Any woodworker will tell you the vital role of a table saw in virtually all projects. Even if you're an enthusiast or DIYer, a table saw provides you with many advantages. Small shop owners may think the idea of a table saw is far-fetched, but in reality, it is possible to find an excellent table saw for small shops. The table will fit in your limited room space and leave more space for other projects.
The primary use of a table saw is to cut large pieces of wood into smaller ones. However, they also do other functions such as cutting rabbets, kerfing, cutting joints, and more. Many factors come to mind when you finally see the need to buy a table saw. But one of the primary considerations includes the type of table saw, blade size, rip capacity, weight, etc.
In this table saw for small shop review, we've rounded up a list of the best products with ideal functionalities for your woodwork needs. We also have a few tips to help you choose the right table saw for your small room. Specific brands on table saws we sell include Cantek saws and Maksiwa saws.
View The Maksiwa Sliding Panel Table Saw 126" with Tilting Blade, Cabinet Saw - BMS.3200.IR
What To Look For When Buying Table Saw For Small Shops
When space is limited, you have to choose compact tools that don't take up much space but still offer the same capabilities as decent woodworking equipment. In the following paragraphs, you'll find the most crucial points to consider to get the perfect table saw for your small shop.
Type of Table Saw
The distinct classification of table saws is mainly in two parts: portable and stationary. Within each of the categories, there are three main classifications.
Stationary table saws are heavy and divided into cabinet table saws, high-quality hybrid saws, and contractors. On the other hand, portable table saws include compact, benchtop, and job-site table saws.
Small shop owners can take advantage of the compact nature of portable table saws as they do the same job, only on a smaller scale. Their size makes it easy to fit and move to a new location.
Se our article on the difference between a sliding table saw and a standard table saw.
The dimensions of a tale saw generally depend on the material and what features are equipped. For example, table saws can weigh up to 1500 pounds, while some only weigh 40 pounds. But you need to understand that the largest and heaviest table saw does not necessarily take up ample space.
For instance, for those with small shops, benchtop table saws handle heavier power duties but may not take up as much space. Besides, stationary table saws are ideal in workshops and specialized schools that need all the power and sturdiness.
A table saw's miter gauge is an important device that ensures all workpieces are cut in precision. A miter gauge has calibrations and parts to hold the wood piece at a given angle while cutting.
While most tables come with their miter gauge, it is not always the best. Ensure you check the type and quality of the miter gauge of your table saw for a small shop. The material of the miter gauge matters a lot, and you can consider steel or aluminum. Plus, check the miter gauge micro-adjustments to ensure you are at your best when making fine adjustments.
You need to be extra careful when working with table saws to ensure you don't rip off your fingers. That said, an ideal table saw needs to have a riving knife, blade guard, push stick, and a dust collection system. Also, there should be features to stop the blade in case of an emergency. These features can only prevent the blade from harming you to a certain extent but will be good enough to ensure your well-being. Finally, we'd advise you to avoid loose clothing when working with a table saw and always wear safety goggles to prevent eye injury.
The best indicator of value for your table saw is warranty. First, check the warranty to make sure your product has lasting materials. Of course, you want a longer warranty, but it is equally important to read through the warranty terms and details. Seeing what the warranty covers helps you decide when to do replacements and if the replacements will affect or void the warranty.
Typically, go for products with at least a one-year warranty. Some table saws will have two years, five years. It all depends on the material itself.
Power and Precision
Most woodworking professionals will debate which is more important, but they all agree on their valuable role in choosing a table saw. Power determines what types of wood you will cut, and it is measured in Amps or Horsepower (HP). But even with lots of power, you will need a precise machine. Otherwise, you will ruin your project big time.
The best way to find out about the precision of a table saw is through checking other users. You can check this in online videos or saw cutting tutorials.
The blade is an integral part of the saw as it does most of the work. Table saw blades come in various sizes, number of teeth, and construction materials. These features determine the speed of your saw and how smooth it cuts.
Typical table saws come in 10-inch blades. But table saws can have teeth ranging from 24 to 80, with higher teeth numbers promising smoother cuts.
