Hafco Woodmaster SB-12 table saw review

Hafco Woodmaster SB-12 table saw review

It was about time I did a review on my ‘new” table saw. It has been 10 months now since I got it. I forgot to mention in the video that this is a totally independent review based on my use of the saw, I was not paid or sponsored by Hare and Forbes.



  1. Cameron Walker on October 25, 2023 at 10:21 pm

    G’day mate,
    Regarding the moving adjustment wheel.
    I’ve just bought the same model,its adjustment wheel for the tilt didn’t hold in place.
    I’ve fitted a rubber washer behind the wheel and this has cured the problem 😁😁

  2. Litch on October 25, 2023 at 10:22 pm

    Thanks for the concise, objective review. I’ve been trawling through all the tool shops, Bunnings, eBay and so-on for weeks trying to find a reasonably good table saw for under a grand. They all seemed to be a mixed bag between "works ok" and "total shit" – especially the worksite (semi-portable) models (Makita, DeWalt, etc…). So I was lost with nowhere to go, and didn’t want to part with what seemed to be the "cost: sweet spot" where the reviews seemed to begin to lean towards being a reliable unit at around $1,500+. So as a last effort I put up an Ad asking my local Buy/Sell group about what they had out in the shed collecting dust and someone came through with of of these Hafco units – a google search later and I ended up at your video, now I’m picking it up on the weekend. So thanks for taking the time to run us through it – one thing a lot of online reviews lack is experience with the unit – that’s certainly not the case here and that fact alone lends much more valuable insight than some bloke unwrapping a Makita for the first time and pointing at all the accessories (not having a clue how the bloody unit works over time)! Subbed.

  3. Trevor Rufus on October 25, 2023 at 10:23 pm

    Hi Thanks for the step by step review. i ‘ve just bought one of these saws but can’t get the fence lock to operate. the front handle is in a 45 d down position out of the box and nothing happens when i lift it up, but i notice your demo model is in the 45 d up position when unlocked. would appreciate your comment on this.

  4. Jono WK on October 25, 2023 at 10:24 pm

    Hi there mate. Just found your channel out as I was looking for a reference before buying a new table saw. If you don’t mind me asking, what’s the size of the Arbor of your table saw and did you get the diablo blade with the appropriate bore? Just making sure I will get the blade easily once I decided to buy the similar table saw as yours. Cheers.

  5. Ken Chung on October 25, 2023 at 10:26 pm

    Thanks for your video. I think i’ll get the same saw as you.

  6. geoff stein on October 25, 2023 at 10:26 pm

    Great review. You’ve had it for a few years now how do find it now days after all the great things you’ve made with it? I’ve heard bad reviews about the fence being a bit crappy and also not square to the table?

  7. Sim Racing For Noobs on October 25, 2023 at 10:26 pm

    Thanks for the great review,
    I have a 2003 model sb12 saw that I picked up from a garage sale and I was wondering if you could help me?
    I have replaced the A46 belt as the old one had developed a flat spot from sitting so long and not being used.
    Found that when I put the belt on it rubs on the bottom edge of the cutout where the belt goes through the body and I can not find any info on how to adjust the belt or motor to stop it , could you help me at all?

  8. Mike Herbst on October 25, 2023 at 10:30 pm

    The blade indicator on the rip fence leads me to believe that the original set up was not quite right.
    I have a Craftsman Contractor Series table saw with the Exact-I-Rip rip fence that is almost a duplicate to yours except for the webbing in the table extensions.
    After the initial setup no other adjustments were needed even after 15 to 18 years of use.
    Keep in mind that I am the only user & whenever it was moved I packed it in the original packaging. It is pristine & makes no noise other than the quiet whistle of the blade. One precautionary measure would be to consider that the depth of cut is 3 3/8".
    That’s 3/8" taller than the height of the fence. Be careful!

  9. Dave Prue on October 25, 2023 at 10:35 pm

    I bought the same SB-12 Saw (Although with a different name on it) here in the Philippines. Everything identical to yours except the name. I have been running it alot for the past few months and I absolutely love it. The best part is the price here PHP26,000 which is about AUD750.

