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Work(shop) in Progress #18: Finally Took the Plunge (saw)

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Blog entry by PurpLev posted 568 days ago 3457 reads 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 17: Sharpening Station Part 18 of Work(shop) in Progress series Part 19: Bar Clamp Storage »

I have wanted to get one of those track saws for a while now just couldn’t fork out the 600 for the original green machine. with the recent introduction of a track saw by the other green company (Grizzly) I did some research (online reviews, online videos, demos, different model user manuals for features, parts diagrams and features) and found the Scheppach CS-55 model to be a suitable match for me.

I have had good past experience with Scheppach products (my slow grinder) and from looking at their online website (although poorly constructed) it seems on-par with Grizzly in many ways (there are also numerous products that are identical from both mfg.) which is good for long term parts/service purposes as I think Grizzly is very very good in that sense (ease of getting replacement parts). Since Grizzly’s track saw is still not available in stock, and since their overall price was $50 over the alternative, I ended up going with the Scheppach model.

I also ordered an Oshlun 48teeth replacement blade to have a spare at hand (since these are not readily available at the BORG I don’t want to be stranded without a blade in the middle of a project).

My use for this will be sporadic and not too often so I don’t need a power horse that will run 24/7 nor do I need all the bells and whistles, just a solid saw that will do what it’s supposed to do with safety in mind.

The saw arrived quickly, and well packed, with very minimal set of instructions:

all seems to be as expected and in working condition. it definitely does not have a high-end quality feel to it, and feels rather plasticy but in terms of functionality it’s mostly there. It lacks some of the functionality other models have like stronger motor, variable speed, and some accessories that I suppose would come standard with other models are only available as “accessory pack” for this one. I personally will make the accessories I’ll need for this one so opted not to get any additional add ons.

first impression (not from heavy use – just impressions, could theoretically mean absolutely nothing at this point):
Cons:
  • feels plasticy
  • motor is noisy and doesn’t have that vroooom feel to it (just a 9amp motor as known prior to purchase)
  • motor doesn’t seem to have a quick change carbon brush slot, for long term maintenance you’d have to open up the motor cover – no biggy, just found it curious.
  • no “made in ….” sticker anywhere on package/saw – only reference of Ohio distributor. I suppose this is made in asia/china and shipped to Europe from where it is passed to the US. otherwise I’m pretty sure you’d have to have that sticker on the product if it’s direct asia to US (I could be mistaken)
Pros:
  • slips nicely and securely into track – nice
  • rides smoothly on track
  • working position is comfortable and the feel is much more in control over freehand circular saw
  • plunge action is awesome, setting depth of cut is convenient and safe – no need to flip saw guard halfway and drop saw down on part to be sawed. the operation on this one definitely feels like a huge improvement.

unfortunately I do not have any shop time as of late, but I do have 1 project that I would like to address, so hopefully I will get to test drive this a bit more seriously.

Not that I would be willing to pay full price for the green machine (or even for a used one), but after playing around with this one at this price range, I actually find the price tag on the higher end models more realistic with the attention to details that they include. But pound-per-pound for the occasional use and comparing the basic functionality, I find this one to be a good contender for the serious hobbyist.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.



6 comments so far

View Cory's profile

Cory

723 posts in 2050 days


#1 posted 568 days ago

I’ve been jonesing for a track saw, too. Just can’t bite the bullet….even if it’s a blue one instead of green. I’d love to hear how this saw performs over the course of a project, though. What about the rails? Do they have longer lengths? When you’re joining them together are they solid?

-- The secret to getting ahead is getting started.

View SPalm's profile

SPalm

4786 posts in 2513 days


#2 posted 568 days ago

Neat.
I want a track saw too. It will be interesting to see how this plays for you.
Looks good from here.

Steve

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8476 posts in 2279 days


#3 posted 568 days ago

Cory, the rails are solid, and while they come as 2×25” rails (as opposed to a single 55” piece like other mfg offer), if you align them properly the line is unnoticeable when sliding the saw over it

unfortunately unlike the other brands which carry the rails everywhere, I was not able to find any source for the Scheppach rails, other than Grizzly (still unavailable at this point in time). I’ll take measurements and would be interested to check against Makita and Festool rails to see if they can interchange (I believe they can) albeit much more expensive (thought I would like to have a full 100” rail setup to rip sheet goods lengthwise).

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Karson's profile

Karson

34870 posts in 3031 days


#4 posted 568 days ago

Good luck Sharon. It will be nice to have an operation review.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware karson_morrison@bigfoot.com †

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6805 posts in 1782 days


#5 posted 567 days ago

Sweet! Thats going to make working with plywood much easier .

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Marty5965's profile

Marty5965

158 posts in 576 days


#6 posted 567 days ago

There is also a product called true track. It is made in Ohio and utilizes your own CS on an adapter and turns it into a track saw. They sell add-on packs (don’t they all) to create a kind of sacrificial saw station that folds up into about the size of a folded saw horse. Check out their website. i noticed that Woodcraft carries it too. Don’t have one, just thought it looked neat and has a low price tag (comparatively speaking).

-- Marty, Columbus, OH, learning every day....

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