Is your table saw wild and untamed? Does it need to be fenced in? Okay, all jokes aside, a great table saw fence can mean the difference between your projects looking professional and looking like your kid “helped” you with them.
The keyword in this sentence, however, is great. You don’t want just any old model now, do you? Doesn’t your table saw deserve better?
The problem is that there are just so many different options out there. How do you choose? How do you know you are making the best decision? Which model is the best table saw fence?
You don’t need to worry – we have gone through countless reviews and dug up all the dirt. We have faced off with thousands of different models to come up with this list of comprehensive table saw fence reviews.
We’ve come up with the good, the bad and the ugly to help you make your final decision with confidence.
|Vega PRO 50|
|DELTA 36-T30 T2||$$$$||29.9 pounds||4.6/5|
(Best for the Money)
|Shop Fox W1716||$$$||53.3 pounds||4.2/5|
|Delta Power Tools 78-919BT2||$$$$||31.5 pounds||4.0/5|
This comes in as the number one pick because it allows you to work with complete precision. It is sturdy and built to last. It will fit a 10-12-inch table saw. When positioned all the way over to the right, the rip capacity is a full 50 inches. When positioned to the left, this drops to 10 inches.
So, it will work well for both large and small projects. It is also compatible with contractor saws, and cabinet saw models, increasing its versatility.
Installation takes minutes because all the holes you need have already been included. The front bracket is slotted so it can be vertically or horizontally adjusted. The jacking plates that come with it help to level fence rails.
The head is made of high-grade aluminum. The front rail is chrome that has been polished up nicely, and that keeps the pieces steady when making your adjustments. The combination of chrome rail and high-grade aluminum head help to make this model one of the most durable.
That said, be warned, the drill holes are not as nicely finished as could be desired, so you might need to neaten them up a bit. The installation instructions were not great, but you can figure things out.
This model gets the title of the first runner-up.
It is sturdily built, with solid welding to reinforce joins that might under a lot of pressure. It will allow for a range of projects and grips the surface firmly. It makes use of a T-Square locking system that is highly accurate.
It works well and will align projects nicely. The fence will fit a range of saws and, if necessary, you can modify the pre-drilled holes so that it fits your table perfectly.
It comes in second for two simple reasons. First off, installation – it comes with the bolts, good – but the pre-drilled holes are probably not going to line up to where you need them to be – not so impressive.
However, spending a couple of hours drilling holes will impress you with the strength of this model. The second reason is that handle is plastic. Now, this might be nit-picking, but a plastic handle just doesn’t quite seem like the best fit for a high-end model.
This model comes in as the best Table Saw Fence for the money. It offers similar benefits to our top pick but has a slightly smaller capacity. It will fit tables saws between 10 and 14 inches.
It is a durable model that will be useful to amateur and professional craftsman alike without the eye-wateringly high price that you would expect for the features.
It allows high-precision work and micro adjustment ensuring that your projects come out with a professional finish.
Installation has been made easier with the careful arrangement of the pre-drilled holes but, like with our top-pick, you might want to spend some time cleaning them up. If you don’t mind a little bit of a rough edge, it won’t matter here.
What is it with the manufacturers of these products? Do they all go to a convention and decide, “Let’s make the instructions more difficult to follow.” Maybe they feel that as DIY experts, we like having a bit of a puzzle to work with.
Or, maybe they know that most of us don’t really want to read the instructions anyway. Check on YouTube if you are not sure how to proceed.
Okay, so this is not going to win the prettiest princess prize, but, hey, it works. It is a more compact model and does a pretty good job overall. It is a high-quality model and durable. The magnified cursor detail is an excellent idea because it is easier to see the measurements. (Perfect if you don’t “need” glasses.)
The maximum rip of 30 inches here is a little disappointing, and is also the primary reason that it came in lower on the list. It’s more than enough if you do the odd smaller home project but is limiting when you want to do something a little more substantial.
It does feel a little heavier than some of the other models and that can be either a good or bad thing, depending on what you are looking for.
Overall, it is a good model, except for the fact that it is not quite as versatile due to the low maximum rip.
The manufacturers went to the same convention about instructions that the previous ones did, but I did find a video on YouTube to help. Installation was not as easy as with other models because you do have to drill your own holes in places.
Okay, you were promised the good, the bad and the ugly. Drumroll please while we present the bad. The only reason that this even made it onto the list is to warn you off buying it. We did think that this Biesemeyer model was made in the States and so would be good quality.
Boy were we wrong. It is flimsy, and while it does kind of work, it doesn’t work very well. The plastic on the guide should have been the first warning sign. It would be nice to say that it is better than nothing, but, to be honest, at the price they are charging, that isn’t true.
And, to add insult to injury, we have since found out that this model is not even made in the United States anymore.
It feels like it has been made cheaply and we did see some complaints that the metal was dimpled in place when it arrived. That gives you an idea of the quality you are getting.
Okay, so there you have it – the top choices when it comes to better precision when using your table saw. We are sure that you have some great ideas now, but what if you are battling to choose between our top picks?
