A Comprehensive Guide to Choose the Best Miter Saw
It doesn’t really matter whether you’re a hardcore professional or not ready to commit yet, woodworking is a serious job and takes a lot of practice to perfect this art. Being a DIY savvy myself, I completely understand the significance of having the best tools stashed in your toolbox all the time. Just in case you’ve realized that it is high time to bring growth in your business by increasing the productivity of your workers, you’re reading the right article. My objective behind publishing this guide is to help you purchase only the best miter saw. Now what are things that qualify a miter saw as the best? Or rather, better than the rest? All this and more, coming up for you in the next segment.
What a Miter Saw Actually Is?
Speciality saws come in different varieties, each is best suited for a specific task. As far as miter saws are concerned, no other cutter allows for angled cuts more accurately than this ultimate slicer. A typical element in miter saws is the location of the blade right atop a swing arm that rolls in both left and right direction to impart neat angular shapes on wooden fabrics. Folks who love to have a personal touch to their homes would love this gadget. Things you can do with it include crafting stylish photo frames, window casings, wall panelling and much more. No workshop is complete without a solid miter saw at the disposal. There are a couple of variations in these saws.
Manual Miter Saws
Manual Miter saws are greatly affordable and damn easy to use by just about anyone. Powerful enough for small-grade projects like crown moulding, creating photo frames and the likes, manual miter saws houses a mounted saw instead of an induction motor to facilitate neat angled cuts. It comes packed with positive and negative angle stops at 45, 90 and 22 ½ degrees. Manual saws might not tickle your fancy, but gets the jobs done well, if that’s precisely what you’re in need of.
Compound Miter Saws
This specialised tool is an indispensable part of any committed professional’s arsenal. The singular directional tilt allows for smooth bevelled cuts housed alongside another set of blades that swings in vertical against a table’s horizontal rotation leads to angled figures in either directions. The unique ability to engage both of the axis simultaneously is what makes miter saws a step ahead of its brethren. The blade runs on two planes to impart precise angled cuts for framing purposes.
Talking of the cutting security measurements, compound saw manufacturers rely on features like retractable blade guards that don’t act like a buffer between the cutting surface and the edge of the blade. If used and maintained cautiosuly, there’s hardly anything that can go wrong with the cutting capacity. The prime feature of any miter saw, the miter index is practically designed in compound saw models, making incremental adjustment of the saw blade a breeze.
Sliding Compound Miter Saws
This type of miter saw is equipped with multiple arms and a 300 mm slide mechanism to maintain the hassle-free philosophy on your workstation. Unlike compound miter saws, these need-specific systems have a tow-way tilt to facilitate variations in bevel cuts. The addition of extra arms helps you finish a thick section of lumber delightfully fast. The system comes bundled with positive and negative bevel stops at a number of angles to prepare a suitable surface for bevelled cuts.
Dual Compound Miter Saws
Another sub-category of miter saws, differentiating only in the performance department. Dual compound units are an out an out professional tool and applied mainly for intricate sawing jobs at the industrial level. A radial arm saw manipulates the blade in left and right direction. Moreover, it can be also pivoted forward and backward, aiding to an increased length of the cut.
A standard miter saw or a specialised one? What would suit your requisites in the most effective way is totally up to your evaluation. Here the chief deciding factor should be the kind of cuts your projects demand. Choose an equipment that will simply get the job done. If you’re buying a saw only for low-duty stuffs like home renovation, minor repair works in your garage or workshop, it’s better not to go overboard with a high-end model that excels in complex cuts such as crosscut, bevel cuts, dado joinery and all.
Portable Miter Saws
It’s ain’t a bad thing when you can transport your wood working essentials without developing a crack in your bone. Although there aren’t many promising product in this category, a few brands have actually pushed the boundaries and encapsulated a bundle of practical utilities like laser guide in an enclosed package. It’s wise to keep your expectations grounded if you’re planning to own a portable model.
Type of Cuts
Crosscutting is nothing but the method of splitting the lumber along the length. You don’t essentially need a miter for this. Any regular table saw or circular saw would be substantial.
You’ve already got some hints of it in the previous section where i explained different miter saw types. Compound cut is a complex sawing action that involves tearing a dimensional object angled across the width and kerf, at once. Only quality miter saws have the flexibility to get such subtle jobs done, without splinter the material.
Now that’s what a mighty miter saw is really for. In this style of cutting, the blade runs through the object angled across the width.
The same as above. Just replace width with thickness. Thank you. A compound (especially dual compound saws) saw rightly fits the bill for it as the blade tilts in only one direction.
