DeWalt recently announced three new portable table saws. I attended the media event where it happened and had the opportunity to make a few cuts on one of the saws and give it and its stand a quick once over.
The new DeWalt saw represent an evolutionary change rather than a revolutionary one. And that's fine; revolutions don't happen that often in tool design. The last time for portable table saws was in the late 1990s when DeWalt introduced the DW744, a model with an extendable fence and pinion gears that opened the door to making 24-inch cuts on lightweight jobsite machines. Every DeWalt portable saw since that time has had some version of this fence. These new models have it too but the manufacturer has done earlier designs one better by boosting rip capacity and making improvements to other parts of the machine. When these news saws are in circulation DeWalt will lead the pack in rip capacity. How long that lead lasts will be up to the company's competitors.
This is the smallest and most compact of the three new saws. It looks to be an upgraded version of DeWalt's last new saw, the DW745, a between size model and the first with a metal roll cage instead of a traditional plastic housing. The DWE7480 has the same metal roll cage but can rip up to 24 inches wide. That's a lot for a saw of this size – 4 inches more than the most recent version of the DW745 and 6 inches more than the Bosch GTS1031. At 48 pounds and 4,800 RPM this new model is 3 pounds heavier and 950 RPM faster than its predecessor. The DWE7480 will hit the market this fall and is expected to sell for about $369.
The DWE749IR is DeWalt's newest premium jobsite table saw. It comes with a wheeled folding stand and offers an insane amount of rip capacity for a portable – 32 1/2 inches. I was able to examine this saw and make a few cuts on it at a media event. There wasn't time or space to put it through its paces but I feel comfortable saying it cuts the way you expect a jobsite saw to cut.
The most visible change from the DW744, an earlier model of comparable size, is the switch from a plastic housing to a more robust tubular steel roll cage. The removable guard and riving knife have been upgraded by the addition of a dust port on top, making it possible to connect a dust collection hose there as well as below the table – a feature similar to what is found on most European table saws. Like DeWalt's other recently announced saws, this one has a 10-inch blade, 15-amp motor, and spins faster (4,800 RPM) than preceding models. It weighs 90 pounds (with the stand) and will retail for about $599.
When I first encountered this machine I thought it was the DWE7491R with a different stand. That saw comes with a rolling stand; this one has a simpler scissor-style stand. Both saws have 15-amp motors, 10-inch blades, and have no-load speeds of 4,800 RPM. Except for the stands, the only difference between the two saws seems to be their rip capacity. This one has a maximum rip of 28 1/2 inches while the DWE7491R will do 32 1/2 inches. It's an unusual choice to differentiate machines by stand and rip capacity alone, but DeWalt's good at marketing so I assume they know what they're doing. The DWE7490X weighs 57 pounds without the stand and will retail for about $499.