BTS20 Portable Tablesaw - Fine Homebuilding Tool Review
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BTS20 Portable Tablesaw

Ryobi - BTS20 Portable Tablesaw

This portable tablesaw from Ryobi can rip a 4x4 in half in a single pass, yet its size and weight allow for easy loading and unloading from a truck

$200.00 (As of 7/1/2005)

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User Reviews

I've had this saw for a little over two years now and I'm finding that you get what you pay for. The miter gauge has slots on the top rather than through-holes for attaching a sacrificial fence but since the face of the miter gauge isn't flat, the sacrificial fence kept coming loose. Compounding the problem, the slots for the miter gauge are just a little too wide, giving about a 1/16" side-to-side play. Doesn't sound like much but if you like straight cuts, this is a problem. I bought an adjustable Incra miter gauge that took care of that problem, but the bottom of the slot actually has raised bumps about every 6". Possibly when the top was bolted on, the bolts were tightened just a bit too much, but whatever the cause, it makes life difficult when cross-cutting. And I agree wholeheartedly with the comment about the blade raise/lower mechanism binding - I've found I have to thoroughly clean out the underside of the saw every time I use it or it is impossible to adjust the blade height. I wouldn't recommend this saw and now that I know what to look out for, I'll probably be shopping for a new one.

I'm a travailing builder and this saw is the best on all fronts. Sets up fast, angle change is fast, opening the table up to 32" is easy, and break down to store is fast. Its just what I needed to complete my tool set.

Marksouthflorida bought, and is reviewing, the wrong saw. He is describing the Ryobi BTS20 10" portable table saw with sliding miter table. If he had simply bought the base BTS20 10" portable table saw he would have gotten the simple miter guide with the slot on either side of the blade. I have this saw and it is great

I've used this saw extensively and for cutting stock that's not too wide or too thick you can get by. It's easy to roll around and set up. The plastic knob that raises and lowers the blade broke off. You must clean this saw out thoroughly otherwise it will bind when you raise or lower the blade. My biggest complaints with this saw is the way in which you must loosen the plastic hand-screws underneath to extend the outfeed support and to extend the table on the right. For some reason you must turn and turn and turn these things before anything can be extended. It's frustrating and time consuming. It would seem that after a couple of turns would be all you need, but not on this saw. 10-15 turns of two screws just allow the outfeed support or right table to extend. Then you must tighten these screws with another 10-15 turns each to secure it. Then reverse everything when it's time to put tools away at the end of the day. For the price and quality of the tool I would rate this table saw as a home user saw. It's too frustrating and too breakable for a worksite saw.

I've had this saw for over a year, and it is well worth the money. Like the other Mark, I don't care for the cross cut guide, but the rip guide and built in tape are very good. The table extends quickly to cut wider sheets. With a simple outfeed roller, you're good to go. The saw is cheap enough to have two on the job if you don't like the cross cut guide. My only fault is that it's easy to hit the blade tilt lock unintentionally. Dust control is pretty good, it has plenty of power and stores in almost no space. I gave my portable old steel top saw to my son.

This saw would be great if the sled had not been engineered as it is. The value, build, features, portability, weight, deck surface are all to my liking. However, i returned it after using it on a job installing a wood floor. The right angle push sled, used for making angle rip cuts, for me was far too frustrating and annoying to live with. Instead of having a simple groove on each side of the blade and a simple adjustable t-square type of device (as nearly every table saw i have ever encountered) Ryobi decided to reengineer the procedure into an overly complicated, unlatching table sled into which a plastic and metal guide is affixed and held in place by a plastic dowel and a simple long bolt with a plastic twist knob on the end. At first, i thought . . . ok, that's not too bad. But when you have to switch back and forth from rips to using the fence, it becomes tiresome and annoying. Not the way i like to feel about my tools (50 times a day). I had read reviews that mentioned this problem and due to the price (half of the Rigid saw) . . . i decided to give it a shot. No way. I guess i'll send Ryobi an email . . . it seems it would be an easy fix. Although, the composite material used for the top may be the reason that they went with this design. I would imagine that once sawdust got into the groove, the sled would bind and not travel smoothly along the composite material. Anyway . . . my two cents.

I used this saw on two house remodels and for many small projects here and there. It's price, light weight, very very quick set up and many nice features make it a great buy for home owner or for basic carpentry. The ability to rip a piece of plywood wider than two feet is one of its great features. Don't let the price fool you. You can do a lot of professional work with this unit. Keep your blades sharp and it will rip well through most material you have to use. If I was building high end furniture in a shop I would not use this product but as an all a rounder you can crank out a lot of serious work. On a price/quality/features scale this product does not disappoint. Lieblich

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