This protects the fragile edge until you bevel it slightly with fine sandpaper. Here's where you fine-tune the cut. The deeper you set your saw blade, the more marks you get. With Kreg Rip-Cut Circular Saw Track System you can cut any width up to 24 inches. Make … It also ensures that the cutoff piece won't splinter, break or fall off as you finish the cut. Generally it's better to let the wide side of the base shoe rest on the guide side of the cut for maximum stability and a smoother cut. We are no longer supporting IE (Internet Explorer) as we strive to provide site experiences for browsers that support new web standards and security practices. Circular saws can be tricky to handle on plywood. Then start the saw, push the base plate against the guide and just nick the plywood. Be sure the blade is spinning before you touch the plywood; otherwise you'll splinter the edge. Remember to allow for the thickness of the saw blade. The system works well for both rip cuts (parallel to the grain) and crosscuts (perpendicular to the grain). Just remember to start the saw at the top of the wall and cut down. Please review Disclaimer and Terms of Service, No Tablesaw? Full support means that the cut-off piece won't splinter and fall when you reach the end of the cut. Finally, be sure to keep the saw going all the way through the end of the cut. Take your circular saw and place the base tightly up against the factory edge of the top guide and carefully cut off the excess from the bottom of the guide.  Blades come in different diameters to match your circular saw, so make sure you get the right one (I've got pictured the blades I have on hand and they are too big for this circular saw). If you can't find one at a hardware store or home center, you can get one from Woodworker's Supply. In conclusion, circular saws are great power tools for cutting plywood, but they still have the potential to cause tear-out. When I need a perfect cut with a circular saw, I use a guide. Both factors minimize saw tooth marks. What technique could I employ to help me cut straight lines in my plywood or any board for that matter. plywood. But, I mainly use my circular saw to cut plywood, and the max depth of that is 3/4”. The disadvantage of the 140-tooth plywood blade is that the teeth will dull much faster than the teeth on the three carbide blades. The best tip I can give you is to first upgrade to the right blade. You'll have to include the thickness of the blade in your measurement when the cutoff piece is the “good” piece. We recommend our users to update the browser. The large size and the weight of plywood also makes it difficult to cut a full sheet directly on the table saw. Set the guide the measured distance from the cut line. This is where working on the floor pays off for long cuts. Last weekend, I was helping one of my friends come up with a design for a bed, and she requested to only use off the shelf boards - as in no plywood. Lay 2x4s under the plywood perpendicular to the direction of the cut. Whichever method you choose, it is important to make sure you … Use the right blade, and use it properly. The more stable the plywood, the better your chances for a perfectly smooth cut. But the cord can do you in. (I've had that happen more than once!) Home Tools, Gear & Equipment Tools & Supplies Saws Circular, By the DIY experts of The Family Handyman Magazine. I was so worried that I wouldn't be able to cut all the plywood accurately, but now I'm excited because I think I can probably manage it. blades will make smooth rip cuts (parallel to the grain) in plywood and reasonably good crosscuts. That may seem unnecessarily fussy, but blade depth makes quite a difference in achieving smooth results.  She said cutting boards up to 1x12 width is easy, and easy to do accurately with her miter saw, but cutting plywood is much more difficult. We are no longer supporting IE (Internet Explorer), 9 Ways to Keep Your Dog Active Inside During the Winter, Get Precise Circular Saw Cuts With This Simple Hack, Do Not Sell My Personal Information – CA Residents. The rubber grips on … We show you out seven best tips for making smoother, straighter and more accurate cuts on big sheets of plywood. Nick the wood, then stop the saw and measure to make sure the cut is accurate. wide. So, make sure you have the best face—the one that will show most on your project—facing down as you cut. Step 3: Clamp the straightedge jig to the edge of a workbench, and set your circular saw so the blade will cut through the base. Disclosure: I am very thankful to work with the Kreg Tool Company, and truly love and use their tools, but this post is not sponsored by them. At some point, you may need to make a long, straight, vertical cut into a plywood wall, and the circular saw is the right tool to use. Your saw probably came with a blade designed to make fast, agressive cuts in construction lumber, not splinter-free cuts in sheet goods. But if you are doing alot of plywood or sheet goods ripping with a circular saw, I recommend investing in a saw guide. Measure from the edge of the blade to the edge of the base plate. Remove the tape carefully, pulling it off perpendicular to the cut (photo 2) to avoid peeling off the veneer. The most convenient way to do is is to procure a 1 1/2 inch thick installation About the same size … So, I could go up to 1/2” plywood for the base board of the guide, but that would put me at the limit for cutting depth. Clamp a straightedge to a scrap of lumber for a circular saw rip guide. In addition, the 3/4-in. I keep one in reserve and use it only when I need a fine cut. So always cut plywood with the good side down. And you don't have to bend or stretch into an awkward position. All Rights Reserved. In general, a sharp blade should flow through the wood with little force, as if it's melting the wood away. Also note that a circular saw cuts on the upstroke, which often splinters the top edge (veneer) slightly. You now have a circular saw guide that … You can buy straightedges at home centers and hardware stores, but for long cuts I almost always use the “factory cut” edge on a strip of 3/4-in. This shallow scoring pass (about 1/8 inches) cleanly shears the surface … For one thing, the factory edge is usually perfectly straight (sight along the edge to make sure). Sometimes the saw even comes unplugged. So, for how to cut plywood with a circular saw without splintering: use the right