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Anyone changed from TS3650/60 to R4511?

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  • Anyone changed from TS3650/60 to R4511?

    Bit of a long story, but I would be grateful for the views of anyone who has changed from a 3650 or 3660 to a R4511.

    I have a 3660 that I bought earlier this year. At the time, it was $599 for the 4511 and $549 for the 3660. Then the 3660 was clearanced out at $399, and with the Ultimate Power Deal, final cost was a mere $282. Absolute no-brainer to me from a pricing perspective, $282 vs $599.

    As time has gone on, I have found things I like about the 3660, and things I don't. The fence is a winner, to me. It is solid, accurate, glides so smoothly in the rails, nice big magnifying cursors. The CI on mine has been fine, T-9 and wax have done a great job. It took me a while to get to that stage, but I have it cracked now. On the negative side, the dust collection is just not up to my aspirations. I've put a floor plate in the base of the saw, and have the DC on it, but it's going to need quite a bit of work to get it right.

    I considered buying a second saw, a 3650 that came my way cheaply, but it was badly pitted, and I passed on it. I was going to use it as a dedicated crosscut saw (with 80 tooth blade) and outfeed table for the 3660.

    Enter the price reduction on the 4511 to $499, and the Friends and Family promotion. I could now buy the 4511 for as little as $320 with a little work at my HD. My lovely wife gave me a planer for my birthday, and I can do a paper return on it at the same time as buying the 4511 and get a larger rebate.

    So I am now considering buying the 4511 for near as dammit the same money as the 3660, and I could move the 3660 for what I paid for it. I even have a spare fence (long story) for it, so I am sure I could change to the 4511 for zero cost.

    So that's the background, and where I am coming from.

    I would be grateful for feedback from anyone with a 4511 that previously had a 3650 or 3660. Is the 4511's fence (my main concern!) as good as the 3660? Better, even? The 3660 has 6" more rip capacity to the right. Did you miss the extra 6"? I used the 36" capacity just the other day, but I could have got round it by trimming off the "other side" of a board I cut to 36".

    I expect the dust control to be near perfect, is that realistic? Is the riving knife as much of an improvement as it promises to be? Anything I have missed? I don't expect the stability of the 4511 to be much better than the 3660, as that never moved on me, but maybe it's less vibration?

    I'd be making my move next week if I do this, so I have between now and then to agonize! Help much appreciated from those who have made the change and can honestly compare the 3650/60 with the 4511.

    Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Re: Anyone changed from TS3650/60 to R4511?

    I have just bought the 4511 and its a great saw I have only had to cut one peice of plywood that required more than the 31" the fence alows you, but the piece was small enough i could through the miter sled on and cut it with that. overall great saw will not warp in the cold and will not rust from humidity. If you do decide to go with the r4511 be very carefull on assembly with the 2 side leafs of granite because they do not need to be realy tight (mine chiped) if yours chips its an easy repair with some 2 part epoxy and a razor blade. 4511= 450lbs lol they loaded it in my truck with a forklift . there is a thread in this forum that shows you how to extend your ripping capacity with the r4511 with a side table


    • #3
      Re: Anyone changed from TS3650/60 to R4511?

      I sold my 3650 for $300 and bought the 4511. The fence is as good or better. The fence on the 4511 is a "T" while the 3650 squeezes the front and rear rails. I installed a longer, single piece front and rear rail along with a Wixly digital fence. I now can cut 40" on the right. The dust collection is greatly improved with a 4" bottom, rear discharge. I used a piece of foam pipe wrap to close the gap at motor cover and table bottom and a magnet vent cover to seal the tilt slot. Over all I am happy with my 4511 even though mine is in the recall and am currently working with HD to get me a new saw as they don't have a repairman in my area. the riving knife is one piece with the blade guard and don't tell anyone but mine is in like new condition. I do plan on fabricating one.
      Last edited by Richard$; 11-07-2009, 09:56 PM. Reason: riving knife


      • #4
        Re: Anyone changed from TS3650/60 to R4511?

        OK, so I did it, I bought the 4511. An utter pain in the *** to get into my basement, but it's up and assembled now.

        I like the weight of it (other than trying to move it down stairs!), it is very solid. I siliconed all the little gaps in the frame as I was assembling it, and the DC is not in the same league as my 3660, just as I expected, and hoped for.

        The granite is a little off colored in parts, but that's OK, I didn't buy it for looks. Well not much

        The stock blade is MUCH thicker than the stock one that came with the 3660. I did a couple of test cuts last night, comparing the output with the same cut on the 3660 (which now has a a Freud Diablo). The 3660 produced a much cleaner cut.

        I'll swap the blades round tonight and try the exercise again. I expect the good cut to follow the Diablo onto the 4511. If it doesn't, there's a black mark against the 4511.

        The riving knife is much better, but I'll have to get used to taking the throat plate out to change it. I can see a low profile knife and an overhead blade guard/vacuum shroud in its future.

        I feared that the fence would be a disappointment, and it seems I was not wrong to have that thought. It is as far out of kilter with the 3660's fence as the DC is the other way. All is not lost though. I can see that it is the relatively rough surface of the rails (in comparison with anodized aluminum) that causes it to feel like it is on sandpaper in comparison. The join in the rail is also a horrible thing as the riding pads go over it. It seems to lock down square, but until I got the knack, it seemed to kick right as I locked it down. I prefer the magnifying cursors of the old saw too. However, I'm prepared to give it the benefit of the doubt, and get a one piece (longer) rail pair, and polish them to death to improve the gliding of the fence. At the same time, I'll put faces on the fence and new tapes.

        The price is right though, $499-20%=$400. At the end of it, for the price of the saw when it came out ($600 or so) I should have a 500lb hybrid with a 50 inch rip capacity and a (nicer) T-square fence. Maybe even a router table insert.

        I won't be parting with the 3660 anytime soon though, just in case the upgrades planned for the 4511 still leave me feeling a bit disappointed, as I do now. I don't know how it's possible to feel disloyal to a table saw, but I do at present!