
    Sold old Unisaw, minus fence: -$650
    Accidental cartridge firings: (4) @ $120= $480
    One finger save: PRICELESS – or easily more than $3830

  29. Daniel says:

    I’d buy one (or any quality tablesaw with a stop) if the price were within reason. Most of us cannot spend $3000 just for the table saw.

    It’s ironic that Scott’s post mentions vaccines as he suggests the inventor should be able to make as much money as possible. I guess he doesn’t know that Jonas Salk (inventor of the polio vaccine) gave away his vaccine Salk said “Who owns my polio vaccine? The people! Could you patent the sun?…”

    Now, I know the inventor of sawstop is a lawyer, not everyone can be a Jonas Salk, BUT…does the guy have to gouge everyone? Does the added cost really justify the retail price tag? Initially when he still thought every manufacturer might use his sawstop he said that the added cost could come down to around $100 per unit with mass production. What happened?

  30. Brandon Curtis says:

    I have worked with one of these saws for the better part of a year and have no complaints. In fact with a tune up and a sharp blade it is one of the smoother saws I’ve used. Highly recommended.

  31. Evan E says:

    I have 2 and they are made of really high quality material, and they run really smoothly.

  32. Jim B. says:

    I have owned the Saw stop cabinet saw for about a month now and have to say that it is the finest table saw that I have personally ever used. I am a retired shop teacher and furniture builder and when replacing my old contractor saw set certain criteria. the determining one where; the need for a riving knife, good dust pickup and quality construction. The riving knife limited me to the Powermatic 2000 or the Sawstop, or a european saw. I spent some time comparing the powermatic with the sawstop and came away feeling that the sawstop was a distinct cut above in design and quality. Little things like the superior integration of the dust pickup, the ease and smoothness of changing between the guard (which is the best I have ever seen–and I actually use for the first time in my life) and the riving knife, and the smoothness of the blade height and tilt controls sold me on the machine. The blade brake was a great extra on a superior saw.

    Having used the saw now I can add that the On/Off switch that is so easy to operate with the thigh of your left leg is a great feature and the fence (once I spent time shimming it perfectly flat) is fantastic and accurate across its entire range. An old friend told me a long time ago that if you spend a little extra for something you really want you will soon forget it and always enjoy your purchase, but if you compromise you will constantly be thinking “why didn’t I get the one I really wanted?” The Sawstop is worth the extra, even if the blade brake is just a nice extra to have in case.

  33. Larry D. says:

    Almost 39 years ago (9/9/1969 at 1:45 PM) I severed the middle finger of my left hand, partially severed the fourth finger and nicked the first finger on a band saw while working in a company that made hardwood pallets as a summer job during college. It was a stupid mistake on my part (boredom from doing the same action over and over) but it has in one way or another affected my life from then on. While it’s not a circular saw the incident, naturally, instilled a healthy respect on my part for the fact that in arguments between saws and hands the saw will win every time. Trust me in my statement that ANYTHING that would have saved me from having a missing middle finger and shortened fourth finger would be worth whatever it would have cost. Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when I was working with my table saw and I, again due to a lapse in attention, nicked my index finger on my left hand. I was lucky this time, but I can guarantee you that a SawStop table saw is on my list. $2,700 is a small price to pay.

  34. Cobie says:

    I just used a Sawstop for the first time at a shop where I was working for a few days. I agree with previous posts that kickback is the biggest danger with table saws so I really appreciated the splitter that follows the blade, making it possible to use the splitter for grooving and dadoing. In my mind, that’s it’s biggest safety feature not found on PM 66′s and Unisaws. The brake is a bonus. As far as overall quality goes, it was easily on par with a PM 66, maybe better. Super smooth. The multi-groove belt is nice and quiet. For those who feel the “fear factor” keeps them safe, but who want the lower insurance rates, maybe they could just disable the brake while they’re using it, then re-enable it for their employees.

  35. drew says:

    As an amatuer woodworker, ER physician, AND an attorney, I must say that these comments are interesting indeed. While the wisdom of legislation to require a feature such as the sawstops’ on all tablesaws may be debatable, the reality is that a great number of digital amputations occur because this mechanism is NOT on all saws. In my own admittedly unscientific experience of digital amputations, the pro woodworker loses a finger as often at the amatuer. If I ran a shop, the lawyer in me would certainly scream and shout to get the shop fitted with these machines. It is simply foolish not too. Comments that this saw doesn’t prevent all injuries, that it may fail, or that one shouldn’t be sticking fingers into a tablesaw blade all miss the point: accidents happen, and all reasonable steps should be taken to prevent them, or, in the alternative, minimize the harm when the do occur. This safety feature, while surely not failsafe, represents as significant advancment.