blade, support the fibers along the cut … That assumes that the blade is sharp. Crosscuts, that is, cuts perpendicular to the grain, will splinter the top veneer, even with a sharp blade. If you find yourself pushing against substantial resistance, either you're going too fast or your blade is dull. With this saw it’s difficult to make long and straight cuts without the help of a jig or a guide to keep the saw straight. The process of cutting Plywood using a Jigsaw is almost similar to a Circular Saw. Â. You'll get both blade and burn marks if you let the blade spin in one place, so it's important to keep moving. A blade with bad teeth or wood pitch buildup won't cut cleanly. Certain settings and precautions should be taken to avoid rough edges or blowout. The Kreg® Rip-Cut turns your circular saw into a precision edge-guided cutting tool that makes straight, accurate, repeatable cuts in plywood, MDF, and other large sheets. I was really apprehensive about a job I need to do (built in cupboards and shelves in our lounge) but I'm feeling happier about it now. Mark the desired location of the cut on both ends of the plywood with a pencil. 2 Measure from the edge of the shoe or saw base to the face of the saw blade. With the Rip-Cut, you can cut … More importantly, cross-cutting a sheet into multiple pieces … The tricky part is clamping it in the right spot for an exact cut.  This will help prevent your finished plywood edge from chipping and splintering out. A circular saw, or skill saw, is a common tool used to cut plywood. The simpliest guide is just clamping a long, straight edge to the sheet of plywood, positioned so the foot of your circuclar saw follows the straight edge. Make a straightedge guide from two 48-inch-long pieces of ¼-inch plywood… Make a smooth steady cut, without stopping the entire length. (We made a dark line for photo clarity.) The easiest way for a clean cut with a circular saw is to score the cut line first. I build and share smart, stylish diy projects. Cut the excess plywood along 8 ft. of the 1 x 4's length, trimming the larger side of the plywood. Use a straightedge clamp as a saw guide. A circular saw cuts on the up stroke. thick plywood will lie flat, and it'll stay rigid if you choose a piece that's at least 12 in. Be sure to set enough slack on top of the plywood so you don't get hung up (photo 2). Set the saw along the plywood edge, lift the guard and look closely as you set the depth. How to make a straight cut using a circular saw Let’s say you want to cut two inches off a long piece of wood. Going too slowly may cause the blade to overheat and burn the wood. I've cut a lot of plywood on sawhorses with pretty good results, but when I want really smooth finish cuts on an expensive sheet, I always cut on the floor. In general, the more teeth, the smoother the cut. then run your back edge of your saw up against your top factory edge (as a fence) and cut off any excess of the bottom plywood. The idea of cutting long straight lines with a hand saw may seem odd at first, but it’s actually possible with just a little but of preparation, practice and patience. It is very important to get accurate, straight cuts. Tip: If you have to cut with the good (finished) side up, reduce potential scratches by taping the bottom of the saw base (Photo 1). Run the saw along the edge of the plywood to produce straight cut. As long as they're sharp, any of these four 7-1/4- in. The Accu-Cut should be placed on the “good” side of the mark so that the blade cuts on the “waste” side.  Just make sure you have a very straight edge to work with (a factory cut plywood edge is what I use). It may say something like “plywood” or “finished cuts,” but the real secret is tooth count. This setting lets the teeth shear the wood fiber rather than chop it, and it helps stabilize the blade (less vibration). Copyright 2009-2011 Ana White/Ana White.com. That means the blade enters the wood from below, and exits at the top. No matter what type of Jigsaw you use, cutting a Plywood using it is secure. Spike Carlsen, an editor for The Family Handyman, will show you how to cut construction grade plywood and finish grade plywood with a circular saw in our video tutorial. Simply make your cut in two passes instead of one. Also note that a circular saw cuts on the upstroke, which often splinters the top edge (veneer) slightly. Cutting Plywood with a Hand Saw Buy a good saw. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but the blade that came … Your circular saw can cut just as well as a table saw. Then measure to the edge of the nick to double-check your measurements. Retest until the guide is positioned just right. Remove the tape by pulling it at a 90-degree angle away from the cut edge. Be sure to use a sharp, carbide-tipped blade or plywood-cutting …  In the above photo, I'm cutting into a chalkboard panel with the painted side down. Place the plywood on a set of sawhorses. The bottom edge usually remains … That … The 2x4s will be “sacrificed” just a bit when the blade passes over them, but that won't affect the quality of the cut. I used 1/4″ plywood for my guide too. Set up the work area. Width cuts with out leaving rough edges simply run the circular saw cuts the! The entire length properly orient the sheet as you’re cutting Rip-Cut circular saw and width... The thickness of the base to the cut on both ends to ensure a straight cut on.. 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Tools, Gear & Equipment Tools & Supplies Saws circular, by the diy experts of blade. Saws can be tricky to handle on plywood avoid peeling off the veneer expensive laminate blade ( less )... Cuts and full width cuts with out leaving rough edges or blowout the while... An incredibly easy, precise, and leaves blade marks just make the... As a surprise, but a Jigsaw is almost similar to a circular is! Other blades, pressing a layer of masking tape over the cutting line will splintering. Wood to rip and tear, and exits at the top edge ( veneer ).... Circular Saws center, you will be a lot of cutting plywood using a circular and! Layer of masking tape over the cutting line will reduce splintering disadvantage of the cut edge fiber rather chop. ( photo 2 ) clamp onto the workpiece and then guide the measured distance from the edge of the plywood... The future steady cut, without stopping the entire length result in a smoother cut a. 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