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Excellent Track Saw At A Great Price

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Review by jonah posted 11-10-2013 01:25 AM 9343 views 5 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Excellent Track Saw At A Great Price No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

The Scheppach Track Saw is sold under many brands, including Scheppach, Grizzly, Woodstar, and several others. All are identical. What is different, at least in my case, is the price. Grizzly sells the saw by itself for ~$180, or as a part of a kit for $245. The Grizzly kit comes with a 55” rail and some accessories.

In the US, the Scheppach saw is imported by the Colovos Company, a Chicago-based company. I’ll detail my contact with the company later in the review.

I purchased my saw from Amazon, where it has been periodically available for $130. For that price, it came with the saw, two 25” rails, and one rail connector. I found the saw to be perfectly fine, though the stock blade is not good. I replaced it with this Freud blade almost immediately. After replacing the blade, I get tearout-free cuts on just about anything I try to cut. I don’t own a Festool or other track saw, so I can’t speak to a direct comparison there, but I have to say that the cut quality is nearly flawless, and I can’t picture it being any better with another saw. I’m getting table saw-quality cuts now that I’m using a good blade.

Tweaks
I did make two important tweaks to the saw. Both are detailed in this youtube video I found. Relocating the glide strips makes the saw incredibly stable on the track, and cutting the spring makes it quite easy to plunge. Next time I order anything from McMaster-Carr I’ll probably order a smaller-gauge spring and replace it.

I watched Mark Spagnuolo's comparison of the Grizzly and Festool track saws several times before buying the Scheppach, and I believe replacing the blade and tweaking it as Cosmos Bauer did addresses all his concerns and would give you equivalent cut quality and ergonomics at a fraction of the Festool price.

Drawback
Having two 25-inch tracks is obviously not as good as one ~50-incher. That’s the main drawback of the Scheppach kit in my opinion. You can occasionally get a tiny wobble in the saw (barely noticeable) where the two tracks meet. 95% of the time it’s perfectly fine, especially with two connectors.

Customer Service
As I mentioned above, I did contact the company because the kit only came with one track connector. Don’t get me wrong, it’s only advertised as coming with one, and the connection is pretty good with one, but having two connectors makes a much more secure connection. I called the company, explained the situation, and they sent an extra connector out to me gratis. A-plus for customer service. Bonus: they have real people that answer the phone!

The Future
I plan to buy a Grizzly or Shop Fox 55” rail to go with my saw at some point, along with a couple of extra track connectors. At that point, I’ll still have spent less than the Grizzly kit, will have ~9 feet of track and a much better blade to go onto my saw. I can’t recommend the saw enough at $130.

The Good:
- the price
- cut quality is great with a replacement blade
- post-tweaks the saw is very usable

The Bad:
- the stock blade is mediocre at best
- some wobble in the saw if you don’t relocate the glide strips
- two 25” tracks means more opportunity for sloppiness where the tracks meet
- the stock spring needs to be cut or replaced.

Replacement Blade Options
Any 160mm blade made for a 20mm arbor will work, such as blades by:
Freud
Forrest
Festool
Dewalt
Oshlun
CMT
Tenryu

My own cost-no-object choice would be the Forrest blade (a 50 tooth WW1), but I picked up the Freud plywood blade for a little less than half the price and have been happy with it.

Conclusion
Before replacing the blade and tweaking the saw as I mentioned, I’d give it four stars, but considering the price (~$180 total) and the post-tweaks cut quality, I give the saw five stars. It’s a phenomenal deal.




View jonah's profile

jonah

453 posts in 2043 days



22 comments so far

View sawdustjunkie's profile

sawdustjunkie

225 posts in 461 days


#1 posted 11-10-2013 02:38 AM

Seems like you got the last one. I checked Amazon and they are no longer available and have no expected restock timeline.

