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Bought BT3100 returning it for a TS3650

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  • Bought BT3100 returning it for a TS3650

    Hi All,

    Well eventhough I wanted wanted a TS3650 the cost and popularity of the Ryobi BT3100 enticed me .... so I bought the BT. Well today I am going to pack it up and return for a Ridgid TS 3650. The BT seems to work great for many people (see www.bt3central.com) but its tolerances and just not as tight as the TS3650 that I looked at. Anyway, for those looking that were considering the BT here are my thoughts:

    First let me say that Ryobi does and excellent job packaging the BT's.

    - Sliding Miter Table (SMT): there is side to side play in the sliding grooves of the table (I could not find a way to remedy this).
    - All three tables seem to be at different heights (yes they were seated properly).
    - The SMT was as flat as my straight edge, but the main table was concave and the accessory table was convex.
    - The accessory table would does not lock securely at the rear (where it slides into the rear fence rail). This causes the table to tilt or wobble depending where pressure is applied. So it would need to be shimmed, which is annoying since one is constantly moving the table about.
    - Where the Fence attaches to the locking handle asssembly there is a ridge that does not allow the work piece to feed flat against the fence. I suspect the could be remedied, but I did not try as I had already decided to return the saw.
    - The saw is just cheap overall and kind of annoying to tune...actually mess with until you get close is more like it.
    - Plus move one foot and you have to recheck alignments.....
    - So to me and this is my opinion only the BT3100 is a quite frustrating tool to use (if you get to use it since you could spend so much time tuning it). The overall concept is great, but the final product is cheap feeling and would have to be "babied" when compared to a contractors saw that will hold its adjustments/alignment. I assembled and aligned the saw according to the manual and using some of the info i found at this link ( http://benchmark.20m.com/tools/BT310...mentindex.html ). Once I finished I did not even turn the saw on because I knew that I would not be happy with it. If you like tinkering with your tools then the BT3100 is for you; however, if you are like me and you prefer to "work wood" and not your table saw then save your $$$ and but the TS 3650 or any other quality contractors saw.
    Once, again this is my opinion and i don't mean to step on the toes of any happy BT owners.

    kmw

  • #2
    Yoda says

    From the dark side into the light welcome you are
    Lorax
    "Did you put the yellow key in the switch?" TOD 01/09/06

    Comment


    • #3
      Excellent Choice

      I had the BT3000 and now have the 3650. Best I can see from looking at several 3100's, aluminum was replaced with plastic on the 3100, probably due to wanting to sell the saw at the $300 level. The 3000 was almost double the price of the 3100.
      Most of your points are valid even for the 3000, tho. I was happy with the 3000, but it being the first TS I owned, I guess I was ignorant.
      I grew tired of having no space in front of the blade and that *&^%$#@ sliding miter table.
      IMO, you made an excellent choice. I don't see that I will ever need another TS.
      As for BT3Central, don't let being a Ridgid owner get you away, I am still active there and there are many members with non-BT saws.

      Oh, Lorax, over there we are referred to as the Darksiders!
      Congrats on the new saw, once you get it assembled and tuned, you will love it.
      Ken
      Poplar Branch Wood Crafts

      Comment


      • #4
        Well I returned the Bt to HD this morning hoping that the TS3650 would by some miracle be marked down because of Presidents Day...not so. Anyway, I am going to wait till the end of the month (save $$$) then go pick up the TS3650. And you are right KenM BT3central is a great forum.....I will stick around and be a "darksider" also

        kw

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by kmw
          Well I returned the Bt to HD this morning hoping that the TS3650 would by some miracle be marked down because of Presidents Day...not so. Anyway, I am going to wait till the end of the month (save $$$) then go pick up the TS3650. And you are right KenM BT3central is a great forum.....I will stick around and be a "darksider" also

          kw
          kw,
          http://www.homedepot-coupon.com/

          29% off valid till 4/30/06
          Poplar Branch Wood Crafts

          Comment


          • #6
            Thanks KenM,

            I appreciate it....I will call my local stores and see if they will accept it. Lol I tried the HF coupon at 4 local HD's with no luck, but I have a good feeling about this one. Thanks again.

            kmw

            Comment


            • #7
              Hey, don't forget to clip along the dotted lines. Need to get the californiafreebies stuff off of it ;-D
              I wouldn't call, just go to the store and present the coupon.
              Poplar Branch Wood Crafts

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by KenM
                ...Oh, Lorax, over there we are referred to as the Darksiders!
                ...
                At least we're "enlightened" darksiders!

