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PostPosted: Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:12 pm 
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oz0707 wrote:
Is it right that these also run on a festool rail?

Don't believe anyone who tells you that.....

Attachment:
Makita SP6000 and Festool TS55 on Rails 001_01.JPG
Makita SP6000 and Festool TS55 on Rails 001_01.JPG [ 70.56 KiB | Viewed 311 times ]

Unless they show you the photos. That's the original TS55 on a Makita rail and an SP6000 on a Festool rail. The only difference is that the Makita rail has an additional lip to allow the anti-tip mechanism of the SP6000/DSP600/DSP601 to work with the rail (prevents tipping when doing bevel rip cuts). That does mean that the TS75 probably won't work on the Makita rail - although to date I haven't tried that. Hilt used to make a couple of saws (the WSC255 and WSC265) which were also compatible with the Festool-type rails whilst some current Bosch non-plunge saws (e.g. GKS85CE) and some Metabo non-plunge saws are also compatible. Virutex make what is basically a copy of the Makita SP6000 and their rails are identical to the Festool (at least the one and only one I ever saw used was)

oz0707 wrote:
Shame you can't buy a 1500 rail as discussed.

I currently use my Mak on the Festool rails, but the way I'm going to do it in future is to buy a 3m Makita rail and slice it in two on the mitre saw - 1500+1500 or 1400+1600 should do the trick - then add a 1400 and a pair of Makita joiners (you need two joiners with current generation Makita and Festool type rails). I'm told, but still need to confirm, that the Makitas bag will accommodate 1500mm long rails. Either way the Mak 3m rail is a lot cheaper than the Festool rail, and in addition Mak have just introduced a rather handy 1m rail as well which should be a useful size for smaller crosscuts especially when combined with a cross cut fence attachment:

Attachment:
Palette 370 001_01.JPG
Palette 370 001_01.JPG [ 34.01 KiB | Viewed 311 times ]

oz0707 wrote:
I'll have to have a proper look into the pricing, the Makita seems good value naked be nice if there was a generic rail supplier out there!

There is a guy on eBay Germany who sells a low cost generic rail - in fact it's the original mk.1 (1st generation) Festool profile which only allowed one joiner between rails. TBH he isn't a lot cheaper than just buying the Makita rails in the UK

oz0707 wrote:
Is the Makita the same as festool in that the max cut depth is less the rail thickness?

Yes. Both are marked to 55mm (off-rail) and the rails deduct 5mm from the DoC. The Mafell and Metabo saws also lose 5mm when on there own rails

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 12, 2018 12:32 am 
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I was going to go for the DHS680 last month but unexpected costs for the car meant I planned to delay things till after Christmas. In the meantime I borrowed a cheap £30 circular saw and realised I preferred using a TS55 for cutting wood. Mainly because of the track. It was easier to cut in a straight line, felt safer in use and I felt I could control it more easily. I didn't experience kickback the way I did with a cheap circular saw. The SP6000/1/2 had mixed reviews or I would have bought it instead.

I know it's a bit like apples vs oranges, but how would you rate this against the DHS680? I was going to buy it with the rail adaptor and rails.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:33 pm 
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Stealthwolf wrote:
I know it's a bit like apples vs oranges, but how would you rate this against the DHS680? I was going to buy it with the rail adaptor and rails.

Chalk and cheese? Then some! The DHS680 and DSP600 are utterly and completely different tools.

I had a BSS611 first, then a DSS611 and more recently a DHS680 as my "go to" on-site saw. Yes, they are both circular saws, but there the similarity ends. The DHS680 is primarily a cordless version of general use portable rip saw favoured by site carpenters for more than 50 years (in the UK). As such it is a fairly basic, relatively unsophisticated tool. It has a relatively poor rip fence, basic depth control and basic tilt mechanism. It is actually the sort of tool you tend to use instead of a handsaw and with which you should expect to do some corrective work with hand plane and sander afterwards. It is, however lightweight, relatively powerful and small enough to use one-handed a lot of the time. Its' left handed blade makes it easy to watch the cut line when sawing (essential for long scribes) and is purpose-made for doing framing crosscuts when used in conjunction with a speed square - I've framed out floors and walls that way where it simply wasn't viable to lug a chop saw to the build site.

