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Do i actually need a table saw?

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GeeBee62

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Hello again,

I am wanting to cut/saw plywood or mdf, i do have a track saw but am finding it time consuming to keep setting up for each individual piece, also i am woking in a small garage so space is quite limiting. Can anyone recommend an easier way of doing this, would a small table saw do or should i just persevere?

Thanks

Mark
I also have a small workshop. I do not have a chop saw or a track saw. I do have a small accurate and fast Sliding european saw which is my ho to tool. It also has a scriving knife, and a dadoo cutter which are perfect for mdf and plywood. I have worked this way fir 14 years and never regretted it. I have a a hammer k3 slider now. Ace. There are ither comoact sliders too with optional outriggers. If you have the space..., I have a small double garage.
 

segovia

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I have a track saw, table saw and band saw. Current usage as below

Bandsaw 90%
Tablesaw 9%
Track saw 1%

The track saw only comes out when I have large sheets to deal with, Table saw is okay for larger sheets if you have the feed and exit extensions and then it becomes an issue as you need plenty of space. I can't imagine being without my bandsaw
 

Rorton

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I have a garage I work out of that is shared with a car - the car comes out when I want to do anything.

I bought a Bosch GTS10J 'jobsite' Table saw 12 months ago, and I use it for everything and love it. If I do need to use sheet goods, I get them cut to rough size before bringing them home - I love the accuracy I seem to be able to get with the sable saw and suits what I like to make - with a crosscut sled I rarely need to get out the mitre saw unless im cutting mitres for pic frames - I have my mitre saw dialled in for these and is accurate - will have a go at a 45 degreee sled for the table saw one day.
 

sirocosm

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Hello again,

I am wanting to cut/saw plywood or mdf, i do have a track saw but am finding it time consuming to keep setting up for each individual piece, also i am woking in a small garage so space is quite limiting. Can anyone recommend an easier way of doing this, would a small table saw do or should i just persevere?

Thanks

Mark
FWIW, I also work in a small garage and have a small Bernardo table saw with a cast iron top and a sliding table, which I use for almost everything. I even use it for crosscutting most of the time because I don't have space to keep my compound mitre saw set up.

I use it all the time for sheet goods. I have home made extension tables that double as my work bench, and I have to open the door to do anything longer than 2 meters or so.

I often thought about getting a track saw. When cutting strips for shelves, I would make the first cut with the track saw and then off to the table saw for the repetitive cuts to final size. As always with woodworking, it is nice to have both.
 

thomashenry

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I cut big sheets with a handsaw , resting them on sawhorses in the garden, then tidy up the edges with a hand plane. I have a table saw but its not seen any action for several years.
 

aebersold

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Hello again,

I am wanting to cut/saw plywood or mdf, i do have a track saw but am finding it time consuming to keep setting up for each individual piece, also i am woking in a small garage so space is quite limiting. Can anyone recommend an easier way of doing this, would a small table saw do or should i just persevere?

Thanks

Mark
Mark, I too have a reasonably small workshop. I use my combination machine to dimension real wood and it’s brilliant. My latest project is inbuilt bedroom furniture so I glued myself to Mr Millards youtube channel, bought a domino and a track saw and felt liberated ! On your point of cutting sheet material, I think the best way if possible is to be organised and have the yard cut sheets down to manageable sizes, but failing that, it’s best imo to take the tool to the panel rather than the panel to the machine. A full sheet of any panel above 12mm weighs a considerable amount and you need loads of space.
Alex
 

artie

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I wouldn't like to be without the table saw, I rip 150 by 38 on it as well ass 50 by 38.
I rip 8 by 4 sheets of plywood and on occasion osb. I use a parkside track saw to crosscut the plywood and osb.
A dewalt mitre saw gets a lot of use with 50 by 38 and 150 by 38.
I have a hand saw which is essential, but used as little as possible.:)
 

Sean33

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Hello again,

I am wanting to cut/saw plywood or mdf, i do have a track saw but am finding it time consuming to keep setting up for each individual piece, also i am woking in a small garage so space is quite limiting. Can anyone recommend an easier way of doing this, would a small table saw do or should i just persevere?

Thanks

Mark
Hi Mark,
Was in a similar situation a few years back. For me i bought a Mafell plunge saw that came with rails etc, brilliant piece of kit, i bought it for a large run of wardrobes i had to do out of sheet material and worked a treat. Anyway thought i would test it out on some 2 inch euro Oak for a desk i was making, again was fantastic, have since added an MFT table for repeatable cuts. For me unless i had the space for a decent panel saw the plunge saw is more than adequate, only downside is the depth of cut, think its 55mm. What i would buy though is a bandsaw, would not be without mine
 

sometimewoodworker

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+ 1 for Peter Millard, thanks. I think i need to find a better way of using my track saw for small and large cuts rather than throw money at new tools. Thanks again for all your comments, they have helped a lot. 👍🏻
For your use case the next purchase I would suggest is the Part guide from Axminster. At £200 it allows you to make surfaces that have the main benefit of an MFT without the cost here are some things I’ve used it for, or could have used it for My stuff an important point is that as long as you complete a 3mm grid of holes you don’t need to complete the 20mm grid, you can come back at any time to drill the holes you need.
 

petermillard

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I am wanting to cut/saw plywood or mdf, i do have a track saw but am finding it time consuming to keep setting up for each individual piece, also i am woking in a small garage so space is quite limiting. Can anyone recommend an easier way of doing this, would a small table saw do or should i just persevere?
Persevere. I ’worked wood’ for a living for 14 years before buying a small table saw; it was handy for very narrow rips and cutting wedges, otherwise it didn’t seen much use. Bought a bigger one a couple of months ago for a specific task - haven’t used it yet 🤷‍♂️

As to working smarter, longer rips are easily done on a tracksaw with parallel guides - DIY ones works fine - or if the rips are narrow enough, a pair of larger combi-squares; set one to the rip width + blade kerf, set the other off the first, and you’re in business.

A rail square is excellent for one-off crosscuts, or a simple crosscut jig is easy to make for repeat cuts. Or go the MFT-style top with Benchdogs and rail dogs, or add a fence etc.. etc.. There are many ways to skin this cat, at many price points.

FWIW all my tracksaw-related videos are in a playlist here - http://bit.ly/TracksawWorkshop

HTH P
 

Togsie

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Mark, before you commit to your final solution you might want to do a quick Youtube search for "DIY Panel Saws". There are some interesting ideas out there.
 

okeydokey

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I know this is a lazy way of doing things but my B+Q have a wall mounted saw and will precision cut sheets (no charge), nice finish as well. Makes boards small enough to fit the car - well just about. Fine for odd one off's not in commercial quantity
 

Droogs

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Only problem there okeyydokey is the boards sold at B&Q are total pap in quality terms. I don't think they will cut a board of medite or kingspan that you walk in with
 

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