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Track Saws

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The Best Track Saws For The Money

Makita SP6000J1 Saw Review

Weight

17 lbs

RPM

5200

90° Cut Depth

2-3/16″

45° Cut Depth

1-9/16″

Warranty

1-year

Weight

19 lbs

RPM

5800

90° Cut Depth

2-1/8″

45° Cut Depth

1-11/16″

Warranty

3-year
30-day money back

Weight

12.5 lbs

RPM

4000

90° Cut Depth

2-1/8″

45° Cut Depth

1-5/8″

Warranty

3-year

Weight

10.2 lbs

RPM

6250

90° Cut Depth

2-1/8″

45° Cut Depth

1-5/8″

Warranty

1-year

Weight

11 lbs

RPM

5500

90° Cut Depth

2-5/32″

45° Cut Depth

1-5/8″

Warranty

2-year

Shop Fox W1835 Track Saw Review

Weight

12.8 lbs

RPM

5500

90° Cut Depth

2-5/32″

45° Cut Depth

1-31/32″

Warranty

2-year

Weight

18.25 lbs

RPM

4000

90° Cut Depth

2-1/8″

45° Cut Depth

1-5/8″

Warranty

3-year

Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 Inch Plunge Circular Saw Kit

Makita SP6000J Track Saw Review

Summary & Features

If you’re looking for an all-in-one track saw kit with great function, and at a reasonable price, you’d have a hard time finding a better option than the Makita SP6000J1. This kit includes the saw itself, the track, the hex wrench, a tool case, and it is available at a terrific price, making it a great choice for the first of our track saw reviews.

The saw’s blade is 6 ½ inches in diameter and has a cutting capacity of up to 2 – 3/16 inches thick. It has a bevel capacity up to 48 degrees, with positive stops at 0, 22.5, and 45 degrees. This saw is a corded model, with a cord that measures 7.9 feet long. It has quite a powerful motor that measures 12 amp and features a soft start to prevent overheating and torque, giving this saw an outstanding balance between capability and safety. 

The Makita SP6000J1 saw has a speed control dial with available speeds between 2,000 and 5,200 RPM, giving you a lot of flexibility in your woodworking. A significant selling point of this model is that it is capable of extremely accurate miter cuts, so overall, it is an excellent choice if you want the maximum possible amount of control over your tool. 

The Makita saw comes with a 55-inch track complete with locking disc mechanisms to prevent the saw from moving. However, the saw is compatible with tracks from other brands, as well. 

Although this is a terrific model overall, it’s, of course, not perfect. Some users wish for a larger blade, although the saw’s design makes blade replacement a breeze. A few users also reported difficulty in adequately securing the track. Lastly, this model doesn’t have any anti-kickback features. 

Even with these downsides, the Makita track saw is an excellent choice for any carpenter, particularly if you’re buying a track saw for the first time. 

Pros

  • It has a very powerful motor and a soft start engine 
  • Very reasonable price for saw and track combined, plus hex wrench and tool case
  • Large range of speed control (between 2,000 and 5,2000 RPM) 
  • Capable of extremely accurate miter cuts 

Cons

  • It doesn’t include a riving knife or anti-kickback mechanism 

Festool Model HK 55 Cross Cutting Track Saw PLUS FSK

Summary & Features

Like the Makita saw we reviewed above, the Festool HK 55 is a corded plunge cut saw that comes with its own track. However, the Festool model is a definite upgrade even over the Makita. 

The main reason for this is its blade—although measuring just 6 ¼ inches in diameter, the Festool saw’s blade is a fine-toothed beauty that allows you to easily cut through the thickest of woods (up to 2 ⅛ inches thick). It includes sensitive depth adjustment features that let you tune the saw to your project’s exact specifications. 

The Festool saw also features a special spring-loaded riving knife that protects you by preventing kickback while giving you maximum control over your cutting. The combination of the fine-tooth blade and the innovative riving knife make the Festool model the most reliable and accurate track saw available on the market. 

This model can make bevel cuts up to 47-degrees, and has a 13 amp motor that includes a slow start feature to prevent jumping. It weighs just under 10 pounds. 