Single Bevel v/s Double Bevel Saws
Depends on whether you want a device particularly for extensive bevel cuts. If yes then you already know that the singular tilt of compound miter saws is highly favourable for cutting across the thickness of substance. You can engage your entire focus on the sawing action as there’ll be no need to bend the lumber time to time. What regular compound saws do well, Double compound saws do even better. Since the blade pivots in both left and right, you can just stand in once position and accomplish the task without deviating from there or adjusting the material.
Corded or Cordless?
Corded tools are extensively used in upscale workshops, manufacturing factories and commercial wood shops. While the lack of free movement on the part of the user can be a real pain for amateurs, corded units are four times more forceful than cordless ones. But then, since cordless saws operate on electricity, there will be long product downtime if the power goes off. For that, you should always have a cordless equipment stashed in your toolbox as a backup.
Cordless miter saw works great for people who can’t avail constant access to electricity or close proximity to the power outlet of the place. One big problem with these battery-operated systems is the battery-life. You need to fully charge the batteries before getting started with the device. Even if you do, the high energy consumption will make the charge wear out within a few hours anyway. If you want to work with cordless miter saws for prolonged hours, it’s absolutely essential for you to own an extra pair of lithium ion batteries, which are capable of holding the energy much longer than standard batteries. However that would add up extra digits to your overall budget.
Features to Look for in a Miter Saw
Miter Saw Blade Types
Just like any cutting equipment, a miter saw also sources its power and efficiency from its blade. Covering a topic as vast as miter saw blade types and considerations, a brief discussion won’t suffice. Still, I will be trying to give as much details as possible in a nutshell. After all, I’m not here to train you to become a master handyman, it’s meant to be a comprehensive guide and I don’t want to minus the comprehension part from it.
When you visit the retailer’s chain or browse the e-commerce sites in search for the most perfect miter saw for your money, the first parameter you need to assess very carefully is the blade. There are blades for both heavy-duty and low-key tasks. A standard miter saw blade measures around 10-12 inches in length, which is practical enough to help impart optimum cutting flow. In order to figure out the right blade for your job, keep three key aspects in mind-the thickness and size of the substance. Longer blades are always a go-to option if you will be slicing a lot of hardwood. One of the biggest advantages of miter saws is the miter index which allows for perfect fine0tuning of the blade angle according to the fence.
Don’t get fooled by the advertising gimmicks. If you’re completely new into this world, experts would recommend you to get your skills tested by a general, all-purpose blade that’ll glide through almost any surface without a hitch. Think about the blade rotations per minute (RPM). If the blade faces overheating issues while dealing with a wide stock, you’re probably using a wrong blade. But above all, safety should be at the top of your priority list. Amputation is a very common workplace hazard in wood shops. Have some mercy on your limbs and get a blade that is covered by a protective retractable guard.
The steel is first melted and then shaped into a moulder. It’s just as basic as it gets. Okay for ordinary cutting jobs.
Laser Cut Blade
This time a more solid material is flawlessly chipped by a laser. The expansion slot features no hole. Easy to touch up and best used for polished cuts on a variety of materials.
Saw Tooth Profile
Universally used miter saws devise a circular shaped blade that slides into the surface in slow motion against the fence, resulting in a straight and uniform cut every single time. When you talk about tooth anatomy, we are actually referring to the formation of the cutting surface of the teeth. There are ample of geometry to choose from, Triple Chip-grind (TCG) is one of the most prolific among them. Be it hard wood or a non-ferrous material, TCG teeth profiles rises to any occasion you put it through.
Again, take into consideration what purposes do you intend to tackle with the device. If you’re going to rip cut a large volume of wood or a medium density board choose a blade with a small tooth count, preferably a widely gapped 24 tooth saw. The specious room between the gullet is not suitable for crosscutting, because this time the teeth requires to nibble, not bite hard. Increasing the tooth count will help you improve the finery of the end product. Anything between 50-80 would be a subtle slicer of engineered sheet goods, natural woods and non-porous materials alike.
Experts recommend a hook angle from -5 to +7 degree for low to medium demanding projects. If precision and speed are your priorities, stress on a more negative angle hook for swift, hitch-free action.
What about the Prime Features?
This should be the next thing to grab your attention after you’re satisfied with the blade quality. It’s imperative to make sure that the motor induces enough power to get your job done fruitfully. It’s still okay to throw up a couple of cash extra for a higher amp motor, but never ever settle for a low amp unit. When you put it through a hard wood piece, it would try to cut it forcefully, resulting in a mess you can’t afford.
DIY lovers don’t need hurt their arms unnecessarily with an intimidating saw. Instead choose a portable model powered by a solid induction motor and your sawing career will blast (lot literally!) in no time.
