Let’s have a quick look at how you can cut down big sheets of MDF without using a track saw. In this video I’m just using a battery operated circular saw and a piece of wood as a guide.
You can watch the whole video here:
Cutting up big sheets of MDF and plywood can be a bit of a pain in the backside. Back in the days before I had a track saw this is how I used to do it.
- Put your sheet of MDF on a suitably sized bench and make sure it’s lifted off the surface using 4 pieces of wood. The reason for this is since once the wood is cut you’ll need 2 pieces under each side to keep things stable.
- Mark out the length required and mark a line using a joiner’s square. If you don’t have a square you can make two marks the same length at either side of your piece of wood, assuming it was square to start with.
- Make a second mark so you know where to clamp your cutting guide – you’ll need to account for the thickness of the blade and the width of the sole plate of your saw.
- Clamp your cutting guide to the MDF at both ends ensuring this is square to the wood (parallel to the marks made in point 2).
- Make sure you’re wearing safety specs and a dust mask.
- Make sure both sides of the MDF will be supported by your 4 blocks of wood, before AND after the cut.
- Carefully make your cut.
PRO TIP: Make yourself a set of cutting guides that can be used over and over! These can easily be made by gluing one piece of wood on top of another and following the second piece as a guide. Your first cut will trim the bottom piece to account for the thickness of the sole plate of your saw.
This is a very old video and these days I would almost always use a track saw for such cuts.