    And as an amatuer woodworker, this saw simply rocks. Expensive, yes. But the billing for a basic reconstruction of a complex laceration in the ER is far greater. To say nothing of digital reattachement, etc.

    It should be noted that I have no stake, either with SawStop of medical malpractice. Just an ER doc who likes to make furniture (and went to law school awhile back).

  36. Jake says:

    Hello All,

    I have seen this saw and used this saw. It is perfect. The quality alone justifies the extra expense. Far better and more solid then any others.

    I have seen the demonstration of stopping the blade. I will buy it and pass it along to my son and grandson. It is an heirloom tool – and should be in every shop. My cousin who has a production shop has 2. Best thing going.

  37. ReverendTed says:

    One of the above commenters (admittedly over a year ago) suggested that he hadn’t seen anyone actually test it on a finger.
    Well, the creator did just that:
    http://www.videosift.com/video/SawStop-Tested-on-Inventor

    If you want to call “cop out,” he does introduce the finger very gingerly, but it still gave me shivers to watch.

  38. Mike Porter says:

    My saw (an old delta named Gladys) has drawn blood.
    I would upgrade it with this technology in a heart beat and would feel justified in spending quite a bit to do so….but I cant afford to just dump it and buy a new saw.
    There will come a time when all saws sold will be equipped with some such mechanism. How could that not be true?

  39. Mick McCaslin says:

    I’ve been aware of SawStop for a couple of years now. It is incredible technology.

    The commercialization of this safety feature presents an interesting, and somewhat depressing, business-versus-law dichotomy. I don’t know that the following actually happened, but if I were an existing table saw manufacturer of any significant size and was approached with this technology, I would have to pass on it and keep my mouth shut as to the reasons.

    It might appear to give me a competitive edge, something every manufacturer wants. It would certainly make my saws safer and I would want to sell a safer saw. However, acquiring the SawStop technology would either guarantee that I would be sued multiple times or decrease my total sales.

    Why? SawStop obviously increases the cost of a saw. How much isn’t particularly relevant, but clearly it’s not a $20 add. If I incorporate it in only some of my saws, then I have to assume that anyone injured on one of the unprotected saws will immediately sue me because I had the technology and didn’t apply it to the entire product line. Not all of those people will sue, but a great many will do so and they stand a better chance of winning the case than if all I build are saws without this safety feature.

    Conversely, if I put the technology on every saw I build, my prices go up significantly. As evidenced in the above discussions, many woodworkers are unwilling to pay the additional cost, so the number of saws I can sell will almost surely drop off. I will lose sales, profitability, and potentially lose investors.

    Finally, if I walk away from the opportunity, my sales will remain unchanged and I won’t see any more lawsuits. No added risk. In short, the upside for an established manufacturer to acquire this technology is nil, but the downside is very likely quite large.

    On the other hand, since the inventor went the route of a startup company, he can include it as the main selling point of all of his saws. He doesn’t have to worry about loss of sales, loss of profit, and loss of investors as a result of the decision.

    Unfortunately, a startup venture may not be able to capitalize on the years of design knowledge in an established manufacturer. They might actually introduce design flaws that make their saw less useful or less safe, although it doesn’t sound like that happened in this case.

    What is even worse, a startup company does not have the name recognition, reputation, and global reach of a well established manufacturer. That means a saw with an outstanding safety feature won’t reach as many people as it would otherwise.

    As a side note, stepping back into my hypothetical manufacturer’s role, I may not agree with legislation which requires that I include this technology in my equipment. However, I prefer that to the risk inherent in acquiring the SawStop technology as a commercial venture in which I’m the only manufacturer offering that feature. If it’s legislated, my competition has to include it as well, so my risk is much lower.

    Again, I don’t know what all of those manufacturers were thinking when they took a pass, but that’s what I would have done if I were in their shoes.

  40. Clayguy says:

    For the cost of repairing the loss of three fingertips, I could have bought 2 saws and had plenty of money left over. And yes, the inventor has put his hand into the blade! It’s way too bad that lawyers now run the world….

