Both track saw and table saw are standard tools for cutting pieces of wood. But they consist of different features; thus, their working ways are different. And without knowing the differences between track saw vs table saw, you can’t choose the right tool as a novice woodworker.
The major difference between these two tools is their cutting procedure. When you use a table saw, you move the lumber against a rotating blade to cut the wood. But in the case of the track saw, you need to move the saw across the board using the guided track.
In the following discussion, we’ll provide more differences between these tools. So read along to learn the dissimilarities and make your concept clearer.
In this post we'll cover:
- What Is a Track Saw?
- Key Features of the Track Saw
- When You Should Buy the Track Saw
- What Is a Table Saw?
- Some Key Features of the Table Saw
- When You Should Buy the Table Saw
- What Are the Differences between Track Saw vs Table Saw?
- Which One You Should Choose: The Final Bargain
- Frequently Asked Question
- Final Thoughts
What Is a Track Saw?
If you want to make long rips or crosscut across the wide board, then a track saw is the best option for you. It’s also known as the plunge saw. The track saw uses a track or guided rail to get perfectly straight cuts.
Moreover, it’s lightweight, which makes the machine portable. Besides, a track saw is more beneficial for cuttings sheet goods due to its track cutter.
It consists of a riving knife that ensures your safety. Also, if you’ve limited space in your workshop, you can buy this device as it doesn’t require much space to store.
Key Features of the Track Saw
You probably didn’t know about some of the unique features of the Track Saw. Here are a few of them:
- Dust Port
A dust port is an essential and useful feature for every woodworker. The track saw directs the wood debris into the dust port, which helps the woodworker to keep his working space clean.
- Circular Blade
The track saw comes with a circular blade, and it cuts wood precisely, reducing blade-pinching and kickback.
A track saw tool can make clean and smooth cuts on woods, and the main reason behind this is its tracks.
It holds the blade in one place, ensuring that it cuts on the exact point. The good thing is it doesn’t make mistakes or slip after it gets aligned with the marks.
- Balde Cover
A blade cover is an essential part of a cutting machine to ensure safety. So having this machine will reduce your worries about safety.
- Rubber Strips
You don’t need any clamps while using the track saw. It uses a rubber strip that holds the track and keeps it stable throughout the process. The rubber strips are sticky enough and don’t slip from their place at all.
When You Should Buy the Track Saw
A track saw can make an accurate straight cut. If you need a tool that gives you stability while making straight cuts, you should buy a track saw for your project.
You can manage the cutting process easily by adjusting and placing the track. Plus, this machine is lightweight; thus, you can carry it across your workshop. The debris collection port is also helpful to keep your workplace less messy.
- Makes plunged and angled cuts with ease
- Less prone to injury
- Provides excellent stability, movability, and adjustability
- Small in size, lightweight, and portable
- It takes a longer time to set up the machine
What Is a Table Saw?
If you want a wood cutting machine to cut any wood, you won’t regret buying a table saw for your project.
It’s manufactured with a circular saw blade and mounted on arbors. You need to move the piece of wood through the rotating blade to cut the wood.
A table saw is widely used for cutting down the center part of plywood lumber. It would help if you placed pressure on the lumber to allow the blade to make a consistent and smooth surface.
It’d be an excellent choice for you when you want a tool to cut wood with accuracy, power, and repeatability abilities. All the features of the table saw let you achieve clean and accurate cuts.
Some Key Features of the Table Saw
Before picking up the table saw, it’s better to know what the table saw can bring to your table, don’t you agree? If yes, here’s a few of them –
- Dust Port
The dust port is used for collecting debris while working, and it’s useful for keeping your workplace debris-free.
- Powerful Motor
This tool uses a high-power motor to drive the circular saw blade. And the power pushes the cutting device to make the cuts with ease. However, make sure you have safety gears for your eyes and ears against the flying debris and loud noise.
- Emergency Button
It’s a safety feature. By using the emergency button, you can quickly turn off the device if the lumber kicks back.
When You Should Buy the Table Saw
If you want to cut hardwoods and make repeatable rip cuts, then you should go for the table saw. The good part about this tool is that it can cut any wood; thus, you can use it for multiple projects.
On the other hand, you don’t need to reset the device after each cut, whereas the track saw needs to reset before cutting the second cut. Thus, the cutting process is less time-consuming for a table saw.
As this device comes with a powerful motor, cutting thick and rigid materials becomes less challenging.
- Easy assembly process.
- Its powerful motor can cut most materials.
- Cut woods with more accuracy and speed.
- Less portable and need a lot of space to store.
- The cutting blade doesn’t come with a blade cover.
What Are the Differences between Track Saw vs Table Saw?
The main differences between the track saw vs table saw are given below –
|Track Saw||Table Saw|
|A track saw is best for cutting sheet goods.||The table saw is suitable for cutting any wood.|
|It can accurately make straight cuts.||Besides the straight cuts, it can cut bevel accurately too.|
|The repeatability depends on the setting of the track.||Excellent repeatability.|
|Easily portable.||Not portable enough and takes a lot of space in your workplace.|
|It comes with a less powerful motor.||The table saw includes a very powerful motor.|
|The track saw is less prone to injury.||The possibility of getting an injury is high.|
Which One You Should Choose: The Final Bargain
To be honest, there is no way to choose one tool over another; both saws provide outstanding performance. So, it’s up to your project requirement; you need to figure out first what you’re going to make with woods.
However, you can consider some factors from their differences to decide which one you should buy. If you have less space in your workshop and want a portable machine, you should go for the track saw.
And if you look for a fast, powerful, and versatile machine that can be used in every type of wood, then the right choice will be the table saw.
Frequently Asked Question
- Can you replace a track saw with a table saw?
Technically yes, you can replace your track saw with a table saw, but it mostly depends on your woodworking project. Some woodworks can be done in a better way with a track saw than a table saw.
- Is a track saw safer than a table saw?
Mechanically a track saw is safer than a table saw. The track saw comes with a blade cover and a guided rail that reduce the tool’s chances of slipping. Also, it is lightweight and more portable; thus, it can ensure more safety for you than the table saw.
- Can you use the track saw as a circular saw?
Yes, you can, as both these tools are pretty similar to each other. Both the track saw and the circular saw is widely used for angled cuts and cutting lines. But you can attain a better and professional finish with track saws due to their clean and accurate cuts.
- Is it possible to cut wood using a track saw without the track?
You can cut woods using a track saw without utilizing the tracking feature, just like a circular saw. However, it’s pretty tricky to cut straight on wood with a saw but using the track allows you to make perfectly straight cuts.
Now, we hope you have a clear concept about the differences between track saw vs table saw. The track saw only provides the best performance for cutting sheet goods that you can cut with a circular blade.
And a table saw is suitable for cutting thick and hard boards and repeated work. But having both tools will make your job easier and give you a better result.
I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.