Why do you need a Track Saw Square? A table saw may be the most versatile tool in any wood shop, and an adjustable power miter saw runs a close second. But what options do you have if these two shop workhorses aren’t available and you require precision cuts?
For linear cuts, the answer is the track saw. Set the track, clamp it in place and follow the track saw guide rails with your plunge saw. With the correct blade, the cuts are indistinguishable from those made by a precision table saw. Add a track saw square to your track saw guide rails and you have the ability to cut angles as accurately as you do with a mounted miter saw.
What is a Track Saw Square?
As foremen have said for generations, those boards aren’t going to cut themselves. The same is true for precision right angle, 45° angle or any other measurement between 0 and 90 degrees that are required on a remote job site.
In the modern era of limited storage, a track saw and track saw square, capable of making accurate plunge cuts in dimensional lumber and plywood, are great things to have for the serious woodworker who is long on skill, but short on storage.
A track saw square is a device that you can attach to track saw rails, allowing you to cut angles in relation to the rails. A rail guard square used properly can create 90° degree and 45° angles with a fine toothed saw blade that can be used in cabinet making and picture framing.
What Different Models are Available?
Makita is a leader in portable power tools. Their miter guide works with Makita’s plunge cut saw, and with Makita guide rails. It offers a wide range of angles from +75° to -75° along a central pivot point and is an ideal tool for cutting panels, cabinets and angles for bookcases. The track saw clamp locks the guide firmly in place on the track saw rail guides for precision work.
The guide works with track saw guide rails for perpendicular cutting, and milling. The easy to clamp guide has fixed 45° and 90° angles with an internal guide for plunge cutting.
This product from the United Kingdom is fitted to specific portable tools for precision work. The square is specifically designed to work with Dewalt, Makita, and Bosch guide rails and power tools and has a right angle only version for Kreg. Benchdogs also “offer an extensive range of high quality, precise, MFT accessories that helps our customers work with ease, speed and precision.” Worth checking out on their website.
Bora offers an inexpensive solution to cut fixed angles of 22.5°, 30°, 45° and 90° with a rail saw system, or with just a piece of dimensional lumber as a guide. This device is held with the left hand firmly on the rail or board to cut clean, precision fixed angles in dimensional lumber or plywood with widths up to 14 inches.
This is one of the most sophisticated solutions to cutting accurate angles with a track saw system. The guide attaches firmly to the rail and slides smoothly into place, allowing straight cuts with industrial saw level accuracy from 0 to 60° angles. The Woodpeckers Adjustable Track Square is compatible with systems made by Festool, Makita and Triton guide rails. Mount the square, and start cutting, it is that easy.
A quick-lock mounting system makes the Insta-RailSquare one of the easiest track saw squares to use. The guide is fixed for 45° and 90° degree angle cuts, the two most common angles on the jobsite. Made of precision aluminum, it mounts easily and firmly to Festool, Makita and Triton guard rail guides and tracks.
One of the first rail guide squares on the market, and still one of the best. The GRS-16 PE has a sure grip coating that is easy to hold and stays in place for precision cuts. The T-shaped lead-in makes it easier to attach to a guide rail and offers quality cuts every time once it is locked in place.
The FC Tools Rail Square is a flat, easy to attach square that is popular on the job site. It’s portability, near universal attachment option and easy to lock in place set screws make it a favorite among professional carpenters. As an added benefit, order one directly from FC Tools and they’ll engrave your name on it so it doesn’t “grow legs” and wander out of your work area.
What Track Saw Square Model is the Most Popular?
The Makita 196664-7 Miter Guide Set is the top ranked guide rail square among consumer reviews, and in comments from professional contractors.
Makita is one of the top manufacturers in professional portable tools. The Miter guide has a wide range of angles from -75° to +75° It works with Makita’s plunge cut saw and traditional saws made by every other manufacturer. It locks securely in Makita rail saw guides and works with all major brands of track saw rails as well.
So there are quite a few options available here and they are all reasonably well made tools with similar, but some unique, features. It’s worth finding the one that works for you, and that might mean trying one or more out, as this is one of those tools that needs to suite you personal ergonomic preference. Hope this sets you off in the right direction. Happy (and square) Cutting!
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