Last updated on August 7th, 2021 at 11:09 pm
A track saw may look like a circular saw, but it allows you to make cuts you’d not even attempt with a circular saw.
If you think it’s just a fancy-looking circular saw, think again because it’s far from that. It’s a saw you can use to make cuts normally meant to be made on table saws and panel saws.
The main purpose of a track saw is to make long accurate rip cuts.
This is so because it comes equipped with a slide or guide rail which allows it to glide smoothly and accurately on a straight line as you make the cut.
It’s called a plunge-cut saw because you can lay it flat directly on the material, and the blade will protrude from the bottom, plunging into the material to make the cut. Something you can’t do with a circular saw.
You might already have a table saw and a circular saw, and wondering why should I get a track saw? Well, you should get it because it affords you an easier way to make long rip cuts.
Unlike using a table saw, you don’t have to bring the material to be cut to the saw, you can bring the saw to the material.
That means you can rip-cut and break down unusually large boards which will usually be too large to cut or handle on a table saw.
1. Makita SP6000J1 Plunge Cut / Track Saw Kit
If you’re talking about the best plunge-cut or track saws, you can’t complete the discussion without mentioning Makita.
Theirs is one of the best models you can go for. The Makita SP6000J1 plunge-cut track saw kit offers you a true cutting system you can rely on for all your plunge cuts and rip cuts both on and off the jobsite.
It features a 6-1/2 inch blade powered by a 12 amp motor to produce smooth splinter-free mirror finishes on your material of choice.
It also comes equipped with a 55 inch guide rail which the blade glides along affording you the capacity to make long rip cuts with the greatest accuracy.
The body is made with magnesium components to decrease the weight and make it easier to handle for long periods of time.
Controlling the speed is done electronically allowing the blade to maintain a constant speed under load to produce splinter-free results.
Apart from that, the Makita SP6000J1 comes equipped with a variable speed control dial you can use to vary the speed from 2000 to 5200 RPM.
This ensures you can adjust the speed of the blade to suit different types of materials.
You can make bevel cuts from -1 degree to 48 degrees, with positive stops at 22.5 and 45 degrees respectively.
Additionally, as a plunge-cut saw, the saw has a built-in depth cut feature you can use to vary the depth of cut of the saw blade.
This comes very useful when you have to make preliminary cuts to improve the accuracy, neatness or quality of the cut, and to ensure safety.
Overall, the Makita SP6000J1 come equipped with top of the line features you need in any track saw.
2. Dewalt DCS520ST1 60V Cordless Track Saw Kit
Make straight splinter-free cuts through hardwoods as thick as 2-1/8 inch with ease using the Dewalt DCS520ST1 60 Volts cordless track saw.
Equipped with a powerful brushless motor backed by Dewalts 60 Volts Flexvolt battery system, you get a powerful cordless plunge-cutting machine with enough run-time to complete heaps of cuts in one charge.
The zero clearance track or guide rail ensures every cut you make is straight, precise and free of splinters.
Not limited to 90 degree cuts, you can also make bevel cuts up to 45 degrees at a max depth of 1-5/8 inches.
Wide materials tends to bind with the blade when making rip cuts, that’s why this one is fitted with a riving knife to prevent binding and kickbacks from happening when making a cut.
In fact, Dewalt’s track saws are only one of the few among the competition that have this very important safety feature.
Dust collection is a breeze as the saw comes fitted with 1-1/4 inch dust ports onto which you can hook up your vacuum to keep sawdust in its place when making cuts.
All in all, if you really want a cordless track saw that’s designed to take care of special rip-cutting and plunge-cutting applications both on and off the jobsite, then you should seriously consider getting this Dewalt DCS520ST1.
3. Festool TS 55 REQ Plunge Cut Track Saw
The TS 55 REQ is the most advanced plunge cut saw ever made by Festool. It’s their flagship crosscutting and rip cutting tool.
Equipped with a 6-1/4 inch blade, you can make straight plunge-cuts in hardwoods as thick as 2-1/8 inches with great accuracy.
