Tool Test: Makita Cordless Track Saw with Bluetooth - Popular Woodworking Magazine

Tool Test: Makita Cordless Track Saw with Bluetooth

 In Tool Reviews, Woodworking Blogs

Your next cordless power tool could very likely include Bluetooth. The communication protocol has been pushed hard in the consumer tech world for years. So why is the power tool industry adopting Bluetooth? Flexibility.

Makita’s cordless track saw and cordless vacuum both integrate its AWS Bluetooth technology to talk to each other. That means, when you begin your cut with the track saw, the vacuum turns on automatically. I found the system to work well after the first pairing. I did have to pair the duo a second time during a large build and a battery change, but the connection was solid otherwise throughout both days of building. This type of connection could also be made with an RF trigger, but I would speculate that the Bluetooth connection allows for future expandability in their product line and functionality.

As a track saw, it performed wonderfully. The cuts were crisp, and the track stayed exactly where I laid it down. The project I was building was made up of laminated baltic birch plywood, 112” thick. The Makita’s brushless motor (powered by dual 18-volt batteries) didn’t hesitate at all and held its charge throughout the bulk of the project. The track-lock lever was helpful in keeping the saw engaged before and after the cut. Dust collection was better than expected. After making a series of 34″ cuts, I was left with just a dusting on the table –  everything else was captured by the HEPA vacuum.

— David Lyell

XPS01PTJ Plunge Saw Kit


Street price:

$500 (saw kit with two batteries); Cordless HEPA Vacuum XCV07ZX $360; track $85

makita cordless track saw with bluetooth

Makita Cordless Track Saw with Bluetooth

This article appeared in the August 2018 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine.

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Showing 3 comments
  • IrritableBadger

    At the risk of pointing out the obvious, the saw and the vacuum are already connected by an unwieldy corrugated plastic hose and Bluetooth ain’t going to change that.

    On the technical side, if you just absolutely have to have a wireless vacuum switch, RF would have been far superior. Unlike RF, Bluetooth never stops polling for signal, so both Bluetooth radios are constantly sending and receiving and powered by the same batteries running the tools.

    That’s not a great thing when you’ve got a total of four, expensive, batteries being pushed to their limits to begin with.

    I’m sure it’s a fine saw, and the pricing is in line with similar saws, but if you take out the Bluetooth it could have an even better price. This reeks of design by someone you who doesn’t use tools.

    • Chip Sawdust

      Designed by millennials for millennials
      I thought it would maybe measure the length of the cut but perhaps my 60 year old imagination is limited. I’d already have measured the cut ‍♂️

  • jim

    Those prices are ridiculous.

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