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PORTER-CABLE PCC660 Review

This inexpensive saw is for light-duty applications only
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Price:   $60 List | $60 at Amazon
Pros:  Inexpensive, decent blade changing system, average cutting power
Cons:  Limited battery life, poor sightlines, fiddly adjustments
Manufacturer:   PORTER-CABLE
By Nick Miley and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Dec 19, 2019
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41
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 10
  • Ease of Use - 50% 4
  • Cutting - 30% 5
  • Battery - 20% 3

Our Verdict

While the PORTER-CABLE PCC660 appears to be a bargain, the reduction in price comes at the cost of battery life, and ease of use functionality. Specifically, the saw has a difficult to turn twist knob for the bevel adjustment, and the bevel degree markers are hard to read. Moreover, the sightlines are a sixteenth of an inch off on the long side. The 4 amp-hour battery is also an issue — it's one of the shortest-lived power cells that we've tested. The saw will make most cuts, but it often struggles to do so. Ultimately, we see this saw as an introductory tool that restricts users to the most basic cutting applications.

Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

What sets the PORTER-CABLE apart from the class of circular saws is its price tag and its low scores in our ease of use and battery tests. The saw would be much improved if it had a longer-lasting battery and some basic user interface features promoting better cuts while easing user frustration. It should be said that the saw will make some reasonably demanding cuts. However, it protests the action with sluggish blade RPMs and a heightening of the motor pitch — not good signs. Finally, the saw's shoe is rather poorly designed, making bevel adjustments and cuts hard to get right.

Performance Comparison



Likes


We definitely like a saw that is priced low enough that those on a tight budget can enter the market. It's also good that it is capable of making crosscuts and rips of common dimensional lumber. After all, what good is an affordable saw if it doesn't work?


Dislikes


What we don't like about the PORTER-CABLE is that the saw will quickly be outgrown if the user puts it to regular use. Our concern here is the old adage buy cheap, buy twice. The saw is indeed substantially better than a hand saw. However, it lacks in so many important features — accurate sightlines, proper bevel adjustments, and decent battery life — that it will quickly become an obsolete item if consistently used.


Additionally, we found the blade changing procedure to be a real pain in the you know what. As this is a common point of frustration for the inexperienced user, we think that PORTER_CABLE could have done better on this aspect of the design. As it is, the blade has to be leveraged into place.

Note the lower blade guard pressing against the saw blade. On the opposite side  the arbor is also in contact with the blade. This makes the task of inserting/ removing the blade a pain.
Note the lower blade guard pressing against the saw blade. On the opposite side, the arbor is also in contact with the blade. This makes the task of inserting/ removing the blade a pain.

Value


We think that the PORTER-CABLE is an appropriately priced product. However, the saw's value decreases with an increase in use. This means that if you are an infrequent DIYer, this tool's low price is a boon. However, if you plan on using the saw often, then you will likely be shopping for a better product rather quickly because all its shortcomings will become overwhelming and ultimately unbearable.

Conclusion


The PORTER-CABLE PCC660 is an economy saw to be sure. However, it's important to recognize that the decrease in cost is accompanied by a loss in battery life and numerous ease of use features. We think that this saw will best suit those with infrequent light-duty tasks in mind. Those with plans for more intensive work should set their sights on a higher-quality saw.

Nick Miley and Austin Palmer