                IMHO you made the right choice. The two saws are in different leagues and the vast majority who transition in the direction you did feel the same way. Have fun and be safe!
                Last edited by hewood; 02-26-2006, 09:00 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by KenM
                  kw,
                  http://www.homedepot-coupon.com/

                  29% off valid till 4/30/06
                  Want to check out HD tomorrow for storewide clearance event 2/27 & 2/28. Tried the link, but keeps going to mapname.com??? tried cutting & pasting link, manual typing, etc, but still get same site. Is the link still valid or is there some trick that I'm missing.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Zman
                    Want to check out HD tomorrow for storewide clearance event 2/27 & 2/28. Tried the link, but keeps going to mapname.com??? tried cutting & pasting link, manual typing, etc, but still get same site. Is the link still valid or is there some trick that I'm missing.
                    Yeah, looks like it's gone. Check your PM's.
                    ken
                    Poplar Branch Wood Crafts

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Well I just got back from HD.........bought a TS 3650 with a HD 20% off coupon. With tax I paid $463 The saw I bought says PO0543... so I think the arbor should be fine....if I remember right I think saws after PO0515 were okay. So if I am wrong please correct me. So I am just making some space for the saw then the assembly shall begin

                      kmw

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        another dissatisfied Bt3100 user here

                        Hi:

                        I bought the Bt3100 in May 05 and finally, after 6 months of almost daily problems bought a TS3650. I can't really afford two saws, and normally I wouldn't spend so much time trying to make a defective tool work, but after all those guys at BT3Central swearing the BT is a great saw I just couldn't get it out of my head that I was doing something wrong. Most of the problems I had have already been mentioned in other posts, so I won't go into them. I just want to second whoever said it was extremely tedious to tune the smt. That's an understatement in my opinion. My own BT had about a 16 inch of slop from side to side so no amount of tuning was going to make it work correctly.

                        If you don't mind these kinds of problems and don't mind buying a new blade guard, and building a cabinet around your saw so you'll have enough table space for your stock, and rewiring the on/off switch, etc.... the BT3100 may be the saw for you.

                        Another thing which I didn't even think of till I bought the BT, but which became a bigger problem as time went on, is that all of the literature and instruction videos, jigs, etc. out in the world are for TS3650 type saws. Any information or advice you need about the SMT has to be taken from the BT users forum. This can be a real drawback at times, unless you already know a lot about using tablesaws and don't need to refer to the books every once in a while as I do.

                        So, now my BT is sitting under a table , and I am once again enjoying woodworking. My Ts3650 took a few hours to assemble, about 5 minutes to square, and I've been using it successfully since.

                        The BT3100 is easily the worst tool experience I've ever had.

                        Mary Jo

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Maryjo: correction to earlier post....

                          sorry .. in my earlier rant I said the smt slop is 16 when it 's actually one-sixteenth. 1/16... a big difference, but still too much.

                          Thanks for the info about Dado blades. I've since looked at my saw's arbor and don't see any potential for problems.. so, I'm going to buy the SD206 on sale at Amazon and see what happens. If anyone thinks this is the wrong
                          choice I'd appreciate hearing why, as I've never used a Dado blade before and am still a bit worried I'll damage my TS3650.

                          Maryjo

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by maryjo
                            ... If anyone thinks this is the wrong
                            choice I'd appreciate hearing why, as I've never used a Dado blade before and am still a bit worried I'll damage my TS3650.

                            Maryjo
                            Maryjo,

                            I have used an old 6" Sears dado blade on my 3650 many times with no problems. I have never used an 8" but personally believe the 3650 is capable of handling it also.

                            Jerry
                            It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              dado blade

                              I have a 2412, an earlier version of the 3650. I routinely use an 8" freud stack dado with no ill effects to the saw.
                              there's a solution to every problem.....you just have to be willing to find it.

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