How to find the best miter saw for the job
Having the best miter saw available is important when you’re dealing with signs like we do at NonStop Signs and Graphics. Not just signs, but also picture frames, and many other kinds of the woodwork that is inseparable from a lot of the physical marketing materials we produce. Miter saws, of course, have many other uses and can come in handy if you ever need to make or customize furniture. We’ve put together this guide to help you navigate the market and find the best miter saw for you.
Why should you buy a miter saw?
Miter saws, also sometimes referred to as a chop saw, are amazing machines that can cut wood at pretty much any angle. Every woodworker will have a miter saw in their workshop, as it helps them produce a wide variety of products. Miter saws can be used to cut large and small pieces of wood alike, making it a very flexible tool. The cuts produced by a miter saw are completely straight and doesn’t leave splinters. If you’re making pictures frames, door frames, window casings, or crown molding, you’ll want to buy a miter saw.
How does a miter saw work?
Miter saws allow you to make angled cuts and cross cuts at 90-degree angles. They are fitted with a round blade that is powered by a motor. The blade is set in motion and plunged into the wood, which makes the cut so clean.
What to think about when looking for the best miter saw
Before you dive headfirst into the miter saw the market, there are a few things you should consider. Miter saws come in many shapes and sizes, as well as having different functionalities.
What is the miter saw made of?
Being a power tool, the miter saws are made to be sturdy and able to handle tough workloads. Mitre saws are made of steel and/or aluminum. Some miter saws may have a blade guard or handle made out of tough plastic. If this doesn’t seem safe enough, then you might want to consider one that is completely made out of steel.
What are the parts of a miter saw?
There are many kinds of miter saws out there, and many of them come with their own pros and cons. Amps show you how powerful the miter saw is. Go for higher amps to get more power. The blade size will also determine how long cuts you can make with the saw. Many miter saws come with what is called positive cuts. These allow you to make accurate cuts and cuts the time spent on setting up a particular cut. Similar to positive stops, depth cuts allow you to limit how deep into the wood the miter saw will cut. many saws also come with blade guards that allow you to where the saw is cutting whilst working on the wood.
If you need to suddenly stop the saw, look for a miter saw with electric brakes. These reverse the electrical current, which makes the blade stop in less than two seconds. Dust chutes are useful for blowing away sawdust from the areas you’re putting on. You can also get saws with dust bags, that will collect said saw dust. If you need to change blades often, you should look for a saw with a spindle lock, which makes the process much faster. Saws with digital displays will make it easier for up to read information about miter and bevel settings.
What size should the saw be?
The most typical miter saws have blades measuring 10 and 12 inches. Ten inches might suffice if you are just an occasional user. If you are a professional, on the other hand, then the twelve inches might be more suitable for more industrial purposes.
This size is the most popular one, and there are a few good reasons for that. The number one reason is cost. 10-inch blades are not only more affordable when it concerns the initial cost, but will also save you money down the line. The size of the blade means they have fewer teeth and thus are easier to sharpen. The blades are spin faster and use less electricity due to their smaller radius. This means initial cost, sharpening cost, and energy costs are all lower with this option.
As great as it is that the 10-inch is an affordable option, it doesn’t always cut it (pun intended). A 12-inch blade will not only make longer cuts than a 10-inch blade but will cut wood with much more power. Because these blades have more teeth than a 10-inch blade, it also means the cuts will be cleaner. This means the 12-inch blades are ideal for larger projects, such as cutting building a deck.
Should you get a laser?
Although a miter saw is cutting very accurately, it doesn’t mean that your own aim will be as accurate. To remedy this issue, it is worth considering buying a laser for your miter saw. This will create a red line that indicated where the blade will cut when it impacts on the surface you’re working on. This is particularly useful if you don’t want to waste any materials due to human error. Just be mindful of the fact that the laser will not work well in a bright outdoor setting.
What kind of miter saw should you get?
There are quite a few different kinds of miter saws available for a variety of needs. There are basic, compound, dual and sliding compound miter saws. So which you should you get? Have a look at the differences here below.
#1: Basic miter saw
The basic miter saws are useful for DIY projects at home. They can cut most types of wood, and are a great tool to create window frames and door frames. They can handle most simple jobs you throw at it and will do it much faster than a manual saw. Basic miter saws will come with a miter index that tells you the angles the saw can cut it.
#2: Compound miter saw
Compound miter saws are a step up from the basic model and can create both miter and bevel cuts this makes them particularly useful for crown moldings an picture frames, as they can cut angles in two planes. The blade on a compound miter saw can pivot to both sides for angled cuts and slides in one direction for the beveled cuts.
#3: Dual compound miter saw
A dual compound miter saw, also called a sliding compound miter saw, is the same as a regular compound miter saw, but with one added difference. The dual compound miter saw is able to slide the blade in both directions when performing bevel cuts. This makes it possible to create a bevel cut at any angle very quickly.
What else should you think about?
If you’re cutting long pieces of wood it might be a good idea to invest in a stand for your miter saw. A solid stand will help keep your saw and wood steady when you’re working on the wood. It will also help you create more accurate cuts as you can simply press the saw again the fence of the stand when cutting. Another thing you should think about when using a miter saw is to let it do the work. Don’t push the saw to get the work done faster, as this will only result in a bad cut. Finally, you might want to invest I a cordless miter saw if you’re working in an area with few or scare electrical power sockets. Given that these saws run on battery, it would also be wise to invest in additional batteries if you’re working for an extended period.
Which one do we think is the best miter saw?
We’ve identified five really popular miter saws on Amazon as the best miter saws out there. Check them out here below!
Best Miter Saw #1: DEWALT DW715 15-Amp 12-Inch Single-Bevel Compound Miter Saw
Get it in just two days with Amazon Prime right Dewalt.
Best Miter Saw #2: Bosch 120-Volt 12-Inch Dual-Bevel Glide Miter Saw GCM12SD
Get it in just two days with Amazon Prime right from Bosch.
Best Miter Saw #3: TruePower 919 High-Speed Mini Miter/Cut-Off Saw, 2-Inch
Get it in just two days with Amazon Prime – TruePower.
Best Miter Saw #4: Hitachi C12FDH 15 Amp 12-Inch Dual Bevel Miter Saw with Laser
Get it in just two days with Amazon Prime right Hitachi.
Best Miter Saw #5: Makita LS1018 10-Inch Dual Slide Compound Miter Saw
Get it in just two days with Amazon Prime right Hereabouts.