Attachments for circular saw: a brief description, device, principle of operation, photos
Everyone who at least once worked with a manual circular saw knows how difficult it is to make a clear and straight cut with it. Many people solve this problem with the simplest devices, such as a strip of plywood or plastic, which is attached to the surface with clamps. However, it is much more convenient to use a special guide rail for this purpose.
Such a device is very rarely included with a handheld circular saw, and in stores it is offered at a price often comparable to the cost of the saw itself. It seems strange, because it is not complicated in design. If you have the necessary materials, it is possible to make the guide bar yourself, which we will tell you about in this article.
What is it?
Basically, a guide rail is a rail that allows a handheld circular saw to slide back and forth while keeping the tool from deviating from the cutting line. But a properly designed guide not only ensures a straight cut, it also reduces chipping where the saw blade touches the material.
Homemade guide rails have different designs and are made of different materials. For example:
- plywood rail;
- rail and guide jigsaws made from angles;
- rail made of aluminum profile;
- A ruler made from a construction rule;
- outrigger carriage on bearings.
The chair and outrigger carriage are the most difficult to make. A plywood guide or profile rail is much simpler structurally, but this does not mean that a cut with it is of poorer quality. The difference between these varieties is mostly in the ease of use.
The usual parallel stop for the circular saw is a good example of how a small addition can be very useful. Virtually every hand-held circular saw is equipped with a parallel stop for making a longitudinal cut of a given width. This is a really useful tool.
The standard stop has one disadvantage. For safety purposes, it should be set to a size that makes it possible to make cuts less than 20-25mm wide. It is made so that the stop does not interfere with movement of the saw’s blade guard. But simply attach a wooden block to the parallel bar of the standard stop with self-drilling screws, and its capabilities will be increased, while the minimum width of cut will not be limited in any way.
Note! Keep in mind the safety. if you make cuts less than 15 mm, the guide bar does not allow the blade guard to cover the saw blade.
Cross-cutting and corner-cutting stop
A cross-cutting tool is also often used. It makes quick and precise 90° cuts in planks. This stop is also used for cross-cutting boards. Based on 10 mm thick plywood. Fasten the guide bar or rail at least 20mm high on it with glue or self-tapping screws. On the underside of the base, a stop is attached that is perpendicular to the guide and is made from a similar bar.
Cut off unwanted part of the base (from the guide to the saw blade). As this distance is different for each manual circular saw model, so the device is always made individually. It is usually screwed to the material by clamps.
Advanced craftsmen make their fixing devices from wooden washers, one of which is shaped like an eccentric. Clamping is carried out with a wing nut on the screw. Such clamping device allows very fast fast fastening of the stop on the different width of the lumber.
If on the other side of the guide set the same bar, but fixed at an angle of 45 ° to the first, and then cut off part of the base under 45 ° with the saw, you get angular universal stop for cuts and under 45 °, and under 90 °. A more versatile angle stop design is obtained if it allows for bar rotation. And the angle can be monitored by the transporter attached to the top. It should be noted that making a protractor for a circular saw with your own hands is a more difficult task.
Making at home
The main thing is to maintain the geometry. The base can be:
A serious disadvantage of wooden and pressed tires is their sensitivity to moisture.
Option 1. A laminate rail.
- Use the ruler to cut two pieces of material of equal length.
- Mill one edge at a time.
- Fasten to the base (also made of laminate) with self-tapping screws.
- Check the width of the groove using an A4 sheet of paper with a thickness of about 0.11mm: insert the paper into the device and screw it on.
- The guide bar is fastened to the circular saw’s sole with the side stop mount. You can drill a hole in the housing if the warranty period has expired.
- The guide bar is extended as far as possible in front of the hand circular saw. The nose of the sole a few centimeters should overlap the guide. Using the laminate saw blade, saw off the edges of the guide so that they are flush with the marking.
This will absorb the depth of cut (about 1.5 cm), but such a device is convenient and easy to make.
Option 2. The base is a construction rule. The model with handles moving along the groove is suitable.
- Handles can be removed, and softly fixed spring-loaded clamps can be used instead. Models with removable tops are suitable. After removing the upper part, the clamping base is fixed to the ruler with an adapter.
- Adaptors are made of polypropylene on a milling machine. The result should be parts that resemble the letter “T” in the cut. They are firmly inserted into the groove for the handles.
- Holes are drilled in the “leg” of the adapters and screwed on with screws.
- The guide bar is placed with the groove down on the plate and firmly clamped from underneath. No parts braking the circular saw from above. The only limitation in the work is the length of the rule.
Variant 3. In order to get a precise cut, you need to have a perfectly straight edge at the base of the tool against the guide. Professional tools with molded soles differ in this feature, but inexpensive stamped bases do not have this property. Therefore, we suggest the rail option. The tool can slide along it without bumping into the guide rail. At the same time the effort required for pushing the saw is considerably reduced. The rail can be made of aluminum U-profile. Two pieces with different cross sections are needed. The smaller profile is inserted into the larger one without any gap, but it must be possible to move freely.
The guide rail can now be made by hand:
- The plywood is screwed to the rail with a larger diameter. The heads of the screws and self-tapping screws are ground so that they can be hidden flush.
- On both sides of the rail, tightly press plywood strips 0 and also fasten them with self-tapping screws. Plywood can be replaced by chipboard.
You cut off the extra wide bars and the rail is done.
Prepare a hand saw:
- Small profile is inserted into the rail, the height of the “feet” is removed so that the profile fits flush.
- Secure the cut profile parallel to the saw’s disc on the base plate. A pair of M 4 wing screws is used for this purpose. If the circular saw’s platform is flat and of good quality, its edge can be adhered to.
- Place the hand saw on the guide rail with the profile. Turn on the tool and saw off the excess width of the bar.
For a perfect cut, the rail edge is overlaid on the marking and the guide is clamped. The saw moves smoothly with the guide rail, does not wobble, cuts precisely and feeds easily.
Stop for cross cuts and corner cuts
A cross-cutting fixture is also often used. With it, boards are cut quickly and accurately at a 90° angle. Such a stop is also used for facing boards. Its base is a sheet of plywood 10 mm thick. On it with glue or self-tapping screws fasten a guide bar or rail of at least 20 mm in height. On the underside of the base, a stop perpendicular to the guide bar is fastened, made of the same bar.
The excess part of the base (from the guide to the saw blade) is cut off. As this distance varies for each model of manual circular saw, so the device is always made individually. It is usually fastened to the material to be worked, using clamps.
Advanced craftsmen make their fixing devices from wooden washers, one of which is shaped like an eccentric. Clamping is carried out by a wing nut on a screw. This clamping device makes it possible to fasten the stop on lumber of different widths very quickly.
If on the other side of the guide set the same bar, but fixed at an angle of 45 ° to the first, and then cut off the saw part of the base under 45 °, you get angular universal stop for cuts and under 45 °, and 90 °. A more versatile design of the angular stop will turn out in the case of ensuring the rotation of the bar. And you can keep an eye on the angle on the overhead conveyor. It should be noted that making a protractor for a circular saw with your own hands is a more difficult task.
How to make a guide for a hand saw and cut boards evenly like a stationary circular saw
It is not so easy to make a straight cut with a hand circular saw. Because of the heterogeneity of the wood and for other reasons, the saw always tends to go sideways. Of course, you can buy a guide bar in the store, but the factory branded product is comparable in price to the saw itself. As a beginner in carpentry and metalwork, you can make this helpful addition to your tool yourself.
- Manual circular saw;
- aluminum channel;
- screws, bolts, nuts and washers;
- aluminum plate;
- double-sided adhesive tape;
- A roll of sandpaper.
The process of making a guide rail for a manual circular saw
Using a stationary circular saw make longitudinal and cross cuts of the laminate to obtain the billets for the base of the guide rail.
Join the two laminate boards lengthwise by tapping the joint with a mallet and fill the back side with quick-drying glue.
Sand the surfaces of the workpieces with an emery on a round holder and wipe them with a cloth.
Apply glue to the back surface of the narrow laminate planks, press the aluminum channel to the base along the length as a stop and glue the narrow plank to the base along the aluminum channel.
Drill holes of the same type in the back of the aluminum channel at regular intervals, boring them from the inside for the screw heads, and deburring the outer side with sandpaper.
Lay the aluminum channel along the narrow strip glued to the base with a guaranteed clearance, using two pieces of aluminum channel of the appropriate size.
Apply glue to the contact area between the aluminum channel and the laminate base, and press the channel so that the stops will slide freely along the guide rail.
Secure the guide rail with screws through the holes in the back of the channel to the base.
Grind the ends of the screws on the back side of the base with a hand grinder.
Fix the narrow strip with screws along its length, screwing them into the laminate base. Grind down the screw tips with a hand grinder on the reverse side as well.
Cut to size an aluminum channel, similar to the guide rail. Based on its dimensions, we make two parts out of aluminum strip, bent closer to one end twice at right angles. Roughen the places of curvature with a hand file.
Mark the large sides of the bent plates and cut along the edges along the entire length of the strip. Deburr and round off the edges.
Make two holes each in the base of the slats.
