We’ve written quite a but about the new Makita XGT 40V Max cordless power tool system so far, but the story is far from complete. Makita USA has not provided a lot of information or details, and so we’ve been trying to piece things together from some of the other international announcements.
At this time, we’ve seen images of two different Makita XGT brushless circular saws, include the 6-1/2″ saw shown above. Officially described as a 165mm circular saw (which converts to ~6-1/2″), doesn’t this circular saw resemble Makita’s 18V sub-compact model?
There are many differences in the saws’ features, such as the absence of an auxiliary handle, added digital controls, and some structural changes. But the two saws’ general form factors and sizes look to be quite similar, don’t they?
It seems atypical for Makita to introduce a 6-1/2″ circular saw as part of their new high performance 40V Max system. Atypical, but not unwelcome.
I say it’s atypical because other brands’ most premium and highest-powered circular saws, such as Milwaukee M18 Fuel with High Output batteries and Dewalt FlexVolt, have 7-1/4″ blade sizes. From product images, Makita does also have a 7-1/4″ brushless circular saw coming to their XGT 40V Max cordless power tool system.d
Cordless 6-1/2″ circular saws are lighter and more compact than 7-1/4″ circular saws, but they’re not quite what you think of in the context of “next-gen high-performance cordless jobsite.” Still, having the option for a smaller and lighter circular saw is always a good thing.
And look, the new Makita XGT 6-1/2″ circular saw will also be available in both teal and black color schemes. As you might know, Makita’s sub-compact 18V cordless power tools are available in black.
This looks to be the most compact 36V/40V Max circular saw on the market. Is it the only 36V/40V Max 6-1/2″ brushless circular saw available?
The absence of an auxiliary handle looks to make the XGT 6-1/2″ circular saw look even more compact than Makita’s 18V sub-compact offering, at least from the product images.
Read More: Continued Makita XGT Cordless Power Tool News
Shall we continue on our efforts to explore and hopefully understand what Makita will be doing with their XGT 40V Max cordless power tool system? I feel that little details like this could potentially provide greater context for the new lineup.
My first thought when I saw all the XGT tools is that they looked compact-ish, at least when compared to their LXT X2 brethren or a comparative Flexvolt tool. Which is why I thought the lineup made sense. It is offering next level power in a smaller form.
Please do continue coverage of high voltage, smaller diameter compact saws. A great many portable saw buyers niver need the larger 7-1/2″ blade; many others have a backup larger saw that is needed only occasionally.
Most of the XGT tools look very similar to existing 18v designs. Makes sense since they only need new electronics, motors and a revised battery mount. Makita already has excellent ergonomics and tool designs. The 40v battery needs only add power/run time.
Compact saws are great. If you’re heading up and know you don’t need to bevel cut thick material, a larger saw is just additional weight for nothing.
I don’t know about about sub-compact, but it looks like they unfroze somebody from the 80’s to design the saw shown in the first photo.
Koko The Talking Ape
What’s the max depth of cut at 90 degrees?
According to Makita Australia’s website the upcoming saw has a 185mm blade and a 66mm cut depth.
I did mention there was another saw with 7-1/4″ blade (185mm). This is the 165mm saw. Take another look at the images to see what I mean, they’re different saws. This is the one that was shown in the Makita JP YouTube video.
OK so they are making both a 6-1/2 in and a 7-1/4 inch. I suspect the 6-1/2 has gained alot of popularity overseas – and it’s popular enough over here.
leads to a curious question.
Engineer in me sees a common body/motorsystem and moldings setup for their new XGT Tracksaw. The lack of the front handle especially. Curious on what the electronic controls are for. Maybe it has controls for cutting ply vs dense wood lumber – etc etc. That might be interesting.
The control at the front allows you to set the saw to two different modes. One is for making finishing cuts in more delicate material and the other is for making quick cuts in framing lumber.
