Both a circular and track saw are very useful tools. You might find one more useful than the other, depending on your job. This article can help you choose which one to purchase!
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BEHIND A TRACK SAW FROM A CIRCULAR SAW?
Track saws can be described as circular saws which run along a track. Track saws can be equipped with additional features like scoring, full blade covers, dust collection and riving knives. They are cheaper than track-saws.
Traditional track saws can be used to cut large plywood sheets with a straight edge. Circular saws can create splinters along the cut and tear them. You can use circular sees similar to track saws by using modification and jigs Track saws are not limited to their tracks. To make longer cuts, track extensions are also available.
WHAT IS A TRACK SAW?
A track saw basically is a circular-saw that runs along a track. This track makes it very easy to make perfectly straight cuts. Start cutting by lining up the track’s edge and your cut line.
You can choose to have your track saw powered by a battery or corded. Some users have found that corded track saws can become caught on the track end, pulling the track out of alignment and ruining cuts.
Here are some features that come standard on most track saws:
This track directs the saw in straight lines. It has a non-marring and grippy underside to help keep the track in its place. T Rack Saw Clamps may be used to secure the track.
- Splinter Guard
This is a clear rubber material at the edge of your track that is perfectly sized to fit your saw. This allows you to align your tracks with your marks, which will ensure that the track is placed precisely. It also prevents any tear out.
- Vacuum Dust bag
Most track saws come with a port to attach either a shop vacuum or dust bags. This allows you to keep your workspace tidy. This blade cover is enclosed for better dust collection.
A track saw blade is about 6.5 inches. This is slightly smaller than the traditional circular saw. Track saws can be equipped with a riving knife just like table saws. This knife follows the blade and prevents the saw’s kickback and injury.
WHEN SHOULD I USE A TRACK SAW
You can use a track saw to cut large sheets of material into smaller pieces. A track saw can be used to cut 4ft x8ft sheets of plywood into smaller components of a cabinet.To cut down large boards you can use a track saw. The track saw could be used to cut down a 2×12 board into a 6×6. For cutting corners, position the track at an angle.
You can use the track saw to make straight edges from irregular boards, such as rough lumber, or live edge slabs. Track saws were used to create the flat back of these living edge floating shelves.
A track saw can be used in a small work area to replace or supplement a larger table saw.
HOW DO YOU USE A TRACK SAW?
Each track saw will operate in different ways. Make sure you know the details of your track saw before using it.
Here are some guidelines for how to use your track saw.
Wear safety sunglasses and hearing protection. Make sure there is enough room to cut the material and make sure it is stable.
- Lay out your work area
To protect my workbench from being cut, I place a piece of 2″ thick rigid insulation over it whenever I use the track saw. This keeps the surface safe from being cut, supports the board and stops it pinching the blade. It is strong enough that I can use it as a working surface for two sawhorses when I’m outside.
- Mark your line of cut
Measure your desired width on the board and then mark your line on it. Keep in mind that the rough cut side of the board will be on top. The splinter shield will keep the fibers in the cut on the keep side. However, if the offcut is to be used for another piece, it may be a good idea to place a strip o painter’s adhesive along the cut line to prevent the fibers from being ripped out on the waste side.
- Align your track
Mark the cutting line on the board. Then place the track on . Keepside. The blade will remove some of the material (called kerf). You may make the board a little too short if the blade is used on the wrong side.
- Check for the square
When you make a 90 degree cut, make sure that your track is aligned with your reference edge. To speed up your cutting process, attach a cross-cutting saw square onto the guide rail.
- Set your cutting depth
Make sure the blade is just below the material. Some track saws come with a button that you can press to make a scoring cut. Score cut is a quick first pass to break the wood fibers. The score cut is a quick way to ensure the highest quality cut.
- Make your cuts
Place your saw onto the track. Slowly bring the saw to full speed and then make the cut.
FREQUENTLY QUESTIONED QUESTIONS REGARDING TRACK SAWS
CAN I USE A TRACKSAW WITHOUT A TRACK
Yes. You can use the track saw without a tracking. If used in this fashion, the saw will operate exactly as a circle saw.
