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BTP Review – Bosch 4100-09 Table Saw – 18 months Later

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  • #630671

    I have been using the Bosch 4100-09 Table saw as a partial cabinet saw replacement for the past 18 months. I wanted to share my thoughts on it as well as on the accessories I use. The 4100-09 is the version that comes with a folding gravity-rise stand.

    Before it, I had a Bosch GTS1031 as my portable, and a Delta Unisaw as my non-portable. With this saw, I only need the one, which is a huge space saver.

    This saw is powerful enough to rip 12/4 (3-inch thick) hardwoods and has never hesitated to rip harder woods like birch and maple, at least not with a dedicated ripping blade (more on that later)

    The soft start is a nice touch, and it avoid the insane startup of its little brother, the GTS1031. I also notice fewer popped breakers with this tool than with the GTS1031 – the Unisaw ran on its own 220v circuit, so that was never an issue

    The quality of cut is as good as I can get with a cabinet saw, with one key exception: It takes more time to get it set up just right. There isn’t as much lead up before the blade, so getting the wood to track true is harder with less fence. I kind of wish they had backed the blade up an inch or two assuming they couldn’t make the saw a bit deeper.

    Rip capacity is 25 inches, which will get you where you need to be. I occasionally would see the use to go a bit higher, say to 31” or so, but only because I use a lot of 5×5 baltic birch sheets.

    But, as much as I occasionally wish the table was a bit bigger, I love how compact it is. Folded up on its really cool gravity-rise stand, the footprint is quite small. It isn’t much bigger when it is set up, but with all extensions in, which is how I usually keep it – set up for quick smaller cuts.

    As for extensions, I have added the TS1002 and TS1003 outfeeds (rear and left side respectively) – They do a great job supporting the workpieces without making the saw the least bit tippy. For my use, I don’t get much use from the left side support, but the rear outfeed is great. Much nicer than setting up an outfeed stand and trying to dial it in.

    I never – not even with a big cabinet saw – enjoyed cutting down full sheets, and that isn’t going to change anytime soon. So, for me, the bigger capacity of the big saws isn’t as attractive as just cutting down the sheets with a track saw. Suddenly, with a track saw and a quality saw the size of the 4100, I can achieve the same results in a smaller footprint, for less money, more safely (I consider a track saw safer than manhandling full sheets alone)

    Dust capture from this saw is pretty bad. I was shocked that a European brand would ignore the dust collection to this extent – at least I was until I discovered that their version of the 4100 does have quite a few more pieces that help pull most of the dust from the airstream. There is a plate that encloses the rear around the vacuum port and a bottom grid that allow airflow to the motor while still shaping the airstream to drive the dust to the vac. I added the plate, but decided against the grid. Instead, I added a sheet of ¼” plywood and put a 4” vacuum port in it that I hook up to my dust collector. I also replaced the blade guard with the European version that has a dust port built in. Minor upgrades, but dust capture has gone from terrible/non-existent to pretty acceptable. Bosch also sell a bag that will capture whatever dust would get tossed out the back of the saw, but that isn’t much, so I consider it a waste. I did buy it, and it works well on other tools, but it is not IMO a must-have for the 4100

    Cutting dadoes can be done with a dado stack blade. I use the Freud 208. Blade changes are easy, and there is a lever that locks the blade in place so I can get a good yank on the nut with the included (and stored onboard) wrench. There is an accessory throat insert for the dado blade stack, but the standard throat will easily handle a ¼ thick stack, which is what I usually use.

    Which leads to a problem. A standard blade should not have that kind of space around it. Fortunately, Bosch sell very inexpensive throat plate blanks that can become zero clearance inserts. I have one for each of my three main blades and a fourth unused one that I put aside just in case. While I can make my own, it just isn’t worth the hassle as these are pretty affordable.

    As for my blades, I replaced the blade that came with the saw right away. It is terrible and would have been better to be not included at all. I replaced it with a Freud industrial 24 tooth glue-line rip blade and a Freud Diablo 80 tooth plywood and crosscut blade (I find it easier to just buy new plywood blades since the glue does a number on them, not to mention the wear and tear caused by MDF). As an all-around blade, I keep a 50 tooth Tenryu Gold blade. It is quieter somehow, and does a cut almost as good as either the rip or crosscut blade. Great for making quick cuts without always changing blades. I will use it for most ripping, but will switch to the ripping blade when I have a lot of ripping to do, or will be going thicker than about 1.5” in hardwood.

    The miter gauge gets an “its fine” grade. Ok to support a narrow piece for a crosscut, but not long enough to do much more than that. I upgraded to an Incra miter 1000SE and never looked back. Although a crosscut sled is pretty easy to make (and I highly recommend getting one) I picked up an Incra Miter Express sled for real cheap at a garage sale, so I am happy to use that.

    I also added in a bicycle saddle bag, that attaches easily to the tube frame of the saw. In it, I keep my PPE, and my Grr-ripper push blocks (great upgrade over regular push blocks). I also have a push stick made of wood that was modeled after the plastic one mounted on the back of the saw. The wood one is there now. I read too many stories of injuries after the blade touched the plastic stick, which to me is the whole point of using a stick – to avoid injuries. These things turning to shrapnel seems like a bad idea.

