If you’re wondering what makes a good track saw and how to buy one, here’s everything you need to know. These tools are amazing additions to any DIYer or even seasoned professionals.
I’ve spent a good amount of time researching the best track saws on the market, and I’ve come up with this list to narrow down the choices for you and help you pick out the best one for yourself.
Our Top Picks:
Maximum Speed: 5,200 RPM
Motor Capacity: 12 amp
Maximum Speed: 4,000 RPM
Motor Capacity: 12 amp
Festool TS 55 REQ
Maximum Speed: 5,200 RPM
Motor Capacity: 11 amp
Shop Fox W1835
Maximum Speed: 5,500 RPM
Motor Capacity: 9 amp
Maximum Speed: 5,300 RP
Motor Capacity: 12 amp
Festool 561438 TS 75 EQ
Maximum Speed: 3,550 RPM
Motor Capacity: 13 amp
Grizzly Industrial T10687
Maximum Speed: 5,500 RPM
Motor Capacity: 9 amp
The 7 Best Track Saws in 2020
1. Makita SP6000J1
The Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 in Plunge Circular Saw Kit is a must-have for tackling all your projects –from putting up a fence, to building the back deck. This saw will cut right through the wood, leaving clean and smooth edges every time.
When talking about power, this tool runs on a 12-Amp motor, while also offering a control dial of various speeds that range between 2,000 to 5,200 RPM.
Some of this saw users even commented on its power, saying it has superpowers when cutting a 6/4” piece of solid timber, or a ¾-inch piece of plywood. However, on hardwood pieces, it may lack the speed.
The finished product, nonetheless, is still the same smooth piece of wood, no matter the thickness or what size has been cut.
The dust collector feature on the saw is a huge plus. It is used when you pair it with a shop vacuum, although the side holes defeat the whole purpose of it.
Also, the guide edge is a great addition as it increases your accuracy when cutting through wood.
- High accuracy
- You don’t need to use clamps
- Runs quiet
- Low dust and a blower that hooks into the vacuum
- Cord is too short
- Soft start feature is slow and delicate
- Depth gauge measures in millimeters
- Rails do not connect smoothly
- Possible breakage of upper plastic parts
As you can see, the Makita saw provides you with everything you need to complete any task, large or small, with a finished product that will definitely outshine them all.
2. DeWalt DWS520K
DeWalt is globally known for its impressive work in manufacturing industrial tools of the highest quality. And the DEWALT SWS520K is no exception. This tool is a track saw kit, which makes it a very versatile choice that could potentially substitute more than one tool for some people.
It runs on a very powerful 12 amp motor that enables it to cut through hardwood with ease. It can cut up to 2- 1/8 in thickness. This is because its 12 amp motor spins the blade at speed up to 4,000 RPM.
On its top side, it features four low friction slide strips, which allows it to work smoothly along the track to give you a perfect cut.
To enhance the control mechanism, it also offers a continuous anti-kickback system, which means that the forwarding movement only is allowed. This works on preventing any kickback
Moreover, it features a universal 1- 1/4 inch dust port that accumulates a huge amount of the excess debris and dust. It has an efficient working blade with precision crushed teeth and laser cut plate for perfect cut quality.
- Very precise and accurate clean saw cuts
- Features anti-kickback feature that improves safety for the user
- Dust collection feature
- Highly efficient, very durable and comfortable to use
- Really powerful; cuts effortlessly through hardwood
- Saw itself and its extensions or replacement are somewhat pricy
- Surface area sometime not quite enough
The DEWALT SWS520K is a very good saw, and while you are investing bit extra cash for limited features, the features you are getting are very well implemented, which will make the whole experience much more convenient and smoother for you.
Not to forget that it is highly versatile, as it can be used as a circular, panel, and table saw, so it is a 3-in-1 tool.
3. Festool TS 55 REQ
The Festool track saw TS 55 REQ’s design and compact size makes it highly efficient. This saw is absolutely one of the best performers in the woodwork industry, and it is great for use both at job sites or home use.
It is quite versatile and accurate, working at a cutting speed that ranges between 2,000 and 5,200 RPM, and bevel tilt ranges between -1 to 47 degrees.
Chances of kickback are significantly lowered by the use of a combined spring-loaded riving knife that keeps material away from the rear side of the blade and keeps the cut kerf open.