It comes with micro-adjustable depth controls that allow you to fine-tune the depth settings of the blade to match the cut you want to make.
A really flat housing ensures you can flush-cut against walls or adjacent surfaces with ease.
To prevent binding and kickbacks, the Festool TS55 REQ track saw comes equipped with a spring-loaded riving knife which keeps the cut kerf open so that the material you’re cutting does not pull back together and pinch the saw blade.
Looking at the way the blade is housed in the case, one might think that changing it will pose some difficulty, but fret not.
The TS 55 REQ uses the FastFix system which locks both the switch and arbor together simultaneously to allow each changing of blade and arbor.
You can make bevel cuts from -1 to 47 degrees and the saw weighs just 9.92 lbs.
As with all Festool products, dust extraction is very easy. Just hook up your vacuum to the dust port, and every dust produced will be properly channelled away from your work area or surface.
4. Bosch GKT13-225L
Bosch needs no introduction when it comes to tools such as this. When you use the Bosch GKT13-225L, you’d easily see why we think so.
Every feature of the tool is engineered to ensure your cuts come out as straight and accurate as possible.
It’s a 13 Amp corded track saw capable of producing variable speeds from 3600 to 6250 RPM. The 6-1/2 inch blade spins at that much speed to help you produce the best quality cuts on the hardest of woods.
You can make bevel cuts from -1 to 47 degrees with a single bevel point when using the track or guide rail compatible with it.
No matter how hard or demanding the material is, the saw’s constant electronics feature ensures the blade spins at a constant speed to allow you get the results you need.
It also has an overload protection feature which prevents the motor from overheating while making cuts.
Changing blades is a quick 3-step process and dust collection is also easy once it’s hooked to a compatible shop vac.
5. Kreg Adaptive Cutting System
The Kreg Adaptive Cutting System is a track-guided circular saw you can use for cutting materials with accuracy and precision.
Combined with their 62 inch guide track, you can plunge-cut plywood, solid wood and other materias with it with great accuracy.
The saw comes equipped with a 12 amp 120 volt variable speed motor which spins the saw blade at a no-load speed within the range of 2000 to 5500 RPM.
With it, you can cut boards as thick as 2-1/8 inches at 90 degrees and you can make bevel cuts through 1-1/2 inch thick materials at 45 degrees.
It comes with important safety features like a riving knife that prevents binding and kickbacks and an electronic break to halt the blade rotation once you’re done cutting with it.
You can make bevel cuts from -1 degrees to 47 degrees which makes it ideal for a whole lot of applications.
6. WEN CT1065 Sidewinder Plunge-Cut Circular Track Saw
If you don’t have the budget to go for the high end models, WEN produces a very budget friendly track saw you can get without altering the weight of your wallet.
The WEN CT1065 track saw can rip 2-1/3 inch thick boards in one pass at 90 degrees and 1-5/8 thick boards at 45 degrees.
If you want to make long rip cuts or internal rip cuts, this is one of the best saws you should get. It comes equipped with a 6-1/2 inch 24 tooth carbide-tipped blade, but you can always upgrade the blade to get even finer cuts from this machine.
At the heart of the saw is a powerful 10-amp motor capable of spinning the blade at 5500 RPM, cutting cleanly and precisely through the hardest of sheet woods, even engineered lumber.
Three blade settings allow you to make 1/8 inch deep scoring cuts, plunge cuts and for easily swapping out the blade for a new one.
Overall, this WEN track saw comes with just the right features to pitch it among the best track saw you can use for your projects.
7. Makita XPS01PTJ Cordless Plunge-Cut Kit
This is the Makita XPS01PTJ cordless plunge-cut track saw kit.
Although the guide rails don’t come with it when you buy it, you can always include it as an accessory if you want to.
The cordless saw is powered by not one but two times LXT batteries with LXT technology that helps it deliver more power, more speed and more run time per charge.
It comes equipped with a variable speed dial you can use to adjust the speed to match the application. You can adjust the speed from 2500 to 6300 RPM.
Apart from that, the electronics of the saw automatically adjusts the cutting speed and torque of the saw under load to help you get the best results.
Based on the design of the saw, you can even make flush cuts or cuts close to adjacent surfaces as close as 11/16th of an inch.
It has a large cutting depth capacity of 2-3/16 inches at 90 degrees and 1-9/16 inches at 45 degrees, and a bevel capacity of -1 to 48 degrees.
All in all, if you want a cord-free way of making long rip, plunge and flush cuts on really hard wooden boards with great accuracy, this Makita XPS01PTJ is one track saw you should definitely consider.
8. Shop Fox W1835
With a blade size of 6-1/2 inches and cutting speed up to 5500 RPM, the Shop Fox W1835 track saw allows you to make straight, accurate cuts free of splinters.
Cut full sheet of plywoods and engineered woods, make plunge cuts and trim doors to length.
The 120 V, 9A Shopfox saw produces enough torque in the blade to power through cuts easily without binding, guaranteed by the riving knife that protrudes with it.
You can make bevel cuts as well as 90 degree rip cuts.
The maximum cutting depth at 90 degrees is 2-31/32 inches and that at 45 degrees is 1-7/16 with the rails attached.
Combine the saw with a Shop Fox 50 inch guide rail, and you can make any kind of rip cuts you want to make on the hardest woods you have.
You can break down sheet goods, trim doors, table tops and a whole lot of other applications. If you’re not looking to spend much, it’s also very budget friendly saw.
9. Dewalt DWS520K Track Saw Kit
If you need a corded version of the DCS520ST1, this is it. It’s the Dewalt DWS520L track saw saw.
Pair it with their dual-edged tracks to achieve perfect, zero clearance, splinter-free cuts in both directions of the track or guide rail.
The saw comes equipped with a 12 amp, 13 hundred watts motor with a no load speed that can be varied between 1750 to 4000 RPM.
You can make straight 90 degree rip cuts and bevel cuts, with a bevel capacity of 47 degrees.
At 90 degrees, you can cut through a maximum thickness of 2-1/8 inches while at 45 degrees, you can make a bevel cut through a material as thick as 1-5/8 inches.
The saw makes use of an anti-slip aluminum track that secures itself to the material being cut to enable you make straight, clean and precise cuts.
This is possible because the tracks underside comes fitted with two friction strips which grabs the material and prevents it from slipping when making cuts.
Hence, additional clamping of the track to the material is not necessary.
Up to 90 percent of dust created while making cuts can be conveniently collected as long as you hook up a good shop vac to the universal 1-1/4 inch dust port fitted on it.
10. Festool TS 75 EQ Plunge-Cut Saw
If you don’t want to compromise in cut quality, and all you want is pin-point accuracy with no room for errors, then the track saw you should probably go for is this one from Festool.
It’s the FESTOOL TS 75 EQ Plunge-Cut track saw. Remember, they also have the TS 55 REQ track saw, but this one here is better than that one.
While the TS 55 comes with a 55 inch track or guide rail for the saw, this one comes with a 75 inch track to enable you rip through and break down the largest of sheet materials.
You can find every feature of the TS 55 in this TS 75. Features such as the spring-loaded riving knife for preventing binding and kickbacks, and the FastFix system which enables locks the saw switch and arbor simultaneously to allow you swap out blades easily.
To further prevent or minimize any chances of kickbacks occurring, the saw also comes with a slip clutch, which in addition to that helps minimize wear on the saw blade, motor and gear case.
With a saw blade diameter of 8-1/4 inches, you can use the TS 75 EQ to cut through materials as thick as 3 inches when making 90 degree cuts and 2-1/8 inches when making 45 degree bevel cuts.
It has a bevel capacity of 0 to 47 degrees and consumes up 1600 Watts of power.
All in all, when you’re looking for a top quality track saw to tackle projects such as breaking down large sheet materials, trimming rough lumber, cutting solid doors and window frames, this is the saw you need.
It will tackle those projects and some more with pinpoint accuracy.