Let’s look at some of the things you should consider before making your purchase. You know the main features of each, let’s look at some of the other things that may come into play as well.
Strictly speaking, you could wing it. However, considering the high cost of lumber, the accuracy that you can achieve with the right table saw means that it pays for itself pretty quickly.
Besides, when the fence that comes with your saw gives up the ghost, do you really want to play chicken with the saw? It’s going to win every time.
Part of the exciting thing about choosing a new fence is that you get to choose the rip capability. This is great when you want to upgrade to larger projects. You do, of course, need to ensure that the new fence is completely compatible with your saw.
Aside from that, you need to ensure that you are able to align the fence exactly parallel to the blade of your saw and that you can lock the setting in place. You will want a mechanism that allows for easy adjustment, and that helps to guide the lumber properly.
Check that the mechanism allows you to easily and quickly move it from right up next to the blade over to the farthest reaches and back again. Calibration should be easy to check because you will want to do this on a regular basis.
Choose the rip capacity that best suits the projects that you want to undertake. For example, a rip capacity of 30 inches may seem like plenty, until you consider that a standard doorway is between 18 and 36 inches in width.
How many larger projects might you decide to take on? Choosing the option with the maximum rip you can afford means getting the best possible use out of your fence. It is something that will be in your workshop for a long time and so it is well worth considering this measurement.
How easily the mechanism moves is important when it comes to productivity comes down to the old question, “How much wood does a woodchuck chuck?” By that, we mean how much will you be using it? And really using, not planning to use it.
If the answer is several times a day, you want a model that is built for the strain.
Accuracy is highly important and so is micro-precision at times. Does the arm come with a measuring scale built in? How small are the units? The smaller they are, the more precise you can be.
How well marked are the units? Can you read them easily? What if there was a fine layer of sawdust obscuring them slightly? Are the markings etched in, or will they rub off easily? With the cheaper models, the markings rub off in next to no time making the fence practically useless.
There is a certain satisfaction that is gained from pushing the wood along to cut it. This satisfaction won’t last long, however, when you are repeating this action several times a day.
If you are going to be cutting large quantities of wood a day, an electric model can do the heavy lifting for you, freeing you up to concentrate on creativity and saving you a lot of mind-numbing work.
The electric fences are also useful if you need to do highly precise work. It can easily switch between the different measurements without you having to use too much brain power.
Finally, you do need to consider paying a little more for your fence. This should be a purchase that will last many years and, unfortunately, the cheaper models tend not to be as useful. They are more likely to break and be unsteady and might not produce the most accurate results.
If need be, save up a bit and get a durable model that has been carefully made.
You have a lot of options when it comes to these fences, but they can all be classed into two primary categories – the T-Square and the standard table fence.
The latter is what you will find more useful if you have a table saw that can slide. This type of fence will also be able to slide backward and forwards smoothly, and this allows you to make more precise cuts. It will also be able to remain flat, and this is necessary when you have very thin projects.
The models that we reviewed above are the T-Square type. These are ideal for helping you get precise geometric squares and rectangles. Most of these also allow for the attachment of jigs and other fixtures that allow you to work with greater accuracy.
These fences do have a particular range. Some customization is possible in that you can often drill new holes to reposition that bolts. However, do check the range of sizes and models of saws that the fence you are considering is compatible with.
Do take the time to take measurements of your table and saw so that you get a more precise match. You will need these measurements when installing your new purchase anyway, so it is not time wasted.
Does your model have the ability to hold different accessories like jigs in place? This may not be something that you need straight away, but it may become important for more advanced projects. Choosing a model that does allow you to use extra accessories with it expands the capabilities of your fence.
It is not something that is absolutely essential, so it shouldn’t be a deal breaker if your choice doesn’t allow this kind of modification. However, most, good brands will have this kind of alternative.
Hopefully, nothing will go wrong with your new purchase. But you do need to be a pragmatist. What kind of warranty is in place? What kind of information can you find on the service the company offers.
What happens if you need to replace the unit because it is faulty? Check these things online before committing to your purchase.
Reputable companies will have a returns policy that is fairly clear to understand and are more than willing to make things right if something is wrong.
If you begin with a good brand to start off with, you are bound to have fewer problems in the long-term.
Considering the wide range of options to choose from, it was hard work to narrow it down to the top five. However, the Vega PRO 50 shines heads and shoulders above the rest.
It is the best quality model and offers the highest range of versatility. With a 50-inch rip, it can handle a wide range of projects and so will prove very useful to you in the years to come.
And now we come to the end of our reviews of table saw fences. By now, you know everything that you need to know to make your choice for the best replacement table saw fence. You know which models perform well, and which are the bad apples.
We hope that this review has made your choice easier for you and wish you all the best with your woodworking going forward.
With our buying guide, we are expecting that you can get the best aftermarket table saw fence for your needs! If you haven’t gotten yourself a table saw yet, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered in our popular reviews of the best table saws.