Reviews for the Festool saw are overwhelmingly positive, with users praising the saw’s cutting accuracy, safety features, and dust collection system. The only obvious downside to this model is its price, which is considerably higher than other options we’re reviewing here. However, if you’re looking for a high-grade track saw capable of extremely heavy-duty projects, you can’t do better than the Festool. 

Pros

  • Fine-tooth saw with depth adjustment allows for immaculate and accurate cuts
  • Powerful 13 amp motor with slow start feature 
  • Spring-loaded riving knife for kickback prevention and greater accuracy 
  • Adjustable speed control 

Cons

  • More expensive option 
  • It doesn’t include clamps 

DEWALT FLEXVOLT DCS520 Circular Saw, 6-1/2-Inch, Cordless TrackSaw Kit

Summary & Features

Although some woodworkers carry a vendetta against cordless power tools, there are some instances where a cordless model is preferable. Cordless saws allow you greater maneuverability and are particularly great for small spaces. They are also much more portable than corded models. 

If you’re looking for a cordless track saw, you won’t find one more potent than the Dewalt Flexvolt model. Often power is a concern for cordless power tools, but this saw uses a powerful Dewalt 60 volt battery, giving it a surprising amount of juice and a relatively long charge life. The saw has a 6 ½ inch diameter blade as well as a riving knife to prevent kickback. 

The Dewalt Flexvolt has a cutting capacity of 2 ⅛ inches at 0 degrees. It also has bevel adjustability up to 45 degrees, with its cut depth capacity at 1 ⅝ inch at this angle. Note that the Dewalt track saw does not include positive stops in its beveling adjustability, so you’ll need to look elsewhere if that is a must-have feature for you. 

This saw also features an adjustable speed between 1,750 and 4,000 RPM. Weighing in at 12.5 pounds, it’s slightly heavier than other models we’ve reviewed here, but it makes up for that somewhat by not dragging around a heavy cord. 

Reviews for the Dewalt Flexvolt are mainly positive, with users remarking on its significant power for a cordless model. While, like other track saws, it makes very accurate cuts, its cuts aren’t necessarily as smooth as those that different models can produce. 

This track saw model comes in a kit including a battery, a blade, a blade change wrench, and a kit box. Unfortunately, you’ll need to purchase the track separately; however, this saw is compatible with tracks from a few other brands, so if you already own a corded model that came with a track, you might be able to use the same track with this one. This saw comes with a limited three-year warranty. 

Pros

  • A very powerful cordless track saw 
  • Affordable price 
  • Includes anti-kickback mechanisms, including riving knife 
  • The plunge mechanism allows you to get a straight cut in any section of the wood 

Cons

  • The guide rail must be purchased separately 
  • No positive stops in bevel capacity 

Bosch Tools Track Saw – GKT13-225L

Summary & Features

Like Dewalt, Bosch is a prominent player in the power tool business. The company consistently produces high-quality woodworking tools, and the GKT13-225L Track Saw is no exception. 

This saw is another corded model with a 6 ½ inch diameter blade. It has a potent motor that measures 13 amps and has a beveling capacity of up to 47 degrees. One of the main advantages of this Bosch track saw is its high-speed capability—it features adjustable speeds between 3,600 and 6,250 RPM. This makes it an incredibly powerful tool, capable of delivering clean, fast, accurate cuts on all different types of woods. 

Safety is obviously essential to Bosch, as this track saw comes equipped with overload protection, a spindle lock, and a lock-off mechanism. 

This track saw doesn’t come with a track included, which is particularly disappointing since it is a pricier model. However, it does come with a blade wrench, a vacuum hose adapter, and a carrying case. Reviews for this track saw are very positive, with customers noting that the higher price tag comes with excellent quality. This Bosch saw comes with a one-year warranty. 

Pros

  • Capable of very high speeds
  • Several different safety features, including overload protection 
  • Powerful 13 amp motor 
  • Comes with a blade wrench, a vacuum hose adapter, and a carrying case included 

Cons

  • More expensive model 
  • The guide rail needs to be purchased separately 

WEN CT1065 Plunge Cut Circular Track Saw

Summary & Features

Last but certainly not least on our list is the WEN CT1065 Plunge Cut Circular Track Saw. This corded model is another excellent choice for woodworkers on a budget but still manages to bring plenty of unique and valuable features despite its lower price tag. 

