The folks at SKIL recently sent us their new 7.0 Amp Flooring Saw to test and evaluate. Founded in 1924, Skil Power Tools features more than 50 tools for do-it-yourselfers and cost-conscious professionals. With the growing popularity of DIY flooring projects we were excited to test this saw on it’s capabilities and performance.
Flooring Saw Features
- Cuts solid, engineered and laminate flooring with ease
- Makes cross, miter and rip cuts
- Lightweight design for transport and use at any project location
- Miter detents at 0, 22.5 and 45 degrees
- Die-cast aluminum miter and rip fence
- Innovative locking system
- Built-in cord wrap
- Vacuum Bag and Dust Port
- Amperage: 7.0
- Arbor Size: 20 mm
- At 0 miter/0 bevel: 3/4″ x 15″
- At 45 miter/ 0 Bevel: 3/4″ x 8-1/2″
- Base Width: 26-3/4″ W x 17-3/4″ D
- Blade Diameter: 4-3/8″
- Category: Flooring
- Dust Collection: Yes
- Miter Detents: 0◦, 22.5◦, 45◦
- No Load RPM: 11,000
- Voltage: 120 V
- Weight (lbs.): 25 lbs.
Included With This Tool
- 3600 Flooring Saw
- (1) 4-3/8″ 40-Tooth Carbide-Tipped Blade
- Self-Aligning Rip/Miter Fence
- Blade Wrench
- Push Stick
SKIL Flooring Saw Capabilities
The SKIL Flooring Saw was designed and built to do the jobs of two popular saws that hardwood flooring project require; a and a . This is a great concept for the average home owner and DIY’er looking to install hardwood floors.
- Cross Cutting – The SKIL Flooring Saw works great for cross cutting wood flooring. We tested it on some Brazilian Cherry engineered flooring with some great results. As you can see in the photo above the fence can be adjusted for cross cutting. In addition to the fence the vise clamp is quite handy when you have a really long piece or need an extra hand. 95% of all cuts needed for hardwood flooring installation will be 90 degree cross cuts so this is a key feature. Traditionally this task would be performed on a miter saw.
- Ripping – The SKIL Flooring Saw can also be set up to rip flooring in the longitudinal direction which is typically necessary for the last board in a room or along an intermittent wall. Traditionally this task would be performed on a table saw.
- Angle Cuts – Lastly this saw can be set up to cut angled cross cuts from 0 to 45 degrees. Again this something that occasionally comes up on a flooring installation and would require a miter saw to accomplish.
SKIL Flooring Saw Performance
A quality hardwood flooring installation relies on clean, accurate cutting and a great layout. While the SKIL Flooring Saw won’t help you create a great flooring layout it will help you with clean accurate cuts.
- Cross Cutting – In order to make accurate cuts you first need to set up the fence for an accurate 90 degree cut. Adjusting the fence and setting it perpendicular to the blade was easy using a framing square. I was able to consistently cut boards with a square edge over and over again.
- Ripping – Again the key for an accurate cut is all in setting the fence up. In this scenario you need to adjust the fence so that it’s parallel to the cutting blade. Again this wasn’t difficult to do when I used a uniform width block and check the fence at the front and back.
- Angle Cuts – Setting the fence for angled cuts is also quite easy. You can get the fence close with the markings on the table and then check it with any number of angle finders.
- Smoothness of Cuts – I was really impressed with the quality and smoothness of the cuts. This was true for both cross cutting and ripping.
The SKIL Flooring Saw has some nice safety features that make it comfortable for novice users of power tools. In particular I like that the saw is pushed into and through the fence with cross cutting. This is opposite of how miter saws typically work and frankly a much safer situation. I also like that the saw is close to the table which reduces the likelihood of someone pushing a finger into the blade.
The spreader/riving knife and anti-kickback pawls work great and give an added level of confidence when working with this tool inside a finished home. Lastly I was impressed to see the bump switch for ripping mode. The bump switch is very similar to what exists on table saws so that the saw can be easily turned on and off.
A really cool feature for this saw is it’s portability. The table is designed with a built-in handle so the tool can be easily moved around the jobsite. In fact the table has small rubber pads on the bottom so you can set it on the floor as you work without marring the surface. The saw is certainly MUCH lighter than a miter saw or table saw so it’s a breeze to move around by yourself.
The SKIL 7.0 Amp Flooring Saw is a great multi-purpose saw for DIY’ers installing hardwood floors. Priced under $200 this saw can do the job of both a miter saw and table saw for a fraction of the cost. This saw is easy to use, portable, accurate and versatile. You can buy it for less money than you could even rent the other saws and afterward you’ve got a saw that can be used for other small projects around the house. This saw gets a thumbs up for the do-it-yourselfer’s installing hardwood floors.
It can be purchased at Lowe’s and online at Amazon at this link: SKIL 7.0 Amp Flooring Saw.