Best Panel Saw for Woodworking

Panel saw is a type of sawing machine that cuts sheets into desired sizes. They come in two forms, which are vertically or horizontally designed. Vertical saws take up less floor space and are ideal for individuals with a small working area. Woodworking professionals use this machine to easily cut panels, profiles, solid wood, plywood, main distribution frame, laminates, plastic sheets, and melamine sheets into cabinet components. They were also used by sign-making businesses to cut aluminum, plastic, and wood sheets for their sign blanks. The good news about these power tools is that they have two cost types; low cost and higher cost. Lower-cost models have the user slide the material through the blade while the higher cost model saw travels through the material. Once you learn a little bit about it, you will make sure that you end up with the right machine set up for you. I hope you enjoy learning about the versatility of the best panel saw for woodworking. Also, note that some machines come with a combination, as you will see below, enabling you to do more work in less time. No power tool is perfect. Focus on the best tool that matches your needs, and you will be on the right track. 

  • Panel Saw, 8-1/4 In, 5800 rpm, Cut H 50 In

The saw is durable and is an 8-inch panel saw system with a powerful 15-amp motor. This machine has some fine details like the counterbalance. You need to ensure that your counterbalance is anchored to the moving part. That way, it’s directly below it, and as you pull it down, it raises itself back up. You use a locking mechanism to lock it once you get the gauge set to the right depth to avoid it pulling itself back up. The rubber stopper holds the cord in place and keeps it from getting in the way whenever you are making cuts. Panel saw 5800 rotations per minute represents outstanding value and brings an industrial panel saw into the sites of even smaller businesses or projects.

You get to take rip cutting measurements and make the cuts, and there are little indexing pins that you pull up. Once you rotate it, they will lock into place when they get to 90 degrees. If you are to do cross-cuts, you repeat the same thing only backward. Milwaukee 8-inch panel saw is an ideal tool for lumber yards because it offers a quick and easy solution to cutting up to 4 by 8-foot sections of the sheet. The horizontally moving materials are cut with minimal effort on graphite impregnated nylon roller bearings, which require no lubrication.

Summary of top features 

15 Amp motor 

  • Rigid all-steel frame
  • No-load RPM 500
  • Blade guard removable
  • Blade diameter 8-1/4 inches

Advantages 

  • Cutting accuracy 
  • Square tubing is electrically welded to prevent warping or twisting
  • Includes a circular saw blade and blade wrench
  • Has a 5-year warranty

Disadvantage 

  • The compact design requires additional support when ripping or cutting close to the end of a full sheet.

  • Saw Trax 1052 Full-Size Varsity Package Panel Saw

This machine comes with the folding stands and wheels already attached. All you have to do is unclip it, hold it into place, and unfold the stand. It is easy to open and close as a ladder. The stand consists of two long angles, a center brace, and three U bolts with fasteners. The first thing you do is attach a smaller component of three pieces to the frame’s vertical square tubing with a U bolt. You then rest the long pieces of angle against the frame. Now you can fasten the upper left portion of the angle to the frame using a U-bolt. Do not tighten it entirely until you ensure all components are in place. Once all components are in place, tighten the nut that attaches the three pieces of the stand. Tighten U bolts attaching the long pieces to the frame and slowly lean the machine back to the frame while it is resting on the stand. 

This 10-foot frame with a 52-inch cross-cut capability uses a floating router plate or razor knife cutter in the same carriage. The package is ideal for customers who need to break down sheet goods less than one and ¾ inches thick. For mobility and portability purposes, transport wheels are included adding perfection to the model.  

Summary of top features 

  • Folding stand and frame
  • Dust extraction hose 
  • Cross-cutting capabilities
  • Comes with wheels

Advantages 

  • It is portable 
  • It can handle the most comprehensive panels with cross cuts up to 64 inches.

Disadvantage

  • It may not be easy to move it from one job to the other due to its weight.

  • Safety Speed Cut C5 Vertical Panel Saw

The vertical positioning on a job site is essential, especially when the woodworker’s space is limited or cutting on site. This model is a version of the larger model measuring 5 feet in length. It can cut up to 4×8 panels with a maximum thickness of 1 and ¾ inches thick. This unit has a full 64 inches/1625mm maximum cross-cut capability. The model has all the features of a full-size panel saw packed into a portable 5-foot frame.  