For the very, very serious workers out there, a laser guide is an extremely useful addition to a sawing machine. It helps you place the cutting line of the blade at an ideal position on the wood piece surface, leaving no room for faulty cuts. The better the laser, the more accurately it underlines the exact point where the blade teeth meet the cutting object. Model equipped with laser guides can be a bit on the steeper side of the economy, but that’s worth it. If budget is not restraining you, eye for a product offer dual laser system that points out the merging area of both surfaces as well as the kerf of the cut.
Electric Brake System
It’s imperative to abide by the security rules while dealing with a machine that’s born to chop and mince. When one is in rush and in need of switching the blade too often, it’s not unnatural for that human being to be obvious of the spinning blade for a moment, and that, my friend is how nightmarish scenarios in work places take place. An electric brake on the miter saw can keep calm, unlike humans and responsibly pause the blade the very second you release the trigger.
The best miter saws for an extensive range of materials are bound to have this one safety element in common. Top-end models utilise retractable blade guards that withdraw and resume automatically in line of the direction you pivot the blade.
Dust Collection Ports
A hygienic work place equals to minimal distraction. Avoid saws that come with no chute or dust collection bag. It will only generate a cyclone of sawdust during the operation and turn the atmosphere terrible for breathing. Most up-to-date models house a dust collection port which can be used for connecting a vacuum cleaner or dust bag.
This cool feature is basically a combination of pre-set points (both positive and negative) that enables the user to adjust the cutting angle rapidly while there’s a demand of multi-style cuts on a massive stock of lumber and non-porous substances. Bevel stops are extremely significant for artistic tasks like making furniture, photo frames, crown mouldings and window cases. The best miter saws offer multiple bevel deterrents for micro-adjustability of bevels.
Variable Speed Dial
If you can control its angle, you can control the motor speed too. Variable speed dial button is not something ordinary small miter saws will have in store. This not an essential feature but does have practical application for hardcore jobs.
Adjustable Rear Fence
The design of the fence, more often than not, defines the credibility of a saw. Poorly made fences can turn your entire hard work into a trash. So, be smart and settle for an adjustable sliding fence can be elevated at desired levels when you’re up for some fine bevel cuts.
Miter saws are made from numerous detachable components. Times when we are in hurry, one or two parts magically go missing and you shift your entire focus on cussing your luck. Keep calm and get a solution for this. Onboard wrench storage on saws are a nice and safe internal storage space where you can stash the necessary components without the fear of losing them.
And Finally, the Pocket Pinch
There are more companies making miter saws than you can count on your fingers, which highlights the fact that you won’t lack options. From portable DIY mini saws to monstrous beats, there’s something for every type of customer. It’s also advisable that you don’t lust after a cheap product after getting lured by gimmicky advertisements. Stretch your wallet a little more, even if it hurts, but don’t compromise with your security. The worst thing about cheap products sold like hot cakes in the flea market is the poor safety arrangement. Chuck them away because they are simply not worth it.
But that doesn’t mean that I’m provoking you to buy an expensive saw bundled with a truckload of feature, if you won’t even need the half of them on the practical ground. I don’t even understand why manufacturers at times go totally nuts and roll out shockingly pricey products that delivers the same quality its cheaper alternative would accomplish with ease. We all are blessed with brains, let us make the most of it.
Reviews of the Best Miter Saws of 2016
When you’re planning to purchase an item of superior importance, there’s a certain level of homework one has to do. Sitting in front of the computer and evaluating a product’s merit with the power of judgemental outlook isn’t really one of them. Folks who won’t settle for anything at any cost without touching the item with their hands and penetrating under its hood with their own eyes are always the smartest ones, they’re perfectly fine with being tagged as old-school. But again, we live in the age of internet, the World Wide Web has brought the whole encyclopaedia of everything at our fingertips.
Virtual world has become an extension of the real world. Whatever we read on the internet greatly influences our views on a topic. When I thought about writing on a subject that may impact the vision of many, I had but to be responsible in every step I took. I won’t claim it to be the best you can find on the internet, but yes, it’s authentic and that too counts.
A 12” single bevel compound miter saw equipped with a hard carbide tipped blade, DW715 is DeWalt’s gift for their DIY customer base. We all know DeWalt has a huge fan base among professionals, contractors to do work working for living. This lightweight machine won’t appeal them. Rather it would appeal homeowners like us who enjoy the craft of furnishing homes on our own. The unit is powered by a 15 motor, inducing a blade RPM of 4000.Would you still undermine this as a low-key saw?
