The Skilsaw SPT99 10-inch wormdrive table saw is a newer, beefier version of the SPT70. Prior to reviewing the SPT99, I’d been using an old 8 1/4-inch Makita saw that I’ve had for more than 20 years, so I was ready for a new table saw when the opportunity arose to review this one.
After assembling the stand and mounting the saw to it, I loaded the unit into the back of my truck. While loading the unit, I noticed that it’s heavy: With the stand, the saw weighs in at close to a hundred pounds. Many portable table saw stands have smaller wheels, but this stand’s wheels are extra large, at 16 inches in diameter. The large wheels made rolling the saw across rough terrain and up stairs very easy.
The first thing I noticed when turning the saw on is that it’s quieter than most other saws I have used in the past. After running a few hundred lineal feet of 5/4-inch white oak through it, I was impressed by its power. According to the specs, with a 15-amp motor, it will cut a full 3 5/8 inches deep. To test this, I put the blade all the way up and ran a piece of 3 1/2-inch oak through; it cut through the stock without effort.
The rack-and-pinion-style fence is easy to adjust and was accurate out of the box. Locking the fence in place is done via a cam lock that snaps securely in place. Total rip capacity is impressive at 30 1/2 inches. As on other saws on the market, the fence features a flip-over guide for ripping thinner material. Another nice feature of the saw is that all accessories store on board.
After using this saw for a few months, I can attest that it cuts very well. The model that we received came with a 30-tooth Diablo blade, which cut well until someone hit it with a screw. We then ran it with a 60-tooth Diablo finish blade. The saw cut smooth as glass in oak and anything else we ran through it—producing really nice glue-line rips.
I did have a few quibbles with the saw. The first is that the dust chute is not durable. While it does a good job collecting dust (I didn’t use dust collection often, but instead captured dust into a bucket), the chute cracked easily. It’s made out of a thin, hard plastic and broke after I bumped into the dust elbow once. It’s usable—but disappointing, considering how solid and well-made everything else on the saw is. Another gripe I had is that it has no spot to hold extra blades. Finally, I also found that sawdust built up in the blade adjustment slide so much so that it wouldn’t let the blade drop below the surface of the table. With constant dust collection, the sawdust may not build up—but it’s worth nothing in case you don’t use dust collection regularly. Despite those downsides, I’d still consider this saw worth buying. At $580, it’s a good buy for the features and quality.
This article originally appeared in Tools of the Trade.