DW743 Flip Over Saw from DeWALT
Flip over saw heaven, the DW743 from DeWALT
The DW743 flip over saw is a classic icon on building sites everywhere, this hub is my expert review from a professional owner and daily user.
I wrote this hub because I rely on my DW743 every day to earn my living and I love the fact that it enables me to make just about anything!
Introducing the iconic DW743 flip over combination saw from DeWALT
The DW743 flip over saw and its cousin the DW742, have been around for years and are a firm favorite with carpenters and builders alike and for good reason.
If you are reading this then you are probably a handy sort of bloke (any lady owners out there?!?) who is trying to decide which saw to buy with your hard earned cash, yes? Well, this review is for you and based on my extensive experiences with the DW743 flip over saw.
Personally, I love the two I have and wouldn't swap them for anything else because of their sheer versatility, their reliability, toughness and ability to get you out of a tight spot when you don't have the right size material to hand.
Is the DeWALT DW743 flip over saw going to be right for me?
Ultimately, you need a rough idea of your type of work to decide if the DW743 flip over saw is the right saw for you. For example; if you do mostly sheet panel work you might want a plunge saw or dedicated table saw with a larger bed. If you regularly cut unusually large, complicated cornices then maybe a dedicated larger blade, sliding chop saw is a better proposition.
However, as a general, all purpose saw, the DW743 flip over saw is going to be very hard to beat and I use ours for just about everything.
There should be no doubt in your mind that the DW743 flip over saw is a well proven and well designed combination saw; it could even be argued that it's cheap for the performance. Don't worry, we have all been lured by cheap tools and mostly lived to regret it!
However, the DW743 flip over saw is an icon. Its design incorporates great capabilities and versatility, for either the workshop, hobbyist or site work.
Is the DW743 Flip Over Saw Tough?
The DW743 flip over saw is robust and will cope with daily site work for many many years; cutting tough materials and handling the rough handling, dirt and wet that site work sometimes entails. This means that for workshop, home or hobby use the DW743 flip over saw is just going to be cruising and might easily outlast your sons, sons!
The DW743 flip saw is built for tough conditions on site and I have inwardly groaned when pushing too hard on a wet section with a blade past its best; but that motor just keeps on pushing back! Both of my DW743 saws are years old and carry many battle scars and have never broken down.
My first DW743 flip over saw was even stolen from a barn in the middle of the night by some ratbag on foot. (The job couldn't manage without it and we never expected to see it again. Hence saw number 2!) A local farmer called the police a few days later after finding the saw in a ditch on his land, a couple of miles away from the barn.
Well, we dried out that saw and stuck it straight back to work where it belongs and it has not missed a cut since!
What is the DW743 flip over saw like to use everyday?
Ergonomically it works well as the table height and sturdy legs make placing timber on it simple. As with all these saws you will need side supports to hold longer timber lengths safely while you cut. You will get away with two but three is better (two to the left of you and one to the right to catch the off cut). You could buy dedicated supports but a great tip is to screw or cable tie timber 'packing' onto your existing 'saw horses'. We use the metal folding type with a four by two screwed to them, exactly the right height and makes handling long lengths a cinch, especially if working alone.
The switchgear is robust and reliable with safe no volt type switches, no false starts and a softish start up. The blade guards automatically move up out of the way on cutting and have a slotted design so that you can see 'through' the guard down to your line if required. Moving the saw down and through the material has a steady weight and feels sure with no hint of 'play' anywhere.
Flipping the saw into table mode is simple and only takes a few seconds. Pull the saw down and locate the rear threaded bar then simply flip the bed over and it locks into place. The riving knife or separator blade can be dropped into place either before flipping or afterwards and is just a simple hand tight fastener. The riving knife also has a simple clip on blade guard which automatically lifts over the wood when ripping making it totally safe.
The DW743 flip over saw is primarily a woodworkers saw and handles the normal stock sizes found in most jobs with ease. Dry timber such as framing CLS or studwork can be cut as fast as you can work, as can most sheet material up to 25mm. Ripping thicker sheets, larger sections or wet wood will slow you down a little but with a good blade, not much!
Our saws some days are running for hours on and off with no complaint, they are fairly quiet once running and but they can make a fair amount of dust if not using the extraction system. You wouldn't want to use a big saw like this inside a finished house without extraction.
