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Recommendations for tracksaw and router upgrades

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KeenDIYer

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Afternoon,

I have bought myself some toys to enable me to complete a project. The router and tracksaw are both second hand but with little usage. I'd like to work on my skills with these tools and make mistakes in the comfort of knowing I haven't spent the earth on them.

After reading a topic on here I 'tracked' down a Titan tracksaw (1200w 165mm) for sale. It came with 2 x 700mm tracks. One upgrade I'd like to make is to change out the blade. I've read that the Trend blades are a good alternative? Also, I'm a little confused as to what tracks this saw is compatible with. I'd like to get a longer single track if possible. Any suggestions here?

The router is a Triton MOF001 and the plan is to table mount this. I've had a little play with the controls and features and it seems to me to be a little sticky when using the manual plunge feature. After doing a little research I found out that this was (and still is) quite a common issue with these routers. It's strange, if I plunge with a single hand on the side with the clutch it plunges fine and is actually quite fluid in its movement. If I press down evenly over the two handles it sticks a little before plunging. If I press on the other handle it doesn't plunge at all. This is something I'll learn to live with but I may try cleaning out the insides and giving it a blowout.

With regards to a good router bit set, is there a good starter set I can get or is it generally better to spend what I can afford on quality bits? I'm not familiar with the actual names of the bits themselves but would like a 1/4" straight cutter and a roundover bit at least. Oh, I also will be getting a 1/2" collet to go with this.

Thank you for any help. Greatly appreciated.

David
 

Nelsun

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Evolution do some cheaper tracks that fit with Festool / Makita compatible saws. I can't vouch for how good they are but there looks to be reviews out there so they may be worth looking at: https://www.google.com/search?q=evoluti ... k+rail+saw

I've been through a few different rail connectors. Festool ones are fidgety, prone to moving unless really tightened up... and denting your rails if you over tighten them so best avoided really.
Makita connectors give a good solid connection and don't dent things but require checking that the two rails are connected straight and true.
I settled on the TSO ones from Axminster. Not the cheapest (£50 IIRC) but they're self aligning (I still mostly check to confirm but I've never had them slip or be anything other than dead straight) and easy to get on and off and, as with the Makita ones, they don't dent your rails either.

As for blades, the thing to watch out for is having different blades (e.g. crosscut and rip) with varying plate and / or kerf thicknesses. When these vary it results in the kerf either moving in or out the way and trimming or missing the splinter strip respectively. Where possible aim for blades with matching measurements. Or you can opt to stick with a single general purpose blade that will rip and crosscut... just not as well as dedicated blades.
 

AES

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I must confess that I don't have a track saw of any type but have seen comments similar to the above on several threads here.

Forgive my ignorance, but I has always assumed that track joiners were no more/no less than simple steel strips with threaded holes at each end. Correct?

If so, then surely it must be a simple matter to make your own? OK, I can see that the thickness of the strip would have to be pretty exact (say +/- a couple/three thou - inches?) and ditto the width of the strip, to similar tolerances - otherwise the joiner will not slide snugly into the extruded "tunnels" in the track. So if you have no filing experience (I assume the width and thickness dimensions are not available as a standard strip off the shelf?), it would need a bit of practice. But with a bit of practice it should be easy to knock out a pair of joiners within, say half an hour.

Apart from the cutting off to length and the filing it's only necessary to drill and tap 4 holes and make/fit the necessary grub screws. "Easy/peasy"!

And if so, with a bit more time and a bit of cunning, it should be easy enough to knock up a couple of track joiners with differing widths and thicknesses at each end so you could join at lease some dissimilar tracks (assuming the "tunnels" were more or less in the same place on each track). No?

Or are all these track joiners a bit more special than that, so that I'm seeing these things much too simply?
 

RichardG

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I have just done this for my parkside tracksaw. Bought some 300mm lengths of 12mm x 6mm bright steel strip. The sizes are nominal so used my belt sander to remove a fraction off and they are now a resistance fit in the tracks. I did tap the strips and put 4 grub screws in but they don’t do much any more. The joined track is significantly more rigid.

Richard
 

MikeK

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I don't know about the MOF001, but when mounting the TRA001 in a router table, I had to remove the plunge return spring. The spring is not required, since gravity will pull the router down during adjustments, but will be a hindrance when raising the inverted router in a table. There are plenty of "how to" videos on YouTube showing how to do this, so please check to see if this has to be done for the MOF001.

With the Bosch and Festool tracks, the sacrificial strip is a wear item and must be replaced when damaged or a blade with a different kerf width is used. Fortunately, the self-adhesive strips come in bulk rolls and are easy to replace. I assume the same is true for the Titan tracks.

The Bosch tracks join with a simple bar, and it appears to keep the two joined tracks aligned. The Festool tracks use two bars and I must use a straight edge to ensure the joined tracks are aligned.
 

powertools

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I don't have a problem with joining shorter tracks together to make a long track.
I purchased 2 extra lengths of 700mm track for my Parkside tracksaw for £20 delivered including a joiner strip.
I have 2 tracks permanently joined together with a strip of hard wood, I can add 1 or 2 extra tracks with the connectors that came with the tracks and that gives me a very versatile system for very little outlay.
 

KeenDIYer

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Thanks for the replies everyone. I'd like a single piece of track to take any misalignment out of the equation but can experiment with joining these two pieces for the time being. I wasnt sure what else was compatible with the Titan. If someone could shed some light on that it would be great.

