radial arm saw

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by rambler, Jun 11, 2004.

  1. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jan 20, 2004
    I'm looking to get a radial arm saw, & wondering what to buy, or what to avoid. Like most all here, $$$ matter, and it's not for commercial use, just me on the farm doing some outbuilding remodeling.....

  2. Tractorman

    Tractorman Well-Known Member

    Jun 8, 2004
    I bought a craftsmen radial arm saw and never use it for anything my mitersaw is much much better. Unless you plan on cutting a lot of boards more than 10-12" wide all I would get is a 12" compound mitersaw I have a Rigid and it is the best most used tool I have.

  3. Ross

    Ross Moderator Staff Member Supporter

    May 9, 2002
    I'll second that. Rigid is tops and if you get a sliding compound mitre saw you'll never regret it. Radial arm saws are first rate for cabinate making and precise cuts but for framing you can't beat the mitre saw. Now if you want to build furniture etc. as well, get a radial arm saw, it will do double duty. I have an old Craftsman radial arm saw built when they were made in the USA and has lots of cast parts etc. You want these things to have some bulk to them to minimize vibration and keep things true.
  4. BrushBuster

    BrushBuster Well-Known Member

    Mar 30, 2004
    my brother in law has a craftsman electronic readout. i have no complaints with it. but we use the table saw and miter saw way more than the radial arm. also if you do any ripping be very carefull of kick back on it!
  5. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    central idaho republic
    Ive got 2 10inch radial arm saws, a monkey wards that i traded some framing work for one day, and a DeWalt/ blackand Decker that my wife suprised me from a yard sale she paid $40 for a couple years ago. They sit in the shop staionary and one of these days i may get to building a long table for double end trims without fliping the piece around [which means cutting a hole in the side of the shop]

    The neat thing about radial saws is they can give you such precision that cabinetry is made so much easier, and i spect ou could get use from it for just about any application you choose, but i too would advise getting a sliding compound miter saw. the 14" Dewalt [or other brandname] will give you a nice cut and wont leave you saying i shoulda got the bigger model. A freind of mine uses the 10 inch Makita for all his crown model jobs it just doesnt have the capacity for large chunks of wood.

    I also have a fixed 10 inch miter and the blades inter chage with my radial saws and also with my 2 10 inch table saws..... a pattern i did not try to set but fell into.

    Versatility is what a radial saw can provide for a staionary shop, but it you need portabitly then go for one of the chop mitre saws.

    As a contractor i have had the use of many saw, and even find the wormdrive saw can be used for more things than many people would use it for, cause it is the handiest saw on the jobsite..... but then again my dad a retired logger says "if you cant doit with a powersaw [chainsaw] it really dont need doin" check pawn shops, second hand places, and even ebay, i see in the papers around here [within 70 miles or so] radial armasaws advertised regularly for around $200-300.00 fairly often. A new craftsman radial saw will run you about $850.00 +/- on sale with enough tooling to get you what you wanna start to do.

  6. Thanks everybody. I talked a friend into going to an auction with me couple months ago, & first thing he did is buy the Craftsman radial arm saw for $70 that I was looking at. Guess I talked about it too much (or not enough?) when I looked it over..... :(

    Anyhow, looks like I will look into a miter. I believe the big blade would be best, yes.