ACC Track Saw Shootout Results – Makita SP600J
Here at A Concord Carpenter we took a hard look at the major Track Saw models on the market and see how they “lined up”. With hours in the shop and critical analysis of each saw’s features and performance we are providing readers with a comprehensive look at each saw’s bright-spots and areas for improvement.
After reading this series of articles you’ll know which model is best for you and your needs. Enjoy this Makita SP600J Track Saw Review, the related reviews, and shootout article!
This article will focus on the Makita SP6000J Track Saw Review and give you a summary and review of this tool without considering the competition, just an objective view of the tool from our expert writers and editors.
Out of the Box
The SP6000J Makita Track saw comes in a spacious case, that is actually stack-able, and the plastic form at the bottom of the case is designed to accept extra blades and track clamps, that slide into the bottom of the track and securely clamp the track to the work piece. These accessories can be purchased separately.
The blade that comes standard with the saw is of exceptional quality, when purchasing most saws, whether it be a miter saw, table saw, or circular saw you often get a middle of the road blade. Most of us pros will either use the stock blade for a bit and quickly change out to a higher quality blade OR when we purchase a new saw, also purchase a new blade, knowing we’ll switch the blade out before we even turn the power button on.
In this case, Makita’s stock blade is definitely top quality, the blade is extremely well balanced to ensure precision cuts when the blade is running at high speeds. In our Track Saw shootout we tested each model with a 165mm Freud blade and the Makita blade showcase the same low vibrations as the Freud.
- Blade Diameter: 6-1/2″
- Arbor: 20mm (13/16″)
- Max Cutting Capacity 90°: 2-3/16″
- Max Cutting Capacity 45°: 1-9/16″
- No Load Speed: 2,000 – 5,200 RPM
- Watts Out: 1,800
- AMPS (120V): 12.0
- Overall Length: 13-3/8″
- Weight: 9.7 lbs
- Electronic speed control
- Variable speed control dial (2,000-5,200 RPM)
- Built-in current limiter
- Soft start feature
- Large cutting capacity (2-3/16″ at 90° and 1-9/16″ at 45°)
- Easy-to-set depth adjustment with large scale
- Smooth and convenient plunge release lever
- Bevel capability (-1 to 48°) with positive stops at 22.5° and 45°
- Magnesium components – weighs 9.7 lbs
- Dual front and rear bevel cutting supports
- Position of the blade enters the material on the same cutting line whether cutting straight or bevel
- Close to the wall cutting (11/16″)
- Arbor Lock
- On board storage for blade wrench
- Electric brake
- Built-in depth stop allows a preliminary cut of 1/16″ to be performed before the entire material is cut through
- Rubberized handles
- Large 1-7/16″ rear dust port
Premium 48 tooth carbide tipped blade
- Optional guide rail system interacts with the saw base to provide smooth cut
- Saw base is attachable to other guide rail systems in the market
The saw itself lacks a riving knife, which is a staple with other track saw models. Additionally, without a riving knife we’d expect some sort of kick back feature integrated into the track of the saw, but the Makita appears to offer no real kick back mitigation, besides the track guidance.
The power cord on the tool is also particularly short, under 8 feet, considering you can run the saw on a 118-inch track, which can even be linked with a 55-inch track you’d expect a longer cord. Regardless, even on the 55-inch track this saw is going to need an extension cord to operate effectively.
The saw can bevel from -1 to 48 degrees and the cut line indicator of the saw is not altered despite the bevel setting which makes using this feature simple and allows you to stay accurate without having to over-think anything. Additionally, the base of the saw has a lock system that ensures the saw won’t separate from the track or tip over during operation. The saw has positive stops at 45, 22.5, 0, and -1 degrees. Although to bevel the saw in the negative you have to simultaneously hit 2 buttons at once under the motor of the saw. Not too challenging, and the buttons are labeled quite well, but still awkward.
The Makita track saw requires an Allen wrench for blade change, much like other models the wrench is stored on board in the saw’s perpendicular handle inboard. Therefore you’ll want to remove the Allen wrench before you
start the blade change process and plunge the tool it’s not impossible to remove the wrench, but it’s certainly more awkward.
The good news is, once you remove the Allen wrench and plunge the saw in the locked blade change position, blade change is very intuitive. The arbor lock, although a bit sticky out of the box, is similar to traditional circular saws, putting the user right at home, making for a quick first time blade change.
First, let’s talk about the plunge on this track saw, which is arguably the most important feature of a track saw. Since accessories exist to modify traditional circular saws with a track exist at a much lower price, the accuracy and cleanliness of the cut during the plunge is pivotal to these saw’s worth.
In the case of the Makita Track Saw the plunge is very smooth and supported by a spring in the base, when plunging the saw during operation it feels extremely smooth and easy to plunge to start the cut.
The track of the Makita Saw feels like its greased, since the saw glides effortlessly across the track, making the track feel the best in class we’ve tested. Additionally, the 12-amp motor with electronic speed control made cutting through 3/4-inch plywood a breeze.
Ergonomics and Design
As far as ergonomics and dust collection the saw wasn’t a standout in any of these categories but none the less the feel of the saw was good and the grips comfortable.
The dust collection performed as well as other saws we’ve tested and the dust collection port was also average. Although the design of the dust collection port and cord being offset to opposite sides of the track kept both components from snagging during operation.
This Track Saw is well worth the street price and compares well against higher end/more expensive models. The smooth plunge and powerful motor makes the cut engage as smooth as the saw slides on this track. We were extremely impressed with the ease of use of the classic skil saw features combined with the high quality plunge cut capabilities. This saw is extremely well designed, equally well priced, and we can’t forget to mention that the stock blade you get with the tool is top quality.
The saw feels great and performs exceptionally well, besides a few minor inconveniences and omissions, namely a riving knife and kick back protection, this is purchase you can be sure of, especially if you want a quality track saw but are hesitant to purchase a more expensive specialty saw.
The Makita SP6000J can be complemented by the following accessories:
- Guide Rail 55″ – 194368-5
- Guide Rail 118″ – 194367-7
- 6-1/2″ 48T Carbide Saw Blade – B-07353
- Clamp Set – 194385-5
- Guide Rail Connectors – P-45777
- Miter Guide Set – 194433-0
- Router Guide Rail Adapter Set – 194579-2
- Rip Fence – 165447-6
- 55″ Splinter Guard Replacement Strip – 194418-6
- 118″ Splinter Guard Replacement Strip – 194419-4
- 32.8′ Non-slip Replacement Strip – 194417-8
- Hex blade wrench – 783203-8
How Much and Where to Buy
The Makita SP6000J Track Saw is available online here: Makita-SP6000J-2-Inch-Plunge-Circular for approximately $420. If you are in the market for a track saw, this saw is well worth taking a good hard look at!