Welcome to Scroll Saw Woodworking & Crafts Message Board, an online scroll saw forum community where you can join thousands of scrollers from around the world discussing all things related to Scrolling. To gain full access to the message board you must register for a free account. As a registered member you will be able to:

 * Browse over 200,000 posts.
 * Communicate privately with other scrollers from around the world.
 * Post your own photos or view from 7,000 user submitted images.
 * Gain access to exclusive scroll saw promotions offered by Scroll Saw Woodworking & Crafts and Fox Chapel Publishing.

All this and much more is available to you absolutely free when you register for an account, so sign up today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact the Scroll Saw Woodworking & Crafts Support Team.

Go Back   Scroll Saw Woodworking & Crafts Message Board > Scroll Saw > Tools and Blades
Connect with Facebook

West Penn Hardwoods
Tools and Blades

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-23-2008, 08:41 PM   #1
Senior Member
dale's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Norwood, MO
Posts: 100
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Who owns a Hawk Saw? Good vs. Bad

I am considering getting a Hawk and would like to know the good and bad about them.
dale is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2008, 09:08 PM   #2
Senior Member
groverd's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: washington state
Posts: 451
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

I have had my 226 for over a year and have done a lot of intarsia with it. I had a Dewalt before the Hawk and i believe if i was doing fret work i would prefer the Dewalt because you can top feed with it. however, i would never give up my hawk, , , well maybe for a new G4 i would!!
Grover D
RBI Hawk 226 and Dewalt 788

groverd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-23-2008, 09:38 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 89
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

I have a Hawk G4. The saw has some very nice features: Low vibration and very quiet running; Top feeding is very easy; Stoke of the blade is adjustable from nearly perfect vertical up and down for better control and tighter cornering in thin materials,to a more aggressive stroke for thicker woods; 26" throat allows large work pieces; smooth hefty table tilt mechanism;easy blade tensioning system where you tool free adjust once for a particular group of blade sizes then each time you reinstall the blade tension is automatic.
Some minor negatives I've found are: Near verticle blade stroke will dull blades quicker than my Dewalt's stroke. This is due to sawdust not being cleared as effectively. When set to the more aggressive setting the blade is actually more forward at the top versus bottom. This will cut more aggressively but not as aggressive as the Dewalt. If set to the extreme for aggressive cut, the bottom cut may actually be about 1/32 short of the top most cut in a stack cut of say 3 pieces of 1/4" material. This can actually leave small inside cut pieces "hanging on". (Hope this make sense).
Bottom line is I much prefer to use my Hawk for 90% of what I do. But occasionally I still use my Dewalt for thicker material where the need for percision is outweighed by the need for cutting tough thick material. Both are very good saws and I've seen and have made some delicate fretwork with the Dewalt. I just think the Hawk makes it easier to be precise. The Dewalt makes cutting thicker materials and 3/4" + stack cutting easier and blades last longer.
I forgot to mention, the Hawk G4 blade holders are a little finicky and will allow the blade to slip out occasionally if not REALLY tightened.
Good Luck,

Last edited by R.Edwards; 03-23-2008 at 09:42 PM.
R.Edwards is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 03:14 AM   #4
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: long island ny
Posts: 97
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

there have been many posts requesting info and opinions on the hawk. the majority have been very much in favor of the saw. i got mine and there were problems, they were fantastic with their customer support. all the issues were addressed, and they never stopped trying to make me happy. they eventually rebuilt my saw with all the new components. the new clamps are machined to closer tolerances than the the first generation. i have the saw sitting next to a hegner vs18. i prefer the hawk to cut thick wood over the hegner. i like the pegas skip tooth blades for cutting thick wood doug
eendreno is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 08:00 AM   #5
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 4,293
Thanks: 0
Thanked 64 Times in 60 Posts

I agree with everything that Ralph and eendreno said. I am also not very impressed by the blade holders. I think that the set screws could have a larger diameter and therefore have a better shot at holding onto the blade the first time. They work fairly well for the smaller blades #3 down to 2/0 puzzle blades but not for the #5's and up. I guess I am spoiled by the Delta quick clamp blade holders on my Delta Q3; a very aggressive saw but great for thick and/or dense materials where absolute accuracy and great detail is not required. I recommend the G4 which is what I have and also the company itself.
A day without sawdust is a day without sunshine.

delta 650, hawk G426
sawdustus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 10:40 AM   #6
Senior Member
Rolf's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Bellport, LI New York
Posts: 8,617
Thanks: 130
Thanked 466 Times in 416 Posts

