Circular saw suggestions?


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My Craftsman circular saw has officially died. It will get about 4 inches into a cut and then it bogs down and stops. I would like get a new one because making cuts on plywood with my contractor table saw is just about impossible.

I know that everyone is going to suggest a track saw but that is just was too far over budget. I can only spend about $100, max.

Suggestions on a normal circular would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks - RJ

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here's the home depot web site, buy the saw that has the most amps closest to your price range http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1vZc28l/h_d2/Navigation?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&storeId=10051#/?c=1 . I'm a worm drive saw guy I always have a Skill model 77 because I'm a carpenter by trade, and thats just what I'm use to but now your talking $160.

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My Makita is a workhorse. I don't use it for much more than construction stuff anymore, but it's been a reliable saw. Can't remember what I paid but I doubt it was much more than $100. I'm often drawn toward Makita when buying contractor-grade tools.

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I've had my milwaukee 7.25" for over 20 years, had to replace the cord about 5 years ago but other than that no issues. It's seen plenty of use and abuse (not intentional) and is still going strong. Funny thing is I didn't really like it when I bought it but needed it and couldn't pass up the deal, 40% off store closing. I'd buy it again in a heartbeat maybe go with the left blade model instead.

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Try and find something with a rear pivot adjustment. Make you a rip jig, (look up one in Marcs videos). If it trys to track just a little off, the rear pivot and be adjusted to cut straight. I was thinking the DeWalt DW 364 but it is $169.00 and out of your budget.

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Your worm drive saws will be more expensive, starting around $160 or so.

They're the most durable but unless you're a contractor by trade I wouldn't bother.

I'd search Amazon.com and look to the comments with saw features you can live with.

Cost depends mostly on how much power you want, 13 or 15 amp.

Saws suck power more than any tool I know so I don't recommend battery operated saws.

Milwaulkee and Dewalt seem to win the most in tool reviews.

Go with the one with the best warranty.

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here's the home depot web site, buy the saw that has the most amps closest to your price range http://www.homedepot...eId=10051#/?c=1 . I'm a worm drive saw guy I always have a Skill model 77 because I'm a carpenter by trade, and thats just what I'm use to but now your talking $160.

Out of curiosity what are the pro's and con's of a wormdrive in the shop? From a design perspective, they look like they'd be more accommodating to my crazy left-handedness, but I don't tend to see that type of saw typically in shops. Not sure if there's a reason or not and never used one. Looking to replace my crappy (and cheap I got what I paid for) Skillsaw myself.

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The worm drive is just a more substantial saw, it holds up to heavy useage like what would happens on a constuction job site. The worm drive has a high amp motor which makes the motor last longer, it also has more power, and doesn't bog down in a cut they really can take alot of abuse and keep working. The Skill model 77 worm drive saw has been the saw that you will find on almost every job site, I use it because it's what I'm use too I've been useing one since I was 17 yrs old and first got in construction. The one thing that would make it not for everyone is the fact that it weighs alot more than a smaller side winder home owners saw.

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the heavy-duty is the 77 worm-drive. i just eBayed mine -- not a contractor and get's too heavy.

also have the makita -- it's a good saw, but it's not the makita of yesteryear --- I've got one that's about 15 years old and it's amazing -- folks have offered me $300 for it. the new ones are OK, but exist off their old reputation.

One thing to consider is battery-powered. I use a TS55 frequently, so my circular saw use has dropped to zero -- I've only kept one battery-powered saw because i'll never do more then 10 minutes a quarter on the thing. the bosch 18v battery tools are good. so if you plan to get more tools in the future, think cordless and start purchasing into a system.

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I picked up a Skil HD5687M and couldnt be happier. I have yet to bog it down (even cross cutting pressure treated 4x4's). Fairly light weight (I suppose its due to the magnesium base). It will come in under your $100 budget. Leave the worm drives to the framers, I think they are too heavy for general and shop use.

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My favorite "fine woodworking" circular saw is my 18V DeWalt 6-1/2", with a Matsushita blade. The $20 blade turned it into an entirely different tool, possibly tripling the battery life

http://www.coastalto...matsushita.htm

Sheet goods do not take much power to cut, especially with a good, sharp, blade. I've also added a shop-made zero clearance foot. The tool's size and shape, as well as the lack of a cord, make it awesome when kneeling on sheet goods placed on 2" foam.

If you already have an 18v DeWalt tool, I see these all the time on eBay and in pawn shops, BRAND NEW without a battery, for ~ $40.

If you're building decks, framing houses, etc... that's different...

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  • 2 weeks later...

I picked up the Ridgid. http://www.homedepot.com/Tools-Hardware-Power-Tools-Saws-Circular-Saws/RIDGID/h_d1/N-5yc1vZc2dcZ18g/R-100618252/h_d2/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10053&langId=-1&storeId=10051#.UMwWz6U1ZSU

I've only made a couple cuts with it and it works good. I got a Diablo 40 tooth blade for it and didn't even bother with the factory blade.

This should serve me well until i get a Track saw

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My framing crews use nothing but the 5007 Makitas. 'Way back when the dinosaurs roamed the Earth and I was toting tools for a living I went through Skils, Bosches, Milwaukees, Dewalts, Porter Cables, you name it. Always went back to the Makita. The Hitachi was a close second but all the others were nowhere close in power, handling and build quality.

Right now we have the 5007s, a couple of the 16" and one of the 10" saws, used every day in production. All hold up well, occasionally they'll need brushes and a switch but that's about all. We do have a couple of the Bosch sidewinders, they're fitted out with the Prazi beam cutters for the 8x stock that the big Maks can't cut in one pass. I still have and use a couple of the 5007s for the shop.

Works fine, lasts a long time.

HTH,

Bill

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