View the Cantek D405M-8 8' Sliding Table Saw, 1HP/3HP, (5HP main, 1HP scoring)
Best Table Saws For Small Shops Reviewed
DeWalt DW745 10-inch Compact Table Saw
The DeWalt DW745 is one of the most compact table saws for small shops. It comes in a highly compact design measuring 22.7 x 29.2 x 16.7 inches and weighs just 45 pounds. But, not to be fooled by the size, the DW745 is exceptionally sturdy and has a steel roll cage to hold the machine during impacts or sudden drops in transportation.
It is pretty powerful and boasts a 15-Amp and 3850 RPM motor to power its 10-inch and 24-inch blades. The 10-inch blades are perfect for small to medium woodworking projects. The table saw won't wobble as it has a stable construction, strong wheels, and an excellent base to work with.
This machine is not short of accessories. It includes a miter gauge, blade wrenches, push stick, and rip fence to ensure you do your projects efficiently. The Dewalt DW745 has a 3-year warranty to back up the craftsmanship of DeWalt.
10-inches blade diameter
3,850 RPM blade speed
Dust Collection Port
Hitachi C10RJ Tablesaw
The Hitachi C10RJ has an impressive professional look at first glance. The quality of construction is definitely worth noting. It has durable wheels for easy maneuvering and a wide table surface to work on various projects. The Hitachi C10RJ also has a table extension to allow bigger cutting projects.
This portable machine comes with a high power motor of 15-Amp and a speed of 4,500 RPM. Woodworking specialists get quickly concerned about dust management, and the C10RJ does a great job at it. The machine has a convenient dust port and a removable collection bag to help declutter your workspace. Alternatively, you can connect the dust port to a vacuum cleaner- so convenient!
Like most models, Hitachi built this machine with safety in mind. When you turn on the machine, the blades rotate slowly and then increase gradually to the top speed. It also has an electric brake which automatically stops during an emergency. Although not added, the tool can be integrated with a 10-inch blade guard.
Universal 10-inch carbide-tipped blade
4,500 RPM speed
All-terrain wheels, built-in stand
Bosch 4100-09 Small Shop Table Saw
Another table saw in this list is the Bosch 4100-09, which comes with tons of features like the throat plate, smart guard system, push stick, etc. the machine has a Gravity-Rise stand equipped with two 8-inch pneumatic wheels to help you move around effortlessly. It has a folding capability and can withstand everyday use due to its materials.
The saw has a lightweight structure, and safety equipment like the blade, miter gauge, and fence can be stored securely on the body of the table. The Bosch 4100-09 weighs 60 pounds and 99 if you add the Gravity-Rise table.
The Bosch 4100-09 has decent power with 4HP and 15 Amp output, enough to cut through an 8/4 sheet stock. The blade speed is at 3,600 RPM, but you can adjust the speed to suit your preferences since it is electronic. It has a soft start button for safety purposes. Other safety features include anti-kickback pawls, riveting knives, and safety guards.
The motor fitted in this tool is power-efficient as it has Bosch's signature Constant Response Circuitry that monitors its power and automatically adjusts according to the load.
Woodworking can get messy if not taken care of, and this model comes with a dust port to help clean out all the debris. It does a pretty job at collecting dust as you can connect to a vacuum cleaner for better results.
Gravity-Rise working table
Uses Constant Response Circuitry for power-efficiency
Powerful 4HP Motor
25-inch rip cap[acity
Safety anti-kickback pawls
Dust collection port
Makita 2705 Table Saw
Woodworking perfectionists gather around as we've got something exciting for you. The Makita 2705 is hands up the most accurate table saw machine on this list. It has a broad design top at 36 x 16 x 32 inches, a powerful amp motor-powered at 15-Amp, and a motor speed of 4,800 RPM. Its extendable table top gives more space for a level of 45 degrees and up to 25 inches of width.
The Makita model has an electric brake for safety operations and an easily accessible safety switch. This model is easy to use and reads to make quick adjustments. The 10" blade has 32 teeth and, when kept sharp, can do small to medium sized projects without a hassle. Plus, you can swap the blades with something bigger (up to 16").
