DEWALT Festool and Makita Track Saw Head to Head
This article was written by Phil Benevides and Ethan Bickford
Track Saw Comparison Results
Here at A Concord Carpenter we took a hard look at the major Track Saw models on the market to 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. These tools allow you to make long, clean, straight, cuts in sheet goods, trim, and framing stock without lugging around a table saw. These are incredibly useful and versatile tools that more and more carpenters (and not just cabinet makers) are using on the job site.
This article encompasses the results of a DEWALT Festool and Makita Track Saw Head to Head, which includes our choices for best saw in a variety of categories from saw performance to model features. Think you’ve found the right saw for you? Then follow the links to a detailed review of your preferred model!
DEWALT: DWS520 Track Saw
Festool: TS 55 REQ Track Saw
Makita: SP6000J Track Saw
Adjustments & Overall Ease of Use
Winner: Festool TS 55 REQ
The Festool TS 55 REQ, with competitive bevel range (-1 to 47 degrees), positive stops, micro-adjustable depth, clear front-of-cut viewing, a unique waste-side splinter guard, and the easiest blade changes of all the saws, the Festool wins for all-around ease of use and advanced features. Like most Festool products there is a lot going on with dials, adjustments, etc. The company makes precision woodworking tools, so although the saw is much more complicated than the competitors, it’s ease of use and intuitive controls and adjustments makes it shine in this category.
Makita has a straightforward approach to its adjustments that is simple and very easy to use. The blade change only requires one more step than that of a traditional circular saw. The only criticism from us is that the back bevel locks, generally a rare cut anyway, are tucked away, being located between the motor housing and the baseplate. Makita kept the saw simple, but packed it with useful and versatile settings. The SP6000J boasts a -1 to 48 degree bevel range and it’s ease of use makes it a close second in this category.
The DeWalt DWS520 also has a simple to use depth adjustment and bevel, but lacks a positive stop at 45 degrees, meaning you need to break out a square to get an accurate 45 degree bevel. The saw’s position in this category is primarily due to the awkward blade change. The blade change mechanism is far more complicated than that of the other saws and locking the plunge and arbor is finicky making for a slower and frustrating blade change. Putting the DEWALT model in last for adjustments and ease of use.
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