powermatic 64A VS Craftsman contractor saw

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boyzwithboardz

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john
My Craftsman saw is having issues and i have always despised the fence. There is a PM 64A for sale in my area for 650. Curious if anyone in the forum has one and what their thoughts are on it. Is it a significant upgrade or should i just bite the bullet and spend a few hundred more for a used cabinet saw? Thanks:help:
 

Mike Camp

New User
Mike
Is your craftsman saw one of the old cast iron, belt driven models? If it is only the fence that is bothering you, you might consider just upgrading to a Delta T2 fence for around $150. I'm restoring a Delta clone contractor saw right now and that is my plan.

For the price of $650 - $800 you should be able to pick up a very capable used cabinet saw if you are patient enough watching craigslist. I'd go to the cabinet saw if you have the room and can add the 220 circuit.
 

boyzwithboardz

New User
john
Thanks Mike. Contemplating that as well. Locally there is a PM66 available with a brand new motor and switch for 950 but i would have to cut the rails because it is huge...not to mention run 220, but it sure would be cool to have a workhorse like that in the basement. BTW...considered a different fence, but saw is so underpowered, it struggles ripping anything thicker than 4/4. Best thing about it is the built in router plate.
 

Mike Camp

New User
Mike
No problem, you might consider upgrading the motor (if its belt drive it's easy), but even a 1.5 hp from grizzly will run you close to $200, and you probably don't want to dump that much cash into the saw. Also that including a new fence would put you more than halfway towards buying the 64A which is a much nicer contractor saw.

I understand the issue with long rails I almost jumped on an older delta with 50" rails, but my bride nixed that idea when she made me figure out where it would fit in the garage. And what do you know she was right, it didn't. :rotflm:
 

gator

George
Corporate Member
I have an older 64A (bought used 10 years ago) and it has served me well. Fence is great (Beis clone) and it has taken everything I have thrown at it. I forget exactly but I paid about the same (650) for mine ten years ago so the $650 price tag may be a little high.

George
 

KC7CN

New User
Don
My Craftsman saw is having issues and i have always despised the fence. There is a PM 64A for sale in my area for 650. Curious if anyone in the forum has one and what their thoughts are on it. Is it a significant upgrade or should i just bite the bullet and spend a few hundred more for a used cabinet saw? Thanks:help:

I have the PowerMatic64A - bought it new 8 or 9 years ago. Although it has served me well, I would recommend shopping for a cabinet saw! I paid about $750. As another member stated, the Biz-clone fence is very good!

The reason I recommend a cabinet saw is the amount of time and effort involved in all the upgrades that are required to make a table saw user friendly. Dust collection (especially difficult), out-feed tables, tool drawers, zero-clearance inserts, etc. Take a look at my photo album for pictures of what I have done.

Photo Album: http://www.ncwoodworker.net/pp/showgallery.php?cat=500&ppuser=1367
 

jobelenus

New User
bigjohn
I have a PM 64a and I bought it used about 2-3 years ago for 525...the guy threw in a lot of extras so it made it a pretty good deal - I too have rigged up dust collection and an outfeed table for it - not as pretty as KC7CN's but it is functional. I like the saw, and it works great and is strong - but I have my heart set on a cabinet saw - maybe we could strike a deal if you want the 64a - I could put the cash towards a down payment on a cabinet saw....looking for a heavier saw and one with a more efficient dust collection system...
 
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