Pros: A bargain saw with some high quality features.
Cons: Laser not the brightest.
I wanted a sliding compound miter saw to cut some wider planks for a built in bookcase as well as some other future projects.Sliding compound miter saws do everything a standard compound miter saw does, plus give you increased cross cutting capacity by allowing the saw to ride back and forth on a pair of thick metal rails.( this saw can cross cut 12 inch boards.)
Pricing the pro brands turned up prices in the 4-5 hundred dollar range. As a DIYer, there was no way I could justify spending that much on a tool that would see such limited use.
I picked up this saw for 179.99! thats less than many non sliding miter saws. There are many good features on this saw for that small price.
There is a laser that is activated by a switch, so the blade does not have to be in motion to have it projected onto the workpiece. I found it to be of varying usefulness, as in full daylight, these lasers tend to be difficult to read.
Built in table extensions- Support for longer boards.Great feature. I really like how the pull out from the sides of the saw table, and can be retracted back when not in use.
Depth stop- you can make shallow cuts for cutting dados and such by setting the max depth that the blade will cut.
Slide lock- You can use the saw as a regular miter saw by locking the slide rails. This prevents the saw head from moving front to back.
60 tooth carbide blade- Good general purpose blade.
Being a craftsman tool, there should be parts availability should the need arise.
After getting the unit out of the box, there was a few simple set up items to address and I was ready to cut wood! The saw was well set up out of the box as far as being able to make square cuts.
The actions of the saw are pretty smooth. The motor has minimal vibration, the sliding of the saw on its rails feels smooth, the pivoting of the saw adjusts easily, and there are easy to read scales for both bevel and compound adjustments. The electric brake stopped the blade reasonably fast.I really like the horizontal D-handle grip, compared with the long handle that is used on my other Craftsman Miter saw.
Some other specs on this saw are:
Weight 52.9 lbs.
Speed Range RPM 4800 rpm
Dimensions 18-1/8 x 13-3/4 in., Table Material: Aluminum.
Fits 10"Arbor Size 5/8 in. Blade.
Maximum Developed Horsepower 3 hp
Amps:15.0.Type Universal Bearings Ball Electric Motor Brake Voltage 120 volts
On/Off Type Trigger Horizontal Handle
Included with Item:
Clamp(s) Dust Bag Extension Table Stop Blocks
At a little over 50 pounds, I find this saw easy to transport and easy to use. My brother in law and I trimmed out my guest room in oak mouldings with this saw, and it performed flawlessly. It was easily able to cut the 1x12 sides and shelves we used to build a built in bookcase, thanks to its sliding ability. The carry handles are well placed to make this saw less cumbersome.
If you enjoy DIY projects and collecting tools, do yourself a favor and pick up one of these.If your local sears doesn't have them, go to Lowes, as they are selling the EXACT same saw under the PROTECH brand name.