Results 1 to 18 of 18

Thread: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    73,787

    Default Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    A clamp & adaptor system to turn your existing Skilsaw into a good-performing TrackSaw system. A couple of minor compromises... but FAR less expensive --

    https://www.finewoodworking.com/2019...ht-edge-system

    https://boratool.com/bora-5pc-ngx-deluxe-set

    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    7,073

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Nice find. Thanks

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Viroqua, Wisconsin
    Posts
    477

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    And ‘out of stock’ at that link. Your post musta caused a run on ‘em!

    Quick Googling turns up lots of retail outlets that carry ‘em though. Some ~ $20 less than SRP.

    Some interesting products in their line up too:

    https://boratool.com/
    Last edited by sp_clark; 04-16-2021 at 07:27 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Indian Land, SC, USA
    Posts
    3,404

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Try your local 'big-box' store for some, or all, bits of this system (as always, no affiliation )




    Rick

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Viroqua, Wisconsin
    Posts
    477

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by hawkeye54 View Post
    Try your local 'big-box' store for some, or all, bits of this system (as always, no affiliation.
    Yeah, quick searching [BORA] on HomeDepot website turns up lots of their line.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Almost in BC, CA
    Posts
    6,707

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    I've always appreciated the simplicity of a nice straight piece of 3/4 ply and two c-clamps to guide the saw. But without the colorful plastic, the vibrant aluminum, and the peel-and-stick tapes, it certainly lacks that glitzy must-have cool factor.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    7,073

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    I got really good with my tape and sheetrock square. Got to the end of the project and was finding the sheet metal out by 1/8”. Son of a....gun.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    seattle
    Posts
    19,921

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    A couple of things I would miss on these systems; plunge and dust collection, otherwise a pretty handy lashup.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Viroqua, Wisconsin
    Posts
    477

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by TerryLL View Post
    I've always appreciated the simplicity of a nice straight piece of 3/4 ply and two c-clamps to guide the saw.
    I’m with you bub.

    Bought a 14’ length of 6061 1/4” x 4” plate about 1981, paid maybe $45?

    Cut one 5’ piece, left the 9’ as-is. With a pair of c-clamps or Jorgensens, the 9’s served me well. (The 5’ ‘walked’ once when I took it to work with me....)

    C-saw, router, trimmer, whathaveyou, if it wears a baseplate & rotating tool to remove material the cuts have been straight 100% of the time.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    Viroqua, Wisconsin
    Posts
    477

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by bluedog225 View Post
    I got really good with my tape and sheetrock square. Got to the end of the project and was finding the sheet metal out by 1/8”. Son of a....gun.
    They leave the store better than they hold their square after getting knocked around for awhile, it’s true.

    Hanging drywall’s not what most consider really fussy about being ‘square’ so it all works out well in the end I suppose, unless maybe you’re building cabinetry, or setting up frames on a strongback.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    73,787

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by TerryLL View Post
    I've always appreciated the simplicity of a nice straight piece of 3/4 ply and two c-clamps to guide the saw. But without the colorful plastic, the vibrant aluminum, and the peel-and-stick tapes, it certainly lacks that glitzy must-have cool factor.
    We really shouldn't denigrate the TrackSaw. I don't own one, but if I were trying to do quality work in a small shop I'd seriously consider it.

    The advantages of an engineered system over a clamped shopbuilt straightedge --

    1. And most important in my book is the built-in anti-chip feature. If you're working with panels with brittle faces (melamine, p.lam., some veneers, etc.)... or if you're working with custom ordered veneer-pattern panels where messing one up has the potential to render unusable many thousands of dollars worth of product... that is huge. It is the same reason sliding table saws mostly have a smaller scoring blade running in opposite rotation. Same same with our vertical panel saw. Chipout is the enemy.

    2. Because of the offset required for the shopbuilt system, you can cut smaller panels with a TrackSaw.

    3. That same offset requires one more layout step.

    4. Many of the TrackSaws have a reversible component that allows you to cut accurate bevel cuts.

    5. Because your sawmotor is lock in place, there is no opportunity for the cut to drift away from the guide.

    6. A TrackSaw, with the addition of additional lengths of rail, can easily cut lumber longer than 8'. Your 3/4" plywood straightedge is unlikely to be longer than 8'. You can rig one - but lots more trouble, and harder to get accurate and to store.

    Of course you pay a premium for those advantages. So every woodworker has to decide whether to spend the money. And with this system - which seems to get good reviews - that premium is now reduced.
    Last edited by David G; 04-17-2021 at 03:45 PM.
    David G
    Harbor Woodworks
    https://www.facebook.com/HarborWoodworks/

    "It was a Sunday morning and Goddard gave thanks that there were still places where one could worship in temples not made by human hands." -- L. F. Herreshoff (The Compleat Cruiser)

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Indian Land, SC, USA
    Posts
    3,404

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Many, many years ago (25+) , I bought (probably at 'Menard's or 'Mill's Fleet / Farm ) the predecessor of the tracksaw / Bora system -- it is 2 pieces of aluminum extrusion, with a raised straightedge and a joining clamp to tie the two sections together. In use, it is clamped to the panel to be cut. So far, I have used it in the renovation of 2 commercial buildings to retail space, 4 apartments, and 3 3-bedroom houses. It was also used in construction of store displays and several large crafting tables. I got my money's worth out of it, and still have it handy in my garage.



