Miter Saw vs. Circular Saw

As I build my tool collection, I'm wondering what I'd get more use out of (and thus buy first) -- a circular saw or a miter saw? I'll be doing occasional basic honey-do projects like birdhouses and shelves and stuff.
Also, any suggestions on brand names?
-F
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You can cut anything on a circular saw, but only narrow stuff on a miter stuff. And, a MS is probably 3 times the price of a comparable quality circular saw. no-brainer, if you can only buy one inexpensive saw.
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Circulars are fine, I have 2 one battery powered one not. I use my table saw more than anything else. Check Harbor Freight for some homeowner power tools. I have several and am please with the performance. I do not use them every day.
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I would say Circular saw definitely.. Miter is more precise but got limited of usage. miter is very good in cutting 2x4 in various angle but not sure how you cut a big board with a miter.
The bad thing about circular is precision, but the good thing is it can cut almost anything. I tried to use circular saw to build a subwoofer box (which requires very precise cutting), but no matter how good you are, even with those aided guide the result won't be satisfied. In that case, I had to buy a table saw to solve the problem, or simply take the measurement give to home depot guys and let them cut for you. That's just my experience, I am not an expert in these stuff.
The rule is, you paid for what you get. Brand names like Dewalt is for everyday use for professional. If u are just use it for projects, other brandnames are fine. My circular saw is Sears, I had it for 12 years (not sure how old it is when I got it), still does the job.

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Thanks everybody for the input. Let me expand the topic just a tad. I see several manufacturers offer kits with a circular saw, power drill, and a reciprocating saw for a good price. What can a reciprocating saw do that a circular saw can't?
-F
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On 24 Nov 2004 10:27:55 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (Fleemo) wrote:

A reciprocating saw can get into tight places. A reciprocating saw's specialty is demolition (cuts through 2x4s, nails, drywall, etc.) A circular saw is probably has more generic uses and with a guide it can cut a clean straight line with reasonable accuracy.
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For me, circular saw is for cutting wood, I use reciprocating saw to cut metal. For precision, reciprocating is not very accurate but it's extremely powerful in metal cutting.
Yes, you can use a metal cutting wheel in circular saw or even using a grinder, but you gonna get smoke, spark everywhere.. where reciprocating cuts like a hacksaw, cutting metal without any burning smell. In your project, like building birdhouses and stuff.. it's not very heavy duty, on top of circular saw I suggest you get a jigsaw, so you can cut wood in diff shapes with curves. In my opinion, you don't need reciprocating saw.
C.P.

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limited to that purpose.
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Ah, my favorite. While I agree with the demolition statement, I think that the reciprocating saw (above all the others mentioned) does more things that simply could NOT be done with any other tool.
I once had to enlarge a closet opening and needed to rip the length of an installed 2 by 4 in the opening (cutting through the "4" dimension). My Milwaukee made short work of it and after I was finished I noticed that on the way down I had cut *lengthwise* through two framing nails (never even felt them).
To add another comment though... There's a reason Norm (genuflecting) has ALL of these saws in his workshop and that is for a particular task there is always one particular configuration that is the way to do it properly, from both a quality of result and safety perspective. As much as one would like there to be a tool that can do it all, it just doesn't work out that way.
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in gold.
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On the scale you seem to be considering, you'd do just as well to stick to hand-saws and a miter-box, and spend the money on a really good workbench.
Fleemo wrote:

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snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (Fleemo) wrote in message

The miter saw is good for -- guess what? -- miter cuts, so if you will be making picture frames, or cutting molding for a remodeling project, or something like that where you need a lot of precise miter cuts on small stock, it's good for that. The circular saw is more versatile for general construction and would be essential if you were to make, say, a deck. Also, it can be used for ripping -- long lengthwise cuts -- which the miter saw cannot do. Not so good for precise work though.
Consider another alternative -- for small to medium size projects, a good quality saber saw can do most things a circular saw can, and can make curvy cuts too, and is generally easier to handle and less dangerous. Must be good quality, though, for example a Bosch.
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<< Consider another alternative -- for small to medium size projects, a good quality saber saw can do most things a circular saw can, and can make curvy cuts too, and is generally easier to handle and less dangerous. Must be good quality, though, for example a Bosch. >>
That gets a vote from here, too. I reach for my Bosch jig saw far more often than the circular saw. Probably different if I were framing houses. And I'd take a cheap table saw any day over a hand circular saw for most home repair stuff. HTH
Joe
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