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We all know that cutting large panels is a laborious job.
If you’re going to be cutting a load of panels, then it only makes sense to make the investment to save yourself time, energy and money.
Once you have one, you won’t know what you ever did without it.
This guide outlines some of the vertical panel saws on the market, which will help you decide which one is right for you and your budget.
A quick comparison
SAFETY SPEED 7400 - Top Pick
SAFETY SPEED H5
Milwaukee 6480-20 - Low cost option
Saw Trax 1064
Safety Speed H6
Safety Speed SR5U
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The Best Vertical Panel Saw with reviews 2023
Here's a list of the best vertical panel saws we found on the market today.
1. SAFETY SPEED MFG 7400 Vertical Panel Saw
- One of the more accurate models on the market
- Powerful motor for thicker applications
- High price tag
- Delivery times can be long
This heavy-duty saw offers incredible durability and accuracy at a very affordable price compared to other continuous production machines. Sporting a 3 Hp, 3 phase induction motor this machine will rise to the occasion during the toughest of applications.
2. SAFETY SPEED H5 VERTICAL PANEL SAW
- Very popular model
- Highly rated
- Great performance
- Arrives without wheels or back metal holding rack
The popular H5 panel saws are ideally suited for customers looking for a full sized vertical panel saw at a very affordable price. This saw has a crosscutting height of 64″ while delivering an accuracy of 1/32″ straight and square. With 3 1/4 Hp industrial motors, these versatile saws are used in a variety of panel cutting operations.
3. Milwaukee 6480-20 Vertical Panel Saw
- Excellent value low-cost panel saw
- Relatively compact and takes up little floor space
- Electrically welded steel frame is incredibly tough
- Comes with a 5-year warranty
- Only recommended for 4 x 8 ft material
- Does not do unlimited rip cuts
- Separate extension kit recommended for sheets over 6 feet - not included
- No dust collection kit included
The Milwaukee 6480-20 had a rigid, all steel frame that’s electrically welded to prevent any twisting or warping. The motor is mounted on a carriage that slides on impregnate nylon roller bearings. That means you’ll never have to worry about lubrication. Rotating the saw from horizontal to vertical helps make different cuts more quickly. You can load it from the left or right side which makes it easy to work around whatever else you have going on in the shop.
For small shops that only deal with 4 x 8 feet material, this is a great option. It’s easy to use, made in the USA, and weight significantly less than other options. And you have to love the 5-year warranty.
4. Saw Trax 1000 Series 1064 Vertical Panel Saw
- Dust collection is really effective
- Folding stand & frame wheels for easy movement
- Accu-Square alignment system keeps the machine perfectly square at all times
- Has both horizontal and vertical measuring systems
- Many accessories available make this panel saw very versatile
- Does not have adjustable cutting depth
One of the best things about the Saw Trax 1064 is the patented “set and forget” technology that assures that the machine will never go out of square. It has both vertical and horizontal measuring system that makes it easy to get your measurements just right. Then, use the stop bar to make repetitive cuts.
This vertical panel saw also has a folding stand and frame wheels so it’s easy to move around the job site or workshop. Plus, it stays nice and stable when set up. It comes preassembled and includes tapes and a dust brush.
The Saw Trax 1064 is a high-quality machine that’s great for professionals or serious hobbyists. It’s packed with great features that help get accurate results.
5. Powermatic 511 Vertical Panel Saw
- Great at getting rid of debris which means better visibility
- Stays in position when loading or unloading
- Folding stand is as easy to open and close as a ladder
- Packed full of features plus an accessory package ideal for most wood workers
- Little to no complaints about this model found
The Powermatic 1510007 is a top of the line model with plenty of power. The stainless steel guide rods have 8 roller bearings to move sheets smoothly for more accurate cuts. Plus, there are solid aluminum rollers with outside support brackets to make sure you get a 90 degree cut every time.
To give you better visibility while you’re working there’s nylon brush surrounding the blade to clear the debris and dual 4-inch dust ports to help dispose of it. It can handle sheets that are up to 5 feet tall and has casters for easy maneuverability.
The Powermatic 1510007 is a superb machine that any professional would love to have in their workshop. It’s a bit of a financial investment but worth it if it gets a lot of use.
6. Safety Speed Cut H6 Vertical Panel Saw
- High quality at a fair price
- Powerful 3 1/4 HP engine
- Durable and long-lasting
- Lifetime frame warranty
- Dust collection system is a paid optional extra
The powerful Safety Speed Cut H6 panel saw comes with vertical and horizontal rulers for accuracy. It’s easy to change from vertical to horizontal cutting and it even has a thin material pressure guard. The steel guide tubes are zinc plated for durability.
It also has plastic rollers that have been injection-molded for added strength and hardness. The spring-loaded counterbalance system helps you move material smoothly. This is a great option that can be used with a wide range of materials.
The Safety Speed Cut H6 Vertical Panel Saw is a reasonably priced option for anyone looking for a powerful machine that gets the job done.
7. Safety Speed SR5U Vertical Panel Saw
- Does panel cutting and routing,
- quick and easy to change from one function to the other,
- welded steel frame is really durable,
- thin material guard included.
