Adding a saw

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Pebbles

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Can members advise on what other saw (other than bandsaw) is the most useful addition in limited space? I got a table saw approx 20x20 inches but haven’t enough room for it ( working in v small garden shed)
Was looking at mini table saws but depth of cut limited usually to less than 1.3 inches. I’m Not familiar with chop saws, mitre saws etc. Any advice would be helpful to a newbie. I like the facility to make other items but have been concentrating on pens.
Many Thanks
 
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mark james

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I have a Byrnes Model Maker Table Saw, but it also has a very limited cut (15/16"). This is a disadvantage I acknowledge. For what I do, it has worked well, but if you need the extra 1/2"+, your options for the footprint are sparse.
 

EricRN

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Is really try to for a table saw or band saw. A chop saw or miter saw has very limited utility- you really only NEED it if doing crosscuts on very long boards that you can’t run through a table saw. Band saw and table saw will give you the most versatility in a small space. If you only are doing small stuff, you might get by with a scroll saw but that footprint isn’t much smaller and it’s not really the right tool. If I’ve learned anything the past five years, it’s that it costs a lot more in the long run if you don’t spend the money for a decent quality version of the right tool for the job. Just a waste of money to try and make a tool do something it’s not intended for. You’ll be frustrated, spend a bunch of time on simple tasks, and get subpar results.
 

leehljp

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Maria,
I used to live in Japan, and space is limited there. I had a table saw, but getting it out to use it and back into its space was time consuming. I ended up making my own saw for pen blank making, (which some would consider unsafe) But I added a sliding table on top that worked out well. I bought a 150mm (6 inch) saw and made a table for it (mounted up side down) as though it were a table saw and then made a sliding table for the top. It was about 12" by 16". It could easily have been made into 12"x12".


 

jrista

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How much space do you have? You don't necessarily need a full sized large table saw. You could get a job site table saw, especially something that can fold up and roll out of the way when not in use, if you need to save space. This is the predicament I am in. I've been looking at the SawStop jobs site table saw (which has become very expensive!), however there are other (and smaller) options as well. There are even benchtop table saws which are even smaller...obviously, that might introduce some additional limitations, but you should be able to use larger sized blades with better cutting depth.
 

Mortalis

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What are expecting to be to do with this saw? Just cut blanks to length? Make angular cuts for sectioning?
A quick search of the internet for "mini" cut off, table or Band saw will garner quite a few options.

Check out Micro-Mark
 
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leehljp

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How much space do you have? You don't necessarily need a full sized large table saw. You could get a job site table saw, especially something that can fold up and roll out of the way when not in use, if you need to save space. This is the predicament I am in. I've been looking at the SawStop jobs site table saw (which has become very expensive!), however there are other (and smaller) options as well. There are even benchtop table saws which are even smaller...obviously, that might introduce some additional limitations, but you should be able to use larger sized blades with better cutting depth.
Jon, she mentioned that she has a saw that is 20" by 20" and she does not have space for that one in her garden shed. She needs a smaller one. Having lived in a cramped space before (Japan), I understand the need for small sizes. 😉
 

jrista

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Jon, she mentioned that she has a saw that is 20" by 20" and she does not have space for that one in her garden shed. She needs a smaller one. Having lived in a cramped space before (Japan), I understand the need for small sizes. 😉
I understood that...I was more interested in the space as a whole. Specifically....would it support a folded up portable job site table saw, when folded up? She could always roll such a saw out of the shed to use it, then fold it back up and roll it into a corner when not in use. It wouldn't necessarily need to fit in a "usable work space" when stored...
 

greenacres2

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If i'm just cutting processed blanks to length, in cold/wet weather i use a manual miter box in the basement (saves a trip to the detached garage for a power saw). Built a jig that sets length by using the brass tube. Probably a 20" x 10" or so footprint, but easier to hang on a wall than a power saw. Can try to get a photo when i get home tonight. I'd say it's a 1960's steel miter box--traded a small curly maple board for it.
earl
 
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Other than band saws, I would go with a chop/miter saw since you got the table saw. Maybe upgrade the table but go with the chop/miter saw next.

I have researched mini table saws extensively, nothing out there is worthwhile or can cut anything more than trim or hobby woods for models. Even the really expensive name brand mini table saws have lackluster power that would struggle to cut most pen blanks.
 

