Miter cutting

I have one of the Harbor freight 10" combination miter saws for the price it does a decent job except when I go to make picture frames for the wood scrollings I do, even though I am using the detents for 45deg cuts when I go to glue up the pieces they are not a perfect matchup usually leaving 1/2" gap that I then have to force together and use filler, I tried using a square to check the angles and it seems to be 45deg any help would be appreciated TIA
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Take a piece of straight wood cut it in half. Cut both pieces at 45deg from the same side of the saw (don't just cut the board in half at 45) Try to mate the two pieces on a flat surface like a TS If the joint is tight you are at 45deg, if not adjust as needed ___________________________ ___________________________ // _________________________//____________________________
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Limp Arbor wrote:

The most important thing to get good corners on picture frames is that the opposite sides are EXACTLY the same length. You can have perfect 45's for the cuts but if they are not equal there will be gaps.
I make a lot of picture frames. I do it on my table saw and use a Right Angle Miter Gauge for the angles. With the miter saw as said above the angles must be 45's.
To get each side precisely the same length I cut the angles a bit proud of what I want. Fasten the opposite sides together and trim them to length.
If using cove molding you may need a jig to hold the piece in the proper orientation while cutting the angles.
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If you are making a compound miter cut, with the table at 45 and the blade tilted at 45, you'll get the result you describe. For reasons that aren't entirely clear to me, you have to make this correction to the blade angle:
tan(actual blade angle)=tan(blade angle) x cos(table angle)
For the setup listed above, you have to tilt the blade 35.26 degrees instead of 45.
Try it! You'll like it!
Scott
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Even using a plastic 45 degree triangle to set up your blade angle, on one side of the blade ONLY, will probably give you greater accuracy than the detents.
Then do all your final cuts for accuracy on that side of the blade, flipping your work pieces as necessary.
If you have a table saw, you can make a miter sled that will *guarantee* a 90 degree join:
http://www.e-woodshop.net/Jigs.htm ... scroll down to Miter Sled, and ask back if you need more information.
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the angles not only have to be correct, but opposite sides have to be EXACTLY the same length.
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This fact is most often over looked. It is best to use a fixed stop when cutting final length miters.
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thanks for all the tips folks I am new to this group reading mostly, don't have much to contribute as all my woodworking skills are tied to scroll sawing
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