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BTP Review: Bosch Track Saw GKT 55 GCE 110V

Review by: wbembrid

My first track saw review

Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE with rails and carrying case and L-Boxx

My review of the Bosch track saw GKT 55 GCE 110V has to come with a disclaimer. This Bosch track saw is NOT sold in North America. I purchased it online and have made modifications so that I can use it with the available power here in Canada. Making modification such as this most certainly will void the warranty. In addition, because this track saw is not sold here it is also not eligible for servicing here as other Bosch circular saws are that are regularly sold in North America. The manufacturer Bosch does not recommend modifying this tool.  Here is the link to this track saw on the Bosch Tool UK site.

Some pics of my delivered package:

Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE delivery.      Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE delivery of 110V.

Converting my Bosch track saw for NA use

Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE with original UK connector. I have been very pleased with the performance of the Bosch track saw GKT55GCE so far, admittedly I have only made a few cuts with it, but I love it so far. I had to start by changing the plug, interesting note it has only 2 wires even though it ships with a grounded plug, I assume this is consistent with most all double insulated tools, either way I replaced it with a 3 prong plug to be consistent.Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE with converted plugs.

I also turned down the speed dial at the back of the saw as it is rated for 110V 50Hz as opposed the 110V 60Hz that is available here, however Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE with final converted plug.depending on how the continuous speed circuitry is designed this may not pose a problem, ideally I should look at determining how fast it is actually running, but that is a future project at this time.

One of the first things I did is that I clipped the L-Boxx to my dust extractor in order to keep things organized.

Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE attached to vacuum with L-Boxx and hoses..

My first cuts with the Bosch track saw

I performed the first cut with the Bosch track saw to trim the rubber zero clearance guard on a piece of scrap plywood. The included instructions instructed me to set the depth deep enough that I did not want to just cut on the scrap of Styrofoam that I was using as a table. The cut produced a scrap strip of rubber from each rail (see photos), which is surprising tough and stretchy, so I think that it will bode well for holding up to long term use.

Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE rails.          Bosch Track Saw GKT55GCE rails. on cutting service

The Bosch track saw rail system

Then I made several cuts for another project on top of a scrap of closed cell Styrofoam, as I have not built a track saw cutting table for this saw yet. I made sure to make cuts with each of the two included rails, which I labeled sections A and B in case there is some problem or discrepancyBosch Track Saw GKT55GCE rails joined. with the individual rails. I also joined the rails together with the included connector locking them in place with the included tool, this looks like a hex key turned into a small flat screwdriver. Joining the rails was fast, simple, and secure, and if one does manage to lose the tool you could use a screwdriver or even a coin to turn the friction fit fasteners on the joining connector.

My initial thoughts on the Bosch track saw GKT55GCE 110V

I was very pleased with the cuts, the only two issues I initially encountered were my own fault; I had a little piece of uncut plywood at both the start and end of the cut because: 1) I plunged too late and pulled up a little early and/or 2) I have set the depth of cut a little too miserly for the material (20mm for plywood that was 18.73 mm according to my digital caliper). I have not cut any thick hardwood yet, but I do plan to cut some shortly and will update the group when I do.

My review findings so far:

Bosch Track Saw Pros

• Overall precision of the cut
• Precision depth adjustment (in Metric scale)
• Adjustable guide for depth with or without the guide
• Smooth sliding action
• Firm stable rails which did not move or slide and had minimal deflection (none noticeable yet)
• Smooth plunge
• Very good dust collection when used with Bosch Dust Extractor

Bosch Track Saw Cons

• Not Available In North America (NAINA)
• Changing the plug
• Tools rated as “~50Hz” (as opposed to be rated for 110V 50 – 60Hz NOTE: I have to wonder how much variance is allowed given the approximately 50Hz represented by the tilde)
• The Bosch Dust extractor tends to fall out.  NOTE:  So far, maybe it is me, but the dust extraction hose that came with my Bosch Vac090A falls out reasonably easily, even if it goes in somewhat hard.)

Conclusion of the Bosch track saw

I am very happy with the saw and am glad that I purchased it.

