(Topic ID: 224101)

Table or band saw!?

By sebastiann

3 years ago


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  • 40 posts
  • 27 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by Luckydogg420
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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    #1 3 years ago

    Hello,
    I've wanted to know your opinion what is more convenient for a small hobby workshop, a table saw or perhaps a band saw?

    #2 3 years ago

    That would depend on what you are working on. I think I get more out of the table saw.

    #3 3 years ago

    That depends on the work you think you might be doing or what you might be cutting.

    Personally, I don't use a table saw that often. Maybe a small handful of times per year.

    A scroll saw might be another tool to consider--you could make your own plastic protectors with that. Although a laser cutter might be something interesting to look into if you start going in that direction.

    Right now, I have a a jigsaw, some hand saws, a circular saw (along with saw horses), and a small drill press. So far, those have served me well. Space is an issue, so I don't have room for anything too large (like a table saw). For larger tools, I know a few people with larger workshops who don't mind me asking to use a table saw on occasion. Although, this usually requires some advance planning to make sure you can accomplish everything in one trip.

    #4 3 years ago

    bought a tablesaw first after i had a compound sliding miter saw and skil saw. awesome tool that with jigs you can make is a very versatile tool. really handy when im making rustic furniture and breaking down stock. made enough extra money from the furniture to get the 17 inch band saw from grizzly and that thing is great and able to do a lot of things with that i dont have to use the table saw as much. get both!! haha.

    #5 3 years ago
    Quoted from ForceFlow:

    Right now, I have a a jigsaw, some hand saws, a circular saw (along with saw horses), and a small drill press. So far, those have served me well.

    This is a good point. I use my handheld saws quite a bit more than my tables. For example, to cut large stock or make a cabinet, you are going to find a table saw or band saw very impractical. Cutting a bunch of balusters for a deck rail is a good job for a table saw. Cutting precise small shapes, a good job for a bandsaw. Larger shapes, I use a jigsaw. Using the right tool for the job is more important.

    #6 3 years ago

    Going along with what others have alluded to, if your shop is "small" a table saw is a tall order. A good one requires a bit of space, and if you intended to primarily use it to cut large pieces, like sheets of plywood, you will need even more space for clearance in front and behind.

    A couple of sawhorses, some clamps and a good straight edge guide to use with a circular saw (or upgrade to a track saw) is likely be better for flexibility, price and storage space needed after use.

    A similar comparison can be made with a bandsaw vs a jigsaw.

    The one benchtop or larger tool that I think is a significant upgrade over a handheld version is a drill press vs a handheld drill. I have not been impressed with the guides available for handheld drills when you want to ensure accurate and straight drilling.

    But with all of that being said, and again, without knowing the specifics of what you would be working on, I give the edge to a bandsaw - the bandsaw tends to be safer (less incidence of kick back) and even the larger models tend to be more space efficient vs table saws.

    #7 3 years ago

    I've witnessed three accidents with table saws, worst was seeing someone cut 4 fingers off. I won't own one.

    #8 3 years ago

    They are both useful in their own right. I have a Dewalt contractor table saw I built into an 8' rolling workbench, so I can rip full sheets of ply much easier. But unless you are doing some major projects, it can sit a lot. I use my jig saw and small band saw about the same amount. The jig saw will do finer contours, while the band saw will do faster work on more broad contours. One of the best bang for the buck tools I own and hasn't been mentioned so far is the Kobalt mini chop saw. I've used the crap out of that, and also have a cutout built into my workbench for it. It's usually around $125 at Lowe's. You won't build a deck with it, but you can do quite a bit without taking up a ton of room.

    #9 3 years ago

    Depends on what you are trying to do. If you are going to resaw a lot of stock, you'll need a bandsaw. If you want precision and the ability to rip stock to precise widths, then go with the table saw. But dont skimp. You get what you pay for. A cheap tablesaw will produce inaccurate cuts and frustration.

    For me, I would go with the tablesaw.

