TS 55 EQ Circular Saw - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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TS 55 EQ Circular Saw

Festool - TS 55 EQ Circular Saw

The next-generation of Festool's plunge-cut circular saw (model TS 55 EQ) comes with a 55-in. guide rail and cuts up to 2-1/8 in. deep.

$430 (As of 10/15/2006)

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Editor Choice-Best Overall

Editor's Review: A Woodworker's Circular Saw

by Mark Edmundson

review date: October 15, 2006

The Festool TS 55 EQ is a circular saw like no other. With its splinter guard, razor-sharp blade, and well-engineered guide system, the saw makes long, straight cuts—whether on plywood, tabletops, or cabinet doors—extremely accurately, cleanly, and easily, virtually eliminating the need for a larger, more expensive panel saw or sliding tablesaw.

The Festool adds a unique plunge action, opening up a range of other tasks. I work with a lot of cabinet-grade plywood, and while I have a panel-saw attachment for my tablesaw, wrestling the 4x8 sheets onto the carriage without scratching the veneers or throwing out my back is a chore. With the TS 55EQ, I can whittle down large sheets to a manageable size quickly and cleanly.

The key to the saw’s accuracy is the 55-in. guide rail made from extruded aluminum. The base of the saw mates with and slides effortlessly along tracks in the guide rail. You can correct for any slop in the fit by tightening two small cam screws on the saw’s base. Two foam strips under the rail provide a firm footing to hold it in place without clamps, and they protect the wood surface from scratches. Simply align the edge of the rail with the cut line, set the saw on the rail, and make the cut.

The guide rail mates with Festool’s OF 1010 EQ router (with guide rail attachment, No. 488752), making the system even more valuable and versatile. Key features of the saw include a plunge depth stop (metric), a 1-in. and 1-7/16 in. dust port, and a splitter to prevent binding. A splinter guard acts like the zero-clearance insert in a tablesaw to help make splinter-free cuts, even close to the edge of plywood, in stacks of veneer sheets, and on cabinet doors. The controls are easy to reach and the saw is comfortable to use, portable, and stores easily.

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Editor Test Results:

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer Festool
Manufacturer's Web Site www.festoolusa.com
Manufacturer's Phone Number 888-337-8600
Blade Size 48 tooth; 6-1/4 in. dia.
Maximum Depth Cut 1-15/16 in. on guide rail; 2-1/8 in. without rail
Amps 10 amps
Blade Speed Variable, 2,000-5,200 rpm

It does exactly what it says on the box! I am amazed at the accuracy of this saw and how much time it saves me when used with the guide rail(s) to cut up sheet materials. The finish straight off the saw very rarely needs cleaning up either and I have never had any splintering on veneered ply. It is expensive (especially in the UK) but you get what you pay for. It is a delight to use a quality tool that one knows will just get the job done with no drama.

You will lose sleep with this tool. I just got it and my biggest issue is that I now spent my nights, restless, thinking about all the new projects I could be doing with this fantastic piece of engineering. This saw is simply near perfection. A table saw almost becomes obsolete with this saw. I was able to cut flawlessly several panels in no time. No splinter, on either side and the cut was as accurate as I can make it. The saw glided easily along the track and was not very noisy. It is generating wood dust for sure and would be the only "negative" remark I may have, which is not really the tool's fault.This is really worth the price, when considering what you get (rail) and the level of quality. If you're still debating because of high price (I was) This will pay for itself for any serious woodworker that wants quality. I am a Festool fan for sure now and will probably check out their other tools!!!

This saw, guide and Multi Function Table replaced a 40 year old radial arm saw which I sold for more than I paid for it. It's a panel saw and a cutoff saw (dead square cuts). I've used it to edge joint walnut boards for glue-up table tops. And it's quiet. The soft start is great. Hooked up to a Festool vac system it doesn't spray dust all over the garage.The money doesn't matter when you can get a tool this good.

If you can afford it buy it!!!

Better than I even imagine, don´t think about not to buy it.

Buy this saw. You will find you can do things you never thought of doing before. Sometimes I need to make a long cut along a very small angle to get a board to fit. (This often happens in old houses.) This could be a real hassle with an old circular saw and I could end up wasting tons of time. With the Festool TS 55 EQ and guide rail(s)a trim like that takes about five minutes. Cutting up plywood is a snap; no need for a panel saw. Like others have done I could go on an on. This saw is simply second to none. Buy one and be happy!


I think that festool has really done fine woodworkers a favor by designing a high quality, long lasting, precise piece of equipment. The ease of use is a 10, there is virtually no learning curve, just plug it in, clamp and cut. I highly recommend the TS 55 EQ, it's worth every penny. I also have the rotex 150 sander with vacuum, this also is highly recommended, because of it's dust free automatically powered on vac system. The equipment this company provides is top notch and if you are a serious woodworker then I would consider spending the extra cash and enjoy what these tools can offer you. They will make you a better woodworker in the long run.

Enough said already.