Safety is key to Makita, and they have added crucial features to this model, including a transparent blade guard, riving knife, and anti-kickback pawls. The transparent blade works as a safety feature and helps you accurately work on your piece of wood.
Accurate 10-inch blade
25-inch rip width and 3.6-inch cutting depth
Integrated anti-kickback pawl
Adjustable spreader/riving knife
Skillsaw SPT70WT Brass Worm Drive Table Saw
The Skillsaw SPT70WT comes in a compact suitcase design, perfect for small rooms. The compact design is also an advantage to woodworkers who frequently change shops. Nevertheless, it packs a lot of power and a big rip capacity. The saw has a small ripping capacity of 11", but it reaches up to 24" when extended.
The SPT70WT has a power output of about 5,300 RPM, considerably higher than other table saws in this list. This table saw doesn't produce as much sound even with so much power.
Safety is a top priority in woodworking, and this saw has added a few features to ensure no one gets hurt. First, it comprises an anti-kickback feature to prevent kickback injuries. The table saw also has clear plastic guards to prevent damaging your hands. Finally, the riving knife blocks cut pieces from flying back to you.
Skillsaw did not add a rolling stand to this model, and it is a little awkward if you were already used to it. Nevertheless, you can purchase a table saw stand or make a DIY version to avoid sitting in weird positions when woodworking.
Lightweight at 52lbs
Isolated motor allows for heavier cuts
High power speed 5,300 RPM
25 inch rip capacity
Compact and portable design=
Rockwell RK72415 Workshop Table Saw
If you want to work on a massive project but still need a table saw huge enough to fit your small shop, the Rockwell RK72415 is your best bet. It can handle several professional projects due to its sturdy and solid features.
The highlight of this line of Rockwell table saws is the massive cutting depth. Plus, if you've ever struggled with tilting and blade adjustments, worry not, as this table saw has an integrated laser to point out all angles accurately. The build is straight off professional with steel frames and sturdy legs to hold your wood pieces.
Don't be fooled by the 15 amp motor. The Rockwell RK72415's motor saw rotates up to a speed of 4,800 RPM. That's enough power to handle serious cutting projects on hardwoods or pressure treated lumber. That said, it effortlessly glides through soft materials like plywood.
This model is not as compact as the Skillsaw SPT70WT, but it is portable and easy to move between workshops. The saw comes with several accessories such as a riving knife, blade, push stick, blade wrenches, dust bag, and miter fence. Despite Rockwell adding a few security features, you need to be careful when handling the Rockwell RK72415. If you're a beginner, we'd recommend following the user manual before using the saw for the first time.
Weighs 88 pounds
Innovative laser for accurate cuttings
2-year limited warranty
Fold-out fence for a max rip capacity of 30"
Shop Fox W1837 Hybrid Table Saw
Shop Fox may not be a popular name in table saws, but it has decent models that compete with big brands like Powermatic. One such model is the Shop Fox W1837 Hybrid Table Saw.
If you're rushing to search for "Hybrid table saws," don't go anywhere. Hybrid saws are table saws that work as cabinet saws and portable saws. It gives you the best of both worlds for the price of one.
A first glance at the W1837 tells you this is a serious machine. It weighs a whopping 243 pounds making it the heaviest model on our list. It's supported by sturdy frames, caster wheels, and an efficient riser system for extra movement. With a wide table that measures 40-¼ inch x 27 inches, this hybrid table saw provides enough space for all types of woodworking projects.
The Shop Fox W1837 has 10-inch blades with 40 carbide-tipped teeth to make cutting hardwood and other thick pieces easier. It is powered by a 2HP motor generating a rotating speed of 3,450 RPM.
This model of table saw has an excellent dust collection with its 4-inch dust cabinet chite at the bottom. You can connect the dust port to a shop vac to ensure little dust when working on a project.
Powerful 2HP motor hybrid saw
10-inch blade, 30-inch ripping capacity
Dust control system
Quick-release blade guard
Built-in caster wheels for mobility
Riving knife and anti-kickback pawls
Bosch GTS1031 Portable Jobsite Table Saw
Companies like Bosch and DeWalt are steering the wood fabrication market, which is why we had to include the GTS1031 in this list. While it has similar appearance properties to the 4100-09, the GTS1031 has many exciting features.