-- Steve: Franklin, WI

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112806 posts in 2321 days


#2 posted 11-10-2013 02:48 AM

Thanks for the review.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View jonah's profile

jonah

453 posts in 2043 days


#3 posted 11-10-2013 04:39 AM

They have been in stock at amazon periodically over the last few months. They’ll have some, sell them all, then some time later get more. Keep your eyes open for it.

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

2100 posts in 1975 days


#4 posted 11-10-2013 05:06 AM

I bought my Scheppach track saw through a WOOT! deal of the day for $119 + $5 shipping. I also bought the Grizzly 55 inch track and the accessory kit. Everything works with the track saw…identical to say the least.

I have been thinking about replacing the blade. thanks for the link.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View mantwi's profile

mantwi

312 posts in 640 days


#5 posted 11-10-2013 05:40 AM

Great find and you have done what most of us must do. Improvised, adapted and overcome. I know about the inherent problems of a two piece guide rail and would suggest that you make a permanent connection with some type of epoxy or rivets if possible to eliminate this issue. I thought Spagnuolo’s review of the Grizzly model though he did try to be objective was still a bit skewed, wouldn’t want to offend potential sponsors now would we? Even at $250.00 it’s a bargain compared to the festool and I’ll have to look into it. Good review and great job on the mods. God bless.

View mathom7's profile

mathom7

69 posts in 1655 days


#6 posted 11-10-2013 05:40 PM

Thanks for the review, I appreciate the links.

View jonah's profile

jonah

453 posts in 2043 days


#7 posted 11-10-2013 06:09 PM

I think what I’ll end up doing is picking up a 55” track for another $50. It looks to me like the slots in the track are standard t-tracks, so a standard t-track connector should work to connect them. I will investigate further at some point.

Then I’ll have lots of track options: a short track for cross cutting, a medium track for longer cuts, and if I put all three pieces together a track suitable for breaking down an eight foot sheet of plywood.

I do see value in having a 25” track: lots of cuts are cross cuts and one 25” section is a lot less unwieldy than a 55” section.

The only advantages of the Festool saw, in my mind, are a better stock blade and better dust collection. Otherwise you’re just paying triple the money for a comparable tool.

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

2100 posts in 1975 days


#8 posted 11-10-2013 06:49 PM

I think the track connector came with my Grizzly 55 inch track.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View natenaaron's profile

natenaaron

377 posts in 541 days


#9 posted 11-11-2013 09:27 PM

Are all of these track saws 6.25 inches? I have been thinking about one. Thanks for the review.

View Surfside's profile

Surfside

3361 posts in 917 days


#10 posted 11-11-2013 09:48 PM

Thanks for the review. Something I want to consider for my future tools.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View jonah's profile

jonah

453 posts in 2043 days


#11 posted 11-11-2013 09:49 PM

It’s more accurate to say that the track saws are built around 160mm blades, which works out to close to about 6.3 inches. They all have 20mm arbors.

Festool does make a larger track saw (the -75 model), but it’s the only one of that size and frankly there’s no reason to buy the thing for 99% of even people that are in the market for track saws.

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

2100 posts in 1975 days


#12 posted 11-12-2013 12:46 AM

I had no problem cross cutting two pieces of 3/4 ply at the same time. I bought it specifically to cut down sheet goods for cabinets.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View jonah's profile

jonah

453 posts in 2043 days


#13 posted 11-12-2013 02:56 PM

According to what I’ve read, the maximum cut depth is 2 1/8 inches, which is why I think almost no one needs the larger Festool saw. Who really needs to cut material thicker than 2 1/8 inches with a track saw?

View cutworm's profile

cutworm

1065 posts in 1537 days


#14 posted 11-15-2013 11:56 PM

Added to the Amazon wish list.

-- Steve - "Never Give Up"

View jm8's profile

jm8

64 posts in 1056 days


#15 posted 11-18-2013 02:03 AM

Great review, thanks. I’m in the market for a track saw.

-- Joe from Western Ma.... Peace to all

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