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Tablesaw, tracksaw, bench..... opinions please!

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baldkev

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Hi all,
I have a shipping container for a workshop. I am a site carpenter but have always wanted a space of my own, so about 18 months ago i did it.

Its about 2.3?? M wide internally.... so a bit cramped for width. Plenty long enough. ( 40ft )

Anyway, today i started my next job, a shelving unit for a tapered alcove and a set of built in cupboards. In the past i used to do this on site ( most if my customers have enough space )

But today, i found my multico was lacking width to the fence. I can just squeeze 500mm between fence and blade. I do have rail extensions and a more basic 'fence' that can extend it ( came with the saw ) but as you'll see, there isnt room to fit it! I also have a dw745 tablesaw, with goes to 630mm and fits in the same width space because its blade is nearer the left. So i had to set it up level with the multico and use the dw site saw. That got me thinking again about a tracksaw etc.

Should i sell the multico, build a level bench with an area up front for the dw?? I could then buy the tracksaw to aid breaking down sheet goods and full width cuts and still retain a tablesaw.
The bench could have a few dog holes at 90° with a batten along the back edge for quick 90s over 400mm ( ive got a radial arm saw )

The only thing the multico is better for than the dw is depth of cut. Both have similar power, the fence setup on the dw is significantly better and dust extraction on the dw is far better.....
I dont often cut 4" timber, but i have a few times. Think the dw tops out at 80mm?
 

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baldkev

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Worth adding ive got a couple more built ins coming up and i want to make my own kitchen. The dw is my site saw, but since i bought a big makita cordless mitre saw, i rarely move both in my truck at the same time, so the dw mostly lives in my shed now 🤦‍♂️
 

Jameshow

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Nice set up considering the space.
Two table saws is too many - the master carpenter says so... I'll be down in a jiffy.

Some table saws have a folding Rh extension. I'd sell both and get that.

Narrow when you don't need it but wide when required.

Does the DW use an induction motor?

Cheers James
 

Doug71

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You don't have a track saw 😲 Honestly get yourself one, they are made for breaking down sheet goods, absolutely fantastic for making things like built ins.

Regarding the saws I would keep both but I'm the wrong person to ask, I have 2 saws, 2 mortisers and 2 planer thicknessers, it's always good to have a spare just in case 🙂
 

baldkev

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You don't have a track saw 😲
Nope.... when they came out and were uber popular ( and more expensive ) i was a subcontractor 100% of the time ( to a few builders ) and being on hourly, why pay out to make a job quicker for someone else? 😆

Ive got 2 makita 18v circular saws and I usually use a straightedge and clamps, but they dont plunge, which isnt a massive thing, and the extraction is poor.... i do a few kitchens ( howdens usually ) per year, but i find as long as i use good quality and new blades, i get great cuts, so after a kitchen job, the circular saw black gets relegated to site work. I usually get 3 trend blades for 30 quid off ebay, for the price they are a great balance.
 

baldkev

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Does the DW use an induction motor?
Dunno! The internet says its a direct drive brushed motor. I imagine for the size and weight, its universal and induction dont have brushes? So must be universal....

Its a site saw ( portable ) so i wouldnt sell it. Its fantastic for the money
 

Hornbeam

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If its 40ft long you must have a lot more space not shown in the picture. I would keep the multico and turn the outfeed table into an FRT type table for use with a tracksaw. You can then use the track saw for sheet materials but also set up for crosscutting on longer lengths
 

Chunkytfg

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Track saw is exactly what you want! Add a MFT table and a set of parallel guides and you'll probably never use a table saw on sheet goods again.

Also worth looking at Woby designs on Youtube. He makes stuff out of recycled skateboards but up until last year was working out a shipping container using a full size table saw. It can be done but just needs proper storage.

If it was me I'd be getting absolutely everything you can up in the air! Anything on the ground just takes up what limited space you have.
 

jcassidy

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Peter Millard appears to have a similar sized workshop, albeit I don't think he has a thicknesser/planer. He has a vid going over his setup and why.