Achieve accurate 45 degree flat ground with the assistance of positive and negative bevel stops. The blade effortlessly pivot left and right, expanding from 0 to 48 degrees in the left and 0 to 3 degrees in the right. The miter index of the device has the read-outs very clearly printed upon it, preventing you from making a mistake when the sawdust tries to block your vision. Having 32 blades spread across the edge infuses great versatility in terms of cutting applications.Check the Latest Price
When you want to ready to commit to your, with to the next level of wood working by opting for a compound miter saw. DW713 is steeped in logical features, has sensible ergonomics and helps you master the skill in real quick time. Its unique cam-lock miter, state-of-the-art carbide blade, a rugged motor at the heart of the machine and a plenty of bevel stops allows you to customize the cutting method as per your convenience. The razor sharp carbide blade allows for consistent results. This efficiency is further boosted by the 0-50 degree left and right miter capacity. The blade imparts giant strength from 5000 rotation in every 60 seconds, which should positively substantiate demanding assignments.Check the Latest Price
Wood sawing technology reached new heights with the introduction of miter saws. In a market monopolized by DeWalts and Makitas, there are dark horses who deserve just as much of the recognition as the industry leaders do. Milwaukee is one of those dark horses I was hinting towards. Their latest 6955-20 series cutters split both natural and man-made wood smoothly with conviction.
The great cutting power owns its origin to the premium carbide blade that can write a history (and then cut it into little pieces).The bevel detent override options pave way to rapid micro-adjustment of the angles and depth. A dash of novelty comes from the inclusion of two individual bevel locking system. There’s also a green light indicator that keeps check of the exact angle of the cut, helping you to produce same results with every batch of objects.Check the Latest Price
Portable saw enthusiasts should not overlook this compact genius from the house of Makita. As you might be already knowing, Makita is a reigning trader of power-tools and sawing accessories since decades. Any product with a stamp of Makita embossed on it can be relied upon without hesitation. The key feature of this power house of applications is the exceptionally power yet energy-efficient induction motor. It was really logical on the part of the merchants to include a 10 amp motor that generates a whopping 6000 RPM, more than sufficient to blow the mind.
The miter capacity devises 9 bevel deterrents located on each side of the frame. Plus, the saw bends up to 47 degrees and 57 degrees in left and right direction, consecutively, leaving you with the liberty to play with depth and angles. After so much praising, it feels bad to highlight the flaws. I would have really skipped this part had it not sprained by muscles due to its weight disposition. I hope somebody from the company is reading this and pondering over the issue.Check the Latest Price
The next merciless cutter lining up in the queue is a product of Bosch, the boss.CM10GD is a representation of outstanding technology merged with responsible product design. Being one of the highest ranked tools of modern times, Bosch has left no stone unturned to keep the security standards high and at par with the modern safety perspectives. It comes with a 60 t carbide tipped blade which is a pitch-perfect tooth count for fine sawing on delicate substances. 10” dual bevel sliding mechanism is ideal for intricate carvings. The in-built laser guide helps you stay focused at the exact merging point of the teeth and cutting area.
As the space between the gullets are almost negotiable, there’ll be no risk of splintering. CM10GD likes to get the things going in a quiet and peaceful manner, you can be sure of least distraction during the operation caused by vibration. On top of that, you’ll be getting two fences, one fixed type and one adjustable, letting you avail of optimal convenience when you need it the most. This is one of those quality miter saws that excels in every essential aspect without compelling you to break a bank to own itCheck the Latest Price
Another industry standard compound miter for those who take their assignments very seriously. It has all the primary features a universal miter saw has to offer. But what’s makes it rise above the ordinary is the ability to slide through the hardest and thickest materials like butter. Having a single bevel equipment at this price range to handle objects 2 5/16 inches in height and 5 21/32 inches in depth like breeze is a privilege you shouldn’t be missing out on. The 15 amp motor housed at the middle of the champ draws 15 amps to produce 5000 rotations per minute, which doesn’t disappoint. The solid fence structure and great blade adjustment enables you to reproduce same cuts every single time.Check the Latest Price
The Final Word
No article in the virtual world would highlight only a single product as the best in the business. Each product in my line-up, or for that matter, any other comparison chart, is a winner of its own kind. Which one will exactly meet the objectives you’ve set for it is a very very difficult question to answer. I know that it’s next to impossible for a non-pro have physical access to so many products for quality checking. Partially that’s why I chose to do the hard yard for you, and partially because I don’t want a single line to sound like a paraphrase of someone else’s opinion. But that doesn’t free you from your due diligence. Put your bit of effort before making important long-term investments like this.
It doesn’t really matter whether you’re a hardcore professional or not ready to commit yet, woodworking is a serious job and takes a lot of practice to perfect this art. Being a DIY savvy myself, I completely understand the significance of having the best tools stashed in your toolbox all the time. Just in case you’ve realised that it is high time to bring growth in your business by increasing the productivity of your workers, you’re reading the right article. My objective behind publishing this guide is to help you purchase only the best miter saw. Now what are things that qualify a miter saw as the best? Or rather, better than the rest? All this and more, coming up for you in the next segment.