    Overall, I really like this saw. I have used it for trim work, and for cabinetry work. I worked for a guy who had the older model (the 4000) which is pretty much identical except that it does not have a riving knife (best safety upgrade ever) and it is still going strong after well over a decade of daily use. I wish there was more table in front of the blade, and I wish the dust capture was better, but it is a tremendously good saw and I consider it (with the addition of a track saw for full sheet handling) to be a viable alternative to a big cabinet saw.

    #630676
    #630684
    jponto07
    Moderator
    Bloomington, IN

    It sounds like you’ve come to the same conclusion as me about the 4100! I too love mine. It is probably the most used tool in my shop given all of the sleds and such you can use with it.

    Tell me more about this dust collection set up! Mine is in serious need of an upgrade in that department!

    Here’s a thread I started on setting the blade parallel to the fence/miter track a while back for anyone interested in that portion.

    https://bethepro.com/forums/topic/how-to-align-your-bosch-table-saw-blade-fence-and-miter-track/

    Jon P.
    Timber Carpentry & Construction
    https://www.facebook.com/timbercarpentry/
    Instagram

    #630687

    It sounds like you’ve come to the same conclusion as me about the 4100! I too love mine. It is probably the most used tool in my shop given all of the sleds and such you can use with it.

    Tell me more about this dust collection set up! Mine is in serious need of an upgrade in that department!

    Here’s a thread I started on setting the blade parallel to the fence/miter track a while back for anyone interested in that portion.

    https://bethepro.com/forums/topic/how-to-align-your-bosch-table-saw-blade-fence-and-miter-track/

    Mine came correctly lined up, but I did bookmark it in case I ever need to.

    I also made a sacrificial fence that clamps onto the existing one for rabbet cuts. Nothing special, but the t-track made it easier to make one without drilling out the fence and without just using hand clamps

    For dust capture, the best upgrade was putting a plywood plate on the bottom, attached to the stand. I then put some expanding stick on weatherstripping between the saw and the board. By the next morning there were no gaps. Did the same between the saw body and saw table, to keep the air inside.

    Fastcap sawstache front and back, eventually replaced with the European parts (under $20 shipped)

    And finally the overarm dust capture- that just pinches the roving knife, so it isn’t great (sort of wants to lift away if you knock it), but with suction hooked up to the top, back and bottom, the other gaps all become air inlets and nothing much gets out.

    Not perfect but pretty good, and I avoided putting anything non-Bosch inside the saw itself.

    Some guys just put a shroud around the blade well, which I’m positive works great, but I don’t feel comfortable modifying anything that close to the blade.

    #630690
    smallerstick
    Pro
    North Bay, ON

    Great summary! Nice to see a review after so much experience with the saw.

    I am surprised as well that so little attention has been paid to dust collection for the NA market.

    The Incra accessories are a good upgrade for any saw for sure. Nice find on the sled; at a garage sale no less!

    I would have a hard time parting with my Unifence but the space saving for me would be game changing. Food for thought.

    BE the change you want to see.
    Even if you can’t Be The Pro… Be The Poster you’d want to read.

    #640314

    Wow @montreal_woodworks thanks for detailing review on the table saw . This really will help out someone in the market for a new saw .

    Always willing to learn .

    #640320

    Wow @montreal_woodworks thanks for detailing review on the table saw . This really will help out someone in the market for a new saw .

    Thanks

    I was just using it again this morning, and couldn’t help but wish that the top was a magnetic metal though. I loved the various magnetic accessories that I used to use with my old cabinet saw. Wonder if it would really add that much weight

    #640327
    r-ice
    Pro
    Durham region, ON

    Wow @montreal_woodworks thanks for detailing review on the table saw . This really will help out someone in the market for a new saw .

    Thanks

    I was just using it again this morning, and couldn’t help but wish that the top was a magnetic metal though. I loved the various magnetic accessories that I used to use with my old cabinet saw. Wonder if it would really add that much weight

    yah the magnetic featherboards, the mag switches? i’ve been meaning to pick up a few, as they work across a few different machines.

    #640328

    Wow @montreal_woodworks thanks for detailing review on the table saw . This really will help out someone in the market for a new saw .

    Thanks

    I was just using it again this morning, and couldn’t help but wish that the top was a magnetic metal though. I loved the various magnetic accessories that I used to use with my old cabinet saw. Wonder if it would really add that much weight

    yah the magnetic featherboards, the mag switches? i’ve been meaning to pick up a few, as they work across a few different machines.

    Among others, yes.
    The only ones still in use are my bandsaw ones, since that is cast iron

    #655400
    DirtyWhiteBoy
    Pro
    Honolulu,, Hi.

    I have been using this saw everyday now and the blade and fence don’t seem to be parallel?? Is there some way adjust the blade- motor to make it parallel to the fence?

    Dirty

    A Working Pro since 1988!

    Member since January 26, 2013.

    #655401

    I have been using this saw everyday now and the blade and fence don’t seem to be parallel?? Is there some way adjust the blade- motor to make it parallel to the fence?

