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darylb
05-15-2006, 02:54 AM
I am looking to buy a worm gear circular saw. Which have you used? Dewalt, PC, Milwaukee, etc... I want it primarily for cutting sheet goods (plywood) into managable sections.

Regards, Daryl

srpoly
05-15-2006, 07:25 AM
If your only going to be using it for sheet goods, why do you feel like you want a worm-drive? The reason I ask is that they're heavy, expensive, and much more unwieldy than a sidewinder. It used to be that you wouldn't even find them in the eastern US. Western framers would use them, since there were more stick framed houses, but also they got the lumber from the mills more quickly, which meant more moisture. The worm drives just have way more torque to power through wet, heavy, tight junk.
We could always tell where a guy was from originally when you saw that nice old Milwaukee sidewinder in his truck. Of course you never saw it on the jobsite, cause he hasn't used it since the day he moved out here.
The day I quit framing for a living is the day I traded my Skil 77 with 75ft #10 cord for a 6 1/2" PorterCable left blade sidewinder, and I've never been happier. It still has enough grunt to get through the 2x material when needed, but I don't have to pack that heavy SOB around any more! Nowadays I frame at my pace and it works perfect for that. It's nice and light, has a nice dust management system, and still has pretty good power. By far, it's main job is sheet goods.

darylb
05-15-2006, 08:41 AM
I've been using an old Craftman, the first power tool I ever bought. So I was looking for power. But from this and the other couple forums I belong to, I've been convinced that a smaller 6" saw is the way to go. As I said it's only to cut down sheet goods before they head to the TS.

Thanks, Daryl

Sonny Edmonds
05-15-2006, 09:04 AM
The one you don't list is Skil Saw.
I've used both the Skil Saw and your conventional (and IMHO, dangerous) "side winder" saws.
My Skil Saw has never kicked on me, where the conventional (cheap)types can kick and sprain your wrist.
Plus the worm drives are much easier to aim than climbing on top of a sidewinder.

As an aside, worm drive saws are so tough, they are also used by the stone masons to cut granite and such on site.
I've used my anchient Skil Saw to cut 30' of driveway for an expansion slot with a dry type diamond blade. Now that is workin a saw.
Mostly it gets used like you want to use one, cutting down sheet stock.

:D

[link:home.att.net/~paul.edmonds/|Sonny Edmonds ]
"Precision Firewood Specialist"
God Bless America !
One Nation Under God!
"Lurkimus turdius orifus"

Welcome to the Forum!

srpoly
05-15-2006, 10:36 AM
Boy Sonny, you're right on about "climbing all over a sidewinder"!
That's the reason I went with the PorterCable in the first place. They offer both the 7-1/4 and the 6 1/2 in a "blade on the left configuration. I think there are a couple other manufacturers who offer it now as well.
As a right hander having spent many years running that Skil 77 wormdrive, going to a "standard" blade on the right saw was not an option. I for one cannot figure out WHY in the world they were ever developed that way in the first place. Kinda seems like a cruel joke to me.
As far as the Skilsaw not kicking tho- Worst one I've ever seen was a FNUG trying to cut Ijoists with one. It kicked and cut him DEEP, right across his thigh. Worst part was... it was my saw.

mstens
05-15-2006, 04:47 PM
Ye, I've had kickbacks with both. The only circular saw I own that I haven't has a riving knife.

rrich
05-15-2006, 05:11 PM
I have a B&D worm drive that I purchased 20 years ago for about $110. I wouldn't trade that saw for any sidewinder. As I understand it, Milwaukee makes a rather good one as does DeWalt. The new design DeWalt may be worth looking at.

Dave D.,
I've never been able to understand the West vs. East thing on the saw types. On my worm drive, the starting torque will twist my elbow and not my wrist. My elbow can handle the twisting much better than my wrist. After watching a framing carpenter rip a 1x10, standing on the roof rafters and resting the 1x10 on his leg, I understand why he uses a worm drive. (Not that I would ever do that, but to each his own.)

bigjoegags
05-18-2006, 12:27 PM
I recently asked about the best small circular saw-I want to use it to break down sheet goods too- and many people seem to like the PC sawboss. I think it is a 6 1/2 saw-a sidewinder though. Porter cable also makes a trim saw (PC314, I think?) which, if I remember correctly, is a small worm drive saw. It is expensive, over $200 last I saw.

joentoni
05-18-2006, 01:35 PM
I have both, a Skill worm and a Milwalkee side. I use the worm to gang cut ply, other then that I rarly feel it is worth toting around.But I am not a weight lifter, I am a weight avoider.

Sonny Edmonds
05-18-2006, 06:02 PM
"I've never been able to understand the West vs. East thing on the saw types."

Rich,
It goes back to that Left Coast, Right Coast, thing. Mostly they get jelous because we get the fresh lumber. Their lumber is stale from being trucked. By the time they get it, it don't matter what you cut it with. }>
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LMAO! :o :7 :9

:D

[link:home.att.net/~paul.edmonds/|Sonny Edmonds ]
"Precision Firewood Specialist"
God Bless America !
One Nation Under God!
"Lurkimus turdius orifus"

Welcome to the Forum!

Sonny Edmonds
05-18-2006, 06:10 PM
Dave,
The side winders I base my experiance on were very old saws. One was from the 40's and the other was from the 70's. That one from the 40's would kill your wrist! And it loved to kick back. The other one wasn't much better, either.
Once I got a Skill Saw (worm drive) in my hand, I never looked back. Although the Skill Saw I have and still use is also anchient.
But I gotta respect a saw that will cut 30' of concrete and ask for more. I was tuckered out, but it wasn't. ;)

:D

[link:home.att.net/~paul.edmonds/|Sonny Edmonds ]
"Precision Firewood Specialist"
God Bless America !
One Nation Under God!
"Lurkimus turdius orifus"

Welcome to the Forum!

Jim_J Lazy 3
05-18-2006, 09:58 PM
FWIW, I have owned 3 or 4 worm drive milwaulkees,77's and mag 77's. I have been using a Makita w/d for the last 4 years or so, and wouldn't trade it for all the rest combined! It uses a ring gear that reduces hand/forearm shock, but doesn't compromise power at all, and is a pound or two lighter! I prefer the blade on the side I'm standing, and even though there are left blade sidewinders out there, they still torque your wrist pretty good at start-up, and I for one now prefer the lower and more reward placing of the handle that the w/d has.
Ultimatley, what ever feels right to YOU,is what YOU need to be using!
...........Jim@JLazy3

"The only thing certain in life ...is uncertainty!"

CajunRider
05-19-2006, 04:53 AM
You may want to check the new hypoid saws. They are the new generation of worm drive saws. The [Link:www.toolsofthetrade.net/articles/showarticle.asp?articleID=1623&position=2&type=article&partID=1|Dewalt DW378G] is supposed to be really good.