  41. Carl Dahlberg says:

    I have the SawStop contractor saw. For the price I paid I probably could have bought a lower-end cabinet saw but I think it was well worth the expense. Apart from the contact detection system it is an excellent saw and I don’t find myself wishing I had something bigger. If I ever find it bogs down when I am cutting thick stock I will probably switch to a thin-kerf blade.

    I bought the SawStop because I work in an emergency room and I have personally have seen many more injuries from hand/blade contact than from kickback. The most common scenario is a shop worker who is doing something repetitive and briefly loses focus. I have never met anyone who was using the blade guards at the time. If you are wondering if the contact detection system is worth the money trust me when I say: thumb amputations suck.

  42. Allan says:

    I apologize if this comes of poorly, but I think for a person to say “The owner is a dick head for charging so much” are also the same people who are going to be saying “The surgeon is a dick head for charging so much” after an accident.

    Another perspective is: Look at this like insurance- Take the cost of a ‘normal’ saw, and subtract it from the cost of a SawStop. Spread that cost over the life of your saw. If you added that yearly/monthly cost to your insurance with the (almost) absolute guarantee that you and your employees get to keep fingers attached, is it worth it?

    And hell, if you’re worried about the brake going off because of a false-positive, tell the employees that you’ll charge them whenever they set it off and it isn’t an accident. Some guys might get annoyed, but the first person who gets to keep their hands working will shut the nay-sayers up.

  43. JOHN says:

    I BOUGHT ONE. YES, SPENT THE MONEY AND NEVER REGRETTED IT. THE SAWSTOP IS A QUALITY SAW ON PAR WITH GENERAL AND POWERMATIC .THE PIECE OF MIND THAT COMES WITH THE SAW IS WORTH THE EXTRA MONEY. I LOST A DIGIT IN MY TWENTIES AND UNDERSTAND WHAT IT IS LIKE TO HAVE A SURGEON PULL A KNUCLE FROM A FINGER AND PLUCK INTO A PAN AND THE FEELING AND SOUND THAT COMES WITH THAT. WE ALL MAKE MISTAKES DAILY BUT NORMALLY FORGET THE MISTAKE AS SOON AS WE MAKE IT. THAT IS NOT POSSIBLE WHEN YOU MAKE AN INSTANTANEUOUS MISTAKE ON A TABLE SAW. I USED TO TEACH SAFETY IN THE MILITARY AND WHEN IT HAPPENED TO ME I AND AN ENTIRE MILITARY COMMAND WAS SHOCKED. IT ALL HAPPENS FASTER THAN YOU CAN BLINK AND IN MY CASE WAS SPRAYED IN MY FACE WITH MY OWN BLOOD FASTER THAN I COULD BLINK. EVERY DAY THAT (i am now 51 years old)SINGLE MOMENT OF STUPIDITY RESURFACES WHEN I REACH FOR A RAZOR BLADE TO SHAVE. WHAT I AM TRYING TO SAY IS THAT YOU MAKE A MISTAKE WITH YOUR CHECKBOOK YOU CAN FIX THAT BUT WHEN YOU MAKE A MISTAKE WITH YOUR BODY ITS PERMANENT. BUY A SAWSTOP. YES, ITS MORE MONEY THAN MOST BUT THE HELL WITH ALL THE OTHER B.S. YOU HAVE HEARD. IN ALL HONESTY, I HAVE NO CONNECTION WITH SAWSTOP EXCEPT BEING A CUSTOMER. SAWSTOP HAS TREATED ME EXCEPTIONALLY WELL AND HAVE NO REGRETS.

  44. Brian Smith says:

    I have read alot of feedback on here about anti-kickback blade guards and Saw Stop. First let me say that I am a floorlayer and have been using a table saw for about 15 years. I recently cut 3 fingers off and did extensive nerve damage to the remaining 2. The saw that I was using did not have the blade guard on it and thankfully. For some reason seasoned woodworker seem to think that a guard is always a good thing. I could not disagree more. For one thing the guard only protects the hands if they are coming down on top of the blade, not from going into it. Second the anti-kickback pawls (in my case)would prevent your hand from being removed from the saw. I know what many of you are going to say, remove it from the back. It does’nt work that way in the split second that this happens. Most guards on contractor saws are flimsy and poorly engineered. I have seen 3 plastic guards that have shattered from coming into contact with the blade sending flying debris back at the user.

