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Cygnus A

Tipping point for 3hp vs 1.75hp table saw?

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I returned my Grizzly G0715p and decided to really step up to a nicer saw and am looking at Sawstop since the wife is encouraging it. I do not have a 220v in the garage and am currently renting so I cant add an outlet. But I do have access to the dryer outlet behind the garage wall (I would punch a small hole and run power that way) which isn't being used since our dryer is gas. I've done this in the past for an air compressor).

So the question is, at what point would someone regret not purchasing the 220v 3hp model over the 120v 1.75hp model? I did experience some motor slowdowns on the Grizzly, but they may have been due to the alignment issues I was having, and not necessarily the motor's power. I guess the good news is that I can upgrade the motor later if necessary (and when I have my own place to wire how I want), and I can save $450 now using that towards something else.

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Since you have already returned one saw why not just get the one you really want? Over your lifetime the 450$ is a non issue. If you have a way of plugging it in as you say, you are all set. The benchmark in furniture making tablesaws in my mind is a 3hp cabinet saw. Im not saying a 1.75hp will be a big disappointment but if you say you might upgrade in the future it seems absurd to not just get the 3hp now. DO IT !

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I think the smaller one would be fine for hobby work.  If you were going to be pushing a hundred or two pieces through it fairly regularly, while trying to make a living doing it, the larger motor would definitely be worth it.  I got by with a 2hp motor for about 15 years while using it to make a living.

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If you are eventually going to upgrade to a 3HP then you will never be satisfied with the 1.75. Just get the one you want because you are going to eventually. Might as well be now.

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I have a PM1000 that is 1.75 hp and have used it to make only a couple full 3-1/8" cuts in hickory and ash. The saw bogged but powered through. For saw stop the cost to upgrade to 3 hp is a no brainier in my opinion.

I have a 2.5 hp band saw now and any thick rips are going there for 8/4 and 4/4 work the 1.75hp is more than enough with a good sharp blade.

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8 minutes ago, Mike. said:

    I love how 100% of people only use flat stock but 50% of woodworkers don't own a jointer....

Kinda like how 90% of the population consider themselves above average drivers.

1.75 HP will likely do you just fine (if a hobbyist), but if you are already dreaming of 3 HP, you may as well do it right.

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1 hour ago, shaneymack said:

 

Since you have already returned one saw why not just get the one you really want? Over your lifetime the 450$ is a non issue.

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My feelings exactly.  I have done "something else" only to have to go back and do it again to get it right.  Certainly jumping right to a higher tier tool isn't right for everybody every time.  If you are tablesaw-centric then just go ahead and get the saw you will give to your own children when you are too old to safely use it anymore.

Let's see.  Even if it were $1000 more, over ten years that's less than a cup of coffee per day.

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On June 16, 2016 at 3:25 PM, Cygnus A said:

"at what point would someone regret not purchasing the 220v 3hp model over the 120v 1.75hp model?"

For me, the minute the thought entered my mind. Buy once and be done with it.

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You will always wonder if you should have bought the 3hp. If you have access to 220 go for it!

Retrofitting the 3hp motor is a hassle and you will wish you just bought the3hp. Once you do upgrade you'll kick your self for not doing it sooner.

I just upgraded to the 3hp sawstop from a jet proshop 1.75 and wrestled with the same decision. Now I wish I would have done this years ago!

