"Hands down, dealing with Scott from Elite Metal Tools was a great experience. He was on it every step of the way. No hassle price, quick freight shipping, and he followed up right through delivery. I am new to Elite Metal Tools, and they certainly won over a new customer. Thanks Scott!
As for the Dake SE712, well, its just OK. I selected a Dake, as (I thought) they were all made in the USA...but not the SE712 or SE912 models. They are just another import machine; so I was a bit naive in my selection, but that is completely on me.
The pallet arrived via FedEx Freight in perfect condition. The saw was well packed. Once unpacked, I found the configuration slightly different than the manufactures website description...the unit pictures at Dake had a front handle and the saw that arrived has this feature omitted (for safety purposes according to Dake and they have since removed that picture from their website). The instructions are nearly useless, you can tell they were not written in the USA.
The saw teder-totters slightly on my shop floor, as the four wheels have no "slack" or adjustment that my previous saw's adjustable feet had. I'm guessing the fabrication of the base is not completely square, and there is no adjustment. The head bow blade guard cover was slightly warped, which cause minor interference when the saw closes and comes to rest on the base (which also has scratched the paint). I was able to bend it back in place to an acceptable position. The vertical table was missing the support bracket and hardware...of which I'm still trying to resolve with Dake. When opening up the saw head to the vertical position, there is a slight rocking of the entire head on the axle connecting it to the base of the machine. There is not adjustment to correct and the motor is so heavy, I am guessing the tolerance is not tight, hence cause the slight yielding. And with the machine on (4) wheels, it moves freely when working the head to align up for a cut. Again, it the front had footrest vice wheels, this wouldn't occur.
Short of that, the saw did come equipped with a Lenox Classic bi-metal blade and a gallon of Trim Sol concentrate coolant solution. The operator controls are sealed in an industrial enclosure with industrial machine control buttons.
In the initial test cuts to break in the blade, the down feed works well, but the auto stop needed slight adjustment. Although flimsy, the chip brush does an adequate job removing chips. The vice works well and fairly set up for accurate cuts. The belt guard cover is only attached with a pair of machine screws to the casting on the head, so it vibrates when the machine is running. I have made about (20) cuts in some mild steel square tubing to break in the blade and the saw has performed well.
Out of curiosity, I compared my Dake to a Grizzly G0561 and found them to be the EXACT same machine (with some minor features like the control box, front handle, paint color!). In fact the parts manuals are the same exact document with the same numbers! To think for $900 less, I could of had the same machine in Green versus Black :(
For now, I will settle for my purchase. And don't forget, Scott and Elite Metal Tools are AWESOME!!"