Running long lengths of timber through the blade needs care, ripping down a long length of 2"x6" into 2"x2"s for example (Sorry, 47mmx150mm or 47mmx47mm to be all European!) needs a steady push and accurate feeding.
See the saws specs, further down this page for the exact dimensions that the DW743 flip over saw will get through with ease.
Wood is not the only material either; the writer regularly cuts various plastic sheets, sections and even pipes.
I have also remodeled an 'industrial chic' office complex that specified a LOT of aluminum sections and checker plate sheets. Miles and miles of aluminum which the DW743 flip over saw handled admirably. The special Aluminum cutting blades are not for the faint hearted though, as they produce a fair amount of noise and the material needs a firm hand, but the smooth clean cuts were awesome.
Pros' of the DW743 flip over saw
- Versatile and adaptable, making it suitable for most jobs
- Reliable, tough and capable of working in harsh conditions
- Long expected life on site and virtually forever in the home workshop!
- Has enough capacity to easily cut all common timber sizes found on the average job, 2"x4", 1"x6" etc (Sorry, 47mmx100mm or 25mmx150mm to be all European!)
- Converts in a flash from combination crosscut saw to table saw
- Portable and stores well in the truck, esp. in table saw configuration with legs off
- Good switch gear, both table and handle mounted
- Sturdy and heavy construction with its own legs makes bigger timbers no problem
Cons' of the DW743 flip over saw
- Doesn't have a plunge depth stop, although arguably rarely needed either.
- Lacks the larger cutting capacity of a dedicated table saw or big combination saw.
- Can be heavy to lift alone (I guess I'm getting old!).
- Need to remember to turn a blade stop key when cutting unique angles, you'll only forget once though!
- Dust extraction system is arguably complex and expensive, although efficient.
- Accessories are expensive.
- Everyone on site will want to 'borrow' it!
What are the alternatives to the DW743 flip over saw?
Arguably the main competitor to the DW743 flip over saw is the LF1000 saw from Makita. It cannot be denied that Makita's pedigree as a premium tool manufacturer is first rate but as the new kid on the block it still has to prove its longevity in this writers opinion. The Makita LF1000 is slightly smaller and lighter than the DW743 flip over saw but arguably the specifications between the two saws are very close. The writer openly admits that he has only operated this saw at trade shows and has no direct experience of its particular merits on site. However, if it performs like the writers Makita jigsaw and cordless drills, the DW743 faces some stiff competition from the relative newcomer from Makita.
Does anyone out there own the LF1000 and want talk about it on here? If so please contact me or leave a comment.
Another alternative is the Metabo KGT501. Unfortunately I don't know anything about these, so over to you! If you have one of these let us know all about it!
Other alternatives to the DW743 flip over saw are arguably not in the same class as they are noticeably cheaper and from little known manufacturers.
However, I welcome recommendations for serious alternatives and am interested in hearing about practical comparisons.
CONCLUSIONS and who should buy the DW743 flip over saw?
It would be difficult to list everyone who would find the DW743 flip over saw a useful addition to their tool kit but definitely if you are building; renovating; remodeling; restoring; extending; repairing; upgrading; fitting kitchens or bathrooms, framing works, building decks or sheds, woodworking hobbies or simply want some saw bling in the garage, the DW743 flip over saw is going to accurately and reliably cope with your cutting needs and more.
In conclusion, the DW743 flip over saw has proved itself on site over many years now and few would argue that it earns its keep and its coveted place in the ever crowded tradesman's truck. It is easy to use and has enough capacity for most jobs, both domestic and commercial.
It's reliability and toughness make it a survivor and it could be argued that its biggest downfall is its desirability to others, of the light fingered persuasion!
The DW743 flip over saws ability to get its owner out of a tight spot is legendary, instantly creating what ever size timber section is needed from spare stuff lying around. Try that with a non-flippable crosscut saw!
Simply put, I have NEVER met a DW743 owner who had anything bad to say about the saw; or as one bricklayer said to the me, "it even makes a brickie into a chippie!" Now you cannot ask more from a saw than that!