- Heavier than a lot of other models
- Wheels not included
- Stand not included
- Dust kit not included
If you’re looking for something that can handle panel cutting and routing, look no further than the Safety Speed Manufacturing SR5U. Changing from one to the other can be done in as little as 30 seconds. With adjustable vertical and horizontal rollers, you can get perfect cuts no matter which direction you’re working. It includes a thin material pressure guard as well as 4 material clamps. The 10-feet welded steel frame and chrome plated guide tubes are tough and will last through a lot of jobs.
If you have a shop that does panel cutting and routing, the Safety Speed Manufacturing SR5U is perfect. It does double duty and is an ideal choice if you don’t have a lot of room in your workspace.
8. Safety Speed PR02K
- Very affordable,
- great for small spaces,
- Includes a stand and vertical and horizontal rulers
- Only recommended for material 4 x 8 feet or smaller
- Have to get additional extensions for larger pieces
- Dust kit not included
- Quick stop angles not included
For the best panel saw that gives you just what you need for a home workshop, check out the Safety Speed Manufacturing PR02K. It’s a good fit for professionals who work with 4 x 8 feet materials regularly, too. The saw head rotates 90 degrees from horizontal to vertical quickly and easily.
It also has nylon-graphite roller bearings that are dust free and help move the material smoothly while you work. This compact option is perfect for smaller shops or if you just don’t have a lot of room to spare. It includes a folding tubular steel stand as well as a vertical and 2 horizontal rulers.
This option from Safety Speed Manufacturing is ideal for small shops or to use in a home workspace. It’s smooth, accurate, and comes at a reasonable price.
Buying a Vertical Panel Saw
Now that you’ve read through our best panel saw reviews, let’s take a closer look at the things you should consider before deciding which is the right one for you.
Do I Need a Vertical Panel Saw?
It depends what kind of work you do. If you work with large sheets of material often, a vertical panel saw will make these jobs go much faster and they might even be more accurate. They come in especially handy for projects like cabinet making, cutting shelving, or even sizing table tops or doors.
If you already have a shop and use a sliding table saw and want to upgrade, vertical panel saws are a great option, too.
Some of these are easier to move around than others. Weight is a factor, but so are wheels. If you want something that you can move around on a job site, make sure you get one that has wheels. If not, the saw will be stationary and you’ll have to bring all the material to it. It will still save you time but it’s not nearly as convenient.
Good panel saws come already assembled by the factory, and for good reason. They’re much more accurate that way. Some set up is still involved but you’re not actually aligning it yourself. If you go with a component saw, you might save a few bucks but you’re going to be spending a lot of time trying to get your cuts completely accurate. The truth is, you might not ever get there.
Some of the products we reviewed never even need to be recalibrated, that’s how accurate they are. If precision matters, factory assembly and alignment are key.
Look for a one-piece welded frame. This goes along with the accuracy we were just talking about. A strong frame that’s been welded well won’t warp or twist overtime. These saws aren’t cheap and you certainly don’t want to invest in one that will lose its precision over time. Plus, if you get a bolted frame, you run the risk of loosening or corroding over time. That’s not only going to affect performance, it can very quickly become a safety issue, too.
Rip Cut Capacity
Rip cuts go along the grain of the wood so they’re generally a little easier on your equipment. A lot of the products we reviewed have unlimited rip cut capacity while others are only recommended for a 4 x 8 feet piece of material. How much does that matter? Well, it depends on the material you’re working with. If you’re only going to use 4 x 8 feet pieces of wood, you don’t need unlimited rip cutting. That said, who’s to say you’re not going to change your mind in the future?
Cross Cut Capacity
Cross cuts go across the grain and are a little more work for your tools. Most vertical panel saws have a pretty good rip cut capacity but, again, think about what you’re going to be doing with yours and decide how much you really need. Are 50 inches enough? Or do you need closer to 70? It all depends on your needs.
A Good Guiding System
This is what makes these saws so effective and it’s absolutely necessary. Guide tubes should be made of fabricated steel so you know they’re straight, smooth, and going to last. It’s better if they’re welded than bolted because bolts can loosen over time, which will destroy the accuracy and could potentially cause a big safety problem down the line.
From Vertical to Horizontal
Going from a crosscut to a rip cut quickly will save you a lot of time and keep things running smoothly. High-quality saws will have a rotating center that allows you to simply turn it 90 degrees and get back to work while maintaining accuracy.
Blade sizes range a bit. Our picks run from 7 1/4 to 8 inches. That might not seem like much of a difference but it can be. Again, it depends on what you’re going to do with your saw. If you’re going to use it occasionally in a home workshop or as a hobbyist, 7 1/4 is fine. If you want something that will perform well enough to use professionally, the bigger the blade, the better.
A Great Tool for Those who Need It
Like we said, not everyone needs a vertical panel saw. But, if you work with large sheets of material often and are getting frustrated that it’s so tedious, it’s an awesome tool to have. It basically allows one person to do a job that would otherwise take 2 or 3 people to do. To save time, aggravation, and get the most precise cuts, this is the perfect tool for the job.