Yes, continue with covering the compact circular saws. I’m still rockin’ a Craftsman 19.2v 5 1/2″ circular saw and I know eventually I will have to move on to a new tool line and I will definitely replace it with another compact saw. I am just not sure if I should sell my Craftsman cordless tools now while they still have life left in them or just wait until they die on their own. I have a corded 71/4″ Ryobi but I’ve never used it. Just this week I decided to sell the corded saw because I never touch it and I need the shelf space. I bought it years ago as a quick replacement after my tools got stolen. Later, I picked up the cordless circ saw as part of a package deal and its been my go to saw ever since. It’s perfect for everything I need to do around the house. I have a small table saw and a 10″ sliding miter saw for the “big” jobs but for everything else its the compact saw and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
Here in Europe we have this one:
It has a cut depth of 66mm at 90 degrees (a little less than 2-5/8″) I made a few test cuts with it at a presentation of Hikoki (Metabo HPT) tools. First impression: awesome.
Now there is also an even smaller 36V Multivolt circular saw:
Uh… I would say more Minimalist, not so much “Sub-Compact”… It’s still a full sized saw. The Sub-Compact tools are literally smaller on all aspects, including blades. So, I think it’s just a Minimalist Design.
Which, itself, is probably a good thing. If there’s less tool front to back, you need less grip to keep it straight, minimizing the need for secondary handles and the like. You could probably cut curves a little easier with one of these as well. It’s probably better suited for the renvation and design market than the industrial and trade offerings from DeWALT and Milwaukee, Sub-Compact or not.
I’m not sure what you’re saying. The whole point of “sub-compact ” 18v (or 20v max) tool lines from makita, dewalt, Milwaukee etc… is that they have the same capacity (6-1/2″ blade, 1/2″ drill chuck, same blade clamp on the recip saw) in a smaller form factor.
If you want a smaller blade, chuck, or jigsaw blade on a recip, you’ll end up dropping down to a lower voltage, and much less ability overall, which defeats the purpose of a jobsite tool.
My biggest complaint in the DeWalt 20v/60v lineup is that they don’t have a decent circular saw competitor in the 6.5″ category!
Their gen one 6.5″ 20v saw is outdated and underpowered for anything beyond 90 degree cuts in dry 2x4s.
I have two of them and they’re fine for 7/16 OSB and the aforementioned 2×4 cuts, but as soon as I need to cut pressure treated wood, or bevels, birdsmouths, stair stringers, etc. I pull out a corded saw or have to use the super powerful, but awkward, 60v rear handle saw. That thing’s kind of scary. It’s great for cutting 1 1/8 advantech OSB, or something that is stable, but it’s too heavy for me to (comfortably) hold lumber in one hand while using it in the other.
DeWalt needs a compact blade left 6.5″ brushless saw that has the torque to handle wet/dry 2xs in whatever thickness you throw at it!
I could’ve sworn they came out with a 6.5″ wormdrive for the 20 Volt family…
Though, looking it up it appears to be the FlexVOLT 60 Volt 7.25″ wormdrive… And they have the DCS570B (and a few kits with batteries.) 20 Volt XR series 7.25″ Brushless circular saw.
And, I might add, the 20 Volt DCS570 is kind of a stripped down 20 Volt edition of the FlexVOLT DCS575… They have the identical design, one at each voltage range.
So… They DO have a replacement for the DCS391 and 393 basic brushed saws. Several by the looks of it. And also last I checked, the reviews on the FlexVOLT Wormdrive saw included a lot of people using it and saying “Ooooh! Nice!”
Slight tangent, but these seem to continue a trend in battery-powered circular saws moving the main handle towards the top and making it increasingly horizontal. I find the ergonomics awkward, especially if you are setting it to anything less than full depth of cut by rotating the saw body forward relative to the sole plate. I was ready to buy the new Ridgid Octane 7.25, but did not because the trigger handle is all but parallel with the work surface at shallow depths. I found the body mechanics more or less opposite other sidewinders: you sort of hold the saw down with your right hand while squeezing the trigger, and then pull it forward with your left on the auxiliary handle (which is significantly offset from the line of cut). I am sure I could get used to it with practice, but I found it hard to keep a straight cut because of that geometry.
Both Makita and DeWALT have come up with cordless polishers:
The 40v version looks based on the new 18v saw released in Japan some months ago, the hs611.
40V Jigsaw is missed.
Makita is trying to play catchup, unfortunately not very well.