  10. icanhearyoucrunching on October 25, 2023 at 10:36 pm

    Thanks for the video, it was a big help in setting up. My extensions are also a washer short of a length, but they are also bowed 1mm along the length in the center – having got them level at front and back with the cast table, they are both low in the center. Tell me, am I missing something or is it just the weight of the motor that keeps the belt tension, or was there a tensioner missing from my box?

  11. John Summerfield on October 25, 2023 at 10:36 pm

    Timbecon sold this as a Sherwood MJ2331.

    I haven’t used mine in years as my sight wasn’t up to it. Seems better now, but I need to realign it.

    Above the height adjustment wheel, there’s a crank handle. What does this do?

  12. lindsay miller on October 25, 2023 at 10:37 pm

    Bloody saw blade is 1.5mm out of square to mitre gauge channels, not an easy job to rectify, did you come across this problem, if so how did you fix it. No adjustments in table top to move and then square to blade, mongrel thing

  13. Scott Turner on October 25, 2023 at 10:39 pm

    Great review Vic. Picking up a near new used one today. Biggest concern for me is no Riving knife, but it has the splitter I suppose. All the best mate.

  14. Ray Brown on October 25, 2023 at 10:40 pm

    Just got the exact same saw. Thank you for the assembly tips.
    My fence is perfectly true on all faces and parallel to the blade BUT neither is parallel to the T track so will have some fiddling to get it all sorted

  15. Adventures with Willem on October 25, 2023 at 10:41 pm

    I just spoke to the rep from forbes and he said that the tilting wheel that you where having trouble with has a locking knob, which when I look closely in your video you can see in the center. Does this work I am interested in this saw if this works. Did you compare this saw to the equivalent ledacraft saw?

  16. Shaun Mccaughan on October 25, 2023 at 10:42 pm

    I dont think one dam thing was straight and square in my kit of this saw. I have bought it from the place you did and putting togther even the legas was a nightmare. It didn’t matter where I adjusted anything, I could only get the legs near enough. Then aligning the motor was a bigger nightmare, shimming the motor up to be somewhere near square to the trunion was a huge mission and fitting the bottom vaccuum plate involved a lot of swearing and 3 screws in being close enough. I haven’t even measured the blade being square or not yet, not really looking forward to it. Those locking knobs on the adjustment wheels are useless too, just like yours.

  17. JWright81 on October 25, 2023 at 10:46 pm

    Great review was looking at buying one of these saws. There seems to be only a few saws like this at the $1200 mark

  18. Richard Morris on October 25, 2023 at 10:49 pm

    i have the same saw and really get along well with it. I was hoping you might have a good trick for blade changing because you can’t lock the blade to loosen the nut Cheers

  19. Robots N That on October 25, 2023 at 10:52 pm

    The spec for this on H&F website states a 10A supply. Does it come with a 15A plug? Thanks, Dave.

  20. 1958 Plymouth on October 25, 2023 at 10:53 pm

    hey mate….does this have a riving knife?

  21. PAUL ROBSON on October 25, 2023 at 10:54 pm

    is this 3 phase power? if so what’s the cost of running 3 phase in?

  22. Than Win Tun on October 25, 2023 at 10:55 pm

    Hi. thanks for the video. i understand this has been long time ago. but if you or someone who knows could give me answer, can we move front and rear rails to the right for wider cutting capacity only on right side. Also i want to build and fit a carriage on LHS in which rails are in the way. Thanks

  23. Les Wellard on October 25, 2023 at 10:56 pm

    Thanks for your review of the SB-12, it was interesting and I think you covered everything I needed to know, mainly that after 10 months you still have the same feelings as your un-boxing video. Well done and look forward to your next video, you really do a good job.

  24. LostWhits on October 25, 2023 at 10:57 pm

    I’ve heard of people using the magnetic calendars politicians send out to cover the rear air gaps near the motor. Although I’m sure you’ve come up with something by now. Also is there a reason that your fence has equal ripping capacity on both sides? Could you mount the fence over to one side to increase the capacity?

