Miter Saw / November 12, 2018 / OdeletteGervais.
I quickly realized that the tool of choice would be a compound miter saw especially when tackling the crown moldings. I had suffered through a bookcase project a year earlier using a manual miter box and back saw to produce the crown molding trim on several built-in bookcases. There was no way I wanted to repeat that experience! My wife eager to see the remodeling project underway readily agreed to a new saw purchase. A Saw By Any Other Name Miter (or mitre) saws are designed to make angled cuts in wood stock by pulling a circular blade down in a plunging motion. This action gives the saws their nicknames of "drop saws" or "chop saws." A further refinement the compound miter saw can cut both an angle and a bevel simultaneously removing the need for a "work-and-turn" motion when making an angled cut that will smoothly join to another piece of trim or molding. The double action cut is possible because the motor is attached to a pivoting post which allows the blade to swing both side to side and at an angle to the workpiece.
There are three basic types available; the power miter saw compound miter saw or sliding compound miter saw. The power miter saw is a basic model that is good for a person who only intends to make simple cuts of 90 degrees or less such as the cuts necessary for trimming studs to frame a house. A compound miter saw is more versatile than the simpler power model since it adjusts for both miter and bevel cuts. Sliding compound models are more advanced and most versatile model of all miter saws. Because the motor and blade assembly is mounted on a movable arm this saw is perfect for accommodating longer pieces of wood while still performing beautiful cuts on smaller pieces as well. If the project you are doing around the house is quite extensive you might want to consider also purchasing a miter saw stand. The stand is one of the most important elements of a miter saw setup. If the saw does not have a good stable place to sit operating the machine will be frustrating and tedious. A stand will also provide a place for very long pieces of wood to rest while being cut. The purpose you intend to use the saw for will determine what type of stand you should purchase.
For starters a sliding compound miter saw is designed with two rail-like tubes that allow the blade to move back and forth in a larger range of motion. This grows crosscutting capacity by a few inches and allows users to through-cut wider boards (usually with one easy pass). Because of these tubes though sliding compound miters saws are typically heavier they are less portable and theyre more expensive. With the exception of some Bosch and Makita saws that utilize a kind of articulating arm in lieu of sliding-tubes sliding compound miters also require more room (especially at the rear of the saw) to work properly.
High-speed steel blades will hold an edge longer but the real ticket is a carbide-tipped blade which will stay sharpest the longest. I was pleased to see that the Makita LS1040 came with a 40-tooth carbide-tipped blade perfect for a variety of tasks Im doing. When I do need to change the blade theres a shaft lock that immobilizes the blade making it easier to get a wrench on the blade arbor and loosen it avoiding nicked fingers. So those are the things I looked for when choosing my miter saw: a powerful motor the ability to make both angle and bevel cuts at the same time an easy-to-use grip and safety features like the blade brake. Im glad l got a durable saw because once the crown moldings were finished my wife started thinking about adding a chair rail in several rooms and I was off to the lumber yard again. Every large entity starts out as a humble and small enterprise.