At 52 lbs, it is generally lightweight, and if you have the muscles, you can carry it with one hand. The unit is made of an all-steel base making it a solid option for woodworking projects. It is powered by a 4HP motor which produces a top blade speed of about 5,000 RPM.
The Bosch GTS1031 has a 10-inch blade with 24 inch carbide tipped teeth. Honestly, the blade can do a decent job on regular projects. Like the previous 4100-09, the Bosch GTS1031 has a SquareLock rip fence which helps provide precise cuts every time. For convenience, the unit is made with a storage compartment underneath to store all accessories that come with it. Speaking of storage, the Bosch GTS1031 also has a 2" dust collection bag, and like most table saws, the dust collection port can be connected to a shop vacuum.
The table saw has a Smart Guard System, riving knife, and anti-kickback pawls. These safety features work efficiently to prevent any damage from happening.
SquareLock 10" rip capacity
A bit lightweight at 52 pounds
Excellent portability and compact design
4HP motor at 5,000 RPM
SKIL 3410-02 Portable Table Saw
The SKIL 3410-02 is a vast and powerful mode of table machine that features a sturdy 14-Amp motor with a no-load speed of 5,000 RPM. Due to its dimension, the SKIL 3410-02 would work well when cutting surfaces measuring 2 x 4 inches.
Accuracy and precision can't be overlooked when choosing the best table saw for a small shop. Luckily, the 3410-02 comes with a miter gauge to help with cross-cutting, bevel cuts, etc. One of the easily overlooked features of table saws is the stand. The SKIL 3410-02 comes with a foldable stand that makes it easy to carry around and, most importantly, work in a small shop.
The unit has several safety features, but they're not overly impressive or innovative. So instead, you get the basics such as a blade protector, anti-kicking pawls, etc.
The biggest drawback of the SKIL 3410-02 table saw is that it doesn't have a dust collection port. Overall, the table saw still does a pretty good job at cutting wood pieces. Lastly, the EZ view system allows you to make precise and accurate cuts. It is an ideal calibration tool, and you won't need any other measuring material during projects.
Measures 28.8 x 20.9 x 13 inches
Generally lightweight at 67 pounds
Rotating speed of 5,000 RPM
EZ view measurement system
Each table saw in this list has its unique benefits depending on your purpose. These products have plenty of online reviews with positive ratings. Making this list was inevitable, and we believe you have an insight into which model is worth buying for your home shop.
The SKIL 3410-02 is a decent model for beginners and anyone looking to learn the basics of wood fabrication. It has a portable design with foldable stands, an anti-restart switch, and a decent rip capacity. However, one or two features had to be compromised, and the dust bag wasn't added to the 3410-02.
A hybrid model like the Shop Fox W1837 is a woodworking enthusiast must-have equipment. It works as a cabinet saw and a portable version. But at 243lbs, is it a portable table saw?
All we're saying is don't grab the first compact table saw you see. Take time to consider the different features like power, mobility, safety before emptying your wallet. Then, whatever the woodworking project you're in, make sure you have a table saw that perfectly fits your needs. You may also be interested in checking out our panel saw range.
If you have a band saw you may also may be interested in our 'how to fold a bandsaw blade" guide.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What makes my table saw slow down when making cuts?
You may have insufficient power, mainly if you connect your table saw to an extension cord without the proper amps rating. If you have an old model, you may want to check if your motor brushes are running smoothly.
Why do my cuts have splintered edges?
Rough cuts are usually a common problem for newbies. First, you need to ensure your blades are sharp and are cutting at an optimal speed. Remember, faster speeds do not necessarily mean faster cuts, especially if the material is stubborn. Lastly, if the material is rigid, adjust the feed rate to allow the saw to handle it better.
Can you use an extension cord to power a table saw?
Yes. You can use an extension cord as long as the cord has the ampere needed to power the table saw. You may also want to check the condition of the extension and seal any naked wiring or loose ends.
How do I reset an overload switch?
Each table saw has a specific way to do this, so you'll need to check the instruction manual that came with the purchase. Most products will have a switch or button to reset the overload, while other models require you to unplug the whole machine for a specified period.