Personally I wouldn't bother with manufactured rails and the adaptor - you won't get the main advantage of the rails that way (the ability to produce splinter-free cuts by having the saw blade cut against the anti-splinter strip - especially important with laminated materials) because the rail adaptor runs the saw offset from the back of the rail so the anti-splinter strip never comes into play. Far cheaper to make-up a few straight line guides like the ones Somapop made a few years back for his ceilings project

The DSP600 on the other hand (and this is also true of the TS55, SP6000, MT55cc, et al), is predominently designed to use on a rail for the specific purpose of breaking down sheet materials. Without the rails this type of saw is awkward, even clumsy, to use. These plunge saws are best used two-handed and they don't take kindly to being used on narrow materials, rough sawn timbers, etc. That said the one thing they excel at is cutting or breaking down sheet materials. Yes, you can use them on solid wood, but it often a pain to do this - for that sort of work the DHS680 will do better, and for some cuts a table saw will be better yet.

Stealthwolf wrote:
I... ...realised I preferred using a TS55 for cutting wood. Mainly because of the track. It was easier to cut in a straight line, felt safer in use and I felt I could control it more easily.

But, did you try clamping, screwing or pinning a straight edge or straight batten onto sheet material and using that to guide a conventional saw? Did that for years on site- even a 6ft level and a pair of clamps works well. And did your saw have a riving knife? (incidentally almost all the "conventional", as opposed to rail-running, cordless circular saws on the market have no riving knife)

Stealthwolf wrote:
The SP6000/1/2 had mixed reviews or I would have bought it instead.

It's always worth looking at the date of such reviews. As I stated before the early SP6000 (BTW the /1 and /2 only indicate voltage) in the earliest models had some issues which have long been resolved. In reality the differences between an SP6000 and a TS55 are fairly minimal. I'd also be wary of downright snobbery amongst certain members of the journalistic brigade as well as among well-heeled amateur woodworkers along the lines of Makita must be inferior because it is a Japanese tool for tradesmen whereas Festool is superior, is better because it's German and expensive (like a BMW). The scribblings of quite a few of these folk in magazines I've read often show a complete lack of knowledge or understanding about how a tradesman might well use these tools and I do have to wonder whether a lot of these reviews are written by people wjho never use the tools they are using "in anger". The reality is that (in my opinion) the Makita is slightly less polished, slightly less sophisticated than the TS55 but is capable of muchthe same tasks - at a price point quite a bit below the Festool product - and it's from a manufacturer who has been making power tools for tradesmen for quite a long time (available from the early 1960s in the UK). If there is any specific criticism you'd like to discuss, then please post it

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2018 12:10 am 
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as an aside
a circular saw and a track is a less secure choice as the action off use is to push along the track with only the saw weight and gravity holding the track in place so in general clamps needed unless the odd slip wont matter
where as a plunge saw is perhaps 50% more substancial [heavy]with the body sprung loaded for safety to retract quickly
this means you not only have the dead weight off the saw including upper body but perhaps 50% more than body weight to overcome the the spring
this means the actual downward "push" on the track will be about 3 times as much so no clamps needed but may be used if 95-97% chance off no damage is not a risk worth taking :lol:

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2018 1:18 pm 
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Thanks J&K.

I used the borrowed circular saw to chop up a wooden gate into smaller bits so I could stick in my car and take it to the recycling centre: http://www.argos.co.uk/product/4576925 - this is the one I borrowed. No riving knife.

Things I have needed to do or where a circular or track saw would have been useful:

- trim down fence panels so they fit into posts (I used a jigsaw and went through 3-4 blades)
- cut some 18mm chipboard (cross cuts and rip cuts) for the loft (used a handsaw and then got fed up after a while)
- rip down some floorboards to replace the old ones

A table saw would have been good for some of the above but space is limited and I figure a circular or track saw would have made things easier.


The SP6001/2 reviews were the earlier ones so maybe that's why some of the reviews weren't positive. I'm aware that some people see Festool as a superior brand (with a price to match). I'm just after some reasonably decent tools for DIY use. I've already bought into the Makita system so for me it makes sense to remain with them.

Big-all - whatever I'd use as a track or guide would always be clamped down. I've seen a few injuries from circular saws which is what poo me up about using them.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2018 2:59 pm 
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thats the point off plunge saw you dont need to clamp and is safe as the blade retract virtually instantly :lol:
for vertical cuts a lighter circular saw
for flat horizontal cuts a track saw all the way

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 14, 2018 7:43 pm 
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Stealthwolf wrote:
Things I have needed to do or where a circular or track saw would have been useful:

- trim down fence panels so they fit into posts (I used a jigsaw and went through 3-4 blades)
- cut some 18mm chipboard (cross cuts and rip cuts) for the loft (used a handsaw and then got fed up after a while)
- rip down some floorboards to replace the old ones

Well, none of the tasks you mention really warrant a plunging rail saw and rail TBH.