Performance specifications of the DW743
Features of the DeWALT DW743N, classic TGS flip-over bevelling or combination saw
Rapid, tool free transformation from a table saw bench to a mitre saw provides flexibility in a range of site and workshop applications
The handle mechanism allows the guard to retract automatically in mitre mode allowing safe and easy use
New high output, heavy duty, high torque, induction motor provides years of maintenance free use, suitable for workshop applications where low noise characteristics are desirable
Three way extractor connection facility for efficient dust extraction
Integrated carry handles provide greater portability
Updated design for maximum cutting capacity across the range of mitre and bevel angles
Power Input 2000 Watts
Power Output 1550 Watts
Blade Speed 2850 rpm
Blade Diameter 250 mm
Blade Bore 30 mm
Bevel Capacity 45°
Mitre Capacity [right/left] 45 / 45°
Cutting Capacity at 90°/90° (W x H) 140x68 mm
Cutting Capacity at 90°/90° (W x H) 180x20 mm
Cutting Capacity at 45°/90° (W x H) 95x70 mm
Cutting Capacity at 45°/90° (W x H) 120x46 mm
Cutting Capacity at 90°/45° (W x H) 70x95 mm
Cutting Capacity at 90°/45° (W x H) 150x20 mm
Max. Cutting Capacity [Sawbench position 90°/90°] 0 - 70 mm
Max. Cutting Capacity [Sawbench position 90°/45°] 0 - 32 mm
Weight 37 kg
Depth 670 mm
Length 700 mm
Height 750 mm
30 tooth saw blade
4 detachable legs
Saw blade guard
Where can I buy a flip over saw at a good price?
I buy lots of tools and have found that Tooled Up are pretty good to deal with and are usually the cheapest. Their stock levels are good with no quibble guarantees and fast, sometimes free delivery.
There are probably lots more out there, the web changes daily! If you find a good supplier, please get in touch and I can put a link on here, help someone else!
Where can I buy spare parts for my DW743?
Come on! have you not been listening??
You are not going to need em! OK, OK, OK, just in case then, you can get them from Miles spares and powertoolspares (just google them!).
They have got a great exploded diagrams of the DW743 too. They are great companies but don't hassle them, guys who work in DW743 spares departments are pretty laid back dudes........................
Tips and tricks with the DW743 flip over saw
1. To make repeated short cuts, measure and cut the first one and once the blade has stopped spinning, place the cut against the blade on the RH side and mark the upstanding edge of the saw bed with a pencil or marker at the end of the material just cut. Then it's a simple case of sliding the material through tight up to the mark and cut again and again and again! Marks easily rub off with a wet finger or cloth dipped in spirit.
2. Epoxy glue a magnet onto the plastic push stick well away from the business end and then it is always to hand as you can 'stick' it to one of the DW743's metal legs. Remember, working is really difficult with missing digits..........
3. Once the saw is out of its warranty period you can really go to town making modifications to your saw. You can extend the saws 'table' by using a half sheet of plywood, cutting a slot for the blade. The underneath of the plywood can have thin lathes to locate it over the saw bed and turnbuckles to hold it tight. (You lose a little of the saws cutting depth so it depends what you are working on)
4. Once the saw is out of its warranty period you can make a cutting box to extend the chop saw bed. This can just be a simple flat L piece of wood that fits across and is fastened to the saw bed. Repeat cuts are then a breeze using a 'stop' bead. Need a hundred pieces of CLS 554mm long for that big stud wall; no problem. (You lose a little of the saws cutting capacity so it depends what you are working on).
5. If further funds allow, take a look at the accessories for the DW743, the extension bars and stop accessory is very useful and avoids home made mods as above.
6. Use three saw horses to support the timber whilst cutting. Two to the left, one a couple of feet away and one further out depending on the length of timbers. The third one needs to be on the right had side to support the off cuts. You can manage with two but that third one makes all the difference, with a powerful professional DW743 you don't want any accidents and properly supporting the work piece is the way to go.
7. If the house is finished and you don't want a big clean up or cover down use the DW743 outside and under a simple 3m x 3m gazebo! These can be bought really cheaply at DIY type stores or grab a battered one that no one wants anymore. They make great impromptu 'workshops' and keep any mess outside. Your clients will think that you are a real pro and whoever does the cleaning will think that you are a true genius!
Why don't you leave a story about your experiences with your flip over saw?