    #10 3 years ago

    As everybody says, all depends on what you are trying to do. Table saws are fairly limited in usage for regular things. We use our sliding compound mitre saw all the time. As for band saw, never used one but I see these at the big box stores in case you only need a small/occasional one.

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    #11 3 years ago
    Quoted from DBLM:

    As everybody says, all depends on what you are trying to do. Table saws are fairly limited in usage for regular things. We use our sliding compound mitre saw all the time. As for band saw, never used one but I see these at the big box stores in case you only need a small/occasional one.
    [quoted image]

    That band saw is slow speed and designed for use with metals. It would take you quite a long time to cut wood or plastic strips with it if that is what you are working with.

    #12 3 years ago

    Like others have said it is entirely dependent on what you are doing or planning on doing. they are totally not good for the same things. as far as cutting fingers off I've seen bandsaws take them off just as quick as a table saw, know how to use your tools properly and safely. if you are worried about it get that table saw that senses your finger (or a hot dog) and locks the blade instantly if it contacts it.. saw stop? something like that.

    #13 3 years ago
    Quoted from wayout440:

    Using the right tool for the job is more important.

    This

    Quoted from bintzknocker:

    But dont skimp. You get what you pay for.

    And this

    #14 3 years ago

    Remember that joke about the guy who prays to god to win the lottery, god says meet me half way, buy a ticket...

    Maybe you could tell us what you want to do.

    Then we can get into a nice long Pinside discussion about the “right way “ to do It.

    #15 3 years ago
    Quoted from sebastiann:

    Hello,
    I've wanted to know your opinion what is more convenient for a small hobby workshop, a table saw or perhaps a band saw?

    That's like asking, what should I buy....a car or a truck? Depends on what you do with them.

    With what I do, I never use a band saw but I use a table saw all the time.

    #16 3 years ago
    Quoted from Electrocute:

    I've witnessed three accidents with table saws, worst was seeing someone cut 4 fingers off. I won't own one.

    Have you ever heard of sawstop? Virtually impossible to loose a finger

    #17 3 years ago
    Quoted from Luckydogg420:

    Have you ever heard of sawstop? Virtually impossible to loose a finger

    We have a site that has one. They’re pretty cool.

    #18 3 years ago

    Table saw is by far my most used tool in my shop. Set it up right, build a sled along with a few simple jigs and nothing can touch it as far as getting accruate and duplicatable cuts done quickly. Maybe I’m odd here but I actually don’t use my table saw for breaking down large sheets, for that I use a circular saw on a clamped on track.

    It is however a space hog. I have mine on a steel caster tray that lets me prop it up onto casters easily then move it in and out of a useable space then set it back down.

    This is what I use to help get it out of the way when not using it:

    Adjustable Mobile Base HTC2000 for... amazon.com link »

    #19 3 years ago

    For me after Years of remodeling and construction the best bang for the buck is a sliding compound miter box. I have done some creative cutting with this setup and with the folding base its the simplest go to tool for minimal space. Put thousands of hours on it and never an issue.

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    #20 3 years ago
    Quoted from JodyG:

    That band saw is slow speed and designed for use with metals. It would take you quite a long time to cut wood or plastic strips with it if that is what you are working with.

    Thanks for the insight into this.

    #21 3 years ago
    Quoted from DBLM:

    Thanks for the insight into this.

    There are Bandsaws for metal and there are bandsaws for wood. Different animals...

    #22 3 years ago

    As others have said, you're asking about two very different tools that do very different things.

    Both of them can also be extremely devious in how they will try to kill you.

    The major hazard with a table saw isn't actually losing fingers, it's having the saw kick the work back at you. A 3HP table saw can easily throw an offcut hard enough that you'd think it was a crossbow bolt. I've seen such pieces puncture 32oz glue bottles like they were tissue paper. That's also probably fast enough to go right through your forearm.

    Band saws, on the other hand, lull you into a false sense of safety, since they don't kick, and they're generally a lot quieter and less dramatic. It's way easier than you would think to lose track of where one or more of your fingers are when you're feeding a piece in while following a pencil line.