KenB259

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I hate to be a voice of discouragement, but logic tells me if you don't have room for a 20 x 20 inch saw, woodworking might not be a suitable hobby for you at this time. Talking from experience here, I had to give it up for quite a few years, for the same reason. There is also the issue a small cramped workspace may not be all that safe. Do you perhaps have maker spaces near you?
 

Pebbles

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Many thanks to everyone for their advice - I posted last night before bed and was out all day today so am just reading posts now. I will keep looking - I just offloaded the small table saw to a friend who has a garage( one car size) to work in. I have the use of half an 8x8 ft shed and have a mid sized lathe and a chest of drawers on which I have a bandsaw. I am in Europe so we generally don’t have the space in garages or houses ( or have enormous basements that you have across the Atlantic) So I can make small items, pens, salt and peppers and small bowls. If I need to cut something long, I go outside and use the jigsaw on a work table so am not at all discouraged!! I was interested in getting something that could give me consistent thin slices -straight and angled- for segmented pens so maybe the best of the mini table saws might still be an option but I will ponder and take on board all your suggestions and won’t give up- I love it. Thanks again for your advice and any more suggestions if you have them —M
 

KenB259

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Many thanks to everyone for their advice - I posted last night before bed and was out all day today so am just reading posts now. I will keep looking - I just offloaded the small table saw to a friend who has a garage( one car size) to work in. I have the use of half an 8x8 ft shed and have a mid sized lathe and a chest of drawers on which I have a bandsaw. I am in Europe so we generally don’t have the space in garages or houses ( or have enormous basements that you have across the Atlantic) So I can make small items, pens, salt and peppers and small bowls. If I need to cut something long, I go outside and use the jigsaw on a work table so am not at all discouraged!! I was interested in getting something that could give me consistent thin slices -straight and angled- for segmented pens so maybe the best of the mini table saws might still be an option but I will ponder and take on board all your suggestions and won’t give up- I love it. Thanks again for your advice and any more suggestions if you have them —M
Well , if I had to, based on the work of Mark James and knowing he uses a Byrnes table saw, that's the saw I'd opt for. If I had to go small.
 

Pebbles

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Byrne’s saw looks lovely but 500$ before accessories or shipping? Too rich for me I’m afraid.
 

jrista

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If you are looking at doing segmented pens...I think the bandsaw would work. I bought a bandsaw...well, for many reasons, and to make many things, but one of them was to do segmenting. I spent some time watching youtube videos of people creating segmented pens. All but one used a bandsaw, the other used one of those small table saws like you had.

Most of the videos I was watching showed people using home made little bandsaw sleds with angle tools so they could cut at consistent angles with consistent support of the blanks. So, I built a sled of my own, for the same reason. A lot of people use a router to cut channels for things like T-track and miter track, but I chose a different route. I used two layers of wood, and just cut the top layer strait so I could separate the wood to make T-track and miter track channels. I then bolted it all together. Was pretty strait forward. It has some configurable options...one is a solid block of wood that runs across the sled perpendicular to the blade for easy strait cuts (just to do my normal blank cutting). I can take that off, and use the miter track with a miter guide with a T-track fence in it for angled cuts for segmenting.

One thing I haven't done yet is figure out how to do cuts with the blade angled. The bandsaw I have supports angling of the table...but, I'm still a bit new with the bandsaw in general, and haven't gotten to the stage of trying to adjust the table. So most of the segmenting I do is just to support say angled bands of metal and the like, hopefully soon celtic knots and half knots.
 

Pebbles

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If you are looking at doing segmented pens...I think the bandsaw would work. I bought a bandsaw...well, for many reasons, and to make many things, but one of them was to do segmenting. I spent some time watching youtube videos of people creating segmented pens. All but one used a bandsaw, the other used one of those small table saws like you had.

Most of the videos I was watching showed people using home made little bandsaw sleds with angle tools so they could cut at consistent angles with consistent support of the blanks. So, I built a sled of my own, for the same reason. A lot of people use a router to cut channels for things like T-track and miter track, but I chose a different route. I used two layers of wood, and just cut the top layer strait so I could separate the wood to make T-track and miter track channels. I then bolted it all together. Was pretty strait forward. It has some configurable options...one is a solid block of wood that runs across the sled perpendicular to the blade for easy strait cuts (just to do my normal blank cutting). I can take that off, and use the miter track with a miter guide with a T-track fence in it for angled cuts for segmenting.