    Rick

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Dorset, UK
    Posts
    1,439

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Track saw converters weren’t available when I bought my tracksaw. I can vouch that Its been one of my best ever purchases. Weird considering almost everything on a small boat is curved or bevelled but there you are. It cuts down small stock and plywood perfectly. With long and short rail connected and a 4x8 cutting board to cut down onto the world is your oyster. No chip out and your acccuracy is down to what side of the pencil line do you want to cut. Never ever had any kick back or issues. I bought a Festool 55 before others were available which seem just as good. The only limit was depth of cut, same problem with modern site table saws ... you really need a 4 inch depth of cut to cut spars from a baulk of timber. You cAn double plunge cut but its heavy going and not ideal. So yesterday I picked up a cool oldschool heavy 3 phase 3 hp old ‘66 Wadkin AGS 10/12 that will give me that service. Rescued from a local farm I spent yesterday pulling straw out of it! Happy days. But yeah...track saws rule small boat builders tight for space cutting ply and other thinner stock. Worth every penny. I guess new ones must be cordless. Getting rid of trailing cable would be a step forward You have to double check its not going to catch anywhere as you push forward. Still have a trailing vacuum hose though. My one seems to pick up 95% of the sawdust compared to not having a vaccum on. Its clean working. They’re brush motors though close to your ear compared to a quiet induction motor ina bandsaw or cabinet saw. You can take mine from my cold dead hands. No other workshop machine can cut a straight line this side of a large stationary sliding table panel saw. But the panel saw can’t plunge cut pieces out of large stock like a tracksaw.
    Last edited by Edward Pearson; 04-17-2021 at 03:00 AM.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    downward bound
    Posts
    7,893

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by hawkeye54 View Post
    Many, many years ago (25+) , I bought (probably at 'Menard's or 'Mill's Fleet / Farm ) the predecessor of the tracksaw / Bora system -- it is 2 pieces of aluminum extrusion, with a raised straightedge and a joining clamp to tie the two sections together. In use, it is clamped to the panel to be cut. So far, I have used it in the renovation of 2 commercial buildings to retail space, 4 apartments, and 3 3-bedroom houses. It was also used in construction of store displays and several large crafting tables. I got my money's worth out of it, and still have it handy in my garage.



    Rick
    The current Menards track saw kit (plunge saw with dust output, 110” of track, two clamps) lists for $199, which is a way better deal than the converter kit in the op.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Victoria BC, Canada
    Posts
    598

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by hawkeye54 View Post
    Many, many years ago (25+) , I bought (probably at 'Menard's or 'Mill's Fleet / Farm ) the predecessor of the tracksaw / Bora system -- it is 2 pieces of aluminum extrusion, with a raised straightedge and a joining clamp to tie the two sections together. In use, it is clamped to the panel to be cut. So far, I have used it in the renovation of 2 commercial buildings to retail space, 4 apartments, and 3 3-bedroom houses. It was also used in construction of store displays and several large crafting tables. I got my money's worth out of it, and still have it handy in my garage.
    Rick
    I had one of those, good rig. I still use the aluminum extrusions, but the joining clamp seems to have gone walkabout.

    Jamie

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    835

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Many moon ago I bought a clamping/cutting system called a "Tru-Grip Pro FTR." It used HDPE sleds for a circular saw and a router. It was a great design at the time and very precise after setup. After resisting for many years, I found a great deal on a Makita track saw/guide combo. There is no comparison in performance, the track saw is superior in every way. My efficiency and accuracy when breaking down sheet goods have markedly increased. I'm so glad I took the "plunge" and having a dedicated track saw for woodworking is now a necessity.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Haverhill, MA
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    I've become pretty fond of some of Bora Tool's products; I have a variety of their clamps, a set of folding sawhorses, and a few of their mobile tool bases. Once a year they have a "Spring Clamp Sale" which is a pretty good deal and is going on now. Nothing heirloom quality but I've had good experience with them. www.boratools.com
    Walter G
    Chadwick Pond Boats
    www.chadwickpondboats.com

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Indian Land, SC, USA
    Posts
    3,404

    Default Re: Inexpensive 'Track Saw'

    Quote Originally Posted by Jamie Orr View Post
    I had one of those, good rig. I still use the aluminum extrusions, but the joining clamp seems to have gone walkabout.

    Jamie
    Jamie, I had the same thing happen ('lost' the clamp piece), then some years later I discovered it in the back of the kitchen junk drawer when we moved from Minnesota in 2008 - I never did figure out how it got there. . . .




    Rick

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •