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  • TS3650 happy camper

    Hello all, I've been researching for a new table saw for some time as an older craftsman I had finally gave up the ghost. I'm a carpentor and have worked with several brands of table saws.
    If budget would allow a unisaw would have been in the shop by now but around $500 was all I had to invest so I was looking at contractors saws.
    I live in maine and sears is the closest tool store in my area but I couldn't see price vs. qaulity there so moved on. Anyway I was considering the new Grizzly G0444z until I ran across this site. My brother is a plumber and swears by Ridgid tools so I began researching the 3650. The closest HD. is about 3 hours from me but on a trip by stopped in and gave the saw a good look over and liked what I saw. Price was in range and unlike mailorder I could view this large purchase first hand. I ended up buying the Ridgid and having finally got around to setting it up and getting some run time am so far very pleased!! The saw has good features herc u lift works great even on rough floor, TEFC motor cap.run cap. start unlike some others,(I have no conplaints with the motor, quiet,smooth and pretty powerful)Serpentine belt seems to work better than v-belt, fence isn't the best out there but I find it works well and seems to lock sqaure, Don't see what all the fuss about the base being unstable is mine is about as solid as any I've seen? My sears legs twisted but never enough to cause concern. Aligning the blade is easy as the handle on rear trunion moves it enough to get parallel.
    The packaging of the saw was best I've! seen all well protected and organized. Even hardware was packed as to make it easy to find stuff. Most come with a large bag of bolts, nuts,etc. and you have to take an hour or so seperating and checking all is there? As to assembly pretty straight forword there were some minor issues> I believe most were covered in another post.(set up lessons-R.S.Hugger)Mix of metric, american hardware some of the other minor things he covered I too found but most were easily remedied. One thing I did have trouble with I've not seen mentioned was front fence rail would'nt adjust low enough so fence rode high above table. This I corrected by filing the front holes down a little with a round rat tail file then I used feeler gauge to set fence to just clear table. A little more accurate than using pages of manual as gauge. Also like the almost solid extensions just enough space to clamp a jig or something but not fully webbed. Over all I think this is a very competative saw to what else is in it's range. But as many have said time will tell but I started woodworking to long ago to mention (Delta-Rockwell tools) And even many of these so called vets in the industry have lost some of there good reputations. So as for now I am happy with this saw and feel I made a good choice for me and would recommend it. And NO I don't own any other Ridgid products and am speaking only from my experiance. Now my brother on the other hand all Ridgid for plumbing should have stock in the co.
    I hope this helps some for or against, your call?
    And hopefuly time will be on my side, I'll let you know Or hopefully I won't have to
    Thanks all for your input and letting me rant and here's to making the dust fly for many years to come, Rick.

  • #2
    Rick,

    Congrats on your new toy. Be sure to play nice.

    Jake

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    • #3
      Rick,

      I have been looking around for a good table saw and I have been leaning towards the Ridgid TS3650 because of my experiences with the Ridgid brand, and it just looks pretty sweet, not to mention I work at Home Depot and am around them all the time. However, I too am on a tight budget. The thing that concerns me most is the fence. From what I can tell, it looks and feels acurate and stable, a far cry from what I can say about my Crapsman, er I mean Craftsman. I absolutely hate the saw. I already hate Sears/Craftsman brand(the last 10 years or so, they have gone south in quality so far)but it was the "best" saw I could afford at the time, and I am paying for it now. The fence never wants to stay in position, it always moves when stock is passed through. So before I throw down $600 I want to know how the fence is. Do you have any problems with it? If it is as good as the jointer I bought I will be really happy.

      Tim

      Comment


      • #4
        Tim
        I have 3650 and love it. How if I had the money I would buy a cabinet with the high end fence. Just can't justify $2k. I have had no trouble with my fence. I mostly make furniture. For $600 I think the 3650 is a good deal.
        Steve

        Comment


        • #5
          Tim,

          I was in same position as you not too long ago. Old craftsman needed replacement. Went with a powermatic 64A w/ 50" rails b/c of the bies style fence. Probably overkill at the time for my woodworking skills, but glad I did b/c I'm getting quite a bit of use out of them and the accuracy is night and day from old saw.

