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Thread: Cut Formica With A Circular Saw?

  1. #1

    Cut Formica With A Circular Saw?

    I watched a YT and a guy was cutting formica with a circular saw. Can I do that? If so, what kind of blade would I need?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    NW Indiana
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    2,760
    I cut Formica on my table saw with a fine toothed blade. I cut it oversize, apply it and then trim with router bit.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    58,845
    Same answer as Larry but adding that a ZCI is pretty essential. Honestly, I just used whatever blade I had in the saw at the time with no issues.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Location
    San Diego, Ca
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    1,538
    I've cut formica with a sharp fine tooth plywood blade. Perhaps try a practice piece or two. You said circular hand saw, so I'm assuming that it is an upward cut, so put the finished side down. If you get chipout, then try putting a plywood "backer" on top of the formica. Also, putting masking tape on the finished surface (or both) can help with chipout.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Alberta
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    1,966
    This summer I broke down a 5x12 sheet of laminate on my shop floor with my tracksaw with styrafoam under it. Just had the plywood blade in it. Usually cut pieces to rough size on my slider, but this is a two person job and I was working alone.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Escanaba, Michigan
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    43
    Derek, I have cut many sheets of both V-32, and countertop formica with my table saw, using a sharp fine tooth blade like others have said. One think to watch for is that formica does not go under your fence when you are cutting it. I made a jig which I clamped to the fence. It was a piece of 3/4" pine with a cleat attached to the bottom made of 1/8" veneer. This keeps the formica from creeping under the fence. Also, I attached a piece of pine to that to prevent chattering. If you only have a few cuts, and are afraid of chipping you can put blue painters tape over the cut. This minimizes chipping. One other thing to watch for is that your throat plate is the width of the blade.

  7. #7
    Thanks for the help. This will save me a lot of work, scribing the lines with a straight edge and one of those hand laminate "cutters". Haven't worked that hard in years.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Winterville, NC (eastern NC)
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    2,216
    You can cut it with a table or hand held circular saw. But a simpler and quieter way is to get one of the low cost hand held scoring cutters from the big box store. Usually found in the section with the laminate sheets and rollers. Use a straight edge to guide the cut. Takes several passes but saves wear and tear on your blades.

  9. #9
    table saw, circ saw or many times laminate trimmer 1/4" bit free hand to a magic marker line with some care

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Wilkins View Post
    You can cut it with a table or hand held circular saw. But a simpler and quieter way is to get one of the low cost hand held scoring cutters from the big box store. Usually found in the section with the laminate sheets and rollers. Use a straight edge to guide the cut. Takes several passes but saves wear and tear on your blades.
    I did the scoring tool this time, but never again. It really was a pain. I think I'd much rather run a circular saw over it with a straight edge.

  11. #11
    I rough out the Formica using a track saw with carbide blade. Same on the table saw.
    "Anything seems possible when you don't know what you're doing."

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
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    6,096
    I keep a thin aluminum angle to put against the table saw fence when cutting Formica. It just keeps it from going under the edge of the fence by riding it on top of the angle.

  13. #13
    You could just keep it fully supported. On a table saw take a piece of 1/8” material about the length (or the length) of your fence about 3”-4” wide and rip about 1” down the strip to about an 1-2” at the end then cut it off, (basically an “L” shape) put the long edge against the fence and the tab under and in front of the fence ( this keeps it from moving forward). This keeps the laminate from slipping under the fence.

    Also you do not need a zci to do this, wouldn’t hurt but absolutely not needed, i have cut hundreds of sheets of laminate this way even 10’x 5’ sheets (although I wouldn’t recommend that on your first go)

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