I have had my G4 for several years. I have had a few minor(to me) issues.
Some with the clamps like Jeff (I modified mine with helicoil inserts to make them bullet proof) I tend to over tighten things. I now use the single piece Aluminum ones and very rarely does a blade slip out. I still have the original spring? I wonder why it would fail.
I am not sure I agree with Ralph about cutting thick material. I have my blade set as vertical as possible (never change it) and have cut pretty much to the maximum capacity of the saw without any issues. But for the thick stuff no reverse teeth, cut slower, back up frequently to clear the sawdust.
RBI has been very supportive when I did have a problem.
I would buy another in a flash. I now top feed exclusivly.
RBI G4 Hawk, Delta SS350, Nova 1624 DVR XP
Philosophy "I don't know that I can't, therefore I can"
Proud Member of the Long Island Woodworkers Club
And the Long Island Scrollsaw Association
Rolf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 01:09 PM   #7
Barefoot1's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: South Jordan Utah
Posts: 805
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

I have the Hawk 226 VS and I absolutely love it. I do a lot of fret work, and have recently started compound cutting. Thick or thin it cuts wonderfully. I like the deeper throat as some projects get a bit large. I do not use that feature all the time but it is nice to have when needed. Being a bottom feeder does present its challenges when cutting intense fretwork but I am used to it and it is not a problem to me. The only real time is when using very small blade holes since my eyes are getting older. Bottom line is I love my saw and have had it for a bit over 4 years. I bought it used off of Ebay for just over $700 and it came with the accessory shelf, magnifying lamp and foot switch.
Barefoot1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 01:40 PM   #8
Land Locked
Mike Crosa's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 1,801
Thanks: 0
Thanked 4 Times in 4 Posts

I purchased the G4 in December and have been pleased with it. There was a bit of a learning curve for me in the tensioning but Rolf and Trout were very helpful. I have not been able to use it of late because of physical problems but come the start of April will be going full blast with it. I can't wait! You won't be sorry with the G4.
Mike C.
Mike Crosa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 02:42 PM   #9
workin for wood's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Eaton Rapids Michigan
Posts: 2,367
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

I can't tighten a blade into the bottom holder while holding on to it by hand. It's just too small to get a good grip. I hold on to the holder using pliers while turning the knob by hand. Been doing this method for years now. I never have problems with blade popping out since I started doing this. My blade holder does look rather mangled from the pliers, but it always continues to work. I did recently have the little clip piece break off that holds the blade holder up against the lower fingers. This morning I was sanding some wood and heard a pop...the blade flew across the shop. One of the fingers finally gave up. Fortunately I had a back up set in the drawer and have more on the way due to warranty. The new ones that are coming are supposedly stronger than the ones I have. That's about the 5th time it broke over owning the saw for about 3 yrs now. I do use the saw harder than the average scroller I'm sure. Cutting thick hard woods with tight turns all the time, really stresses the saw to the max. I've learned to have back up parts on hand all the time, just in case. I make RBI send extra's when I run low, all on warranty of course. Although now they make me pay shipping, which I don't agree with.
Jeff Powell
workin for wood is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2008, 10:09 PM   #10
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 89
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

Guys, don't get me wrong, I love my G-4 and have no desire to exchange it for any other saw on the market! But just like automobiles, no saw is perfect for every application. I which my Avalanche got 30 miles per gallon and was as easy to park as some small sedans but that ain't happening.
I was merely pointing out the characteristics of the saw in comparison to my Dewalt. I'm sure that with more aggressive blades the G4 will cut thicker woods better. I've already ordered some Pegas modified geometry to try out. But the fact remains that the cutting action on the Dewalt is far more aggressive. The highly agressive cut on the Dewalt, is indeed, the main reason that I sought out the G4.
I'm now using the solid aluminum blade holders I bought from RBI. (mine not under warranty as I bought used) I clean the holders with lacquer thinner,wipe the ends of every new blade with degreaser, scratched an X on the end of the set screw, adjusted the opposing set screw to different depths within the holder block,and I've even cut and installed a round wooden knob to fit over the plastic screw knob to give me a more comfortable knob which I can tighten easier, and I still get the occasional blade slip out. This annoys the dickens out of me! The slamming noise of the upper arm going up shocks me WIDE AWAKE every time. I'm afraid using pliers on the block as Jeff is doing would cause me to have other problems. Without having my fingers there to "feel" what I'm doing, I'd probably put too much pressure on the little finger clip gizmo or something. I just wish we could install a clamp on the lower holder that has a "pressure clamp" type mechanism like I've heard some Delta's have. I've even contacted Frank Pozsgai who does the retrofit clamps, but he tells me his is only designed for the top blade holder. The people at RBI told me that Wildwood designs has such a clamp but I have not found any for the lower blade holder. Rolf I'd love to know more about your "helicoil" refit. I googled this and all I found was some sort of thread insert. How does this apply to the holders we're using?
R.Edwards is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Good Score - RBI Hawk Woody D Tools and Blades 7 09-24-2012 09:56 PM
RBI Hawk Dan A Tools and Blades 6 06-01-2011 11:38 PM
What is diff. b/w new Hawk 226vs and a 15 yr old Hawk 226vs? mtugrad General Scroll Saw 3 07-20-2010 10:29 AM
RBI Hawk help kitmark Tools and Blades 9 07-09-2009 01:17 PM
GOOD News from RBI Hawk scrollin4ever General Scroll Saw 9 05-12-2009 02:59 PM

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:45 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.