Author Topic: Guide Rail Selection  (Read 1065 times)

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Offline Mike Goetzke

  • Posts: 296
Guide Rail Selection
« on: July 22, 2019, 12:13 PM »
I know this is really sort of a personal choice based on budget and type of work but looking for others input to help me out.

I currently own 55” Makita, 75” Festool, and 118” Makita rails. After reading Makita/Festool rails work on both tools I was unpleasantly surprised to find out the guide rib on the Festool is about 0.015” wider than the Makita.

After using these for several months I can say I got tired out adjusting the saw cam for the rail. I applied some tape to my Makita 55” rail and it worked great for a while but then the tape is starting to fail.

Some other background – I like the 75” for x-cutting sheet goods. I use the 55” for shorter cuts but wish it was maybe about 2’ shorter.

Here are best options I have thought of:

Option #1 – purchase a 75” Makita rail and sell my 75” Festool. For some odd reason this is only available from Canada. This would give me 55”, 75”, and 118” Makita rails. I could cut the 55” if needed. Dollar wise this would be close to no cost.

Option #2 – purchase 55” Makita rail (cut it to 20” and 35”), connector set, and sell the 75” Festool. This would give 20”, 35”, 55”, 75” (55”+20”), and 118”. This is close to breakeven too.

Option #3 – cut my 118” Makita (ouch! Cut it to 43” and 75”), buy connector set, and sell my Festool 75” and possibly 55” Makita. This would give me 43”, 55”, 75”, and 188” (75”+43”) Makita rails. Probably $ in my pocket for this option.

Option #4 – Machine the rib on my Festool rail. I saw someone on the FOG built a fixture to rout the Makita saw catch hook off. Wonder if this could be done to the Festool rail rib. Big loss if it doesn’t work out.

Option #5 – Convert to all Festool rails. There is a 118” rail locally for private sale – and purchase a 32” or 55” Festool rail. Even after selling my Makita rails this is probably about $200-$250 out of pocket.

Thanks,

Mike


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Offline ear3

  • Posts: 3865
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2019, 01:08 PM »
I'd go option 1. And while it's nice to have the shorter rail, for the most part a 55" can handle all cuts below 48" Only once and a while do I find myself in situations where I am absolutely required to use shorter rail -- usually when I'm fitting an existing puece/construction where the 55 will not fit.
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Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 703
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2019, 01:23 PM »
Hi Mike, I had a similar issue as I have plunge saws from various makes but, in the end I got fed up with adjusting.
So, I went for all Makita rails.

Mainly because my Makita saw is my favourite but, also they are cheaper, virtually the same as Festool, they couple together easier than Festool, plus I prefer the black splinter guard, as it registers easier with my ageing eyes.

I was in an Axminster store on Saturday and they had some Makita 1400mm (55”) rails going for about half price. When I asked why so cheap, I was told because they’re the old size, the new ones are 1500mm (59”)
I bought the last three they had, and chopped an old one down for the MFT.
So, no more adjusting for me, not bothered about the 1500mm version either, as I have two long rails.


Offline Mike Goetzke

  • Posts: 296
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2019, 08:27 PM »
I'd go option 1. And while it's nice to have the shorter rail, for the most part a 55" can handle all cuts below 48" Only once and a while do I find myself in situations where I am absolutely required to use shorter rail -- usually when I'm fitting an existing puece/construction where the 55 will not fit.

@ear3  I'm partial to that option too (maybe why I made it #1). That option avoids cutting rails and connectors too.

Offline Mike Goetzke

  • Posts: 296
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2019, 08:30 PM »
Hi Mike, I had a similar issue as I have plunge saws from various makes but, in the end I got fed up with adjusting.
So, I went for all Makita rails.

Mainly because my Makita saw is my favourite but, also they are cheaper, virtually the same as Festool, they couple together easier than Festool, plus I prefer the black splinter guard, as it registers easier with my ageing eyes.

I was in an Axminster store on Saturday and they had some Makita 1400mm (55”) rails going for about half price. When I asked why so cheap, I was told because they’re the old size, the new ones are 1500mm (59”)
I bought the last three they had, and chopped an old one down for the MFT.
So, no more adjusting for me, not bothered about the 1500mm version either, as I have two long rails.

@Jiggy Joiner - I did notice a few 1.5M Makita rails listed. I still think 59" is still to short to crosscut 48" and have room for the saw. I don't know how Axminster does it but the 59" Makita rail is around $80 shipped to the USA.

Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 703
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2019, 04:11 AM »
Hi Mike, I agree, if they decided the 1400mm 55" wasn't quite enough for cutting 1200mm 48" sheet goods, they might of been better increasing the length by 150mm 6" or even 200mm 8" ? I made one up just for that purpose from a couple of old beaten up rails. they were cut and permanently joined at an overall length that allows the saw to stay on the track at the start and finish of every cut.

Regarding Axminster, the 1400mm rails that I bought for almost half price were classed as clearance items. As they are now classed as obsolete or old stock because of the new 1500mm 59" rails.
The 59" rails over here sell for around £50-£60 each



Offline ChiknNutz

  • Posts: 71
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2019, 12:33 PM »
Can you only get these across the pond?  I looked at the Makita USA site and they only show 55" & 118" rails.  I just bought 2-55" rails off of Amazon as I didn't know anything slightly longer was available.  I have yet to receive my TS75 but was pleased to find out that the Makita rails are compatible and at about half price.  I just checked the Axminster site and that is a deal at $79 shipped for the 1500mm rail.  Wish I woulda known!
-Chris
Rotex 150/5 FEQ, CT 36 E, ETS EC125/3, TS75, Domino XL

Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 703
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2019, 02:57 PM »
@ChiknNutz being Makita, I would have thought they’d be available in all the countries they deal with?
Can you get 1000mm rail over there?

Offline ChiknNutz

  • Posts: 71
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2019, 03:33 PM »
@ChiknNutz being Makita, I would have thought they’d be available in all the countries they deal with?
Can you get 1000mm rail over there?

Ah yes, I do see Toonut has 39" rails as well as the other two, but NOT 1500mm.  Not sure if they are exactly 39" or 1000mm.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2019, 03:35 PM by ChiknNutz »
-Chris
Rotex 150/5 FEQ, CT 36 E, ETS EC125/3, TS75, Domino XL

Offline broseiden

  • Posts: 52
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2019, 11:43 AM »
I bought a Makita 3000mm rail trying to save a few bucks. I had the same issue as you and ended up buying the Festool one for use with my TS55.

Then I got a good deal on the Makita tracksaw itself and 1400mm rail. Ended up disliking it and getting rid of all the Makita stuff.

Offline Jiggy Joiner

  • Posts: 703
Re: Guide Rail Selection
« Reply #10 on: July 24, 2019, 03:25 PM »
@ChiknNutz being Makita, I would have thought they’d be available in all the countries they deal with?
Can you get 1000mm rail over there?

Ah yes, I do see Toonut has 39" rails as well as the other two, but NOT 1500mm.  Not sure if they are exactly 39" or 1000mm.

Yes the 1000mm (1 metre) is 39.37 inches or just over 3 ft 3 inches.