I'll add my voice that a tracksaw is for breaking down sheet goods, I only got a cheap one recently but its already had a tonne of use on built-in stuff. Cheap is good for DIY. I don't trust myself with a table saw so the circular saw is used plenty.
 

southendwoodworker

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I am curious about the sound.

How do you find the sound whilst working in there? Power tools and banging things with a hammer?

If you close the doors, can you hear the table saw outsite?

My garden shed lets the noise out, which means I can only use it at the same time I am meant to be doing my desk job, but I'd prefer to be able to do noisey stuff late at night 8pm-2am without annoying the neighbours. If your container stops the noise escaping it gives me something to think about.
 

Louie10

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Hi all,
I have a shipping container for a workshop. I am a site carpenter but have always wanted a space of my own, so about 18 months ago i did it.

Its about 2.3?? M wide internally.... so a bit cramped for width. Plenty long enough. ( 40ft )

Anyway, today i started my next job, a shelving unit for a tapered alcove and a set of built in cupboards. In the past i used to do this on site ( most if my customers have enough space )

But today, i found my multico was lacking width to the fence. I can just squeeze 500mm between fence and blade. I do have rail extensions and a more basic 'fence' that can extend it ( came with the saw ) but as you'll see, there isnt room to fit it! I also have a dw745 tablesaw, with goes to 630mm and fits in the same width space because its blade is nearer the left. So i had to set it up level with the multico and use the dw site saw. That got me thinking again about a tracksaw etc.

Should i sell the multico, build a level bench with an area up front for the dw?? I could then buy the tracksaw to aid breaking down sheet goods and full width cuts and still retain a tablesaw.
The bench could have a few dog holes at 90° with a batten along the back edge for quick 90s over 400mm ( ive got a radial arm saw )

The only thing the multico is better for than the dw is depth of cut. Both have similar power, the fence setup on the dw is significantly better and dust extraction on the dw is far better.....
I dont often cut 4" timber, but i have a few times. Think the dw tops out at 80mm?
I have to say your shop is pretty amazing mate, a shipping container as you say offers plenty of length but width ismtricky, but you have somehow worked 9ut a great layout, think long and hard about parting with the older cast saw, I am blessed with a Laguna fusion 3 but even with her 3hp a deep cut can take time, I am a cabinet maker myself and I tend to use the bandsaw for the deeper timbers and resawing, a crisp sharp blade on either the bandsaw or cabinet saw makes the world of difference, you will I am sure solve your problems, but your workshop looks great, best of luck pal, louie UlsterWorksop
 

baldkev

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Hi everyone, thanks for the replies. Ive got someone coming for the multico tomorrow..... rightly or wrongly, i decided to set the dewalt into a bench about 3m long, 1m wide, that'll allow me to put sheets on it and rip down in either direction. It'll overhang on the width by about 300mm i guess, because I'll have to have room for the tracksaw to get through the cut etc. The dewalt will be set to the left, allowing full rip capacity.

The multico blade is 130ish mm more to the right, so without moving it, i just cant cut the width i need. I put a used 24tooth blade in the dw and tested it against the multico. There isnt any difference in speed of cut and the dewalt didnt slow down. The biggest difference is height of cut. The multico can squeeze 110mm, the dewalt 80ish. 60mm sapele and 55mm oak went through just fine.

If its 40ft long you must have a lot more space not shown in the picture
Yep, ive got a trike, spindle, radial arm saw and morticer not in the piks 😆

I'll add my voice that a tracksaw is for breaking down sheet goods,
I considered building a wall panel saw using the 3m and 1.5m tracks, but i think a bigger bench with a few well llaced do holes will do, plus a batten along the back which the sheets will sit against, dog holes at 90 to that reference batten....

