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Sliding Miter Saw

Updated on October 29, 2010

How to Choose a Sliding Miter Saw

Usually the most versatile power tools that any woodworker will ever own is his sliding miter saw , this is especially true of a compound miter saw. Attempting to make a compound cut without one is an exercise in frustration. If you are a serious woodworker you really need to have a compound miter saw. There are some things that you should keep in mind before you purchase your miter saw this will help to ensure that the saw you get suits your needs.

In large part the type of sliding miter saw that you buy is going to depend on how much you want to spend and how serious you are about woodworking. When it comes to selecting miter saws you do tend to get your money’s worth. There is a significant price difference based on the size and the quality of the saw that you buy. Selecting the highest quality saw that you can afford is in general the best idea. This will help make sure that you get the most use out of this incredibly useful tool.

There are usually three different sizes of compound miter saw, eight, ten and twelve inches. When we speak about the size of a miter saw we are actually speaking about how big the blade is. The larger the blade the bigger the piece of wood it can cut. Although you can get miter saws in three sizes the eight inch saw is so limited in what it can do that it really isn’t even worth considering. That means that you will need to decide between the ten and twelve inch miter saw. In most cases ten inches is sufficient, few woodworkers are going to encounter a piece of wood that is going to need a larger the saw.

Something else you will want to consider is whether you need a standard miter saw, a compound miter saw or a sliding compound miter saw. The standard miter saw has so many limitations in what it can do that it really isn’t worth considering since it is limited to cutting miters. The compound miter saw is much more capable because it is capable of cutting both miters and bevels. The sliding compound miter saw has the benefit of allowing you to cut larger pieces of wood since you can pull the saw through the wood after you have lowered it. Of course the cost goes up as you upgrade from a regular miter saw to a compound miter saw to a sliding compound miter saw. It is generally a good idea to choose a compound sliding miter saw but this is really going to come down to personal preference.


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