The TS 55 is also very portable, easy to operate, and use. It’s equipped with micro-adjustable depth control for on or off the guide rail accurate material handling.
And to prevent it from sliding and injuring its user, there’s a grip material at the end.
- The swivel dust port provides increased safety to the user
- Comfortable for prolonged use thanks to its ergonomic design
- Multiple Material Control provides speed adjustment from 2000 to 5000 RPM
- Variable speed control system enables precision cutting
- Binding of workpiece is prevented thanks to the riving knife that keeps cut kerf open
- Quite expensive
- Cut depth could be improved since it does not cut very deep
Whether you are a DIYer or in the woodworking business, the Festool TS 55 REQ is definitely an exceptional investment for you that will prove its value in any cutting task. Although it doesn’t cut very deep, it delivers consistent cuts.
4. Shop Fox W1835
A portable lightweight saw that is pretty affordable and gives you good quality cuts, but also with a sturdy 9 amp motor with 5,500 RPM to give you enough power to cut through hardwood.
The Shop Fox brand may be new in the market, but the product is quite reliable. It delivers reliable performance and is also pretty safe to use. The main reason why a lot of people would want to consider this saw is its budget-friendly price.
After a few tries, you will see how this tool is really useful and will help you do a decent job, no matter if you are a DIY enthusiast or an amateur. The blade’s diameter is 160mm, which is quite good for a portable lightweight saw. It can cut at maximum cut depth positive stops of 2-5/32” at 90 degrees and 1-5/8” at 45 degrees means that you’ll get seamless slicing through most project materials.
Also, one of the main features of the W1835 is the dust port that you can connect to a vacuum to limit the debris and dust from getting everywhere.
The user is protected from kickbacks by the saw and has a blade guard that allows you to work close to the wall.
- Provides anti-kickback system
- Hand and lightweight
- Features a dust port
- Not very powerful
- Comes out of the box with few accessories; you may have to purchase additional accessories
The Shop Fox saw is a perfect portable saw for accurately cutting sheet goods with no panel saw, or table saw. It provides you with control and precision over your cuts, with a motor strong enough to cut through and get the job done.
5. Triton TTS1400
This Plunge cut saw comes with a 48TCG saw blade that is able to cut very efficiently through the material. It offers a pair of carbon brushes as well as a dust outlet adaptor.
Running on a 9 amp motor, it can spin its blade at speeds up to 5,500 RPM.
Moreover, the saw features a mode selector that enables the user to switch between three modes; blade change, scribe, and free plunge modes.
It delivers straight clean cuts with a blade that is flat designed to improve its performance. It’s the perfect choice for trimming doors or cutting any type of hardwood and multiple other jobs.
A guide rail track also provides more stability in addition to its anti-kickback system. Safety is emphasized with the soft start and continuous speed electronics.
It also comes with a universal adaptor for a vacuum system and a 1-1/2” 360-degree outlet that makes sure that all the debris and dust are handled.
- Up to 48 degrees bevel capacity
- Switch between different modes by a mode selector
- Easy blade changing
- Features dust collection system
- Does not stand well to wear and tear
- Is quite fragile
The TTS1400 Plunge Track Saw is a feature-packed, highly versatile tool that offers easy mode selection, advanced safety features, and fast set up. However, if you’re looking for durability, you should pass on this one.
6. Festool 561438 TS 75 EQ
If you are one of those people who value precision over anything else in their saws, then the Festool 561438 is definitely worth a look.
Although some people might hesitate to consider this saw when they see its high price tag, it comes packed with features and motor power that justifies its high price.
The Festool comes with one of the most powerful motors in the market that can easily cut through the hardest kind of wood stock like a knife carving through a cake. It also comes with splinter guards and a slip clutch to reduce the kickback effect and increase safety for the user.
Moreover, there is also a quick-acting braking system to avoid any dangerous accidents. It also comes with CLEANTEC, FastFIX, Anti-Static, and MMC technology, and a spring-loaded riving knife to help avoid the cutting material from pinching the blade when making plunge cuts.
On the downside, the speed of rotation per minute of this saw is low compared to its very powerful motor with a maximum of 3,550.
- Improved speeds by MMC electronics system
- Features a guide rail
- Fast easy and safe blade changes
- Come in a variety of accessories with your purchase
- A very powerful motor
- No extra tooth blade with the purchase
- A professional-grade power tool
- Low RPM
This Festool circular saw is designed for cutting a variety of materials, including rough lumber, solid doors, and stacks of sheet material. The Festool might be expensive, but it is worth every penny you are paying for.