    I own both: a Delta Unisaw and a Rigid 12" bandsaw with a 6" riser. The table saw often does double duty as a setup table, since it is, by necessity essentially dead flat, so even when it's not being used, it's not wasting space. With some creativity and effort, you can build a fantastic set of jigs for either one that will let you do all kinds of things. Neither one, though, is a "wood processor" that will do the hard work for you. Not unlike a musical instrument, you'll need to spend some serious time learning how to tune and play either one.

    #23 3 years ago
    Quoted from Luckydogg420:

    Have you ever heard of sawstop? Virtually impossible to loose a finger

    Sawstop is the ONLY way to go.

    Not only is it safer, but I can balance a dime on it's edge while it's spinning.

    Cuts 3/8" aluminum plate like it's balsa wood

    Dust control is not the best, but I see the latest ones have dust collectors on top and bottom.

    #24 3 years ago
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    #25 3 years ago

    Cut and sand outside or with your garage door wide open. Shop vac dust collection is not adequate by itself. It's reasonable to assume all wood has been treated with some toxic chemical, and dust itself can do damage to lungs. Anything done with a power tool should be done outside.

    A good name brand 15 amp circular saw, a high quality clamp saw guide, bar clamps, a heavy table, and any electrical sander will do everything any table saw can do except ripping narrow stock. You could use all that to build your first workbench.

    A portable table saw for ripping can be had for cheap at a garage sale. Sawstops are awesome but a prosumer grade table saw requires: a prosumer grade dust collector, a large dedicated area of workspace and an upgrade to your homes electrical panel, wiring and likely it's ventilation. All of that for a safety feature that if you do need you shouldn't be using power tools in the first place. A tape measure, square and clamps will get you close enough on any table saw. Jigs can be built to turn any table saw into thousands of inch accuracy, and also eliminate the possibility of your hands coming into contact with a blade.

    Table saws used correctly are safe, as safe as a car door anyway. Always use push blocks, sacrificial boards and jigs. Always use the riving blade; try to use featherboards and the kickback teeth thing that goes on the riving knife. Don't wear gloves. Never push your hands if they're in line with a blade, or within three inches. If you don't rip 1" wide stock or full sheets of plywood you reduce your risk to about zero. Watch a youtube video of someone else doing what you plan to do first and just copy them.

    That being said, I'll always use a miter saw before a table saw. Partially because it's safer and mostly because it's much easier to get accurate cuts. I don't do cabinetry either so I'll often rip with a circular saw and a dozen clamps.

    On a bandsaw you'd have to just about force your finger through for an amputation. They're good for toys and gifts. You can use them for ripping stock, but be prepared to plane or sand.

    With a bandsaw, a palm sander and determination you could build anything. With a palm sander and LOTS of determination you could build anything. Clamps are really good too.

    https://www.tablesawcentral.com/the-ultimate-list-of-table-saw-jigs/

    amazon.com link »

    #26 3 years ago

    Specifically answering your question, easy ... Table Saw (used safely)

    But ... the saw I use the most in the pinball hobby is this jigsaw. Don't buy a cheap one, you'll hate yourself!

    amazon.com link »

    Cuts perfect plexiglass pieces, replacement plastics, airball protectors, etc.

    I use these blades to cut the plexiglass ... cut slow so it doesn't melt

    amazon.com link »

    #27 3 years ago

    If your buying a jigsaw get a Bosch

    #28 3 years ago

    I've never really had on issue with losing a finger. Try cutting a circle out of a piece of plywood on a table saw. That's what happens when a piece binds and gets thrown from the saw. Look at the underside of the piece afterwards and you'll see what I mean. I've only had this happen once and it happens in the blink of an eye. It leaves you standing there saying WTF just happened!

    #29 3 years ago
    Quoted from Bryan_Kelly:

    Try cutting a circle out of a piece of plywood on a table saw. That's what happens when a piece binds and gets thrown from the saw.

    Cutting a circle on a table saw is easy. YOU JUST NEED THE RIGHT JIG. You’d be amazed what you can do with a tablesaw and the right jig.