    Saw Stop is an excellent invention. The fact that the technology exists whether tested long enough or not for false positives proves that the ability to make a table saw safer is possible. In 1999 the inventor created Saw Stop in his garage with limited funding. The fact that the table saw manufacturers did not use Saw Stop is irrelevant because they have unlimited funding and a huge resource in research and development. Furthermore in 2006 many of them stated that they were developing their own guards. That is now almost 4 years ago. In that time about 280,000 people have been hurt. If the technology exists it is the responsibility of every saw manufacturer to produce the safest possible machine that they can, otherwise why have any safety features on any product (cars, electrical devices, child seats, etc.). The auto industry blackballed the inventor of the air bag and were reluctant to improve safety of any kind until they were forced to do so through lawsuits and legislation by Congress. How many lives were saved by that. Saw manufacturers will not make safer products until they are made to, it is not financially feasible to their bottom line. None of these companies would suffer in the long run by installing such a device but you and I will. But hey, it’s only our health.

  45. Michael says:

    I knew about these saws, and thought the same things. I’m careful, won’t happen to me. Well, some how it happened. Not quite sure how, but about a year ago I sawed off the tip of my pinky, and across 4 fingers on a Dewalt table saw. The doctor had to remove the tip of my ring finger, and my index finger was shorten a bit because the bone damage was so severe. My middle fingers tip got chewed up as the blade magically dance around it. How more damage wasn’t done is beyond me. But that finger is nearly healed as the skin grows toward the tip of the finger; my feeling is the damage will be all, but unnoticeable in 6 months to a year. Now the blade didn’t remove anything, but the pinky, and cut into the other fingers, but your talking about 1/8″ wide blade cutting across the all these fingers, if it cuts clear through bone — Well, that’s it. We’re not taking a tiger- or alligator-bite, or slice the thickness of a knife blade… The saw blade removes 1/8″ of skin, flesh, and bone. It’s gone… the saw turns whatever it slices into into splatter, and saw dust. Typically, for the length that remains past the cut — Well, I’m not Shia LaBeouf, who rolled his F150 on his hand and still going through surgeries… So, no attempt was taken to remove bone from my hip and fuse it or whatever… The remains of the finger were shortened and reshaped… I wish to God I would of purchase this saw, but I didn’t. I was lucky though — I’m a software engineer and can still type and year on I’m gaining more and more use of my fingers, that and I’m lucky the QWERTY keyboard favors left handed people. I’m left handed and the damage was to my right hand. My prayer is one day medicine will allow me to regrow em, otherwise take it from me… Buy this saw. Save yourself the grief, and the unimaginable pain you’ll feel when the doctor removes the stitches from stubbier fingers. Peace be with you.

  46. Gough50 says:

    I’ve been looking at the SawStop for some time but, like lots of others here, thought the price was too high. A trip to the ER to have the tip of my left index finger sewn up cost about the same as the SawStop contractor saw. At least my current shop is right across the street from the hospital. I think I’ll spring for the SawStop before I move into my new shop 14 miles out of town.

  47. Marc says:

    I’ve been a hobbyist woodworker for over 6 years. In that time I’ve sliced about an eighth of an inch off my left index finger, and a little more off my left ring finger. The index finger was injured on the table saw, the ring finger on the Jointer. Both injuries were amazingly similar: I reached back to remove debris from the table, after turning off the power. It’s been several years now since I sustained those injuries. The feeling in both fingertips is often numb. I hung the glove I was wearing on the table saw incident over my blade guard for a year to remind me what an idiot I was. I feel I have a healthy respect for power woodworking equipment. A spinning router bit still makes me nervous.

    I’m getting a new table saw after the first of the year. My choices have come down to the usual (with the addition of the new Unisaw, which I’ve eliminated since it’s almost the same price as the SawStop and not any safer). I hate the idea of spending so much money on a saw. Is the SawStop technology worth $1200.00? I want to say, NO. I REALLY WANT TO SAY, NO. But a little voice inside my head keeps repeating the Clint Eastwood line: “So, do you feel lucky, punk?”

  48. Hmmm says:

    Why is this even necessary?

    Surely there’s a low-tech way to cut wood just as well without putting the fingers anywhere near the blade.

    Can’t the blade be inside of a clear assembly that that wood travels under?

    Often nerds (like me) think of a high-tech solution when there are braindead low-tech solutions right under our noses.

