Sidewinders - Tools & Equipment - Contractor Talk


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Old 06-15-2009, 09:30 AM   #1
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with or without an electric brake?

it's time for a new saw, the old PC is starting to smell burnt,
I've made up my mind to go with a makita magnesium model, now to decide on a brake or not, my PC had a brake, the service guy seems to think it could be the reason for the motor not lasting.

I'll let the experts of CT decide
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Old 06-15-2009, 06:15 PM   #2
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Re: Sidewinders

What are you cutting that you need the brake? Did you really like it?

It's true - the brake does reduce the life of the motor (commutator). I have mixed experiences with brakes. They seem to work better with DC tools than AC.


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Old 06-15-2009, 06:18 PM   #3
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Re: Sidewinders

Never had a brake but can see where they are usefull. I just suggest blade left. If your getting it from HD insist on paying the same price as the blade right version of the same saw! A little heads up. One of my employees quit here HD dept manager job and let me in on a little inside knowlage. At the time she quit HD had a customer service campain that would only allow the overall store manager to say no to a customer. She was pissed as she had to give a guy a refund on a pallet of grout that was a brand HD did not sell. Customer insisted he bought from HD and they took it back without a recipt! Then dumped it becuase they were not licensed to sell it! So I went in armed with this info and got my blade left for same price as blade right($40 difference since blade right was on sale and started out $10 cheeper) Plus got them to give me military discount since I WAS in the military and it WAS vetrans day! So overall I saved around $50. (Until I took her and her husband to dinner)
Cheers Jim
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Old 06-15-2009, 06:30 PM   #4
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Re: Sidewinders

Both my PC's doing fine,
thank you.
Neither have a brake, but the
new 18V does.
I wouldn't want one unless
you have a bunch of idiots
using it, then it would be
a good idea.
Put your location in your profile!
( seems there really are dumb questions)
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Old 06-15-2009, 06:32 PM   #5
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Re: Sidewinders

Never really got why you would need a break for a sidewinder....except for thoes times I wedged the guard open then dropped it on the floor and sent it for a little jog accross the floor. Breakes put unecessary wear on motors, although drills with breaks have saved my fingers a few times I can't see getting a breaking sidewinder.
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:20 PM   #6
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Re: Sidewinders

With the tools I have which utilize a brake I have noticed the 'brake' feature never last. That's not to say the motor burns out, rather just the brake itself. The tool works the same as with the brake but it won't stop before momentum does. Brakes wear out. This has happened with my sliding mitres and circular saws.

CypertJ- I have the Mag Makita at I like it. Cuts are smooth and it LOOKS GOOD! Purists have said the older style Maks are better (I have one of those too, but it's now designated as a soffit saw- no guard), I have yet to affirm that.
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Old 06-15-2009, 09:34 PM   #7
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Re: Sidewinders

I have the Milwaukee Tilt-lok saw with the blade on the right. Its probly the best saw I have ever used. Its smooth and comfortable. The adjustable handle seemed kinda gimiky at first, but it reall makes cutting comfortable in different positons.

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Old 06-15-2009, 10:36 PM   #8
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Re: Sidewinders

I like the MM I don't care about the blade break i could go either way . The saw cuts good , but Ive broken 3 in 18 months.
I hate the big blue bubble box and chuck them . John
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:42 AM   #9
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Re: Sidewinders

I use a sidewinder everyday for framing. I like the Tilt-lok but it seems to get stolen quickly. I have the Makita brake. It has a full time LED light that is nice on remodel work when cutting indoors.

In framing you don't really need a brake. Condition yourself to press the saw blade into the cut lumber once you have completed a cut and let off of the trigger. You are applying a braking force with the lumber against the inside face of the blade. Stops spinning in 1 second.

If you are cutting finished product...doing this will mar the end of the piece where the blade rubs against it.
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Old 06-18-2009, 12:08 AM   #10
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Re: Sidewinders

I've got the Rigid. I like it. It has a built in hook.
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Old 06-18-2009, 09:34 AM   #11
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Re: Sidewinders

Brakes are hard on brushes, & coms, but they are safer, & save time. I have used both over the last 40+ years, & always found it frustrating to go from brake saw, & then back to non brake. The only exception might be when you are doing trim work, & have a loose saw arbor. In that case, your better off without a brake. Most newer saws have reduced brake field windings, resulting in less braking torque, & are easier on the motor.

When Dewalt originally came out with their first electric mitre box (late 60's?) they had an instantanoius brake that was brutal on the motor. Inevitably, they had law suits on their hands when the brakes failed to work from wear & tear. Their solution was to eliminate the electric brake on later models, & installed a cheap push button brake pad.

Eventually everyone just started to do smaller brake field windings, so as to make the brake less violent, & gave the motors a fighting chance to hold up.


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