If you want to make a precise long cut with perfect alignment, you need a good track saw, which is also commonly called plunge saw. Moreover, almost all devices provide users with safety, which is invaluable given that power tools are generally dangerous.
So, in case you are here searching for the best track saws, you will find this and more if you go on reading.
List of The Best Track Saws:
- Makita SP6000J1 – Best Overall
- Festool 575389 – Runner Up
- DEWALT DWS520K – Delivers Straight Cuts in Both Directions
- Festool 575388 – Best For Its Safety
- DEWALT DWS520CK – Versatile
- SHOP FOX W1835 – Best For Money
- Triton TTS1400 – Great For Tackling Tough Applications
|Track Saw||Power Source||Dimensions||Ampere||Volt||Weight|
|Makita SP6000J1||Hardwire||75 x 14.8 x 24.2 in||12||110||16.98 lbs.|
|Festool 575389||Corded-electric||11.6 x 15.6 x 16.7 in||13||120||13.6 lbs.|
|DEWALT DWS520K||Corded-electric||12.4 x 18.1 x 12.1 in||12||120||18.25 lbs.|
|Festool 575388||Corded-electric||12.25 x 11.5 x 15.5 in||10||120||9.92 lbs.|
|DEWALT DWS520CK||Corded-electric||17.8 x 12.1 x 12 in||12||120||18.13 lbs.|
|SHOP FOX W1835||Corded-electric||10.6 x 13.4 x 9.5 in||9||120||12.79 lbs.|
|Triton TTS1400||Corded-electric||13.2 x 9.2 x 9.8 in||12||110||6.5 lbs.|
The 7 Best Track saws in 2020
1. Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 In. Plunge Track Saw – Best Overall
Its 12-ampere motor enables it to cut through hardwoods and other tough materials. It also helps the device deliver precise cuts with a smooth finish, so it is safe to say that you can use Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 In. Plunge Track Saw to get a splinter-free mirror finish.
You will also really enjoy the variable speed trigger that this device comes with, as you will be able to select speeds between 2000 and 5200 RPMs depending on the application. That way, you can rest assured that you will give each job the individualistic approach it deserves.
Moreover, you will be able to monitor and control consistent speeds thanks to its electronic control board. Regarding its cutting capacity, it has a wide one where it can cut 2 3/16 inches at 90 and 1 9/16 inches at 45.
The package includes a guide rail, a carrying case, a hex wrench, and a saw blade. The cord length is 7.9 feet. However, all this comes at a high price.
- Variable speed trigger
- Electric control board
Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 In. Plunge Track Saw is a robust track saw that will deliver precise cuts. It is also very convenient to use with various projects because it has a variable speed trigger.
2. Festool 575389 – Runner Up
If you are looking for a device that would provide you with super clean and precise cuts, the 13-ampere Festool 575389 is the one! Its guide rail system is laser straight, and the rubber lip on the unit is made to prevent any splintering that destroys the final result. I must also tell you that Festool is best known for implementing a design that lessens the risk of splinting and tearing.
Its 120-volt motor can cut materials that are 2-3/4″ thick, and its durable blade makes from 1,350 to 3,550 revolutions per minute, which is quite excellent. Moreover, the blade-changing process is a piece of cake thanks to the fast-fix system that simultaneously locks the switch and arbor. This also eases the arbor bolt removal.
Besides, to reduce the risk of kickback, it has a Spring-loaded riving knife that keeps the cut kerf open to prevent the material from pinching the blade. Also, the slip clutch minimizes the risk of a kickback as well as reduces wear on the blade, motor, and gear case.
It is also a very safe device given that it has blade guards, a riving knife, and a dust port that will help you work in a clean area as well as prevent your lungs from getting filled with dust.
However, all of this comes at a high price. Also, the cord is a bit short, so your work will be limited, yet you can remedy this with an extension cord, so it is no biggie.
- Powerful motor
- Clean and accurate cuts
- Short power cord
If you are ready to invest in a track saw that is powerful and delivers super clean and precise cuts, I bet you won’t regret buying Festool 575389.