I was looking at panel saws. This does what they can do with better accuracy and cut edges. I am now making final cuts on a pair of saw horses.

as a woodworker with too little room (sound familiar?) in my garage-based shop to slide a plywood sheet across my unisaw, i primarily wanted a circular saw for that job. i know what you're saying: the unisaw is on a mobile base, so why not just roll it out in the driveway and do the job. well, there's just enough slope to our driveway that the image of a guy chasing his table saw out into the street seems a little too real... but, i digress.so, i really needed a circular which would make reasonably clean cuts, so that i wouldn't have to spend too much time cleaning up the result. i had 2 other circular saws which were serviceable, but the 7 1/4" saw was pretty heavy, and the 6 1/4" trim saw was a little underpowered. even with my shopmade guide, the top ended up furry, and the bottom was an exercise in chipout. breaking a panel down consisted of a circular saw pass, followed by a couple of passes with a flush trim bit in my favorite router.and not to mention that the circular saw always did it's finest imitation of mount st helens spewing saw dust. (at least the router has dust collection.) i've got my nifty spaceman spiff helmet to keep my lungs clean, but the shop wasn't so lucky. i know many people say that sanding is a woodworker's least fac=vorite thing to do, but i humbly nominate shoveling/sweeping/vacuuming saw dust as a pretender to the throne.now along comes the festool ts55 with its guide rail. several people told me that it was the saw i needed. but the price seemed high. i also have a barrel grip festool jig saw, which i really like, but it was priced closer to the other jig saws. the ts55 is almost twice the cost, but it really is more than twice the saw. it's everything they say it is.the guide rail is a simple piece of art; just measure, plop it down and slide the saw along it. unless you push sideways really hard, it'll stay put without clamps. and the cut is super smooth with very little furring or chipout. no need for a router to do cleanup. i even trusted my prized cherry veneered panel to it; came out perfectly. the table saw could not have done any better.and the saw is very easy to adjust: push the depth stop in, and slide it up/down, or twist the bevel knob, tilt the saw, and lock the knob again. it's fairly lightweight and slides along the guide like it's on ball-bearings. my fein shopvac nozzle slips right into the dust port and stays put. no more clouds of dust, just a few stray sprays from the underside of the sheet. i can cut half a dozen sheets and make less mess than i used to make cutting one. i haven't tried using the plunge cut mechanism per se yet, but it is nice to retract the blade into the housing at the end of the cut. no precariously balanced spinning blade.overall, the system is very well-designed, very easy to use, and very powerful. my only quibble is that i wish the blade were mounted on the left side of the saw as i prefer to cut right-to-left. if you try it, you'll buy it.

My company (we do wood floors)bought this saw, along with the two guides, about five years ago, give or take. We bought it to cut a 13 1/2 inch wide header (the material was red oak flooring)across a large room to create two distinct spaces. The saw paid for itself on that first job! THIS SAW IS WORTH ITS WEIGHT IN GOLD!!! Buy it! Now!

easy to use, cuts like butter.no chipout regardless of the material. I have cut melamine to 8/4 stock and it cuts beautifully.Set was a breeze. Took it out of the box and went to work. Very user frendly.I would recommend downloading the user guide from the festool site. It is more American friendly.

I was even more pleased with this tool than I expected at the time of purchase. I purchased 2-55" rails and first used the saw to edge-trim rough-cut hardwoods. I got glue-ready edges! (but that is not what I was after - or used)Then I had a job to bevel a 17 degree edge on a 60" long piece. No problem - just tilt the saw and get the same qiality cut.Finally I wanted to extend a routed Tee-Track slot all the way through a 1 3/8" router table top. I had planned to use a jig saw - but, what the hey, I tried plunging the Festool and the results were perfect - far better that I could have gotten with the jigsaw.Count me as VERY happy customer.Frosty


Excellent cutting, in a tool that lets my girlfriend cut full panels of MDF or Plywood by herself. S

After having used the TS55EQ for over a year now, I can only describe it as an outstanding piece of kit. The build quality and standard of engineering is superb, and this is reflected in the accuracy and performance of the saw during use. When combined with the guide rail system, I find it more accurate than my table saw, with the added bonus of being able to rip large sheets of material to size safely and accurately. An excellent tool and certainly worth the price tag.

I have had this saw for over 6 months absolutely brillant nothing come close. The quide rail is right on the nail just line up to your pencil mark and thats where it cuts. No more measuring from a quide rail to the blade. Great for worktops to cut out sinks no need for a jig saw.

It's worth every cent. Really a great precision cutting tool. A must for dealing with 4x8 Sheet goods

Very accurate and precise. Get CNC quality with a handtool

Great saw for a home shop. Clean cuts on melamine without having to muscle a full sheet across the tablesaw by yourself.

It is the perfect portable saw for a cabinet shop. I have ha a shop for 30 years and I haven't been this enthused by a tool since I bought my Lamello Top-10 15 years ago.With the CT22 dust collector it is virtually dust free-very important when working in a customer's home. The saw cuts 90 or 45 degrees on the guide rail without adjustment. The mark on the guard indicates the back of the blade for plunge cuts. This is not for framing, but great for panel material.


Outstanding saw, very accurate and plenty of power. It's more than a cabinet saw (as reviewed by nvman who has never picked up the saw, what a DA) the only limitations I have come across is the depth of cut and won't take a dado head, other than that it's a fantastic saw.

I have not used the saw and most likely never will (a little out of my budget for a circular saw).However, I would like to point out that this appears to be strictly for cabinetmaking as a 10amp saw might have a difficult time of repeatedly ripping 2x lumber.I would be curious to hear how it performs in a construction environment.I would add, that I sure would like to have one for my workshop!

Flawless. This is the first circular saw that I've owned, after many years of borrowing cheaper ones from friends and relatives. The differences couldn't be more amazing--the cuts that this saw produces are VERY smooth and accurate. The guide rail system is a stroke of genius. My only gripe isn't so much with the saw itself as with the Festool dust collector that I use with it--the CT Mini is too underpowered (even at max speed) to keep up with some of the larger chips that the saw makes when cutting softwoods like cedar.


Yes it's expensive, but it is an excellent product, top quality in every facet of it's design.



Besides the guide rail system, Festool also produces a stationary system (table). The Circular saw can be placed in this system transforming it into a mobile table saw.

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