  25. Nick King on October 25, 2023 at 10:59 pm

    I am in the market for a new saw I am considering this saw is it hard to change blades and can you take the fence off?

  26. bartbug1 on October 25, 2023 at 10:59 pm

    G’day mate,
    any suggestions for a first time woodworker (I’m a Chippy) but looking for a decent table saw that will fit in a standard garage space. Could you give me any suggestions on brands?

  27. tonyflynn25 on October 25, 2023 at 10:59 pm

    Hi mate. Seriously considering this saw. My only issue is that it is much bigger than my current makita mlt100. As space is at a premium would it be possible to mount this on castors? Or do you feel the regular movement would cause issues with accuracy?

    Fantastic videos as always. Really appreciate the effort you go to.

  28. mikey bj on October 25, 2023 at 11:02 pm

    nobody wants a knife till they get hit in the face

  29. michael wakley on October 25, 2023 at 11:03 pm

    I have the same saw, I agree with all your comments, I just have a couple of mods that i have done that may interest you, I purchased the wheel kit from mr forbes and it works well I also have problems with the huge amount of saw dust, what I did was to put a base on the trolley and fill in the legs as to make a box to capture the dust, also filled in the large void in the rear, this seems to work well, I just vacuum the box out as needed
    also I didn’t like the opened (slotted) side wings, sick of tools dropping thru, so I filled them in, much happier
    all in all am very happy with the machine

  30. blazecorp on October 25, 2023 at 11:07 pm

    Just wanted to say thanks for the review. Im about a month out from buying my first tablesaw and I was seriously looking at this model. Cheers mate!

  31. bluecurvedesign on October 25, 2023 at 11:07 pm

    Hi, thanks for the review. I have a different model Carbatec saw I purchased second hand that has the same fence. Mine is practically diamond shaped in cross section – thought it must have been abused but perhaps it came like that. Next addition for me will be a piece of melamine on the side of the fence, attached to the T track in it, and shimmed to be vertical / square. Other than that issue I have been able to shim/adjust everything else into submission.
    For those looking to tune up their table saw, check out this video from the Wood Whisperer – best all round TS tune up instructions I have found, it worked for me really well: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxRSarTJLMU

  32. steve bruford on October 25, 2023 at 11:08 pm

    I have the same saw which I bought 2nd hand and the pulley has come off twice and I hope it never happens to you as it is a pain to get back on

  33. TheWoodfather - Mario on October 25, 2023 at 11:08 pm

    Nicely done, I bought this one a few years ago as well, actually also did a review on my own channel 😉
    Just subbed, but now I’m scared to click on your next video as it is about the saw blade coming loose on you?! Haven’t had that happen to me yet, sounds scary!

  34. Wacky Wood Works on October 25, 2023 at 11:08 pm

    My saw is probably made in the exactly same factory and branded to "Toolshed" here in NZ. First thing I did was change the blade, then sled, incra sled and incra mitre gauge.

    The guard you have is slightly different as is The dust collection port (by the looks) is a bit different as well… but the basic saw is similar

  35. Rocky Ralifo on October 25, 2023 at 11:08 pm

    whats the arbor size for the blade ?

  36. RoweR on October 25, 2023 at 11:11 pm

    на регулировке вылета пилы зажимной барашек, а он струбцину намастырил

  37. MightyHawx on October 25, 2023 at 11:12 pm

    hey mate nice review, just purchased one. Is it possible to remove the legs and sit it on a bench or something similar? Cheers

  38. John on October 25, 2023 at 11:14 pm

    I wonder how much it would cost to get the fence machined square on the side and top at a machining place?
    probably not cheap. :/

  39. TrailZ Z on October 25, 2023 at 11:19 pm

    Does anyone have a riving knife for this table saw? I’m after one…

  40. Shaun Kelly on October 25, 2023 at 11:21 pm

    Hi, thanks for the video. I have purchased a 2nd hand SB12. No guard or riving knife. Noticed you have a splitter on your table. I don’t want the guard so was wondering if I can insert something to the existing set-up to act as a splitter. Had a couple of kick-backs already and not fun.