I'm looking at Trend bits to get me started for the time being with the router. Decent reviews all round. Once I get more experienced i can invest in longer lasting bits.

Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk
 

powertools

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The Trend starter kits are very good value and if you destroy 1 of them with a lot of use you can then replace it with a bit of better quality.
There is no point in having a selection of high quality bits most you will never use.
 

sunnybob

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Yonico router bits are a good compromise between cheap and nasty (silverline) and "top dogs" (infinity, whiteside, wealden, etc).
I also like Blue Tornado, not only work well, but theyre electric blue! =D> =D> 8)

Be wary of kits. I have two kits that came with routers, some of them are now 5 years old and never seen a router.
 

AES

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+1 to the above. I also bought a set of router bits in the 1st flush of enthusiasm (quarter inch shank, Sears USA), so quite good quality and not too expensive, so no big deal at the time (YEARS ago). But fully a quarter of the, I think 12 or 14 bits in the set have never been used. So if buying a "starter set" buy one with just a few bits, say 6, if such a set exists, I don't know.

I'm definitely NOT an expert, but since then I've usually bought Wealden, and only the actual bit/s I need for a specific job. Their prices seem "not to bad for what they are" (quality seems good) and their service and delivery is always excellent - just a few days for me in "overseas"). Usual disclaimers.

HTH
 

KeenDIYer

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Cheers guys. Lots to think about here. Any recommendations on a replacement blade for the Titan?

Pic of toys attached. I know they're not Festool or anything like that but I'm excited to start using them all the same.


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harryc

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I would get a trend craft pro 48 teeth blade about £12.00 on eBay.

PS Nothing wrong with the Triton I have had the same model in my router table for about 10 years.
 

KeenDIYer

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Glad to hear it harryc. Thank you for the blade suggestion. I'll check these out.

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sunnybob

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Considering that the track saw is mostly for ripping sheets of ply or similar, theres no point in buying a top dollar "glue line" ( :roll: ) blade.
 

petermillard

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At the risk of looking like shameless self-promotion - the OP did ask - I’ve done a few videos on tracksaws, particularly the Titan which is my favourite entry-level saw, now discontinued, sadly. I compared it to the Festool in a set of 3 videos starting #071 - Festool cheap tool Tracksaw P1 - https://youtu.be/_8sagpnlF1Q

I did a 7-part ‘beginners guide’ to track saws starting at video # 277 Tracksaw Workshop P1 - https://youtu.be/8JQjGwZT3Ak or all 7 parts are in a playlist here - http://bit.ly/TracksawWorkshop

I tried a variety of blades in video #284 - More about blades https://youtu.be/jR25DirM34E

I compared the Titan to the Aldi Workzone in video #285 - Cheap vs Cheapest https://youtu.be/nZGt_LqR5O8

And in vid #286 - Splinterguard Swap https://youtu.be/h1eo4ZVBTOU - I massively improved the cut from the Aldi saw with a couple of quids worth of rubber strip - always pay attention to the rubber strip!

The stock 24t blade in the Titan is surprisingly good (cut tests in video 071) but the Triton 48t blade - https://amzn.to/2EQgUMJ - is good value and cuts very well, with a decent waste-side edge.

The Titan saw uses the de-facto standard Festool-Pattern rails, so is compatible with Festool and Makita rails, as well as the Evolution guide rails - https://amzn.to/2IhI149 - which are currently the best value pair of 1400 rails you’ll find. I've never had a problem joining rails together using the standard connectors, but if you have space to store it then a long rail is a good investment if you expect to be doing a lot of full-sheet rips.

Hope that helps. Peter
 

KeenDIYer

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Thank you for this Peter. Having watched your tracksaw series (and subscribed to your channel) I completely forgot you covered rails. I'll go back and watch it again.

Cheers

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DBT85

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I have the Titan and the Evolution tracks and am happy with both.

I did have an issue today with the Titan in that one of the grub screws that helps get it square completely rounded out. The process of drilling it out was easy enough as it was soft as anything but naturally I don't have any M6 grubs to hand so mine is out of action for a few days until some arrive.

I was so close to just buying a TS55 but I managed to relent. That money saved is 2 walls worth of timber for my workshop savings pot so its going to a good home!
 

AES

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If you're like me, and tend to buy bolts and set screws which are too long (it's easier to shorten them than to lengthen them!!!) then you soon end up with a pile of "headless bolts" of various sizes.

I save those and when I need a grub screw of some length (they're usually only short) then I cut an appropriate thread "headless bolt" off to size then carefully slot one end (junior hack saw or slim cut off disc) to suit a normal (slot type) screwdriver. With care that will provide you with a long-term substitute, but even on the 1st few tries, where your slot may be a bit clumsy, you should find the result will give you a grub screw to tide you over until the proper grub screws arrive in the post.

HTH
 

DBT85

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A great suggestion AES and while I don't have any bits knocking around I do have plenty of M6 based entertainment that could be hacked apart in a few moments I suppose.

In reality the job I wanted to do was likely going to be a non starter as I'd need two parallel opposite bevel cuts on either side of a 125mm wide bit of MDF. I was going to give it a go and see if it worked anyway as if not I can still use them for something else. Really a table saw would be better for this little job.
 

Beanwood

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I have the Titan track saw with the 700 mm rails. I immediately bought the twin pack of evolution rails and a 48tooth blade - and for my amateur woodwork this is a good setup. It didn't cost a fortune (Screwfix special offers) and seems to cut straight lines which is all I really expected :D
 
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