7. Grizzly Industrial T10687
The Grizzly is a budget-friendly track saw that has some features that you can expect from a track saw of higher quality in the market. This saw comes with a 9-amp motor that is able to deliver 5,500 RPM speed.
This tool is fine for working with most types of doors, lumbers, trimming operations, and sheet materials. It is quite versatile as the variable depth cutting feature allows cutting up to 2-5/35in at 90 degrees.
A great thing about this saw is its standard beveling angle between zero degrees to 45 degrees. Also, it features an anti-kickback protection to increase safety for the user and a dust port that enables the user to collect the debris and dust easily.
On the downside, you cannot use a 6 ½ blade because it will hit the riving knife, and some people even complained about the riving knife hitting the workpiece while working.
Another disadvantage is that you will not be able to use spare parts from other brands. And the trail does not come with the package.
- Very affordable
- Anti-kickback system by utilizing the riving knife
- Perfect for simple repair jobs at home
- Does not perform well on hardwoods
- Low-quality plastic
- Cannot use a 6 ½ blade because of the riving knife
This model’s main selling points are its affordability and being the perfect fit for simple repairs at home. If you are trying to save yourself some cash and still get good results on softwood, then this model is definitely one for you to consider. Although, as you might have guessed from the price, it is not designed for heavy-duty tasks or professional use.
How to Buy a Track Saw?
In this part, I’ll tell you the things that you need to consider when you’re shopping for a track saw to help you finalize your decision.
Variable Speed Trigger
Most high-end saws include a component of speed variability to allow you to customize the speed according to the job on hand.
The wider the range of speed variability, the more versatile your saw is going to be. The high speeds for making flush cuts on hardwoods and the slower ones to work with more delicate and softer wood.
The concept of too much power doesn’t exist. A strong motor will invariably help you work with more types of materials. Let alone that a weak one produces splintering and frayed edges if you overwork it.
Generally, the tougher the materials you’re going to be working with, the more powerful your motor should be. So if you’re working with hardwood, go for a 9-amp or 12-amp motor.
Guide Rail Length
How long your guide rail has a huge impact on the type of work you can do. Longer guard rails allow you to make longer cuts.
While you can buy guard rail extensions, it can be a little hard and even more expensive to find compatible products.
That’s why it’s always better to get a model with long guide rails from the get-go.
Kickback is a serious hazard that can lead to a major injury, so you should get a track saw that protects you very well against this.
Whether you choose a model with a special blade guard or blades that reduce the friction that leads to kickback is a matter of preference.
Track saws aren’t that messy because they come with blade guards, but it’s always better to have a completely visible and tidy working space.
Look for a model that enables you to combine it with a vac to make cleaning up easier and make the operation safer.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Does a Track Saw Do?
You can use a track saw for many purposes, namely cutting long and straight miters, cutting plywood on a job site, cutting drywall boards, or cutting studs.
Track Saw vs. Circular Saw
At the core of their difference is the fact that a track saw and a circular one are designed to serve different purposes –and that’s why you shouldn’t use them interchangeably.
Circular saws don’t include many components, only a blade, base, motor, and a blade guard. When you’re cutting materials, the blade comes quite close to the object, and you can adjust the depth of the cut using a knob that controls the base of the saw.
As you do this, the guard will be retracted in order to give the blade space to cut. The process is a little tricky because you have to do the cutting from the end of the piece.
Finally, circular saws result in a lot of debris and dust because their blades are not covered.
A track saw –also known as plunge saw- is quite a versatile tool that comes with a retractable blade guard. This special design enables it to plunge into different types of materials.
It also makes it easy for the user to adjust the cutting depth of the blade.
And since the blade is covered, it’s a lot safer and less messy than circular saws.
It’s a little hard to choose one product as the best track saw from the seven I’ve mentioned, but the Makita SP6000J1 definitely takes the cake in terms of power, accuracy, durability, and user-friendliness.
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option, you can go for the Shop Fox W1835. It gives you precision, smooth cuts, and a clean workplace. However, you shouldn’t expect the same power you get from the Makita.
A great option for the value for your money is the Triton TTS1400. It’s affordable, powerful, and performs well. However, it’s not that durable.