  49. Mitch says:

    @hmmmm, several people have mentioned why it’s necessary in the long long list of responses above. There are some operations when you can’t use the blade guard. And keeping your fingers away from the blade sounds obvious. But these accidents occur to even the most experienced, careful, and thoughtful users.

    If the naysayers saw the saw injuries that come through the ER, I’d bet they’d change their minds. (also, people falling off of ladders, off of deer stands and the huge one, the daily bread and butter business of the ER – old people falling because they’re old)

  50. chip says:

    Deep down inside every one wants one of these. The biggest problem is that some of us just don’t have the money to buy one. It’s either spend all the money you can get your hands on or buy nothing at all. For those of us that enjoy woodwork as a hobby this puts us in a real bind. Seems to me that the inventor of this technology has maybe lost sight of the concept of profits by numbers of sales. I’d rather sell a lot of these and make a few bucks on each one and help my fellow man than sell a few and make a few bucks and help a small number of people. What a pity!

  51. alexander galvin says:

    We have one of these and have had a number of false positives. We replaced the harness (got a free one) and got a couple of cartridges (free), but finally gave up and just buy them. It makes to feel like a criminal to claim that nothing set the saw off – and all you have to go on is your worker. In the first few cases we returned the cartridge for analysis but they couldn’t explain to us why this was triggered.
    I say “not.” I’m not sure whether others have had the same problem, but ours seems to blow about every six months. It tends to ruin the blade and sets up a good bit of ill feeling when you’re stuck between your worker and the people at Sawstop as to the cause.
    They should have a straightforward policy: if you send it back and they can’t tell you the cause, a replacement cartridge is free.

  52. Mark - Iowa says:

    My profile – 61 year old, attorney, been woodworking since 7th grade shop as hobbiest.
    I have found the posts interesting. I too viewed one on the floor of local woodshop store, and started thinking. For sometime I have been saving gift cards for a major purchase for my woodshop. As I consider what to purchase, I am most impressed with the posts talking about the “what if” factor. The nay-sayers say, “I am safe and attentive and it will never happen that I put my finger in the wrong place.”
    I used to drive as part of my job (before becoming an attorney) – 50,000 miles a year. I considered myself a good, safe, experienced driver – attentive of what not only I was doing but what other drivers were doing. But, once every great while, I would say to myself about my driving, “Damn, I won’t do that again. Or, Damn, I lucked out on that one.” One time at a stop sign at a highway, I looked both ways, and pulled out. Only to realize I just pulled out in front of a semi coming my way. I hit the gas, and asked myself, “where the F did he come from?” The truckdriver was probably saying “What the F is that idiot doing?” Luckily I got out of his way.
    I consider myself safe and attentive around my shop tools too. I occasionally instruct others on woodworking, and watch their hands, and every once in a while grab them and move them over a foot. But, every once in a while, I have to admit, I say to myself, “Damn, I won’t do that again.” If that “Damm” would result in my finger tip going the wrong direction across my room, what do I then say to my wife? “Damn, I could have spent my gift cards on a saw that would not have taken my finger off, but I bought something else.” I think I can predict what my wife would say she would prefer I spend my gift cards to purchase if she has to wrap my hand and drive me to the emergency room.

  53. Carl says:

    HOT! I have one and love it – best saw that I have ever personally used.

    When I purchased it, I struggled with many of the same decisions as others have mentioned here (cost and fear of false positives being the primary detractors). One day, my six year old son asked me “Dad, can I use your tools when I am old enough?” I ordered the Saw Stop that day.

  54. Chuck Truesdell says:

    I have owned the saw for at least 4 years. I own a professional wood working company. This is a very well built saw and I have not had any problem with it for 3 years. During that time I have cut treated lumber, wet wood, OSB, all without any false firing (in my manual I could not find anything stating that these items would trigger the stop – but that doesn’t mean it is not there). Last year it would not start and was flashing mysterious codes. After calling Sawstop to help dioagnose the problem, I was told they had upgraded the computer/cartridge system. Sawstop sent a replacement free of charge. This was very generous. Unfortunately, it appears the new system is quite a bit more sensative. My manual states “conductive materias such as aluminum and other metals , carbon fiber materials, etc…..and must be cut in bypass mode. No mention of treated lumber, wet wood, OSB that I can find. I triggered one cartridge the first day on a piece of treated lumber. Tonight, I triggered the second on 3/4″ OSB. So it appears to be kind of a guessing game as to what you dare cut without using the bypass mode. Possibly the newer saws have a more detailed list of what should be run in bypass. Right now, I am going to go with the theory that if it isn’t solid wood, it will trigger the cartridge. Apparently the glue in the OSB conducts electricity. I assume that is going to aply to any wood composition product.