I am curious about the sound.
The doors do not fully close. They are levered shut on the outside, but thats not possible inside. I built a quick and dirty latch, but theres always a 30ish mm gap. Ive considered a site door welded in, but the kit ones ate actually only 1.5mm or 2mm sheet and ive seen how easy a tealeaf can get through those. My doors have 3 very good locks, set in lockboxes. A petrol cutter will get in but it'll take a good few minutes and a lot of noise, then they'll have to face my special suprise 😆

With the doors mostly shut, you can hear noise but its not that bad.
Inside is fine. Obviously banging metal against the container would loud, but chiselling timber etc is the same as normal, and i wear ear defenders for machines, but doesn't seem louder than normal. With a side door instead, which would seal, and main doors shut, it would definitely reduce noise. Especially if it was lined out. You need at the minimum, the roof insulated, preferably walls too, but then you need to be careful about dust extraction as most bagged units actually expel a lot of very fine dust, which is harmful.
 

baldkev

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I am a cabinet maker myself and I tend to use the bandsaw for the deeper timbers
Thanks for the comments 🙂
I have a startrite 352 that ive just bought, in the process of refining and setting up.
Interestingly, regarding blades, once i tested the dewalt and decided to sell the multico, i ordered some new freud blades for the dewalt in case i need a deep cut. The dewalt has far better dust collection. I figured that if i decide to get another cast unit at some point I'll pony up and get something with a better fence system and i really love those saws with the small scribing blade! Although i dont REALLY need it..... 🤣

If it was me I'd be getting absolutely everything you can up in the air! Anything on the ground just takes up what limited space you have.
Yep, ive started trying to organise myself. Over the last 12 to 18 months i got fed up of moving tools into the container and then forgetting to load the back in the truck, so i ended up getting more kit🤦‍♂️
Im terrible for using bench space as a place for dumping stuff and then spending ages moving things around, so i welded some bolts to the container and started building some units. So far it has definitely reduced the kit layingbaround and ive found im managing to keep the screwdrivers etc in their boxes and actually putting it away after use..... got a couple more to build and then theres going to be a lot of storage options under the new table.....

One thing i struggle with is materials. Ive got a 30ft container with a lathe, trailer, tower scaffolds, mixer etc and building materials, but its not properly dry and condensates a lot in winter, so anything i want to keep nice and dry has to stay in the workshop ( i use a dehumidifier )
 

baldkev

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Thanks doug. My journey with this was not well thought out. Or at least very rushed. I was in the middle of a job when i bought the workshop one but had to move a load of stuff into it, so i put down 1" celotex and 11mm osb on the floor, then moved some stuff in. I got quotes on spray foam insulation, i found kits on the internet cheaper, but still about 700 quid to do the walls and ceiling! Long story short i ended up with condensation as the winter arrived and it became a battle. I spray foamed celotex to the roof and got a dehumidifier in there which has sorted it. I wish i had framed it out at the start.

I'll get photos tomorrow when im there. Ultimately it all comes down to money. One day I'll replace the storage container with a better one and do that one properly, move the kit into it and use the workshop one as a store.
 

TRITON

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tracksaw - Requires a flat surface to lay it on, so 8x4 minimum.
Is your workbench or space able to accommodate a flat 8x4 sheet ?.

Or
You arrive at your unit, and push through the board into the unit through your table saw giving you the 2x 608mm to further work on. A lot easier working on a half sheet than a full one.
Alternatively, you manhandle the sheet into your workshop. Struggle to get it lying flat, after first removing everything that might impede it, and with no doubt one side hanging precariously over the edge, you set up a tracksaw on it. Make the cut into two boards and the one you've just cut is difficult as you need to hold the sheet, be in control of the saw and make sure the track doesnt slide off, as the chances are your bench will be 2 feet wide, and half the board will now be hanging in the breeze or likely balanced on some sort of shaky support.
Of course you're going to need a minimum of 7 feet in the width to be able to operate the saw safely. By the looks of it you're going to be sitting on top of your planer/thicknesser to be able to work the saw.

Tracksaws are for people who dont have the room for a table saw. And before anyone whines its used in industry, mainly shopfitting. Shopfitters have workshops too with bloody great panel saws in them.
 

sometimewoodworker

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tracksaw - Requires a flat surface to lay it on, so 8x4 minimum.
Is your workbench or space able to accommodate a flat 8x4 sheet ?.