Depending on your cutting capacity requirement, this model is one of the best choices in the market today. It comes with a three and a quarter horsepower unit with an ergonomic handle and switches for easy operation. Furthermore, it can change from vertical to horizontal cutting in just a few seconds. The adjustable measuring indicators make precision cuts a snap of a finger. Also included is a thin material pressure guard combined with a proper saw blade; it improves cut performance when cutting thin plastic. A heavy-duty counterbalance neutralizes the weight of the saw during the vertical cuts. The holder conveniently keeps the cord out of the operator’s way. This process is further improved with patented graphite nylon bearings that promote smooth movement of the saw carriage. There is no lubrication required, and the inherent design of these bearings is improvised to sawdust build-up. 

Summary of top features 

  • Maximum cutting capacity of up to 64 inches tall
  • The standard model is designed with a three ¼ Hp.
  • 15 Amp industrial duty saw motor
  • A spring-loaded counterbalance system

Advantages 

  • The saw can travel to work sites and fit into shops with limited floor space.
  • Adjustable vertical and horizontal rulers
  • Quick change from vertical to horizontal cutting 
  • One year parts warranty and a lifetime frame warranty

Disadvantage 

  • The panel can move around while you slide it through the saw and can slightly alter the angle or the cut.

  • Saw Trax – Full Size 64 Classic Vertical Panel Saw

The saw Trax uses a Makita 5007f 15 Amp saw using ¼ inch saw blade. Repairs or replacements can be quickly done at the Makita service center or dealers. It comes with an insert plate with the saw already mounted to it. This company is the only one that uses sealed steel bearings for the smoothest and most precise action of the saw carriage. A patented alignment system is known as the Accu-square will keep your panel seen from ever going out of the square. 

The saw blade is surrounded by a dust shrub brush that provides you the best dust collection in the industry. To make it even better, it also sweeps the cut on its return. The unique carriage design allows for the use of many different tools besides the saw. This makes it safe and effective.  Frame wheels are attached to the factory that allows you to position the frame easily. Once in position and the frame is tilted back, the wheels’ weight prevents the frame from moving accidentally. A trigger lock is used to rip cut, so you don’t have to pay three times as much for a proprietary replacement saw. This model is an excellent addition for small projects with very minimal set-up times.                                                                      

Summary of top features 

  • 15 Amp motor saw with 7.25 inches’ blade.
  • Steel sealed bearing system
  • Patented ‘set and forget’ Accu-square alignment system 
  • Saw cord holder

Advantages 

  • Carriage movement is easy and precise.
  • You get to use an optional router.
  • Easily handles large five by eight sheets for unlimited rip cut and 64 inches’ cross-cut.

Disadvantage

None

  • Safety Speed Cut H5 Vertical Panel Saw

This model, filled with greatness, offers a full-sized vertical panel saw productivity. The unit cuts within 1/32 inches on a wide variety of panel materials and up to 1 and ¾ inches thick. With a decent blade, you can make the cross and rip cuts to your satisfaction. It has a heavy motor on it and the newer nylon bearings that make it a complete set-up. It’s a phenomenal machine for the kind of work or project you intend to undertake. Yet another industry that offers everything without bankrupting yourself.  

The Milwaukee motor is three and a quarter horsepower designed with ergonomic handles for easy operation. Woodworkers like easy and fast machines that can complete their projects in the least amount of time and this model is not an exception. Adjustable measuring indicators make the precision cuts so much straightforward, and it does not allow inaccuracy. This model is another phenomenal model that is out of this world.

Summary of top features

  • Thin material pressure guard
  • Heavy-duty counterbalance 
  • Patented graphite nylon rolling bearing
  • 15-amp engine

Advantages 

  • Has a corded electric power source
  • Easily portable from site to site
  • Comes with a lifetime frame warranty

Disadvantage 

  • This model does not include wheels for easy movements. 

  • Safety Speed Manufacturing SR5U Vertical Panel Saw/Router Combination

This panel saw is one that you are likely to find at lumberyards and home centers. They are commonly used to cut sheet goods just like you did before, just in a different way. If you think all this machine can do is cross-cut sheets of plywood, you are very wrong. It is a very versatile design since dozens of things the unit can do for you. from cutting the shaft to size accurately plus or minus 64th of an inch to also doing joinery for the router head installed. 

