Measuring approximately 22” x 38”, the contractor table saw is then next size up from the bench style. It typically sits on an open attached stand or base which may or may not be on wheels. It weighs between 200-300 pounds and is still portable but requires more than one person to lift. This style of table saw is good for woodworking shops, hobbyists, small contractors and DIYers. The 1-2 hp motors have enough power and stability to handle more heavy duty job site work and workshop demands. One of the benefits to these saws is that they still run on standard electrical circuits.
Kickback is probably more dangerous than cutting yourself with the blade because it can happen so easily and without notice. Kickback happens when the wood becomes jammed and is forced back toward you. This is not a nice experience and often results in pretty serious injuries. Table saws are fitted with a riving knife and often an anti-kickback pawl, make sure these are fitted correctly.
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Next, you’ll want to focus on protecting your eyes. You’ll need a sturdy pair of safety goggles to make sure you keep your eyes covered at all times. If you don’t take precaution with your eyes they could become injured or irritated by debris that is kicked back from the machine or sawdust that floats in the air. Having itchy, irritated, or otherwise injured eyes is a work hazard that is best to avoid – not having clear eyesight complicates things greatly and puts you at risk for other injuries.
Once you’ve made sure that the table saw is unplugged and there aren’t any extra materials in your workspace, you should turn your attention to the miter slot. See also related: Top 10 Miter Saws here. You’ll want to make sure that the miter (click here for sliding miter saws) slot is parallel to the blade. It is important that all measurements are precise and exact – nothing short of parallel will do. Once you’ve measured the blade and the miter slot, you’ll need to check the fencing as well.
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Along with thinking about how the table saw will be used now, it is important to also consider how you will be using it in the future. Will your usage increase or decrease? Many woodworkers may turn a hobby into a fulltime profession if they are talented at what they do. Why are these considerations important? Because they will give you better insight into the kind of money you should spend on your table. If you are going to go into business for yourself in a year or two, spending the money for a high-quality table now is a good idea. It will save you from having to buy another table in the future to accommodate your new needs as a business rather than just a hobbyist.