3. DEWALT DWS520K – Delivers Straight Cuts in Both Directions
DEWALT DWS520K comes with a no-nonsense motor of 12 amperes. It makes from 1,750 to 4,000 RPM. It can cut thick materials of up to 2 1/8″ thick at 90 degrees and 1 5/8″ at 45 degrees.
It is also equipped with some safety features, which is especially great given how powerful the 1300-watt motor is. Moreover, the continuous anti-kickback mechanism and the riving knife prevent kickback when engaged.
Besides, its 120-volt motor delivers crisp and precise straight cuts and can be used with dual-edged tracks for straight cuts in both directions. What improves its precision is the depth scale that indicates the exact depth of your cut.
DEWALT DWS520K can also be used in tight places thanks to its low-profile blade guard; however, it is corded so you will still be limited by its cord’s length and the locations of power outlets.
Also, this device is equipped with a dust port that allows you to hook your dust collection system so that you can work in a healthy environment. It can also be used instead of a table, panel, or circular saw.
What is most frustrating about DEWALT DWS520K is how horrible the blade-changing process is. It is a hectic process to the extent that you have to do 8 steps to change the blade. It is true that you will get used to it by practice, but it is time-consuming still.
- Strong motor
- Good safety features
- Delivers accurate cuts
- Horrible blade-changing process
At an affordable price, DEWALT DWS520K is the best track saw for professionals and hobbyists alike. Its durable body, impressive motor, and safety features are hard to say no to.
4. Festool 575388 – Best For Its Safety
Festool 575388 gives you accurate and splinter-free cuts with its 10-ampere motor that can deliver from 2000 to 5200 RPM. It is extra safe to use not only because it has an exceptional blade setup that reduces the risk of kickback, but also because its blades are spring-loaded
and have a special design that prevents them from pinching the material, so that you can avoid dangerous misfires.
In addition to the mentioned benefits of using Festool 575388, it has a 55-inch guide rail that accommodates cuts up to 49 inches long. This guide rail is compatible with other Festool products like its circular saw and router.
Sadly, it is pretty expensive, and it does not include clamps, that are the main reason for using a track saw!
- Compatible with other Festool products
- Has a long guide rail
- Safe to use
- Does not include clamps
If you are ready to invest in a track saw that has an extended guide rail and is quite safe to use, what are you waiting for?
5. DEWALT DWS520CK – Versatile
This is another powerful 12-ampere power tool that can cut through hardwoods of 2 1/8″ thick at 90 degrees and 1 5/8″ at 45 degrees. Moreover, it can produce from 1,750 to 4,000 RPM.
Since precision and cleanliness are two fundamental aspects to consider before buying a track saw, I am glad to tell you that the zero-clearance DEWALT DWS520CK delivers crisp cuts. It can even make accurate straight cuts in both directions thanks to its dual-edged tracks. Moreover, its depth scale that indicates the exact depth that you will cut at improves the accuracy of this beast.
One of its many great factors also is that it has a low-profile so you can use it in tight spaces that other track saws won’t fit in.
Usually, the best track saw has a lot of safety features. This one comes with an impressive anti-kickback system with a guard as well as a special blade setup that increases the tool’s safety.
Moreover, thanks to its four low-friction glide strips, the tool glides very smoothly when you use it with the anti-slip aluminum track of Dewalt. It can make straight cuts, quick cuts, and plunge cuts, so it is highly versatile.
However, it is a bit expensive and has some plastic elements that break easily.
- Dual-sided cuts
- Anti-kickback features
- Four low-friction glide strips
- May break easy
if you are okay with spending a lot of money on a track saw, this versatile and powerful tool won’t disappoint you. However, it must be handled with care, given that it has some breakable plastic parts.
6. SHOP FOX W1835 – Best For Money
With a 9-ampere motor and 120 volts, this power tool delivers up to 5,500 RPM, which is impressive. Also, like the Dewalt models above, it can cut in tight places as close to 5/8″ from a wall.