In addition to the saw blade installed in this model, there is also a riving knife just like a table saw would have. This feature increases cut quality and make your work more comfortable whenever you are cutting bi pieces. This machine is comfortably treated like a table saw handling big pieces of plywood. You can also make it work as a big sliding miter saw with a pretty vast capacity. There are several ways that the machine allows you to take advantage of the router and mount it on the machine. It further lets you do many joineries, even on large panels, very quickly and very safely. 

As you have seen, the vertical saw and the router’s combination adds a lot of versatility to a shop. When you look around, you will find everyone is using them as a great way of stepping right into technology advancement. 

Summary of top features

  • Equipped with the three horsepower worm drive motor
  • Two thumbscrews allow quick change of the heavy-duty router.
  • A 3 and ¼ horsepower router motor and aluminum material rollers

Advantages 

  • Has the capability to be portable and transported to the job site.
  • This model makes quick work of both vertical and horizontal sizing of panels.
  • Multiple stops and clamps give you accurate repeatability. 
  • Perfect for multiple applications.

Disadvantage

  • It is expensive

  • Saw Trax C52VP Compact 52 Varsity Package Panel Saw

Saw Trax manufacturers design their machines in such a way that they stand out and compete with very few. Their Accu-glide bearing system and an Accu-square alignment system are well thought of designs that offer precision. This combination of excellent features also produces a smooth operation and the cleanest, most precise cuts possible. Another outstanding feature is that it uses a floating router plate or razor knife cutter in the same carriage. This saw is perfect for space-restricted shops or for taking to the job site.

The model is a smaller type of a panel saw but is packed with many of a larger panel’s capabilities into a smaller, more space-efficient frame. The compact has 52 inches cross-cut and offers unlimited rip cut into either direction. This unit comes with the folding stand and wheels, dual rip gauge, stops bar and tapes, and dust brush.

Summary of top features 

  • Set and forget the patented Accu-square alignment system
  • Folding stand and frame wheels included
  • Sealed bearing system that makes carriage movement easy and precise

Advantages 

  • Has a great performance 
  • Trendy model 
  • Engineered in steel material 
  • Excellent customer service

Disadvantage

  • High price tag

 

  • Saw Trax 1064 Full-Size Panel Saw

Welcome to cutting at the highest production and accuracy available, completely assembled, and factory aligned. The model 1064 is powered by a remarkable horsepower with an overall weight of 336 pounds. It makes it even more comfortable to maneuver from place to place due to the wheel’s feature. Rip pointers are used for the fast and easy setting of the rip cuts in either direction. Left and right tapes are included along with the stop and a stopper. The stopper can be used for cutting strips in the center of the machine. It can also be used on an optional mid fence. 

The carriage uses a quick-release mechanism so you can remove one tool and insert another, saving you time. A customer that needs to break down sheet goods that are less than one and ¾ inches thick can comfortably do that with this model. The folding stand is easy to close and fold as a ladder, and it provides complete stability while in operation. 

Summary of top features

  • Dust collection hook up
  • Consists of a folding stand
  • Transport wheels are included
  • A vertical and horizontal measuring system
  • Sealed roller bearing system

Advantages

  • Has a patented Accu-square alignment system
  • Portable and capable
  • Carriage movement is easy and precise.

Disadvantage

  • This model has no clear warranty information so far.

  •  15 Amp 8-1/4 in. Panel Saw

This Milwaukee model is one of the most popular panels saw today for several excellent reasons. It has been constructed with a steel body, and it is very lightweight. This unit’s accuracy is top of its class, and it will be impressive to you with its weight. The saw is designed with an incredibly smooth movement whenever it is cutting. There is nothing that is a good as a smooth and accurate cut when it comes to a woodworkers’ project.

Other panels saws in the market today; you may tend to think that it is just like the rest. It has a unique all-steel welded construction, and a 15 amp 3 ¼ inch saw blade. We cannot forget to mention the ergonomic horizontal handle, which makes it exceptionally easy to use. Additionally, it provides impressive cuts and accurate ones. 

Summary of top features 

  • Ergonomic handles 
  • Industrial duty saw
  • All steel construction 

Advantages 

  • Easy to use
  • Affordable 

Disadvantage 

  • Has got no warranty information. 

  • Saw Trax C52C Compact 52 Classic Vertical Panel Saw

The C52C model from saw Trax is one of the most compact and affordable panel saws in the market. Based on customer feedback and individual years of woodworking experience, the company decided to make a more affordable panel saw that comprises the features demanded by professional woodworkers. They succeeded in the mission with this supermodel. 

While most manufacturers offer the saw attached to their frame, saw Trax asked Makita for this version of the tool. The frame itself features an exclusive steel sealed bearing that makes carriage movement easy and precise. It ensures perfect alignment that never used to be perfected before. The unit comes with a folding stand and wheels, dual rip gauge, stops bar and tapes, and dust brush. 

Summary of top features 

  • Compact 64 inches’ cross cut
  • Folding stand and wheels
  • Dust brush

Advantages 

  • Easily portable 
  • Weighs only 236 pounds

Disadvantage

None 

 

  Best panel Saw for Woodworking buyers guide.

 

Having gone through the best panel saw for woodworking, it is now possible to consider what you need to consider when you walk into that shop to make a purchase.

Portability 

Transport wheels allow you to maneuver what is a pretty bulky piece of kit should you need to. The possibility of the panel being transferred from one job site to the other saves you time and money. Some of the equipment does not come with a feature that allows easy movement, and it can be pretty annoying considering its weight. Yes, we agree that panel saws are portable, but they need to be engineered with a movement aid like wheels. 

Bearing mechanism 

The bearing makes work happen with the tool by allowing smooth carriage movements. Two bearing systems are actual bearing with panels saw using real sealed bearing and a low cow cost U bolt. They both give you a light touch and a great feel. For the U bolt, there are nylon rings around the U. the rings are squeezed between the guide tubes and the bolt at the same time as the rings roll the carriage moves on the guide tubes. The system uses friction to flow, and the tighter you get the tolerance to play, the harder it becomes to move the carriage. This can easily cause a tradeoff of ease of movement and accuracy of cut.  For the real deal, the saw Trax company make their panel saws that way. A carriage corner carries three sealed bearings for a total of 12 sealed bearings. The arrangement has two bearings on top to carry the weight and one bearing at the bottom to load the top bearings. Both of these mechanisms give you accuracy and ease of movement during a cut. 

Material support

Material support ensures the piece of the material stays in place as the carriage moves for a cut. It applies when cutting full-size sheets on the full-size machine. You will realize that some brands use 18 material rollers and a center step as a support system. Others use 14 rollers where 12 of the center rollers need to be kept in alignment since they can move up and down. 

Dust collection system 

A dust collection system is an essential feature for any woodworking tool out there. You cannot be working in your workshop on an open job site and have it messy all the time. We all agree it can put you off even just having the particles circulating in the air. Some of the models are designed with a dust brush surrounding the saw blade with a hose attached for extraction. Other brands have a vinyl tube that is continuously adjusted to rest on the different thickness that comes with the material. Never go for any woodworking power tool which has no dust extraction solution. This is mainly important because of a person’s health. Always do your best to avoid injuries at the job site.

Quick change

The quick-change feature enables a woodworker to switch from cross-cut to rip cuts. The panel saw has been designed to cut large pieces of material either horizontally or vertically. This should be done by changing between the two modes without having to disassemble the carriage. If you focus on these factors, you will eventually realize that the best saws have a rotating center that lets you switch between horizontal and vertical design. 

Accuracy 

We are focusing mainly on cutting accuracy. Without it, the panel saws use is of no good. You are better off with other types of saws instead. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that the equipment maintains the cutting accuracy year in year out. The manufacturers should guarantee you the accuracy of the saw cutting and not just some parts of the panel.

Space

For any powered panel, you need to have space for set up. The availability of space is not only for the equipment but also for the pieces of wood that will be cut. No one wants to be turning a board around, and something hits them mid-way. It does not take up so much space; therefore, give it the required space for sufficient work to take place and beat your project deadline. Remember, you have to create space before making the purchase.   

 

Conclusion 

When it comes to woodworking tools, power saws always top the list. They are increasingly popular alternatives compared to the traditional saws. Operator safety and ease of use are always guaranteed whenever you use the machine. Some panel saws have additional features such as electronic digital readouts that make the equipment setting easier. The knowledge on panel saws that you have acquired throughout this article is enough to give you an idea of what will work best.  Make that purchase and make your work easier. If you still doubt the information you have, read again. It does not matter how much money you have because you will get one that suits your pocket, depending on the manufacturer.