This saw has a 6 ¼ inch diameter blade and can make plunge cuts as deep as 2-5/32 inches. It has a beveling capacity of 45 degrees (with a cutting depth of 1 ⅝ inch deep at this angle) and features a unique adjustable depth stop for added accuracy. The WEN model also features an innovative self-retracting riving knife that protects against kickback. 

Like other less expensive track saws, this model has a less powerful motor that measures nine amps. However, that’s still plenty of power for most basic woodworking jobs. 

A significant advantage of the WEN track saw is that it comes with two pieces of track, each measuring 27.5 inches long, and a connector. These additions give you a ton of options as far as the types of projects you can complete. It also comes with a 2-year warranty.  

Pros

  • Capable of very high speeds
  • Several different safety features, including overload protection 
  • Powerful 13 amp motor 
  • Comes with a blade wrench, a vacuum hose adapter, and a carrying case included 

Cons

  • The motor is less powerful than others we’ve reviewed 
  • The blade may not be sharp enough for some projects  

SHOP FOX W1835 Track Saw

Shop Fox W1835 Track Saw Review

Summary & Features

Suppose woodworking is an occasional hobby for you rather than a passion or a profession. In that case, you can most likely get away with purchasing a less powerful but also less costly track saw. The Shop Fox W1835 is our pick for the best budget buy—it is available at a price that’s low enough to be accessible to woodworking novices. 

The Shop Fox W1835 track saw is another corded model with a 6 ½ inch diameter blade. It has a slightly less powerful motor than other models we’ve reviewed here—only nine amps—but is still powerful enough to get basic cutting jobs done. Its cord is only six feet long, so you may want to use some of the money you’re saving with this budget buy to purchase an extension cord or two. 

The Shop Fox W1835 track saw includes a riving knife for anti-kickback protection. The saw has a speed of up to 5,500 RPM; however, it doesn’t have a speed adjustability feature, which is a considerable downside. For this reason, we would suggest using the Shop Fox mainly for lightweight woods. 

Reviews for the Shop Fox model are generally positive, with users recognizing that it definitely falls into a budget buy category. Still, it accomplishes the main goals of a track saw by significantly cutting down on the time it takes to cut large pieces of wood and by making cuts more accurate. 

Be aware that you’ll need to purchase the track for this saw separately. Shop Fox sells a few different lengths of compatible track.

Pros

  • Budget-friendly—least expensive model we’re reviewing here
  • Speed of 5,500 RPM
  • Comes with safety features including riving knife 
  • An excellent choice for woodworking hobbyists and novices 

Cons

  • No adjustable speed feature 
  • Less powerful than other models we’ve reviewed 

DEWALT Circular Saw, 6-1/2-Inch, TrackSaw Kit (DWS520K)

DeWalt 520K Track Saw Review

Summary & Features

If you’re loyal to Dewalt, one of the primary names in woodworking, but prefer a traditional corded model for your power tools, take a look at the Dewalt DWS520K Circular Saw. It’s basically a heavy-duty, corded version of the cordless Dewalt model we reviewed earlier and is one of the best track saws available from a reputable brand. 

This corded track saw has a 6 ½ inch diameter blade with 48 individual teeth and can make plunge cuts through 2 ⅛ inches of wood. It has a bevel capacity of up to 45 degrees and has a cutting depth of 1 ⅝ inch at this angle. This Dewalt track saw also features a depth scale that allows you to see exactly how deep you’re cutting, providing even further accuracy. 

This track saw has a powerful 12 amp motor and has variable speed control between 1,750 and 4,000 RPM. It has a continuous anti-kickback mechanism for complete safety. 

Unfortunately, the track for this saw isn’t included with your purchase; however, Dewalt offers many different types of high-quality tracks that are compatible with this tool. You can purchase tracks with unique friction strips that guarantee against slips. This track saw is also compatible with dual-edged tracks, allowing you to cut in both directions. 

Like most Dewalt power tools, this track saw has mainly positive user reviews. However, some customers mentioned flaws in the saw’s design, particularly concerning the lock and power buttons. This saw includes a three-year limited warranty. 

Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Dewalt is a reputable name in power tools
  • Powerful 12 amp motor
  • Extensive range of speed control 

Cons

  • The guide rail is sold separately from the saw

Introduction

Every woodworker has experienced the frustration of messing up a cut using a traditional table saw. Whether it’s the wrong blade size or it’s the sheet material or guide rails, you don’t want to end up with an uneven cut from a plunge circular saw and too much dust collection. Even the most skilled carpenters fall victim to human error and end up wasting time, money, and wood trying to fix a rough or uneven cut. 

A brilliant solution is to invest in a track saw from a brand like Festool or Dewalt, also called a plunge saw. Many woodworkers don’t see the benefit of purchasing yet another Festool power tool with a blade size, especially if they already have both a table saw and a circular saw. Still, like a table saw, a track saw is a valuable addition to your carpentry studio for several reasons. 

So, what exactly is a track saw, how is it different from a table saw, and why should you purchase one, and what is the best track saw to buy? This article will answer all those questions and more, and will include our best track saw reviews. Read on to learn all about track saws, plus our picks for the seven best track saws for the money. 

What Is a Track Saw? 

At its core, a track saw is essentially a circular saw on a fixed track (also called a guide rail). Some varieties are sold as kits, with both the track and the saw itself available in one package, while some you’ll need to purchase separately. You can also buy extra track length and additional blades for your track saw. 

How It Works 

Track saws are circular saws that utilize plunge-cut action while riding on an aluminum track. Although every model is slightly different from one another, their primary function is very similar—the saw sits and moves across a raised track edge, which you place on top of the wood you’re cutting. The guide rail normally has a gripped bottom to prevent it from slipping on the wood. 

Benefits Of Track Saws

The main benefit of using a track saw is that you are pretty much guaranteed to get smooth and accurate straight cuts every time you use it. You’ll get much smoother and more precise cuts with a track saw than you will with an everyday circular saw, even if you use it with a straightedge. A high-quality guide rail with strong gripping material eliminates the need for clamps, although you can use them if you prefer the added security. 

Plunge saws make for a clean workplace since the track has dust collection capabilities. You can quickly dispose of sawdust after using your track saw by dumping the collected dust directly from the guide rail’s dust port into the trash can. 

You can make extremely long precise cuts with a track saw by purchasing additional track pieces and hooking them together. On the other hand, track saws are also excellent for small spaces and convenient portability. You can use a track saw to slice a large sheet of plywood even in a tiny studio, since you don’t need to worry about infeed or outfeed space like you would with a table saw. You can also easily carry the tool or load it into your car or van for easy transport. 

Track Saw Buyers’ Guide 

As with any major purchase, there are a few key factors to think about when you’re in the market for a new track saw. Below are some of the most important things to consider when you’re comparing the best models for purchase. 

Brand Name 

You can’t judge a book by its cover, but manufacturer reputation is an essential consideration when it comes to power tools. Purchasing a track saw from a well-established and respected company isn’t about prestige; it’s about quality and safety. Plus, power tools are expensive, and buying from a reputable name will instill confidence in your purchase. 

A few excellent brand names to consider when in the market for a saw are Dewalt, Bosch, Makita, and Festool, though some of the best saws are from other companies. 

Blade Size

The materials you’re able to perform straight cuts on with your track saw will depend on how thick your saw’s blade is. Track saw blade sizes tend to be slightly unusual, with the most common option being 6 ½ inches in diameter. A blade of that size can reliably cut wood up that measures up to 2 inches thick. 

There are also larger blades available for track saws if you want to cut thicker material. You can find track saws with blades that measure 8 ¼ or 8 ½ inches in diameter. For smaller projects, try a miniature saw blade that measures 4 ½ inches in diameter. 

Speed Settings

One significant advantage that track saws have over circular saws and other similar power tools is that many types of track saws include adjustable speed settings. There are several benefits to having speed adjustability on a track saw: it allows you greater control of the tool, decreases your chances of burning or splintering your wood, and maintains your blade’s sharpness for longer. 

Typically, saws with adjustable speed settings will have speeds between about 2,000 and 5,000 revolutions per minute (RPM). Which speed you choose depends on what wood you’re cutting. Softer woods, such as pine and plywood, cut best with higher speeds. Meanwhile, thicker woods like walnut require lower speeds to prevent burning, unattractive markings, and dulling your saw’s blade.