You can use this at home or on a job site, thanks to its ability to cut at both 90 and 45 degrees. Unlike some other products not mentioned on our list, SHOP FOX W1835 can actually cut with smoothness and ease with track clamps because it has a maximum cut depth positive stops of 2 5/32″ at 90 degrees and 1 5/8″ at 45 degrees.
Moreover, it comes with a comfortable handle that allows the user to use it for hours straight without getting tired. Also, to give you the ability to work in a clean environment, this babe has a 1 ½” dust port so that you can hook it up to a shop vacuum or dust collection system.
However, it is not a very reliable tool because its motor cannot really take tough jobs. It works great for easy tasks like ripping plywood, but it will result in a lot of splintering once used with heavy-duty tasks.
Even though it is affordable, you will still need to buy many accessories, including a guide rail, because it comes with minimal ones. You may also want to buy a blade other than the one it comes with because it is not of the best quality.
- Has a dust port
- Can’t take tough tasks
- Comes with minimal accessories
- No guide rails
- Its blade is not very durable
If you need an affordable track saw to use with easy and light jobs, get this one. If you need a durable one to be used on a website, consider another model.
7. Triton TTS1400 – Great For Tackling Tough Applications
This is the best plunge-cut saw if you need one for small jobs only. Although it comes with a 12-ampere motor, you can’t use it with tough jobs or else you will get unclean cuts.
Its 1400-watt motor offers a variable speed range of 2000 to 5.300 RPMs, which is pretty strong. You can also use it to make bevel cuts as it has a bevel tilt range of 0 to 48 degrees. This bevel range allows you to tackle limitless applications.
Also, it is an excellent track saw to use in tight areas as it can cut as close to 5/8″ away from a wall. Moreover, it features a barrel knob that allows you to choose from plunge-action cutting, scoring, and blade changing modes.
For your safety, the track saw has a slow start, comes with an anti-kickback mechanism and a dust port that can rotate 360 degrees. The dust port helps you work in a relatively clean area and prevents your lungs from inhaling dust. Moreover, Triton TTS1400 is highly stable thanks to its dual front and rear bevel quadrants.
In addition, it has an ergonomic handle that helps you use it with comfort even if you use it for extended hours.
However, it is not very durable, and it vibrates a little bit, so the cuts may not always be accurate. Also, the TTSTP track and the TTST1500 track that it requires for saw operation are sold separately.
- Slow start
- Lots of safety features
- Variable speed range
- Rotatable dust port
- Does not handle tough jobs
- Vibrates a little
It is the best track saw to get if you are looking for a model that is great with handling small tasks. It is also attractive for its various safety features.
How to Pick a Track Saw
1. Bevel Capacity
If your saw has a bevel capacity, this means that it can make angle cuts. Some models only cut at 90 degrees or straight down; however, saws with bevel capacities are more versatile. They will allow you to tackle a variety of projects. Usually, the models that have bevel capacities have wide ranges that vary between -1 to 48 degrees.
2. Maximum Speed (RPM)
The speed of a track saw is measured depending on how many revolutions it makes per second. The more the RPM is, the better the track saw will be able to cut through thick materials.
It is definitely better to aim for a track saw with high RPM because it will be more versatile than the other models. Standard models have 2000 RPM, yet some models have 5000 RPM.
3. Variable Speed Trigger
What is even better is to get a model that allows you to control the speed. This feature allows you to manage the cut, move the saw whenever necessary, and cut through thicker material.
In general, high speeds are better for making a flush cut on hardwoods, while slower speeds are better for handling soft and delicate woods.
Normally, this is one of the crucial aspects of any device. You definitely want to buy a powerful track saw that can handle all your projects with ease. A 9-ampere motor is suitable for most woodworkers.
However, if you’re going to use it with tough projects frequently, you will want to go for a 12-ampere motor, at least. If the saw is not powerful enough, it will result in splintering and frayed ugly edges.
You must get a saw that has a durable blade. You should also make sure that the blade can be easily replaced because no matter how strong it is, you will need to replace it at some point.
6. Corded or Cordless
One thing that people usually overlook when buying a track saw is the length of its cord. Imagine running out of cord while working on a project, terrible, isn’t it? You would need to get extension cords, and that will only cause a mess.
However, if you do not want to bother yourself with this point, it is better to get cordless models. That way, you will rest assured that you can use the track saw anywhere without any limitations of any kind. Yet, you must make sure that it is always charged before working on any project.
7. Track Length
The track length of the saw determines how long your cut will be. You can always buy extensions, but you must make sure that it also works with your guard rail that keeps your cut straight and on track.
Having a track saw that has a dust system is excellent because it saves you the time you would otherwise spend cleaning after you are finished.
There are even some modes that allow you to attach the hose from a vacuum.
What are the Benefits of Using a Track Saw?
1. Precise Alignment
As its name implies, a track saw has a track that helps you make precise alignment, so you won’t have to make any guesses. All of this can be simply done if you align the track with the mark before you cut.
A track saw helps you make very accurate straight cuts, as well as reduces the frequency of taking measurements.
2. Sharp Cuts
If you need to make sharp straight cuts, a track saw is the best tool for this. Moreover, if you use it with materials such as solid wood, MDF, and plywood, you won’t have a problem with chip bits.
3. Long Cuts
A track saw is also very suitable for making long cuts because the longest model in the market is 144 cm. Also, if you want to connect multiple tracks, you can do so with a track saw because it usually ends in squares.
4. Clean Finish
If you are keen on getting a smooth and clean finish, a track saw will definitely provide you with this. For example, if you use a table saw, you will have to cut a lot, which keeps you away from having a smooth finish.
Safety should be your top priority when you are using any power tool. So, having a safe device is such a blessing. Luckily track saws have a non-slip rubber strip on the base. Those strips make you unworried about clamping your equipment. They will fix your tracks and make cutting more natural.
Unlike the other cutting power tools, a track saw can be used and stored in small areas. In other words, get a track saw if you cannot afford to cut in large spaces.
Thanks to its compact size, a track saw is easy to carry around. You can even use it with one hand and hold the tracks under your arm.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Is It Better To Have a Track Saw or a Circular Saw?
This mainly depends on your needs and budget. If you need a saw that would give you an accurate, smooth and professional finish, get a track saw. However, you must know that it takes some time to get set up and that it is more expensive than circular saws.
On the other hand, circular saws are more affordable, so that is the better option if you’re an amateur or if you just need a saw for DIY tasks at home. However, it results in rougher cuts. Yet, it is fast, so it may be a better option if you need to finish a whole lot of tasks in a short time.
How To Change a Blade on a Track Saw?
Changing blades on track saw is usually a piece of cake. With most models, you must expose the blade by engaging the plunge mechanism to remove the arbor bolt. Then, get the old blade out and replace it with a new one. Now, you will just have to tighten the arbor bolt, and you are good to go.
What Materials Can You Cut With a Track Saw?
A track saw is only designed to cut through wood-based materials, like plywood, lumber, trim, and melamine. Under no circumstances should you dare use a track saw with non-wood materials like ceramics or steel, for example. If you do so, you will be exposing yourself to danger and damaging your track saw all at once.
Can You Make Plunge Cuts with a Track Saw?
Yes, by placing the blade over any area. You just must know that unlike straight cuts, you won’t see the cut path. So it is crucial to make sure that the cutting path is free of any obstacles before plunging the saw into the material.
- Wear gloves and goggles
- Wear tight clothes that would not get in your way
- Tie up your hair
- Do not point the saw at yourself or anyone else even when it is off
- Unplug the saw once you are finished with it
Congratulations, you have made it to the last section. By now, I suppose you have a clear vision of what the products offer and what you must consider. Yet, if you are still a bit confused, I can further help you by recommending some models, hoping you can find the best track saw among them.
If you are ready to invest in a track saw, you can either buy Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 In. Plunge Track Saw, DEWALT DWS520CK, or any of the Festools mentioned above. You just need to reread their specs, see what offers most of what you are looking for, and confidently go for it.
In case you need to tackle small tasks, Triton TTS1400 is your best for the job.