Just talked to a Makita person re whether or not they intend to put out
their sliding compound miter saws with a laser line guide and the answer was
The rep said they did extensive testing and weren't satisfied that the line
stays accurate. I thought this was a good thing because it shows they care
more about selling a quality product than adding the laser as a buyer
What does this say for the other laser guides that are out there, including
the add-on one now available?
I have a 12" Makita laid away and that's why I asked if they would be adding
the laser feature. May as well go ahead and get it anyway. I like their
I don't believe their answer. To me that is a salesman's answer. They
don't have it so they belittle anyone that does. I added a laser to my
older ls011 I think is the number. Anyway the laser is accurate at the
top of the stroke... it changes as the saw is brought down...(I hear all
of the type that mount to the blade do this... boy did it piss me off at
first thinking my saw was crap) BUTTT that is fine... I have learned to
deal with it... and for most work it is way more accurate than without
it. The only place I am uncomfortable with it's accuracy is with
The problem I have with lasers is that you can't see a pencil line when the
laser shines on it. I often make fine adjustments to my work piece, Often
I'll cut to one side of the line or the other. Sometimes I want to cut down
the center of the line. I'm talking 1/32 or smaller adjustments. I hate not
being able to see the line when cutting.
I always lift the guard out of the way so I can view my line and the blade.
I just can't see the use for a laser.
For people who never lift the guard I guess it's the only way to line up the
I've never had the opportunity to try to use one w/ the laser, but I've
always been curious about whether they were actually very accurate for
precision fits, as well. I can see it being a time-saver for
framing-type cuts, but no substitute for either a stop block or the
actual line for precision it would seem to me. The fuzziness of the
edge alone (at least in all the pictures I've seen) would seem to be
self-defeating for precision.
If I was doing a lot of framing, I'd want the laser for the speed. For fine
work, taking the few seconds to bring the blade down to the mark is a cheap
price to pay for accuracy. The one that require the blade to be running for
the laser to be on sound silly to me. I'll be damned if I'm going to make a
precise alignment with a 12" blade spinning above my hand. My be OK for
chopping a tubafor though.
Is (or can it be) set such that it would hit the edge precisely or is it
(as I have presumed) a fuzzy-enough image that there isn't really that
crisp of a line? If it were set to split the line, I don't think it
would have a chance of anything but "in the ballpark", I agree...
I have no intention of ever paying for one, I'm just curious how well
they might actually work... :)
That is for the blade mounted laser. The fixed type that are in the top
of the housing I've heard resolve this issue. So the Delta w/dual lines
(nice), and Crapsman shouldn't have this problem. I am not sure why,
just that I've heard they don't have this problem, and confirmed with
others that have the blade mounted that I am not alone.
I can say it is more than framing accurate...
But for the very precise use a test cut and stop block.... Which
eliminates more than laser error (minuscule ) compared to marking error,
and (my sighting error). Yes the laser line is more than a hair wide, so
your accuracy is compromised by that... but so is your line unless you
strike it with a marking knife.... Funny I used to use a knife all the
time... but I can't see the damn knife mark half the time anymore.... So
how many times do you need the most accurate cutoffs??? Is it for
repetitive cuts... 2 sides of a table ... use a stop block, you won't
have any question... or leave a hair extra and use a shooting board.
I bought a Laserkerf brand laser for my makita 1013 about two years
ago. It's housing mounted and comes with well laid out instructions
for mounting. It's not a perfect system, but it's a nice option that I
use sometimes and am glad to have even though I have a carefully
constructed cutting station. My set-up involves a solid table with 8'
of t-track to one side and 4' to the other side. There are steel rules
epoxied into each track. