Festool circular-type Track Saws come in both cordless and corded versions. The corded models are available in two sizes; battery powered saws in one size.
This TSC 55 REB Plus-XL-FS is a cordless model, and is the one to buy if you want a cordless saw, and don't already own any Festool batteries or Guide Rails. Think of this model as the "Starter Kit" for a cordless circular saw with the remarkable Guide Rail option.
All Festool Track and Plunge-Cut saws can be used like a standard circular saw, but they really come into their own when used with a non-slip "Guide Rail" track — which simply lies on the work surface and provides a precision cut-line without having to use clamps or scribe lines.
As explained below, these "plunge-cut" circular saws have a number of significant performance and safety features that set them well apart from the circular saws you are used to. Read on...
Festool, approaches their cordless tools a bit differently than others. They demand the same performance from all their tools, regardless of whether or not they have a power cord.
Most significantly, and unlike their competition, Festool's cordless saws power the blade at the same 5200 rpm as their AC powered corded model - for the same high quality cut.
The TSC 55 has two battery docks, and can run on either a single 18V, 2.5 Ah battery or two 18V batteries at 36 volts. Running at 36 volts will provide twice the run time, highest blade rpm, and more blade torque.
This "FS" model of the TSC 55 saw includes a 55" Guide Rail with an integral splinterguard for laser-straight, splinter-free cuts in seconds. Simply lay the Guide Rail between two marked points, and you automatically have your line — it's really that simple. No more struggling with using a 7" Speed Square to make 48" straight cuts.
Unlike a fence, which produces a cut that is still liable to wandering due to inattention, excessive reach, or defects in the cutting surfaces, what makes the Guide Rail system truly unique is that a groove in the saw's table engages a rib on the Guide Rail, coupling the saw to the track for an absolutely wiggle-free, precise cut.
The saw slides on top of the Guide Rail, which has a non-skid backing that grips even smooth surfaces, preventing movement while cutting. This saves significant set-up time, as it eliminates the need to scribe cut lines. It also protects the workpiece surface from damage, as the moving saw does not slide on the actual work surface.
The Guide Rail also incorporates special strips on its upper surface to reduce friction between the Guide Rail and the saw for easier, more fluid cutting. The 55" Guide Rail can be used on materials up to 49" wide. Several Guide Rails can be spliced together for longer cuts.
• Cordless mobility and convenience
• Allows you to replace large, stationary equipment with this incredibly precise, handheld track saw system
• Laser-straight, splinter-free cuts in seconds using the Guide Rail
• Makes the actual cut right on the edge of the scribe line - even on bevel cuts
• Precision adjustment scales for both depth (0 - 2-1/8") and angle of cut
• Zips through 100 meters (nearly 1000 ft) of sheet goods on a single charge
• Spring-loaded saw base keeps the blade retracted (whether spinning or not) unless you are actually making a cut - a significant safety feature; see below
• Plunge-cut action allows saw placement anywhere on the cut line for straight-in cuts, or for making cut-outs
• Splinterguards on both sides of the blade ensure zero tear-outs in virtually any material, on both straight and bevel cuts - for significantly reduced material waste
• Variable, step-less speed adjustment allows you to match the speed of the saw to the material. Electronic controller ensures smooth, jolt-free startup and maintains consistent speed under load - improving cut performance and protecting the motor from thermal and current overload
• Flush housing face allows making cuts as close as 1/2" to a vertical surface, like a wall
• Limit Stop (included) - provides a secure, positive stop for starting or ending a cut
• Spring-loaded riving knife (splitter) keeps the cut kerf open so that the material does not pinch the blade, as can happen on a table saw. This reduces the chance of kickback
• Blade changes are easier and safer using the FastFix system which locks switch and arbor simultaneously for easy arbor bolt removal
• Rotating dust port allows you to direct dust away from the saw, user, and material, or attach the dust collection bag (included), or even hook up to a powered dust collector
• Triple motor bearings improve smoothness of cutting action and extend service life
• Light weight reduces fatigue
• Powered by one or two 18V/5.2 Ah lithium ion batteries (included)
• Includes two battery chargers so you can recharge both batteries simultaneously
This product includes the TSC 55 Saw, 6-1/4" 48-tooth carbide blade, two lithium ion 18V batteries, two battery chargers, outside splinterguard, rail-mounted limit stop, and premium carrying case; plus a dust & chip collection bag and a 55" Guide Rail.
Fisheries offers this saw in other configurations with or without batteries; see Related Products, below.
• 3-year limited warranty - one of the strongest in the industry
Heavy on the technical side...
One of the major benefits of Festool Track Saws is their ability to safely and conveniently handle the cutting of large lumber and sheet goods - plywood, counter-tops, etc.
While table saws are an option for these tasks, having to maneuver and support a large, heavy joist or panel can be difficult, and sometimes dangerous.
A circular saw, with its easy maneuverability, is another option, but suffers the disadvantages of inaccuracy and poor cut quality.
A Festool Track Saw using a Guide Rail offers the best of both these options - easy maneuverability and superb cut quality - in a single, easy to use and incredibly safe package.
With features such as consistently high rpm, dual Splinterguards, riving knives, and incredible track accuracy — cuts are smooth and splinter-free and accurate. The work can stay stationary and fully supported while you simply push the saw along the track. Make your choice of straight, tapered, or mitered cuts. Add the ability to bring this power and accuracy out to the job site, and it’s no wonder that Festool Tack Saws are often described as their owners’ most valuable tool.
Significant Safety Features of Festool Track Saws
No blade guard to operate or get in your way — the entire blade retacts into the housing for safety.
Unlike other circular saws, the spring-loaded bench (base) of the Track Saw is normally locked with the blade in the retracted position - even when the power trigger is depressed, and the blade is spinning - until you start to make your cut.
When you're done with a cut and lift the saw, the blade automatically retracts back into the housing. This greatly reduces the chance of accidents due to a still spinning blade - particularly at the end of a cut when you normally lift the saw off the work surface and set it down somewhere - perhaps back down on the work surface, or just let it swing down next to your thigh. You're cringing, right? But we've all done that at one time or another during a moment of distraction or inattention.
Those of you who have disabled that pesky swinging blade guard on your current saw - because it keeps snagging when you try to start a cut on thinner material - will especially appreciate this feature.
To lower/expose the blade - before or after starting the saw - you must press a release tab with your thumb and gently push the saw down against the work surface. It is this pressure on the work surface during the cut that keeps the blade exposed. This same feature is what allows you to make precision plunge cuts - because you can exactly line up the saw on the cut line before you start the blade.
If you ease up on the pressure, lift, or even drop the saw - the saw bench immdeiately snaps down, retracting the blade.
Decoding the Model Name — TSC 55 REB XL-FS
TS = Tauchsage (German for Plunge Saw)
55 = 55 mm (2.17") depth of cut (off rail)
R = This is a re-designed/upgraded model
E = Electronics Package (electronics controller) - allows for variable speed, constant speed under increasing load, thermal protection, etc.
B = Battery powered - cordless
FS = FuhrungSchneine (guide rail/track)