Trimming fence panels - probably best done with a basic circular saw (corded or cordless) because you'll probably be working on a narrow surface and in any case the timbers are likely to be wet. The most important thing to have, though, would be a couple of home-made trestles so that you are working standing-up. I often make my own which look like these:

Attachment:
Quick and Dirty Trestle 001_01.JPG
Quick and Dirty Trestle 001_01.JPG [ 34.39 KiB | Viewed 251 times ]


This is a style of trestle which most modern site carpenters should be familiar wioth. Basically four pieces of 3x 2 or 4 x 2 softwood screwed together, cross braced with some 2 x 1 slate lath or using 2 to 4 triangular plywood corner fillets cut from scrap and with a pair of feet which can be anything from chipboard to joisting. Takes me 30 or so minutes to make-up a pair

Cutting and trimming chipboard flooring - a job which can be best done using a circular saw, ideally with some form of guide. That guide can be as simple as a piece of skirting or a 2 x 1in softwood batten screwed or pinned or clamped to the surface of the work and then a saw run along it. Just make sure that your batten is perfectly straight and fixed at enough points to prevent bending as a saw is pushed down it, You could build your own ;long saw guides using a piece of 6mm thicjk MDF or plywood and a 2 x 1 PSE softwood batten:

Attachment:
Straight Line Sawing Guide 5ft 001_01.JPG
Straight Line Sawing Guide 5ft 001_01.JPG [ 33.39 KiB | Viewed 251 times ]

Attachment:
Straight Line Sawing Guide 8ft 001_01.JPG
Straight Line Sawing Guide 8ft 001_01.JPG [ 35.5 KiB | Viewed 251 times ]


These take 30 or so minutes to make. For crosscuts a simple guide could be made-up using 2 x 1 PSE softwood as a fence and a piece of straight 12mm plywood for the saw guide:

Attachment:
Cross Cutting Guide 001_01.JPG
Cross Cutting Guide 001_01.JPG [ 40.31 KiB | Viewed 251 times ]


Ripping down floorboards - OK, better done on a table saw, but still doable with a sawing guide (as above) providing you have a work surface (a pair of trestles with a couple of 3 x 2in CLS timbers screwed to the top between them at, say 400mm centres and a rip of sacrificial 300mm wide 12 or 18mm chipboard/plywood/MDF fixed to the top) so that you are working safely and comfortably. If you then place two floorboards side by side and pin them to the sacrificial board using, say, panel pins it is possible to trim in a straight line using a guide as detailed above. The key is to support the saw guide adequately and for lower grade/unseen work to accept a few pin/nail/screw holes where you have fixed your guides to the workpiece. Site carpenters have dealt with sheet materials using these sorts of techniques for years and a saw and rail are just a easier (if much more expensive) way to do the same

I'm not saying use these. I'm just pointing out that even with more basic tools and a few home-made accessories you can leverage your woodworking. I've read queries like yours so many times over the years, as well as been at the receiving of disparaging remarks because I have "all the tools" that I have a good mind when I retire to write a series of articles where I build things using basic DIY tools from the 1960s or 1970s, i.e. pre-cordless tools, pre-power screwdrivers, pre-most power tools for DIYers, just to prove that it can be done with the sort of kit most people would scoff at these days (and it woud give me the opportunity to show off some of my vintage power tools as well)

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2018 10:27 am 
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Thanks J&K. Your advice is much appreciated. I'll ask Santa for the DHS680 bare bones unit, and buy a makpac and insert elsewhere.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 15, 2018 3:54 pm 
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Stealthwolf wrote:
Thanks J&K. Your advice is much appreciated. I'll ask Santa for the DHS680 bare bones unit, and buy a makpac and insert elsewhere.


Great decision. I have both the corded and cordless models and both are great - I have also used a mates Festool numerous times and wouldn't swap. The kerf size is different so I have tracks dedicated to each saw.

The main desirable qualities in power tools is (in my opinion) accuracy, repeatability and the ability to last a good while with frequent use. Talking of a track saw specifically they need the above plus the ability to make smooth clean cuts, both the Festool and the Makita easily achieve this last point but one tends to cost a lot less than the other. That was the one I bought initially and added the cordless version recently. :wink: :wink: Bought mine from powertool world.

https://www.powertoolworld.co.uk/makita ... akpac-case


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