Some track saws come with a separate depth setting so you can use it without the track. It takes into consideration the track’s height and adjusts accordingly so that you don’t accidentally cut your workbench.
HOW DOES A TRACK SAW STAY IN PLACE?
Nonslip strips on both the underside and top of the track keep track saws in their place. The sticky part of the track saw does not leave a trace or residue on your surfaces.
Special clamps are available to prevent the track from slipping on prefinished plywood or melamine surfaces.
ARE TRACK SAWS MORE SAFE THAN TABLE SAWS?
Yes, track saws can be safer than table saws. The blade is still exposed, but it is far safer in a tracked saw than in a traditional table saw. As you can see, the blade is enclosed in the housing. The housing will then be pushed into the wood during the cutting. Many track saws feature anti-kickback technology.
WHAT IS A CIRCULAR SAW?
A round saw has the same functions and capabilities as a track-saw but does not perform them as well. If you have a limited budget, your circular saw can be turned into a portable track saw with straight-edge guide. You can design your own circular saw jig.
Here are some details about the parts and differences between the track and circular saws:
There are many types and sizes of circular blades, depending on what type you need. It is always visible in the front, unlike a track saw, where it retracts inside.
The deck, or base plate, of the circular-saw will glide across wood; the track-saw glides across a surface. Instead of altering the plunge depth for a track saw blade, the deck can be raised or lowered on the circular saw.
- Dust Collection
Many circular saws lack them! The blade will throw all the sawdust at you, creating a mess that can pose a danger to your health and creating an unhealthy environment. Use a dust mask whenever you cut with a circular saw to keep sawdust out of your lungs.
WHEN SHOULD A CIRCULAR SAW BE USED?
A circular saw is ideal for long rip cuts. However, it is more suited for construction than furniture building.
A good circular saw will cost you around $150. The track saw can run up to $500. A circular saw is far more economical, and this is great news for beginners to woodworking. You won’t need the exacting precision of a tracked saw so you will be better off spending your money on a quality circle saw.
A track saw can replace a miter saw, a circular saw and a table saw. This is an excellent option if space is tight.
HOW DO I USE A CIRCULAR SAW?
Here are some guidelines you can follow to operate your circular saws. Use of circular saws is dangerous. Before you start, ensure that you have a good understanding of your circular saw.
Remember to wear safety goggles. A dust mask is essential, especially if you are working indoors. Circular saws can produce tons of sawdust.
- Make sure you plan your cut
Measure and account for the blade’s thickness. The blade should be cut on the waste end of the cut line.
- Pick your blade
To get the best results, you should match the blade type with the type cut that you are making. Make sure your blade is set to the right depth before cutting.
- Don’t let your material slide
Make sure to consider where your material will go after you have made the cut. If your board runs across two sawhorses when you make a cut in the middle, the edges of the sawhorses could pinch the blade and lead to dangerous kickback. The board should be supported throughout the cutting.
- Start cutting
Use the guide marks on your circular-saw deck to help you. Maintain a firm grip, and work at a steady speed.
FREQUENTLY QUESTED QUESTIONS ABOUT CIRCULAR SAWS
HOW MUCH DOES A CIRCULAR SAW COST?
The cost of a circular saw ranges from $60 to $300 on the lower end to $300 for the more powerful models. You should save your money to buy a quality circle saw. However, if you plan to buy a costly circular saw you might want to invest a bit more to get a tracking saw.
CAN A CIRCULAR SAW BE USED WITHOUT A TABLE
Yes, you can use the circular saw without a table. It is important to secure your project properly. Because it supports both sides, the large piece of thick foam insulation can be placed between two sawhorses. The blade will still be able to make a cut.
HOW DO YOU STORE CIRCULAR SAWS?
It is important not to bend the blade of the circular saw that protrudes from your bottom. You can put stress on the blade by leaving it at an angle for long periods. This can cause it to shift out of alignment.
Track saws can be described as high-precision circular or track saws. If you find your results aren’t satisfactory, start with a standard circular saw and move up to a track-saw if necessary. The track saw produces professional results and is easier, faster, and safer to use.