Bevel Tilt Range 

Another great feature of a good track saw is bevel tilt range. Sometimes a particular woodworking project will require that you cut your wood at an angle rather than perpendicularly, meaning you’ll need to make bevel cuts in your wood. Track saws can help you achieve a clean cut even at an awkward angle. 

Many track saws with bevel adjustability include positive stops, or factory set points at certain standard angles, that allow you to quickly and easily cut wood at those angles. This is an excellent time-saving feature. 

Motor Power

The whole point of any power tool is, well, its power, and track saws are no exception. Your track saw’s motor power will determine the thickness of the materials it can cut as well as the speed with which it can cut them. Your track saw’s power depends on what types of projects you plan to use it for; however, we recommend looking for a model with no less than nine amps of power for best cutting results. 

Keep in mind that the more powerful a track saw’s motor is, the more expensive it will be. So, if you plan on using your track saw to cut thick, heavy materials, you should prepare to offer up some extra cash. 

Corded vs. Cordless

It’s difficult to say whether corded or cordless power tools are a superior power source since they largely depend on your project needs and personal preferences. You can find great track saws with or without a cord; however, keep in mind that cordless saws will likely be less powerful than corded saws. 

Generally, cordless models are preferable if you travel with your tools a lot, while corded models are better for long and arduous projects. 

If you opt for a corded model, remember to consider the length of the cord. Nothing is more frustrating than not being able to get the right angle or cut with a power tool because the cord doesn’t stretch far enough. If you have a large studio or are otherwise concerned about cord length, we recommend picking up a few extension cords to have on hand, just in case. 

Track Length

The whole appeal of a track saw is in the stability and accuracy it gets from the track, so you want to make sure the track will be long enough to suit your needs. For instance, if you’re using a track saw to make one continuous cut through a large sheet of plywood, you’ll want your track to be pretty long since having to reset the track multiple times is annoying and compromises the accuracy of the cut. 

Some track saw varieties come with the guide rail included, and some sell the guide rail and the saw separately. While it’s nice to have both components included, purchasing a track independently of the saw allows you to choose exactly the length that best suits your purposes. Just make sure that the track you buy is compatible with your saw. 

If you find that your track is too short for your woodworking projects, you can purchase extra tracks and connectors to extend yours to the length you need.  

Safety Features 

As with any power tool, safety is paramount when purchasing and using a track saw. Fortunately, these saws are by design considerably safer than circular saws and other types of saws since they are on a fixed path. You’ll be able to see any objects or materials that are in your saw’s direction and that your saw could potentially throw back at you. The track also eliminates the need for guiding the saw with your hands and risking slicing yourself open. 

That said, you should still ensure that the saw you purchase has a few key safety features in place. Even with its fixed track, you should look for some type of anti-kickback mechanism in your saw, such as a riving knife. You should also look for a model that features a reliable blade guard. 

Price

Unless you’re very lucky, the price will be a factor you’ll need to consider when purchasing a saw. While prices vary based on brand, model, speed, and other components, you can reasonably expect to pay between $500 and $1,000 for the track and the saw. Remember that power tools are an investment, and cheap options will likely compromise quality. 

FAQ

Do you still have questions? If so, we may be able to address them with these FAQs.

What is the difference between a track saw and a circular saw? 

A track saw is essentially the same thing as a circular saw, but manufacturers design it for use on a fixed track for added cutting accuracy. Track saws are excellent choices for long, sustained cuts, while traditional circular saws are best for crosscuts and other shorter cuts. 

Can I use a track saw without the guide rail?

A track saw without a guide rail simply functions as a traditional circular saw. 

How much does a track saw cost?

It depends on a few factors, such as brand name, power, and more, but you should expect to pay somewhere between $500 and $1,000 for your track saw and all its necessary accessories. 

Final Thoughts

Track saws are an excellent and versatile power tool for any woodworker. They allow you to achieve a remarkably smooth and accurate cut while being more convenient and portable than a traditional table saw. 

We recommend any of the above options for purchasing a saw. Which model you choose will depend on your budget, your skill level, and other factors, but you’d have a hard time going wrong with any of these choices. 

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