One thing I haven't done yet is figure out how to do cuts with the blade angled. The bandsaw I have supports angling of the table...but, I'm still a bit new with the bandsaw in general, and haven't gotten to the stage of trying to adjust the table. So most of the segmenting I do is just to support say angled bands of metal and the like, hopefully soon celtic knots and half knots.
Hi jrista- many thanks for your response. I have seen sleds etc on YouTube also, but as I know nothing about t- track and mitre tracks , and have never really done any woodwork before I did a course in woodturning, I am confused to see runners and knobs and lots of different pieces of wood put together that I would never attempt to build. Maybe you could post a picture of your device- it sounds simpler than all the sleds/ jigs I have seen. Thanks again for your helpful suggestion
 

jrista

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I wrote about my sled above. Its for a larger bandsaw, but should be easy enough to scale down. I used MDF, but I'm reworking it with plywood. Also considering making some custom jigs to use with the T-track (its a dual T-track/miter slot piece as you can see) for cutting certain common angles. The crossbar can be removed, allowing the miter to be used for any angle cuts right now. I added a T-track fence to the miter, which can be slid in and out to give whatever piece of wood I am cutting the maximum support at the blade (with increased angle, the fence needs to be slid out farther from the miter angle part).
 

dogcatcher

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I had an 8 inch tablesaw that was a hobby saw from Sears back in the 1940s. Small blade and overall small in size. Solid cast iron, an old school tool meant to last. I used to make miniature period type furniture that demanded precision. Not for little girls to play with but for collectors. Mine was crude compared to makers like Paul Runyon and Bill Robertson.

That saw could and would do everything I ever tried to reproduce. Want inspiration, search Tom Walden miniatures.
 

jttheclockman

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Byrne’s saw looks lovely but 500$ before accessories or shipping? Too rich for me I’m afraid.
You can do as I did and put an ad on woodworking forums. Someone would probably be selling. I did this 2 years ago and got one with all the goodies for $200. Like brand new. Just beware of scams. Check to see if they are part of the membership and partake in the forum. Shipping no matter what you do will be an expense. It may take awhile but the more sites you post on the better the chance. It is a well built tool but has its limitations. It was designed for model building.
 

Pebbles

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I wrote about my sled above. Its for a larger bandsaw, but should be easy enough to scale down. I used MDF, but I'm reworking it with plywood. Also considering making some custom jigs to use with the T-track (its a dual T-track/miter slot piece as you can see) for cutting certain common angles. The crossbar can be removed, allowing the miter to be used for any angle cuts right now. I added a T-track fence to the miter, which can be slid in and out to give whatever piece of wood I am cutting the maximum support at the blade (with increased angle, the fence needs to be slid out farther from the miter angle part).
Thanks for info re sled- I opted for mini table saw- a Chinese make that got good reviews on some websites and seems to have a sled available that seems to make cutting equal lengths easy without having to construct one myself. However having seen yours and the accompanying instructions- I might have a go if this new machine lets me down ( I already have a small bandsaw) Many thanks again for the info
 

Pebbles

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You can do as I did and put an ad on woodworking forums. Someone would probably be selling. I did this 2 years ago and got one with all the goodies for $200. Like brand new. Just beware of scams. Check to see if they are part of the membership and partake in the forum. Shipping no matter what you do will be an expense. It may take awhile but the more sites you post on the better the chance. It is a well built tool but has its limitations. It was designed for model building.
 

Pebbles

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To jttheclockman, many thanks for suggestion- however I think shipping costs to Europe would be exorbitant!!
 

jttheclockman

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To jttheclockman, many thanks for suggestion- however I think shipping costs to Europe would be exorbitant!!
Maybe the person would be willing to share cost if they are looking to get rid of saw. Maybe there are some woodworking sites in your country. I got mine from a member at AAW forum site. I know I had gotten another offer but can not remember wheat site it was on. May have been Lumberjocks. Worth looking into.
 

alanemorrison

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Maria, hello from up north.
What do you want the saw to do?
If just cutting straight cross cuts or angles why not start with a good Japanese hand saw and a mitre box?
That will get you started and will be a lot easier on your pocket, and a lot safer if working in a small space.
Drilling, barrel trimming, turning, sanding and finishing can all be done on the lathe.
As you improve you will know what equipment will make things easier for you.

PM me if you want a chat or if you are in my area call in.
Alan
 
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