    As with all the high tec products it is great while it is working. Each false firing blows over $100. If the electronics fail, I hate to think what it would cost to replace the items that SawStop so generously replaced without charge. All and all, it is a great saw.

  55. Rob Gworek says:

    I agree with chip’s comment (Nov 2009) about volume profits. I just bought a $200 Sears beginner saw. I wish I could buy a $700 contractor Sawstop when it comes out. But I guess I’ll just have to be careful. I was always an airbag proponent in cars 10 or 15 years before they made them mandatory. And we were 40 years behind on cigarettes and cancer. Someone is always going to point to your right to destroy yourself needlessly.

  56. Roger Steele says:

    Until 6 years ago I was in charge of an R&D and Quality lab in an Oriented Strand Board (OSB) Manufacturing Facility. We cut Quality samples of our panels to be tested at least 6 times each 24 hours and in an R&D project we would cut up hundreds of panels each week into samples as small as 1″ wide by 6″ long. I had 12 technicians using the Table saw and the panels we cut up were as large as 4′ X 12′ and from 1/4″ to 1 1/8″ thick.

    About 7-8 years ago I stumbled across an article on the Saw Stop Safety system on the internet. I had not seen the saw personally but they did have the weiner video on their website. I sent the information to our Senior Safety and Technical Managers in our Corporate head office and within a couple months all 12 of our OSB Quality labs were told to order one of the Cabinet Makers saws.

    I can understand why the cost would keep the average handy man from purchasing one but if I were to set up a home shop I would not hesitate to spend the extra money for one as I have children who would want to use it eventually.

    In the 25 years of our mills operation we have only had 4 saw accidents, 2 on the table saw. Every one of the people who got hurt were sure their fingers would never get that close to the blade!

  57. thetommyhawk says:

    I am one of the suckers who purchased the Sawstop! I purchased the 3 hp professional cabinet saw with the 52″ pro t-glide fence. It is the finest table I have ever had the pleasure to cut on. I’ve cut on Powermatic, Jet, Ridgid, and Delta. My last saw was a Powermatic 2000. In my opinion, the SS beats all of them hands down. The set-up was more precise and easier and it’s cuts are every bit as precise. To all of those who choose to ignore the laws of physics in regard to what the torque from a spinning blade can do to repositioning a piece of lumber along with your hand, would be well served to give it a second evaluation. I have seen two accidents ……. in both cases, the users hand was not close to the blade when the accident happened. One was 6 to 8 inches away from the blade when the piece took of on him! I would also state that I bought the stop saw when I had other people wanting to use my shop. I wanted to protect them as well as reduce my liability. In regard to price, It was the same price as the Powermatic 2000 and as I stated earlier …… in my opinion, it’s an equal if not better piece of equipment plus …… it is much safer. Reconsider guys …….. it’s a cheap investment when you consider the unthinkable!

  58. Sean says:

    I wish the SS was available outside the US. I used my brothers table saw just less than 2 weeks ago – and have a nicely mangled and still painful thumb to show for it. The thought of my brother working alone at home on the table saw makes me nervous.

    Just for my peace of mind, I would gladly buy my brother the SS. I hope other manufacturers get involved so that this tech can spread world wide.

  59. Bill says:

    I am 65 and have been working with power tools all my life. I’ve seen several accidents and often wonder how those people are doing now.

    Recently, I was making a replacement gauge panel for a classic yacht and had to cut several holes to accommodate the gauges. I couldn’t find a hole saw or forsner’s bit that would accept the unique gauge size. Running out of ideas, I remembered seeing an “adjustable hole cutter” bit at my local woodworking retailer and called to see if they still had them. The sales guys guy said, ” Oh, you mean the ‘widow maker’. Yea, we got ‘em.” After successfully cutting 5 out of the six holes needed, I was about halfway through the last hole when my drill press got tired of cutting and simply grabbed the entire panel. In and instant, the 3′ x 4′ panel disregarded any jury rig clamping I had devised and spun at the speed of light into the back post, exploding into a thousand pieces. It was at that precise moment I completely understood sales guy’s choice of words.

