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Felker TM-75 Tile Saw Trials
John P. Bridge (11-14-02)
In November, 2002, Andy Lundberg, products manager for Felker/Target Saws sent me a TM-75 tile saw to try out. My helper, Albert Nelson, and I tested the saw for several days, cutting different types of tile for different applications. We put the small saw through it's paces.
The saw arrived with a standard rip guide for making repetitive straight cuts, an adjustable protractor type angle guide and a 90 degree bevel guide. We also received two 8-inch diamond blades and a fold-up stand.
Removing the parts from the box and getting the saw assembled was no challenge at all, even for a guy who seldom bothers with reading directions. The tool arrives mostly assembled. It's only necessary to mount the motor and install the pump. Set the unit in the water tray, and you're ready for action. For those who must read them, the instructions are quite clear, and there are plenty of illustrations.
The TM-75 is equipped with a three-quarter horsepower motor which turns at 3,300 rpm. The motor delivers plenty of power for any task you might attempt. A small water pump supplies water to the blade.
The best feature of the tool is its weight. The TM-75 comes in at thirty-six and one-half pounds (16.5 kg.). This little saw will put a smile on the face of anyone who has spent years hoisting heavy-weight saws on and off pick-up trucks and hauling them up and down stairs.
Don't be fooled by the compact size and light weight, though. This Felker will halve tiles up to 14 in. square and cut 10x10s on the diagonal in one pass. With a little creative maneuvering, larger pieces can be handled also.
The job at hand was a master bath renovation -- new tile shower and bathroom floor. We used 8x10 wall tiles with A-106 quarter-round trims. The bath floor was 13x13 in. floor tile.
The saw easily handled the 8x10 wall tiles. Above, Albert notches out the hole for the shower valve.
Although we didn't need to do any back mitering, we beveled the backs of a couple tiles to see how well the bevel guide works. Maintaining a consistent and straight kerf is no problem with the TM-75.
Mitering trims is a breeze with the 45 degree miter guide.
We suspected that cutting through the much harder floor tiles would significantly slow the saw down, but that was not the case. The eight-inch blade handled the task easily, chewing through material at a steady clip. The saw runs efficiently and quietly with very little vibration.
The TM-75 makes doorway cuts with nearly the ease of its larger brothers. In fact, I can't think of anything in the way of cutting the saw won't do. Our next job will be a large tiled floor, and we'll revert to the larger Felker Tilemaster, but the job could be done with the little TM-75 as well.
I recommend the TM-75 to do-it-yourselfers and to professional tilers alike. For a weekend warrior who wants to put in a kitchen floor, for example, the Felker TM-75 is an exceptional value at around $300. A person could buy the tool, use it to complete the project and then re-sell it. The difference between cost and resale would probably not amount to the cost of having to rent a saw for a project of that duration.
I have a feeling, though, that anyone who uses this small Felker will not want to part with it. I know I won't give up the saw I received from Felker until it's completely worn out, and I think that moment will be a long time coming.
For additional information on the TM-75 or on any Felker tool, repair to the Felker web site.
And if you would like to buy a Felker Saw or just about any other tool, visit my friends Rick and Joe at ConstructionComplete. :-)
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