Round the corners of a piece of aluminum channel. Glue the aluminum curved strips to the aluminum channel, referring to the attachment nodes on the hand-held circular saw.
Drill holes in the aluminum channel to match the holes in the curved strips. Fasten them with bolts, nuts and washers, placing the bolt heads inside the channel.
Put long ends of curved strips in mounting nodes on circular saw and tighten wing-nuts. The channel must fit tightly on the side of the circular saw’s working base.
Put the end of the channel on the circular saw into the groove of the guide rail and cut off the strip from the base, so that its width equals the width of the working base of the saw. Finish off the other sides of our fixture.
Grind once more with an emery cloth, remove material particles with a brush, wipe the base of the device with a damp napkin.
Apply strips of double-sided adhesive tape to the clean surface of the base along the length. Measure out the width of the base with a roll of coarse-grained sandpaper and tear off the excess across the width.
Remove the protective film from the tape and glue a strip of sandpaper with the grit outward. Cut the ends to the size of the length of the base.
Rub the contact surface of the guide rail and the laminate base with wax candle and our device is completely ready for use.
Circular saw guide line, making
The simplest version of a guide rail for cutting large sheets is shown in picture 3.
A sheet of plywood with even factory edges, which is prepared for making the cabinet yourself, can be used to make a guide rail. For this purpose it is necessary to cut off a strip from it equal to the maximum width of the circular saw in the plan, plus 20 cm. The length, L, of this sheet should be slightly longer than the maximum length of the material from which the furniture is planned to be made.
Guide rail for circular saw. it can be made from improvised means by sawing a flat sheet of particle board or beadboard.
Having departed from the factory edge (consider that it fits, as perfectly flat) on the cut piece of plywood 5-7 cm, we cut a strip. This will be the ruler, along which the bed of the manual circular saw must move. The remaining piece of cut plywood will serve as a base, on which the ruler will be fixed. Along the ruler, leaning on it, move the saw while cutting.
It is very important that the height of the ruler is at least equal to the thickness of the arm, but no more than the distance to the motor.
Now you need to fix the ruler to the base. It is fixed at a distance of 10 cm from the edge or less, but sufficient for the use of clamps.
A very important fixing point: the factory edge must face the side where the cut will be made. The guide is glued to the base and additionally fastened with screws.
The final stage of manufacturing is to remove the excess part of the base. This is performed using the same saw, for which this entire structure was constructed. The removal process is shown in Fig. 4. The resulting edge on the base will be as even along its entire length as the factory edge of the plywood on the ruler.
The design of the circular saw guide takes into account the peculiarities of the main elements of the tool. This is primarily the design of the base of the bed, the presence of slots and guides on it, the specifics of the motor mounting on the bed, additional devices. The latter includes a ruler, stops, retainers, and a radius and curvilinear sawing device. In addition, the features include devices that allow you to work not only on the horizontal plane, but also on the vertical.
When it comes to buying a brand-name device, first of all, you need to assess how necessary a guide in your home arsenal. If it is a matter of permanent use, here it is recommended to look at the guide with the richest equipment with all bolts, clamps, protractor and ruler. For occasional use you can buy a basic set with a minimum of functions.
When choosing a circular saw you must also assess the characteristics of the circular saw itself. the diameter of the saw blade, motor power, the size of the platform and its functionality. From a practical point of view, it is necessary to evaluate the possibility of working with different materials with the circular saw. wood boards, planks, furniture board. Here it is important to choose correctly the length and width of the guide so that it is longer than the workpiece by 2 lengths of the sole.
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Before you start making a guide bar for your handheld circular saw, you should determine the nuances of its use:
- mode of operation. The more often you will use your saw, the sturdier and higher quality the materials from which the guide is made. Otherwise, the friction inherent in the work will cause it to wear and reduce the accuracy of the cut;
- Types of material. If wood is very thick, make sure the saw blade can completely cut through it. For example plywood or aluminum profile rail described in this article reduces the depth of cut by the thickness of the material from which the rail is made;
- the technical capabilities of the tool. These include: maximum blade diameter; slitting and crosscutting capability; pivoting platform to allow you to saw at an angle.
Remember that the accuracy of the cut does not only depend on the quality of the guide bar. It is also affected by the condition of the tool. Make sure that the saw’s support platform is always firmly fixed and stationary in relation to the body. In addition, do not forget to change or sharpen the saw blade in time. Dulled saw blade teeth leave many splinters on the cutting edge as they work.
Using a guide bar with a hand saw greatly expands its area of application. And the ability to use such a device not only with a saw, but also with a jigsaw or hand router, increases its value even more.