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Depends. If all you cut is half inch plywood, then you would need acute senses to discern a difference in feed rate between 1.75 and 3. For me, I routinely work with 8/4 hardwoods. It's a joy when i get to cut 3/4 plywood or 1/2-3/4 hardwood for a project. My 3hp unisaw with forrest blade will cut thin wood as fast as i can possibly feed it. Effortless throughout the cut. I find it to be a very enjoyable experience, just like using a sharp chisel or sharp knife on a tomato. However, get over 1" and the comparison becomes incredibly stark. My 1.5hp saw sucked on 8/4. It was slow, I labored the cut, and i found it to be somewhat dangerous. One, if you are forcing the cut like that you are much more prone to slip or do something stupid with your hands and a spinning blade. Secondly, thick hardwoods have tension. Most boards have a smidge, some boards have wild amounts of it. It is just the nature of the beast in 8/4+. I found the 1.5hp saw had a much much greater tendency to kickback in those tension situations. The 3hp saw powers through the closing kerf. I find it to be much safer and effective. My older contractor saw was downright dangerous to use in those situations. I was always ready for it, and I overpowered numerous kickback situations where I was stronger than the 1.5hp motor by stalling it instead of taking a board to the face. This is why i stepped up to the bigger saw, because i rip thick hardwoods on a regular basis. Honestly, i dont find a 3hp cabinet saw to be incredibly powerful or large. If I had the room, I would much prefer a bigger table saw with more power and a bigger blade. Very few people cut a lot of thick hardwood though, so the decision is specific to your needs. 

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36 minutes ago, Mike. said:

Personally I prefer a big bandsaw for ripping thick hardwoods.  

Yeah, now that I have a 20" laguna I can see myself maybe switching over to ripping on it over the unisaw. I certainly use it on rough lumber that needs ripped prior to milling. A few things might prevent me from using it for final ripping. One, fence systems on bandsaws blow. Sure, I can buy the driftmaster for whatever ridiculous price they charge, but the cast iron fence that came on my LT20 is so very lame. It is all of 10" long. Mind you, this saw costs as much as a car and that's all the fence you get. Secondly, aligning it to be within a few thousandths of parallel seems like a futile chore. Finally, support is a question. The table saw already has appropriate support tables attached to it. I would need to rig some roller stands or something to go along with my bandsaw. Unfortunately, I need to wheel the bandsaw out of the jointer's outfeed path when I joint boards over 6ish feet, and fixed extension tables wouldnt work. I havent had the laguna long, but it's hard to not use a table saw for accurate ripping. It is the whole reason the machine exists. 

 

10 minutes ago, K Cooper said:

I justify have a smaller hp ts with the fact that it bogs down before it kicks back^_^

It's counter-intuitive that more power is safer--you would think more power means its going to kickback twice as hard on you--but my smaller saw would catch and immediately want to throw the board at me. Maybe because my feed rate is faster on the unisaw, so the board traveling forward overpowers the kickback direction? Dunno, maybe i am alone in this one. 

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There's little argument that a 1.75 hp saw will suffice with proper setup and blade selection in a hobby environment if the wood is flat and straight.  Having owned both there's really no comparison in how much less the 3 hp motor has to work.  It's less sensitive about blade choice, blade sharpness, setup, the material, etc.  The additional 50%+ hp simply has an easier time cutting everything.   If the price difference doesn't cause budget hardships, I doubt you'll ever regret having more than sufficient power.  Theoretically the bigger motors should last longer too.

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11 minutes ago, knotscott said:

The additional 50%+ hp simply has an easier time cutting everything.  

It's actually 100% more power. Sorry, I'm being a pedantic pr*ck.

But I certainly agree with all you're saying, which is why I went for the 3 HP saw.

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Running a cord through a wall is a code no-no, but there is a trick you can do and keep your power legal:

Shut off your 220 breaker and open the outlet box. If is metal, punch out a side knockout on a side away from a stud. On the other side of the wall, cut I or surface mount an appropriate size outlet box. Run a piece of appropriately sized Romex cable between the boxes (#8 for 30 amp breaker, #6 for 50 amps) and cable things up. Easier to do than type.

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10 hours ago, Robby W said:

Running a cord through a wall is a code no-no, but there is a trick you can do and keep your power legal:

Shut off your 220 breaker and open the outlet box. If is metal, punch out a side knockout on a side away from a stud. On the other side of the wall, cut I or surface mount an appropriate size outlet box. Run a piece of appropriately sized Romex cable between the boxes (#8 for 30 amp breaker, #6 for 50 amps) and cable things up. Easier to do than type.

This.

Could easily be done in under an hour & then it's done right. You could use armored cable & then you don't need to cut the box in the wall. Check your code. Here #10 is good for a 30 A dryer circuit.

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