    If you have the money, get the SS. If you don’t have the money, get it anyway.

    I

  60. patdee says:

    Michael W said, on June 12, 2007

    “Not everybody needs or wants this technology. If it truly is the “Best Thing Going” it will prove itself in the marketplace. Trying to ram it down everybody’s throat is a little arrogant.”

    I agree!

    Today, the “Saw Stop” is one of THE most popular table saws EVER built. At least in the US.

    I have not bought one of these, because I am pleased with my Powermatic 66. But if I was in the market for one, I WOULD buy the “Saw Stop” hands down; over ANY other saw in the world. I mean that.

    Even a Felder or Martin!

    They have engineering features NO other manufacturer of table saws has ever equaled, not to mention “exceeded”.

    IE: It’s raising and lowering engineering is exemplary.

    It’s dust collection engineering is almost 100% effective. The quality of its table top and extension wings is very fine and engineered extremely well. The ease of raising or tilting the blade is amongst the best ever.

    It’s “Riving knife install/uninstall” is second to none. Takes less than 5 seconds. It’s extension table tops are as smooth as glass and quite attractive.

    It’s handles and other items are well designed and feel as good as any ever.

    Compare this:

    If I had to change belts on my “66″, I would HAVE to remove the dadgum TOP of the saw. That is ridiculous. It only takes moments on the SS.

    Do ya realize what it takes to remove and replace the top of a cast iron table on a tables saw; AND it must be realigned for “parallel with the miter slot” when you get it back on?

    Talk about dumb!

    To boot; it takes a very strong man to lift that top single handedly.

    The SS mobile stand is also exemplary.

    Adding grease is via industry standard “grease fittings”. NOT hit and miss with a rag, brush or fingers, etc.

    The owner’s manual is THE best I have EVER seen by any manufacturer of any product.

    The “STOP” button was and is for most: the largest of all. They set the “standard” in most every way; when it comes to the way they tackle an engineering problem and/or design features.

    The speed of the blade lowering below the top and stopping the blade is unbelievably quick AND designed to be as fool-proof as possible.

    It’s blade “guard” and “riving” knife follows the “excelled” European format with one exception; which I believe SS needs to change.

    It should be equal to what Felder, Format and Hammer saws do.

    The standard way that Delta, Powermatic and others engineered the very important blade guards was archaic and still is, not to mention “aggravating”; and I believe one of the main reasons most simply did not want to fuss with it.

    Etc, etc, and etc.

    Unlike at first: the replacement expended “Stop” (if is ever needed-Jesus forbid) is now less than 80 bucks; at least where I shop.

    Again, a “safety” minded woodworker should not trade in their saws to own the SS. But if you need a new saw, I could recommend NO other 10″ table saw in the world; as apposed to this one.

    For the money overall, it is the best IMO.

    Note: I know nothing of “lawsuits” and the owner being a “jerk”. I just love the SS. I did meet him when they FIRST came out with it; at the by-annual “IWF’ in Atlanta years ago.

    I found them to be extremely knowledgeable, friendly and professional.

    I STILL love my Powermatic; albeit the aforementioned aggravations. It’s dust port is worthless; as are most all others over these many years. Another dumb act on companies.

    It’s like my Delta 14″ band saw. It has got to have THE most inefficient dust port EVER put on any piece of equipment. And would you believe this: EVEN today on MOST band saws they put the 4″ dust port on the “back” side of the blade.

    Hear me manufacturers: The dust comes off the FRONT of the blade dummies! NOT off the back of the blade! The DC port (no smaller than 4″ and preferably 5″) should be on the FRONT of the BS! I have seen it done and it is awesome.

    One of these days I am going to cut a 5 inch hole on the FRONT of that 14″ boat anchor; connect a 5″ DC hose to it; and take that factory installed 1″ port “joke” off…….. Then mail it to Delta and say. “Put it where tha sun don’ shine!” ‘Cuz I got one now that works. No more coughing my head off all night after using that beast.

    And “THAT goes for the Jackass ya rode in on TOO! HeeHee.”

    I’ll guaranteed ya that if SS came out with a BS, they would engineer it right. Bless their hearts.

    They did it right when they FIRST built it; and they are still making it almost impossible to improve upon.

    By the way: I am NOT affiliated with ANY one at SS company. And this includes evenly indirectly; in the most remotest of scenarios.