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The process of making a circular saw guide
As for the size of the proposed guide design, it is selected individually for the depth of cut of the existing saw, as well as those workpieces that will be further processed.
Plywood sheet is used for the table top. Its length can be whatever you want. The width can be made 35 cm, which will be convenient for the vast majority of circular saws. After 10 cm from the long edge of the plywood, you need to draw a line for mounting the profile with a T-slot.It is desirable that the profile was shorter than the actual length of the table top, which will make it easier to store the machine in the future. Profile must be put into the groove. It is most convenient to choose it with a hand router by setting a parallel stop. When working with plywood it is better to go deeper gradually, making a selection in several passes.
Profile with a T-slot is pressed into the obtained flush slot. It is fastened with self-tapping screws along its entire length.
For the direct guide for the power tool itself, you can find a corner, but it often has the same sides, which is not very convenient. It is much better to buy a channel and saw it lengthwise to get two nice angles with a low edge.
Now we need to make the stops for the rail. For this purpose, you should take 2 boards with a section of 30 mm, the length corresponding to the width of the plywood table top. In this case they are 35 cm long. As for the width of the boards, it must be equal to the actual depth of cut of the circular saw plus 8 mm. Align the boards together and mark 7 cm from the edge. From this line the length corresponding to the width of the saw blade is measured. The second mark is put a little wider, taking into account the thickness of the walls of the angle and a gap of 1 mm.
Clamping the boards in a vise you need to saw everything along the marked lines with a hacksaw to a depth of 1 cm, then select the groove.
Now it is necessary to fasten the boards to the table top. To do this, they are first glued and then pulled up with screws. Note that the second board is fixed at the end of the profile with a T-slot, not the plywood. Before gluing it, you need to put a T-bolt in the profile
On the uprights, made of boards, you need to fix the channels right into the grooves, thereby adding stiffness. For the design to be collapsible, it is better not to screw the screws into the wood, and install a furniture dowel and subsequently use a screw.
It is also possible to move the slides of the guide so that it is possible to use it for the router. You will need to make a couple more holes and put furniture dowels.
The second design solution
The following handmade design of the parallel stop for circular saws can be applied to any table, with or without slots on it. The suggested dimensions in the drawings refer to a certain type of circular saws, can be modified proportionally, depending on the parameters of the table and the brand of the circular saw.
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Prepare a 700 mm long rail from the angle indicated at the beginning of the article. On both ends of the angle, at the ends, drilled two holes for thread M5. Every hole is threaded with a special tool (tap).
According to the drawing below, two rails are made of metal. To do this, take a steel equal-sided angle of 20×20 mm. Turned and trimmed according to the dimensions in the drawing. On the larger strip of each guide are marked and drilled two holes with diameter of 5 mm: in the upper part of the guides and one more in the middle of the lower one for M5 threads. Thread is tapped in the tapped holes.
Guides are ready and are fixed on both faces with bolts M5x25 with hexagonal head or standard bolts M5x25 with hexagonal head. M5x25 screws with any head are screwed into the threaded holes in the guides.
- the screws in the tapped holes of the end guides are released;
- the rail is moved from the angle to the required cutting size for the job;
- The chosen position is fixed by tightening the screws in the tapped holes of the end guides.
the stop rail moves along the end planes of the table, perpendicular to the plane of the circular saw blade. the guides on the ends of the angle of the parallel stop allow to move it without infringement relative to the sawing disk.
To visually control the position of the homemade parallel stop, on the plane of the circular table there is drawn a marking.
About how to make a parallel stop for the homemade circular table, see the following video.
It is hard to imagine a joinery workshop without circular saw, as the most basic and widespread operation is exactly longitudinal sawing of blanks. How to make a homemade circular saw will be discussed in this article.
This is already quite a complicated device, requiring time and precision in the making. It enables sawing parallel with the edge of the material to be cut. It will be useful to make a drawing before starting work, so as not to miss the dimensions. Actually such a stop is included in the set of circular saw, but its short length does not always provide a straight cut. Large size and desired strength requires making the base of the stop with at least 15 mm thick plywood. It can also be used to make a stop bar.
- in the base are made longitudinal slots for dowels;
- Hardwood dowels are mounted on the thrust strip;
- Between the longitudinal grooves another through groove is made to fix the thrust bar during work;
- the hole is cut into the base for the circular saw blade;
- on the sides of the foundation you install the limiters for setting up the circular saw and provide for clamps for fixing it securely.
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When installing the stop on the material to be worked, the stop bar moves in the grooves of the base at the desired distance and is secured through the slot with a clamping thumbscrew. In order not to suffer every time with a ruler, you can fix it (or a piece of tape measure) on the base of the stop along the guide grooves.