    #30 3 years ago

    Situational awareness and good work practices are the best safety devices you can own, and they cost nothing. I been work with crushing and sheering machines of death for the last 15 years without injury.

    #31 3 years ago

    No one is more safety minded than a Middle School woodshop teacher.

    They are always missing part of a digit.

    The dumbest thing you can do it believe that you are somehow so careful, that it can't happen to you.

    It can.

    #32 3 years ago

    The first saw most people need is a miter saw- assuming you're cutting 2x4s to build your first framed wall, work table, whatever. If you also need to cut sheets and don't need the accuracy, a corded circular saw can be very versatile if a little harder to use. Smaller or curvy things? Buy a jig saw. A little jig can suit a lot of needs and cut lots of materials and is pretty safe.

    A table saw is probably your 3rd or 4th saw, but it does a lot of stuff and is more accurate. I do 95% of my work on a table and miter saw.

    A band saw is probably your 6th or 7th saw. The portable band saw in the picture is kind of a specialty tool, not really useful for anything I ever want to do, certainly not woodworking. A big standing or table band saw can do a lot more using a fence and miter gauge and also cut nice curves. Maybe this could be a special type of hobbyist's only saw, cutting shapes I guess. The smaller saw to do this work is a scroll saw, kinda an inverted jig saw.

    #33 3 years ago

    Depends on your particular needs if for hobby use only. For general home and shop use though ... definitely a table saw. Wish I still had one, but no room.

    #34 3 years ago

    On a scale of 1 to chop your arm off, a band saw it relatively safe, but it is a specialty tool and won’t be as versatile as a table saw, depending on what projects it will be used for.

    #35 3 years ago
    Quoted from vid1900:

    No one is more safety minded than a Middle School woodshop teacher.
    They are always missing part of a digit.
    The dumbest thing you can do it believe that you are somehow so careful, that it can't happen to you.
    It can.

    Warning_Never_put_your_fingers_where_you_wouldnt_put_your_dick_1024x1024 (resized).png
    #36 3 years ago

    Lots of great info here.

    Amazing how I was able to do a lot of remodeling on my house including replacing all the windows which required reframing on some, complete replacement of cedar siding on the front of the house, rebuilding the bathrooms, which required replacing much of the sub floor, building a white picket fence around the front yard made entirely out of wood, with a hand held Skill Saw. Just call me cheap, I guess.

    #37 3 years ago

    I have both and they definitely serve two different purposes. Bandsaw is great for small things and cutting plastic, while the table saw is best for long straight cuts on plywood. Just used the table saw to make a new back door for an EM two days ago. I used the bandsaw to cut a plastic protector for a pin not long before that.

    #38 3 years ago
    Quoted from o-din:

    Amazing how I was able to do a lot of remodeling on my house including replacing all the windows which required reframing on some, complete replacement of cedar siding on the front of the house, rebuilding the bathrooms, which required replacing much of the sub floor, building a white picket fence around the front yard made entirely out of wood, with a hand held Skill Saw.

    Those are exactly the jobs that a Skill Saw is used for.

    A Table Saw is all about PRECISION and SPEED.

    When I need to build a replacement head for a pin, I'm not going to get out 2 sawhorses and a straight edge, LOL

    When I need a rear panel cut for a Bally, I know the 45* angle is going to come out exactly 45 degrees. I know if I set the fence at 62.8 centimeters , that piece of wood is leaving the saw at exactly 62.8 cm

    #39 3 years ago

    I’d go for a table saw first. Bandsaw takes up a lot of space and I’d probably only get one if I had the money for a nice one that does resaw well. Every time I go to buy a bandsaw I end up with some other tool I feel like I need more.

    I’m planning to buy a sawstop cabinet saw in the next couple years. For now I have the top model Dewalt contractor saw with a paulk workbench and I’ve been surprised how much I can do with this setup. I also have a Festool TS55REQ (track saw) that I’m in love with and has stolen a lot of my table saws work lately.

    #40 3 years ago

    If you get a table saw look for one with a long arbor, so you can do thicker dado cuts.

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