    Two ways. Which of the two is parallel to the mitre slots?

    If its the fence that’s out of square, its the easier one to fix. If the blade is out of square, you have to shift the whole bloody table. PITA

    #655413
    DirtyWhiteBoy
    Pro
    Honolulu,, Hi.

    I’ll have to check that. Right now when the number on the front and back of the blade are the same the fence is out of parallel with the slots.

    Dirty

    A Working Pro since 1988!

    Member since January 26, 2013.

    #655484
    theamcguy
    Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    I’ll have to check that. Right now when the number on the front and back of the blade are the same the fence is out of parallel with the slots.

    That can’t be good. Lots of checking with a square slows you down.

    Automotive Pro
    Fayetteville, NC
    (and also the World's Fastest Poster)

    #655494

    I’ll have to check that. Right now when the number on the front and back of the blade are the same the fence is out of parallel with the slots.

    Found it in the manual. Page 18

    AlIgNINg RIp fENCE
    ! WARNING To prevent personal injury, al-
    ways disconnect plug from power source before making any adjustments. The rip fence must be parallel with the SAWBLADE
    in order to prevent KICKBACK when ripping.
    Your table saw is equipped with a Self-Aligning, Quick-Set rip fence. Once the adjustments below have been made, the rip fence will self align when the fence is locked into position.
    NOTE: The blade must be parallel with the miter gauge slots (see page 17) and be perpendicular to table before proceeding with rip fence alignment.
    ! WARNING To prevent personal injury, al- ways make sure the rip fence is
    locked before making rip cuts.
    1. Lift both guard barriers 2 to their up locked posi-
    tion.
    2. Raise lock handle 1 and slide fence 3 until it is alongside the sawblade, by lifting right side pawl 4 above fence (Fig. 23).
    The fence should touch the blade teeth at the front and rear of the blade. If fence does not touch the teeth at front and rear of blade continue with the following the steps:
    3. Loosen the two screws 5 on the top front section of the rip fence using the included 5mm hex wrench.
    4. Move fence 3 until it touches the teeth and is parallel to the blade.
    5. Hold fence in place and lower lock handle, check to make sure the fence stayed parallel to the blade then tighten screws (Fig. 23).
    6. Clamp rip fence to check if it holds securely at front and rear. If rear is not clamped securely, un- clamp fence and turn rear clamp adjustment screw 6 clockwise for increased clamping. Try clamping the fence to verify if it self aligns and clamps tightly at the front and rear. Overtightening of the rear clamp adjustment screw 6 will cause the rip fence to be non-self aligning (Fig. 23). Overtightening may cause friction or “chatter” when fence is moved side to side.

    #655538
    jkirk
    Moderator
    halifax, nova scotia

    every one raves about the dewalt rack and pinion fence system but… do they realize how much of a pain in the ass it is to re align when it does go out.. ive spent upwards of 2 hours trying to get them realigned

    my personal ts is the bosch 4000.. it literally takes me like 3 minutes to realign the fence when it goes off. some times simpler is better

    heres a tip, dont fart in a space suit

    #655590
    theamcguy
    Pro
    Fayetteville, NC

    ive spent upwards of 2 hours trying to get them realigned

    For me that would be a non-starter. Tools are supposed to save time not add to it.

    Automotive Pro
    Fayetteville, NC
    (and also the World's Fastest Poster)

    #655644

    Great review of a great table saw,
    It’s always been one of the table saws on the market that I have always wanted, just never really needed it yet,
    Have been using an old Mastercraft,

    Obviously no comparison

    After hearing how easily it is to set up and adjust, makes it even more appealing

    Something that I will be looking into in the next year,

    #655657
    jponto07
    Moderator
    Bloomington, IN

    ive spent upwards of 2 hours trying to get them realigned

    For me that would be a non-starter. Tools are supposed to save time not add to it.

    Dang…I built a jig a while back with a dial indicator and everything. The whole process took about one hour including setting up the camera to document the process!

    Jon P.
    Timber Carpentry & Construction
    https://www.facebook.com/timbercarpentry/
    Instagram

    #655663
    DirtyWhiteBoy
    Pro
    Honolulu,, Hi.

    So Monday morning I will check out the problem a little further to see what is off on this brand new saw?? Thanks for the manual.

    Dirty

    A Working Pro since 1988!

    Member since January 26, 2013.

    #655665
    KeeganC
    Pro
    Bloomington, IN

    every one raves about the dewalt rack and pinion fence system but… do they realize how much of a pain in the ass it is to re align when it does go out.. ive spent upwards of 2 hours trying to get them realigned

    What 🤔?? I find it pretty rare to have to re-align the rack and pinion fence on the dewalt, but short of the first time figuring it out, it shouldn’t take more than 5-10 minutes to do. The time savings comes in not having to stick a tape to the fence every time you move it to ensure it’s parallel. I am excited to see other tool manufacturers are using rack and pinion fences now so that there are other options besides the dewalt, namely skil’s latest worm drive ts and the latest hitachi, I’m just not interested in any other fence system on a job site table saw.

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