Dewalt or Hitachi 12" slide miter saw


My girl got me the new Dewalt 12" slide miter saw DW718 for Christmas. She got it at Lowe's which also has the new Hitachi 12" C12LSH. Anyone have any experience with either of these saws? Any comments of one over the other? I've used Dewalt miter saws in the past and have had a good experience. The Hitachi has some features the Dewalt does not, laser and digital bevel and miter angles. The Dewalt says it cuts a 16" board, the Hitachi 12.25". The 2 saws are the same price so I can take back the Dewalt and get the Hitachi.
Any feedback is appreciated.
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The 16" cutting width is more than enough reason to keep it. The other things on the Hitachi are just marketing.

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I agree with Rob, a longer cutting distance is a big plus. How tall can it cut? I assume both of them would lop a 4x4 and a 2x12. In Dewalt's case, a 2.x16. :-)
If you threw out the cutting width though, it would be the handle that made the decision for me. Whichever one felt best in my hand and would be less stressful on those time when I was stuck cutting a few hundred lengths of x for job z. This Bosch I've got is great for everything else but the handle placement really sucks.
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I am a carpenter by trade and bought the 718 last month. The saw will only cut 14" out of the box. A shop made auxiliary fence, IIRC, is required to cut 16". It will cut to 6 1/2" standing up. I looked at the Hitachi (and others) when I was shopping for a new scms and decided the digital stuff seemed gimmicky. Do a google for "DeWalt 718" and check out my longish review. I've been *extremely* pleased with the saw, however my only complaint still is I don't like the provided blade at all. So after receiving a few gift certificates from Santa, it will be replaced with a Forrest chopmaster this week. Also, keep in mind you have 30 days from date of purchase to return it if you don't like it, so put it to the test and take it back if it doesn't "make the cut" for you. --dave

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Is it the 80T DW blade? Have the blade sharpened by someone like Forrest or Ridge Carbide. It will cut better than new. Mine was mediocre out of the box, but now is great.
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Edwin Pawlowski wrote:

I still have mine - it cut lousy so I put a Freud on it. Very nice. I think I'll send out the original to Forrest and do a little comparison.
Also, "When shopping for a miter saw, stick to the 10-in. models. Twelve-in.-diameter blades don't cut as accurately because the teeth are further from the support of the arbor. Besides, a 10-in. diameter saw is large enough for most work."*
JP ---------------------------------------------------------------- * = Taunton's Complete Illustrated Guide to Woodworking, by Bird, Jewitt, Lie-Nielsen, Rae and Rogowski
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Thanks for the tip! Unfortunately the saw came with a 60 tooth ATB blade labeled "fine finish" (yea right) which I think is not sufficient for *real* fine finish work. I'm gonna keep it for more rough work and get a better one for finishing. --dave
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Two things to consider - the Dewalt is a decent performer and your girl picked it for you. Keep the Dewalt, she'll feel good seeing you use it.
PDX David
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