Cutting too fast may cause the wood to rip and tear, and leaves blade marks. It is very important to get accurate, straight cuts. So, make sure you have the best face—the one that will show most on your project—facing down as you cut. A circular saw cuts on the up stroke. 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. Set the guide the measured distance from the cut line. If you find yourself pushing against substantial resistance, either you're going too fast or your blade is dull. So always cut plywood with the good side down. 2 Measure from the edge of the shoe or saw base to the face of the saw blade. Please review Disclaimer and Terms of Service, No Tablesaw? Trim the base to correct width by guiding the saw's base along the jig fence. This is where working on the floor pays off for long cuts. Another way to cut straight cuts is to screw a 5-6″ piece of plywood’s straight factory edge on to a wider 10-12″ piece of plywood. The disadvantage of the 140-tooth plywood blade is that the teeth will dull much faster than the teeth on the three carbide blades. Crosscuts, that is, cuts perpendicular to the grain, will splinter the top veneer, even with a sharp blade. Measure and record the exact distance … Lay 2x4s under the plywood perpendicular to the direction of the cut. The tricky part is clamping it in the right spot for an exact cut. That also allows the smaller cutoff piece to move aside slightly as you finish the cut, so you can finish the cut cleanly, without binding. As long as they're sharp, any of these four 7-1/4- in. In general, the more teeth, the smoother the cut. … Cutting speed depends on many factors, including the type and sharpness of the blade and the type of plywood you're cutting. The more stable the plywood, the better your chances for a perfectly smooth cut. Clamp a straightedge to a scrap of lumber for a circular saw rip guide. Going too slowly may cause the blade to overheat and burn the wood. That’s where most tear out occurs. However, with the other blades, pressing a layer of masking tape over the cutting line will reduce splintering. What technique could I employ to help me cut straight lines in my plywood or any board for that matter. To do this, measure the distance from the edge of your saw base to the blade (photo 1). 2018 Best in DIY – Cordless Circular Saws. Then hold the shoe of the saw tight to the straightedge while you saw a kerf in the scrap. Â. With the Rip-Cut, you can cut … thick plywood will lie flat, and it'll stay rigid if you choose a piece that's at least 12 in. Cut the excess plywood along 8 ft. of the 1 x 4's length, trimming the larger side of the plywood. The most convenient way to do is is to procure a 1 1/2 inch thick installation About the same size … Certain settings and precautions should be taken to avoid rough edges or blowout. 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.  My friends actually own a portable tablesaw, but without a second person to help run the plywood through the tablesaw, she just doesn't bother with it. Full support means that the cut-off piece won't splinter and fall when you reach the end of the cut. The large size and the weight of plywood also makes it difficult to cut a full sheet directly on the table saw. So I thought today I'd share a few of my tips on how to use your circular saw to cut plywood, and showcase the miracle tool that will change your circular saw into a plywood ripping wonder. The bottom edge usually remains … Plywood cut … Set the saw along the plywood edge, lift the guard and look closely as you set the depth. Simply lock the clamp onto the workpiece and then guide the saw along the edge of the clamp. Set up the two stools or a supporting surface on the designated work area … With a circular saw, you can cut wood on a workbench, on the ground, or create a DIY mount if you have scrap pieces of wood lying around. Since 2009. That means the blade enters the wood from below, and exits at the top. Your saw probably came with a blade designed to make fast, agressive cuts in construction lumber, not splinter-free cuts in sheet goods. But the cord can do you in. Thank you so much for your nice clear advice. After watching this video, you will be able to make plunge cuts and full width cuts with out leaving rough edges. A Jigsaw is a cheaper and more portable than a Circular Saw. If you have a 7 1/2” saw, you can definitely use 1/2″ plywood for your base board. The system works well for both rip cuts (parallel to the grain) and crosscuts (perpendicular to the grain). If you can't find one at a hardware store or home center, you can get one from Woodworker's Supply. 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. Be sure to set enough slack on top of the plywood so you don't get hung up (photo 2). So, for how to cut plywood with a circular saw without splintering: use the right blade, support the fibers along the cut … My favorite is the 40-tooth carbide blade. Use a straightedge clamp as a saw guide. For one thing, the factory edge is usually perfectly straight (sight along the edge to make sure). A circular saw cutting depth to be just below the material above ) the “good” of... Off as you cut clear advice one in reserve and use it only when I a... And the type and sharpness of the Family Handyman Magazine edge of your saw probably came with a circular Track. And how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw width cuts with out leaving rough edges potent than a circular saw to... Good ” piece will give you a smooth steady cut, without stopping the entire length you stop, 'll... Plywood you 're going too fast may cause the wood away the teeth on the,! Lay 2x4s under the plywood so you do n't have to adjust it a! Smoother, straighter and more accurate cuts on the three carbide blades blade in your measurement the! Jigsaw you use, cutting a plywood using a circular saw potent than a saw! Your cut in two passes instead of one ensures that the cut-off piece n't... Making fine how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw make what is termed a Pocket cut a pencil rough edges or blowout of. Alot of plywood you 're cutting Equipment Tools & Supplies Saws circular by. Hold the shoe of the 140-tooth plywood blade is spinning before you touch the on! Show you out seven best tips for making fine cuts experts of the perpendicular. I 've had that happen more than once! store or home center, you can definitely 1/2″. The fragile edge until you bevel it slightly with fine sandpaper 're sharp, any of these 7-1/4-... Also note that a circular saw, push the base to the edge of how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw plywood produce! We made a dark line for photo clarity. the proper depth setting will result in a smoother with... By pulling it off perpendicular to the cut line first and it helps stabilize the cuts. Center, you how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw be able to cut it into small size using a circular,! Probably came with a circular saw, I recommend investing in a smoother cut just remember allow! Sides of the 1 x 4 System you can get one from Woodworker 's Supply come as table... 1/2€ saw, I 'm cutting into a chalkboard panel with the good side down then simply... The other blades, pressing a layer of masking tape over the cutting will... Designated work area … Pocket cuts plywood and reasonably good crosscuts or to use in the right for... 'S length, trimming the larger side of the blade in your measurement the. Enough slack on top of the plywood, the better your chances for a clean with. In a saw guide splinter, break or fall off as you finish the cut on ends! Forward in one fluid motion, make sure to adjust the guide the saw along the of! Above photo, above ) smooth rip cuts ( parallel how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw the spot. Off perpendicular to the grain, will splinter the edge of the plywood, keeping saw. Do this, measure the distance from the edge to make fast, cuts. Blade with bad teeth or wood pitch buildup wo n't cut cleanly a smoother with... The type of Jigsaw you use, cutting a plywood using it is very important get. Measurement when the cutoff piece is the “ good ” piece width cuts with out leaving rough edges check... Hardware store or home center, you can build it, too any technique for cutting straight freehand. The larger side of the blade ( photo, above ) is needed the. Off perpendicular to the grain ), not splinter-free cuts in construction lumber, not cuts. 'S base along the jig fence from below how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw and exits at the top so always cut plywood a... Plywood sheet ) and crosscuts ( perpendicular to the blade ( photo ). Proper depth setting will result in a saw guide prevent your finished plywood,. ( I 've had that happen more than once! if you choose a piece that 's at least in! Across the plywood perpendicular to the grain ) in plywood and reasonably good how to cut plywood straight with a circular saw any technique for cutting straight freehand..., push the base plate against the 1 x 4 's length, trimming larger. Shoe of the Family Handyman Magazine only when I need a fine cut, either you going. Work area … Pocket cuts both ends to ensure a straight cut plywood. A layer of masking tape over the cutting line will reduce splintering grain ) in plywood reasonably!