          I'd hold out for a bies style fence but everybody's situation is different. With your discount you may be able to do pretty well on ts3650 and then upgrade fence later. Tough call

          Jake

          Comment


          • #6
            Jake,

            Discount? LOL I wish!!!!!

            How would I upgrade the fence if I needed? Through Ridgid probably? I don't do anything super-heavy-duty but I just want something better than the terrible excuse for a table saw I have in my Crapsman right now. If it can hold the proper size for more than 5 cuts I think I would be happy enough. For the most part I make repetitive cuts based on a template and I just want it to cut to the same size(mainly 1/4" birch ply) every time.
            What price range are powermatics in? Out of my range i'm sure, $600 for a ridgid is a strtech for me, but in the long run I think I can make money off the products and pay for the saw within a few months.

            Thanks for the advice,

            Tim

            Comment


            • #7
              Tim, what if you just get a good aftermarket fence for the craftsman you have. Any saw will cut 1/4" plywood so a good fence should solve your problem. Biesemeyer makes them to fit many sears models, check out the following page
              http://www.biesemeyer.com/home_fence/index.htm

              Comment


              • #8
                Tim,I've had the 3650 about 2 months now and so far no regrets! I've since added a homemade folding outfeed table, rewired the motor to run on 220v,(seems to give a little better performance though I think it would be fine on 110). I am in the stages of designing a crosscut sled and possibly a router table to rt. of extension. Your concern about fence? I have no complaints. Like I stated not top of the line but feels good. I set the saw up and squared everything up and it has not changed. I'm in the building trade and spent a couple days ripping hard figured maple flooring to do accent inlays for custom hardwood floor job,also stair treads,
                The fence remained true everytime I set it! Even not locked you can't twist it out of line without some force. If you work at HD.then you know probably more about saw than most. So take that and compare with others. Eventually it will be your call. Just a note from what I've seen the displays in alot of big wharehouse stores are just stuck together usualy by someone with no concern to how it is set up. This sometimes gives bad feel for what might be a good machine when the time is taken to do it right? Also you have the option of 90 day return, not fun lugging heavy saw back but something to consider?
                Hope this helps and good luck, Rick. [img]smile.gif[/img]

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                • #9
                  Just wanted to mention checking out the new Grizzly 0444,0444z. You may not be able to get firsthand look at one but from those who have gotten them sounds like a good saw?
                  Rick.

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                  • #10
                    Table saws are only as good as the contol system, any machine can be made to function properly, with proper systems, yet: most have been made in last 30 years for the wood ripper ,sorry, true as saleman ship concerns the corporate bottom line.

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                    • #11
                      I must come clean, I guess. I think I am just trying to convince myself to buy a new toy. LOL I will look into an aftermarket fence for now though. But the more I look at the 3650 the more I like it. The motor is better, and I just plain hate Sears/Crapsman anyways. The table is much better on the 3650 too, plus I could rewire it to run 220, and I am sure that will help me out for my construction type work with ptl too. The Crapsman REALLY struggles with ptl.

                      Tim

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                      • #12
                        Tim,
                        Since you do construction type work also, have you considered the TS2400? Editors choice in latest Workbench magazine. [img]smile.gif[/img]
                        Lorax
                        "Did you put the yellow key in the switch?" TOD 01/09/06

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Convinced yet Tim??? lol
                          We all will continue to help you - toys are great
                          Lorax has good idea - yet to read article but know many love 'em. Worthy of reading anyway.

                          Lorax----what the heck time do you get up? I looked at time stamp and figured you up all night?
                          Wish I had the answers ..... even half of \'em

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                          • #14
                            I have the 2400, and it is great for construction, and I've even done some finer work on it (though you'll need a better blade than comes with it). I have no complaints about the fence, though it's not a bies. Best in class saw and fence, I think.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Cranky:
                              Convinced yet Tim??? lol

                              Lorax----what the heck time do you get up? I looked at time stamp and figured you up all night?
                              Cranky,
                              I just retired a little over a year ago so I go to bed whenever I want and get up whenever I want. If I get tired during the day, I take a nap. Most of the rest of the time I spend in the shop. Have a great day. Nappy time.
                              Lorax
                              "Did you put the yellow key in the switch?" TOD 01/09/06

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