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The TSO GRS-16 PE does what it says and makes making square cuts much easier

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Review by Bill1974 posted 02-19-2021 06:17 PM 1165 views 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
The TSO GRS-16 PE does what it says and makes making square cuts much easier The TSO GRS-16 PE does what it says and makes making square cuts much easier No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I was struggling with making square cuts with my tracksaw (cordless Makita with 3 different lengths of tracks). I could do it but it was time consuming and tedious. Measuring, marking re-measure, check with 3-4-5 or similar method, then try to align the track.

I did some searching on what other’s have done and used and came across a few right angle guides that attach to the track. The TSO GRS-16 PE seemed to fit the bill and get great reviews, but a lot of the reviews I saw were given the guide in exchange for a review. Some review were useful and others were just a product plug. But I only came across a couple of reviews where is did not work as expected. So I got out the credit card and bought the GRS-16 PE.

My impressions and experiences in using it.

Looks well make, for the price it should be. Yeah it’s a bit pricey, $194 from Lee Valley. But over time will probably save me from making bad cuts and wasting material. Or I could return it, if it doesn’t do what it’s meant to do. I still have it (have had it about a month and used it a 3 to 4 dozen times).

it’s easy to put on and take off the tracks. Doesn’t need any special care to do so. Just make sure the surface that align one to the other are clean.

You can use hold down clamps with it. It works on either end of the track too. If it’s on the trailing end more care is needed to make sure it remains against the work piece and a clamp for insurance.

Squaring up the guide and track to your work price does take a little practice and a technique. I tip the track on to the work piece while holding the guide against the edge. Usually take a few tries to get it square and on my cut mark. The longer the rail the more difficult it is. It’s pretty easy on the 39” rail, the 55” is a little bit more work but not a bear. The 118” not really do-able unless you have someone to help and are working on nice flat stock.

In a cramped garage and not so flat BORG plywood only the 39” and 55” are options and the 55” can be a challenge with bowed plywood.

But with a lot less effort and just a little checking I can make repeatable square cuts in 10th the time. On a 2’ x 3’ (4 cuts) I am able to get the diagonals to be within thickness of the ticket marks on a tape measure. In about 5 minutes, probably would be 15 minutes without the guide and less square.

As for accuracy of the guide, it’s not off by more than .05° (that’s the limit of what i have access to check it).

For repeating cuts I either stack to make one cut or bounce back and forth with a table saw if possible.




View Bill1974's profile

Bill1974

166 posts in 3996 days



7 comments so far

View Buck_Thorne's profile

Buck_Thorne

136 posts in 2081 days


#1 posted 02-20-2021 12:19 AM

I was watching the most recent Wood Whisperer video last night and Marc mentioned something like that. If he mentioned a brand, I didn’t catch it, but he was talking about an add-on for a track saw that he said was well worth it to keep it square.

View LittleBlackDuck's profile

LittleBlackDuck

6526 posts in 1831 days


#2 posted 02-20-2021 01:08 AM

Nice to see someone do what I haven’t… get off their rrrs and mention a great product to the ignorant. Thanks for making the effort ’74.

I have one and swear by it… One trick I heard about was to pivot down on the end the GRS is attached to, lifting the track just a tad off the table and while pushing the GRS against the work piece, slowly lower that track down… might eat up your .05°… handy for larger runs before clamping.

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View mdhills's profile

mdhills

64 posts in 3643 days


#3 posted 02-20-2021 05:33 AM

I’ve got the TSO square and like it pretty well. Very useful for squaring cuts on 2’ or 3’-wide panels
(anything under 18” gets done on my table saw sled)

I think Wood Whisperer was showing his cut with a woodpecker’s adjustable track square.

Matt

View MikeJ70's profile

MikeJ70

69 posts in 957 days


#4 posted 02-20-2021 07:04 PM

Thanks for the review. I’ve been looking at these for a while now and have been hesitant to pull the trigger on it. When I first got my track saw I thought it was going to take all of the frustration away when breaking down sheet goods, but I was wrong (user ability I’m sure). It is definitely better than a straight edge and circular saw, but there still is some fussing around that you need to do to get it dead-on. This one and the one Woodpeckers make look pretty good.

-- MikeJ

View Bill1974's profile

Bill1974

166 posts in 3996 days


#5 posted 02-20-2021 11:48 PM

A tracksaw is not a solve all. There is a learning curve. The idea of cut to width then cut to length is not that easy. On a table saw it can be. But since getting this TSO guide, it has changed up how I make cuts. If I need more than one piece of the same size, I try to rough cut than stack and make a final cut to size. Using the TSO guide I find that like making 4 90 degree cuts and can get the same or better results in less time then cutting to width then length. But i have made a few wrong cuts because of different sequence. Usually that’s the sign to take a break.

View LittleBlackDuck's profile

LittleBlackDuck

6526 posts in 1831 days


#6 posted 02-21-2021 12:59 AM


A tracksaw is not a solve all…
- Bill1974

Far too true ’74.

A good outfeed/infeed combination is a lot cheaper than a TSO and tracksaw combo for all the frugal members.

However if you don’t have the workshop acereage or you have a tracksaw, these are a great addition… can’t comment for the Woodpecker as I have the TSO and any comparison may make me regret breaking my golden rule of not reading. And one for the records… I’m no fan of the past Fe$tool ”equivalent”.

If all you want is to breakdown sheet goods, for the part 12 years, I’ve always carried a Ryobi 6” cordless saw in the boot of my car. Has been great where Bunnings have refused to cut MDF for me and there are not too many sedans with a 1m x 4m boot. It’s a hassle, but it beats me running next to the car with MDF sheet in hand while the missus pretends she can drive… (hey not having a go at ladies’s driving prowess in general, my missus never bothered to get a driving license… the marriage license was all she could tolerate).

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View mbg's profile

mbg

25 posts in 4388 days


#7 posted 02-23-2021 04:52 PM

Nice review on a great product.

I spent a lot of time and $ designing and making a 3-slab MFT style 4’x8’ work table for my garage shop. Was ready try out using bench dogs. Then at the same time TSO released the parallel guide system (I already had the square). This combo totally pushed me away from using dogs at all.

As far as getting a good seating of the square to the workpiece I just give it a few wiggles.

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