Or
You arrive at your unit, and push through the board into the unit through your table saw giving you the 2x 608mm to further work on. A lot easier working on a half sheet than a full one.
Alternatively, you manhandle the sheet into your workshop. Struggle to get it lying flat, after first removing everything that might impede it, and with no doubt one side hanging precariously over the edge, you set up a tracksaw on it. Make the cut into two boards and the one you've just cut is difficult as you need to hold the sheet, be in control of the saw and make sure the track doesnt slide off, as the chances are your bench will be 2 feet wide, and half the board will now be hanging in the breeze or likely balanced on some sort of shaky support.
Of course you're going to need a minimum of 7 feet in the width to be able to operate the saw safely. By the looks of it you're going to be sitting on top of your planer/thicknesser to be able to work the saw.

Tracksaws are for people who dont have the room for a table saw. And before anyone whines its used in industry, mainly shopfitting. Shopfitters have workshops too with bloody great panel saws in them.
Most of your information is either wrong or a gross exaggeration and obviously written as blatantly anti-tracksaw along with a suggestion that makes no sense if you want accurate cuts (ripping the sheet first on a table saw).

My main workbench is 1.2m x 1.7m. 1.2m is more than is needed and it could be 1 metre with no problem.

Why would you think that a width extension (if it is needed) would be shaky? Most half decent woodworkers are perfectly capable of building a solidly based workbench extension if the need is there for one.

A sheet of solid polystyrene insulation layer on top of a bench that may include the remaining saw makes an excellent cutting surface, and why would that be a struggle?

Why do you imagine/claim that you need 2.3meters width to rip a 1.4 metre board? 1.6~1.7 is plenty.

Why do you imagine that you need to hold either of pieces you have cut? That is what the cutting surface does.

Why do you think that the tracks are going to slide? That is what track clamps are for.

Why do you think that you can accurately rip a sheet of material 608mm wide, it could be 60kg, by attempting to run it through a table saw when you are over 2.5 metres away from the beginning of the cut? That can be done but it is neither easy nor pleasant to try. it is however a simple job for a track saw, but then it is also unnecessary as you would rip the exact widths needed for the job so not wasting material.

My workshop has more than enough room for a humongous table saw (usual free space is between 10 and 20 square metres, more if I move stuff around). there is a brand of Chinese table saws that are good quality not expensive and easily available here I don’t have or want one.

I do have a TS55 along with tracks that can extend to about 4 metres if I want. I also have parallel guides so if I want several pieces exactly the same width it’s easy

I do have a tiny table saw the table is 370mm X 480mm rip width is about 300mm it doesn’t tilt but has a good 10” blade
 
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TRITON

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The thread is for baldkevs workshop. See it in the pic ?. here I'll lend you my glasses if you need them :rolleyes:
So im looking at the space KEV has. Not you, not your amazing 1.2mx1.7m.1.2m bench. This one of course being your main workbench. not to be confused with your other workbenches, in your 20m square shop.

Can you see a 1.2m deep bench in there ?
I cant. I'd say what is there is no greater than 3', though probably closer to 30"
So.....
what about if you were to take in an 8'x4' sheet and lay it flat on the bench we can clearly see isnt 1.2mx1.7m.1.2m.
How much room would it take up.
Where would Kev stand to be able to operate the saw.
How much of the 8'x4' sheet would overhang.


I too have a tracksaw
and a sawbench
and a handheld circular saw
And a cross cut saw
And assorted handsaws

So im not bias, im just looking at the room he has, the placement of his machinery and how I would tackle such a task.

@Kev - sorry for the hijack, one member didnt quite see the point. to be sure your shop looks bigger than the 120sq feet my place is. And certainly not as tidy :LOL:
 
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clogs

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just get a temp cover for the rain and cutup sheet materials outside....
plenty of fold up ally framed covers.....
Take a look at this young mans container....

good luck......

Ps I was tought to cut up sheet materials with a sraight edge and a couple of clamps, also useing the saw off set jig, just a peice of ply.....in California....sometimes 6-10 sheets at a time....
my straight edge is years old and served me well.....can be used with any old circ saw.....
prefer to spend my money on other stuff....
might be dif if I was starting out tho.....
 

Doug71

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As said he could do what we all do on site and just cut the sheet up on the floor outside with his tracksaw.

If he's organised he could do it inside on the floor, it doesn't take up that much space as you tend to cut them whilst kneeling on the sheet, you don't need the space to be able to walk around it.
 
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