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BTP Review: Best Circular Saw – Cordless Bosch CCS180

Can a Circular Saw Blow You Away?

by jummul

The best circular saw from Bosch - CCS180 18VWhile this may not be the absolute best circular saw on the market, it certainly holds its own with other cordless saws out there today. I purchased the Bosch CCS180 18V circular saw for homeowner purposes. A lot of framing and woodworking had to be done and I kept borrowing table saws, so I wanted a circular saw that would get the job done right. Because I don’t have a garage I needed small, flexible but powerful toys – I mean tools.

Let me start by saying that this cordless circular saw proved to be exactly what I was looking for, except for the fact that the blade was on the left. I really prefer the blade on the right. But the Bosch CCS180 18V circular saw proved more powerful than I anticipated. From a cordless tool perspective, it really is the best circular saw – an excellent and versatile saw with professional features. I do have some small suggestions. Some of these ideas are not fit for a battery powered saw, but there are a few things that are just plain easy to solve.

The best circular saw from Bosch - CCS180 18V - battery view.When taken out of the box, this best circular saw breed (I regret not buying a kit with the L-Boxx) feels sturdy. The gripping feels comfortable and the saw is heavy, not too heavy but perfectly heavy. As a “how is the manual” test, I let my wife install the blade (without battery, of course). She had a hard time finding the Allen key that is hidden below the handle. Once you know where it is, this is a good thing because it won’t get in the way again. The saw has markings on the case that indicate the tension steps the Allen key can take. You must tighten the blade two marks back after tightening it finger tight.

Best Circular Saw Operation and Alignment

The best circular saw from Bosch - CCS180 18V - smooth cutting action.During operation the saw is relatively quiet. And it has an electric brake, which makes operation silky smooth. I had to consider whether an electric brake was worthwhile, but I really consider it important to have. When I would trip and fall and drop the saw, the blade would stop almost instantly preventing further disaster. I am very impressed by how fast the blade stops on the Bosch circular saw.

This best circular saw breed has an alignment screw to adjust the angle to an exact 90 degrees. It can cut bevels up to 50 degrees. It’s pretty hard to cut bevels with this saw, I must admit. You’re supposed to stand left from the saw and operate it with your right hand. This means when cutting bevels the top of the saw comes towards you. This makes it harder to hold the saw firm and to see the cutting line clearly. Also, I regretted seeing a riving knife on the saw; this feature is more common with high-end saws.

The best circular saw from Bosch - CCS180 18V - bevel adjustment.The blade is not very big on the Bosch circular saw. Not the smallest either, but I prefer them bigger. This makes for a maximum cut depth of 2″ and it has limited me more than once. You can choose to set the sawing depth anywhere from 2” inches to 0”. This 0” is very exact, you could place the saw on a table (guard retracted) and the blade would touch the table, but not lean on it. For people that don’t have L-Boxx’s, like me, this is an excellent feature to store the saw. You can just place it upright. This also means that this saw can be used for plunge cuts. I DO NOT recommend doing so, however. But using this saw it can be done much safer than with other circular saws. The 4Ah battery held up very well during operations. It can easily be used for two or three hours straight, depending on operation and application. You can not see the battery gauge when it is attached, it must be released first.

Confidence in Using the Best Circular Saw

The saw gives a very confident feeling to the user. It is hard to bend the blade or to engage a kickback reaction, though it can be done. When sawing certain material you can easily cut slight corners without bending the blade or engaging a kickback reaction. It is very clear as to where the saw is cutting. The baseplate has very clear markings for both regular and beveled use.

The best circular saw from Bosch - CCS180 18V - dust port.The baseplate has a guide rail cutout in the bottom and a hose adapter screw hole in the back. The US version of this saw does not come with the adapter, but the screw hole is there. You might be able to purchase the part individually. The saw also comes without a parallel guide, but this can be purchased individually. The lock release does take some time getting used to when you have smaller hands. It is placed pretty high on the handle, but it accessible both for left-handed as well as right-handed people.

Yes, this saw will blow you away. The price tag and the fact that it runs on a battery makes it a worthwhile purchase. The versatility and power makes it my number two power tool (my drill being first of course). I have yet to encounter an application that demanded more than this saw can take.

There is a lot to say about this saw and I can’t mention it all here. While this may not be the absolute best circular saw on the market, it certainly holds its own with other cordless saws out there today.

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About

BeThePro.com is a construction industry information source for professionals working in the North American market. It provides access to how-to, best practices and best new materials details from experts in a variety of disciplines. The site is sponsored by leading construction manufacturers

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