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Thread: Best way to make 18 foot long rip

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
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    Best way to make 18 foot long rip

    The title says it all. I have an 18' long piece of cellular PVC trim I need to accurately rip to width. It is way too long for my shop, so ripping on my slider (right of blade) is out of the question. So, two options, as far as I can see.

    1) Use the horrible little contractor's table saw I have available. My concern is to due to the length and flexibility of the material, it is unlikely to produce a square, consistent cut and that I'll need several people available.

    2) Use my Festool EQ55. I don't own enough track to do this in one shot. Is it feasible to set the track, cut as far a the track reaches, move track and repeat? If I go this route, any warnings or suggestions you can offer to improve my outcome?

  2. #2
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    Just one thought: If you go the track saw route make a jig out of a long piece of straight plywood (or anything else) to register the track against so that it aligns as perfectly as you can get it. -Howard

  3. #3
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    If it already has one straight edge, seems like an ideal job for the track saw. Even easier if you had a set of parallel guides. If you don't, I'd probably an excuse to DIY a set (e.g. https://youtu.be/ZZ81GCNoEz8). Instead of making identical width cuts on two separate pieces, it's two cuts on the same piece.

  4. #4
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    Do you have a router and a template/pattern bit? Using a known straight edge clamped to the PVC, you can "leapfrog" 2-3 times down the length, using the router to cut the edge.
    Timberlight Designs

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa Starr View Post
    ... 2) Use my Festool EQ55....
    There is both a "parallel guide set" for the track, as well as a "parallel guide" for the saw. I'm assuming the earlier reference (above) is to the track guide. The saw guide may be better in this case, if you don't mind the purchase...???

    (Link is just first one to pop up. No affiliation.)
    Last edited by Malcolm McLeod; 06-30-2022 at 11:13 AM.

  6. #6
    What about a router with an edge guide?

  7. #7
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    Can you clamp a piece of wood to the base and make your own Parallel guide.

  8. #8
    What is the application?
    Still waters run deep.

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    I have leap frog-ed my track by cutting as far as I can, then butting a long piece of plywood with a straight edge halfway against the back side of the track so half of the plywood is against the track and half extends toward where you still need to cut. Then moving the track down a few feet, continuing the cut. Then rinse and repeat. It really helps to have a helper to prevent the various parts from moving as you rearrange the plywood and track. It also helps to snap a line the full length as a double check that nothing has moved. I cut the 14 foot top of my fireplace mantle this way (with 8' track) and it worked well, even if it nerve-wracking while in process. Good luck!
    --Certainty is the refuge of a small mind--

  10. #10
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    I ended up making 2 quick and dirty spacers to set the edge of the track. They allowed me to leap frog my way down the length and keep the track set consistently the same. It worked well, thank you for your suggestions. Sometimes I just can't see my way thru a problem until someone starts me down a road.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    What kind of contractor saw do you have? If you have something like the dewalt 749 or similar bosch model, then id use that no problem with a couple roller stands. But if you have a turd saw, then i would avoid that. My next step would be to use my mafell track saw with the parallel guide without the track. Festool has an identical accessory for their saws. My third option would be router with an edge guide.

    Here is the festool accessory. Cheaper than buying a nice contractor/portable saw.
    Festool 491469 Parallel Edge Guide For TS 55 Plunge Cut Saw - Circular Saw Accessories - Amazon.com

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
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    Madison, Wisconsin
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    I once made a 23' long cut for a piece of custom house trim. Used a thin string line to layout and then a track saw to cut to the line. Also did two bevel cuts about 20' long. Worked fine for a house trim application.

  13. #13
    Join Date
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    Toronto Ontario
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    Hi Lisa, can you rip 9 feet on the saw using the fence then flip it and rip the remaining 9 feet?

    Regards, Rod.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
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    Circular saw with a rip fence. Old school and simple. ...If you have a circular saw with a rip fence attachment.

    If you have to use what's on hand, aim your table saw out the door and use roller supports and a feather board. Alternatively, jury-rig a sled for your track saw, made from hardboard, with a fence on the underside. Not sure how to attach it to your festool. Double-sided gorilla tape would probably work.

  15. #15
    Join Date
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    I ended up making 2 quick and dirty spacers to set the edge of the track. They allowed me to leap frog my way down the length and keep the track set consistently the same. It worked well, thank you for your suggestions. Sometimes I just can't see my way thru a problem until someone starts me down a road.
    Yep - exactly how it's done.
    I have an advantage though because I have 2 55" and 1 42" tracks
    I can leap frog them all day long.
    My granddad always said, :As one door closes, another opens".
    Wonderful man, terrible cabinet maker...

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