I tested both saws and found their performance similar, though thanks to the rolling stand, I was more likely to reach for the DeWalt. If you don’t value the stand, the SKILSAW packs a lot of power in a small form and is the preferred job site saw of several local contractors I know. If you’re a weekend warrior like me, you may value the stand enough to spend the extra money on the DeWalt.

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The built-in rack and pinion fence system, which acts as a guide for boards that runs parallel to the blade, adjusts by hand and is both easy to use and very accurate. I learned to trust the fence and its measurements once I got the saw set up, and it made my workflow faster knowing I didn’t have to measure everything four times to double-check the DeWalt.

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The continuous-read, tape measure–type scale is ingenious and easy to read, and Ridgid’s lifetime warranty covers it against breakage. The Ridgid saw has the most versatile miter gauge with holes and slots for mounting extensions and accessories. The designers have cleverly fashioned the stand to also serve as a left-side outfeed support for ripping plywood.

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With a 32½-inch rip capacity and motor capable of up to 4800 rpm, the DWE7491RS is more than prepared to effectively deliver 3⅛-inch deep cuts to thick slabs of wood. Happy customers sing this machine’s praises, reporting that it’s as sturdy as a table saw can get — plus, it’s easy to use, and assembling it is a cinch. They do however note that workers looking to produce finer cuts should seek out a replacement blade since the one provided is more suited for fast, rough work.

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Hybrid saws combine the lighter weight of the contractor saw with the more powerful motor and sturdier construction of the cabinet saw, at a price that’s easier for the occasional woodworker to stomach. They can run about $1,200 or so, and weigh in at under 300 pounds. Their motors are generally in the 1.5 to 1.75 HP range, and can be used with standard 110V outlets.

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