    But I am a mechanical engineer and I have found this saw to be engineered better “overall” than any saw I have ever “drooled” over.

    My hat is off to its engineers (mostly), it’s management and marketing personnel.

    May Jesus bless them for what they have done.

    pat

    Reply

  61. patdee says:

    I wish to add a final comment in brackets below; to my previous post.

    Where I said:

    “It’s like my Delta 14″ band saw. It has got to have THE most inefficient dust port EVER put on any piece of equipment. And would you believe this: EVEN today on MOST band saws they put the 4″ dust port on the “back” side of the blade. [AND.....it is traveling at 3500 feet per minute in a downward direction!]

    Hear me manufacturers: The dust comes off the FRONT of the blade dummies! NOT off the back of the blade! The DC port (no smaller than 4″ and preferably 5″) should be on the FRONT of the BS! I have seen it done and it is awesome.”

    Add also the following:

    [The 5" hole should be cut IN the bottom "door" on the front of the BS; centered just below the point where the blade leaves the bottom rollers. Then install a 5" port and connect a 5" hose; or a 4" hose if that is all your DC permits.

    Note: If you have purchased a BS with a 4" port on the side, back and/or bottom rear of the saw, install a plastic 4" adjustable blastgate onto one (or both) of the ports.

    Then adjust these "gates" to control the efficiency of dust collection. This would create a powerful "cross" counter force to the high speed dust coming down off the blade traveling at 3500FPM. It would force that interminable downward flow of dust into a 90 degree (YES 90 degrees) tornado-like a cross whirlwind; and 5" of vacuum would "suck" it up like gangbusters; very near the point where the dust is being generated! And I believe it would work like a charm. Promise!]

    pat

  62. Michael T. Lemen says:

    I get sick everytime I see that law Office ad suggesting that this device be made to be made mandatory on table saws. I know for most of us the cost of a good table is expensive enough without adding the cost of this device. What bothers me about the ad is that people are no longer willing to accept the responsibility of taking care of themselves. Respect your equipment don’t fear it, wear eye protections and watch where you put your fingers. I’ve been using table saws and all other shop equipment since High School ( 1960s ) and was taught quite a bit of safety precautions then that I still use now. In all that time I have never once cut my fingers I have not one scar on any of them and these tools have been part of my and part of my hobby. I know if I had to pay the extra that this safety accessory cost I would not have a table saw, I couldn’t afford it. To me what this Law office is doing is akin to racketeering , pretty much telling you have this equipment or suffer the quancequences . If we cut off a finger it has more to do with not paying attention then it does not having this accessory and I’m not going to have ANYONE telling me I have to have one PERIOD !

  63. jacob lemen says:

    i would not put in the money for the saw stop because i am a very safe person but i my school does have a saw stop and i like knowing if i do get hurt on the saw stop it will be very minimum damage to me and hands.

  64. Terry says:

    I have been doing home improvements for over 30 years but for some reason had a temporary loss of attention and nicked my thumb on my tablesaw. Safety was emphasized at work being in skilled trades. I have had very few injuries in my life and this really shook me up. I could’ve lost my thumb from this little bit of neglect to safety.
    I recall when this product was offered as an accessory for $200. Now it appears greed is more important than safety.
    Product hot Price not

  65. James says:

    I believe that the Saw Stop is the most overrated product to be introduced in several years. A perfect gimmick! All of the public schools that I know of are switching to this ridiculous idea. As everyone knows we need to be protected from ourselves being that we are no longer able to perform any tasks without an overabundance of government warnings and safety equipment. I find it hard to believe that there is anyone who would want this stupid technology mandated. REALLY? More government intrusion? The table saw is not even the most dangerous machine in the shop. It is so simple to make a jig or push block so that your fingers never come anywhere near the saw blade. Also, what happens to these dumbed down high school students when they go from the warm safe confines of a school wood shop to the actual cold world where a table saw guard or Saw Stop is not on the job site. They will have to keep a bucket by the table saw for severed fingers. If you want to waste your money on this machine, brakes and saw blades thats up to you.
    To the blogger that would like this technology mandated by our ravenous, gigantic government, just wait a few years until the patent expires. Everyone will offer this unnecessary technology and you never know it probably will be mandated to raise the cost for everyone anyway. In closing, if you can’t figure out how to operate a table saw without running your fingers through the rotating blade it’s probably best if you were to choose a different hobby or profession.

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