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Ridgid R4520 Hybrid Table Saw vs Ridgid R4512

By Paul

August 11, 2020

r4512, r4520, ridgid

If you are in the market to buy a new Ridgid table saw from Home Depot then you need to read this article first!

In this post we will describe the differences between the new model R4520 versus the older model R4512. 

It appears that the R4512 is no longer being made but you may still come across some for sale as they replace their inventory.

In the video above we explain the three main differences but since we made the video we found a fourth one.

Here are the 4 main changes between the Ridgid R4520 and the R4512.

1. Fence


No Lower Guide

R4520 (New)

Lower guide for smaller wood stock

Ridgid R4520 fence
2. Power Switch


Regular On/OFF Safety Switch

R4520 (New)

Magnetic Safety Switch

R4520 magnetic switch
3. Motor


Can change between 120V and 240V

(No electric brake)

Page 9 in the Owner's Manual

R4520 (New)

Only 120V

Electric Brake

4. Insert Plate


15 1/8" x 3 3/4" x 1/8"

R4520 (New)

16 1/8" x 3 3/4" x 1/2"

Height can be adjusted from the top

Locking mechanism

R4520 insert plate

Other changes include some aesthetic changes such as the sticker with the brand name and some of the coloring of different items on the saw.

In summary the Ridgid R4520 now has a lower fence guide for smaller wood stock, a magnetic switch, can only run on 110v, and has a larger and thicker insert/throat plate that is faster to adjust and because it is thicker it is now easier to make custom zero-clearance or dado insert plates.

We hope this quick explanation of the differences help you decide if the new Ridgid R4520 is right for you.

If you haven't already, why not check out our Youtube Channel for more straight forward information like this.

If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below, we love to hear from you.

Paul and Brenda

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    1. Seeing that both saws have their quirks. I would still go with the R4520 being the newer model and will have a better chance of getting parts further in the future and I do like the little added security of a magnetic switch. I would have liked the option for 110v/220v though.

        1. Hello, I still am unable to find any plates being made by Ridgid or any other woodworking supply company. It looks like we are stuck making our own.

  1. On the 4520, the auxiliary tables, next to the main table, are stamped steel. Are they also stamped steel on the 4512? Thanks

  2. I recently purchased one of the last R4512’s in the Home Depot chain. Unfortuneately the motor was made so I had to return it in exchange for the R4520. Having had my hands on on both for a while I wanted to add one major difference to your comparison. The R4512 had a cast iron trunnion. The new R4520 has an aluminum trunnion. To me, this is probably the biggest downgrade on the new model.

    1. Too bad you had to lug that R4512 back. Interesting about the trunnion though. The Home Depot site is showing the R4520 model and its description indicates ‘Cast Iron Trunnions: For extended life and added durability”. At first, I thought maybe they didn’t update their information but the other details were updated. I’ll have to take a closer look and see what mine is. I’m pretty sure it is cast aluminum as you said. Didn’t realize it was cast iron before.

  3. I understand the 4512 has inherent (factory defect or otherwise) blade alignment issues. Has the problem ever been truly diagnosed and is there any recommendation on this? I just acquired a used one and have seen alot of videos and discussion threads, but none seem to bring the issue to a close.

    1. Hello Dan, one of the main issues with the alignment has to do with it becoming out of alignment after awhile with the vibrations and use from the saw. The two bolts holding the trunion in place don’t seem to be enough to keep it in place. Some have no issues others more often but vary. The best way to fix this issue is to use something called PALS (Precision Alignment and Locking System) similar to these on Amazon –> https://amzn.to/3rnfoHn This allows easier precision alignment with having to use a screwdriver to pry it over one way or the other and then locks them in place with no chance of movement over time. Unfortunately, the kits available online are not the right sizes. The 8mm kit threaded rod is too small. The 3/8 inch kit and the L-shaped bracket that holds the adjusting screws in place are too short. So you can either get the kit and modify the holes or bolts for them or head over to FB and order from someone that sells them for the R4512/4520 –> https://www.facebook.com/groups/1534112726822123/user/100009502866106/ There have also been some reports of the tabletop grooves not being in line with each other but I’ve only heard of one such report. I hope that helps.

  4. I have had the 4512 for 4yrs now and I just love it. The best $400 (I had a discount on it 😉 ) I’ve ever spent on a power tool. The 2 main issues are the blade alinement and the fence.

    Blade alinement needs to be checked from time to time, It’s a bit of work but all machinery need that. It’s done in 20 minutes and part of my maintenance routine.

    The fence is much more of an issue. It took me a long time but I ended up finding the solution on Etsy. A guy is 3D printing the 2 sliders and an enlarged back slider for $25. No need to make up some kind of thingamabob, and I did try and failed to get a better result.

    2 things this saw needs: switching to 220V and a good blade (Osha, Freud) or any reputable brand you favor. The bonus is to add a larger, foldable exit table. My garage is quite small (150 sq ft) and every square inch counts. No matter what, IMHO it is one of the best values one can find under $1000.

    1. Thank you for sharing your experience. As one person said on one of my Youtube channel, don’t expect $3000-$5000 quality and precision on an approx. $750 table. Cheers

    2. Thank you for the referral to the Etsy shop! I’ve been fighting the fence on my 4512 for a long time. I don’t think I’ll know what to do if I don’t have to poke the back of the fence before locking it down every time!

  5. Hello, I am considering purchasing the 4520 and was wondering your thoughts on the fence system on it. Have you been using this saw? If so, would you recommend it?

    1. Yes, we use it every day for building furniture we sell. It’s not the same quality and strength you would get from a proper cabinet brand table saw but for the price, it is holding up quite well. We still use it with the fence it came with. So far no issues with the fence like some people have reported. Cheers Paul

  6. I am considering getting the R4520 and if I do, I will need to raise the table height to 39" to match all the surfaces in my home shop. Would there be any issues putting some kind of riser between the orange housing and the grey base so I could still use the integrated mobile base?

    1. There shouldn’t be any issues. The only thing that is attached to the grey base is the wheel assembly and the dust funnel that connects to your dust collector.

      1. I have a 4512 with a motor problem at start up. I had earlier replaced the start capacitor and it fixed the problem. Now the problem has returned but a new capacitor does not fix it. I can start it by turning the blade with a stick, but that's dangerous. I can buy a used 4520 for not much money, but I don't know if the two motors are compatible. I don't really need to have 240v capability.

        1. That is unfortunate! The first question I have though, before making any changes is; do you have it plugged in directly into a receptacle? We had issues when it was plugged into a power bar or too long of an extension with our 4520. May not be the same issue with 4512 but thought I would share our experience. As for compatibility, there likely will need be with the switch as that was changed on the new model as well.

  7. This article benefits anyone searching for a difference between the two types of Table saws. You also mention a YouTube video it's really helpful for readers. I think that those who read this article will also find my article on the Best Table Saws for Beginners Guide to be really helpful. It's full of useful information that can help beginners get started with using a table saw. Here are Links: https://toolsdetail.com/best-table-saws-for-beginners-guide/

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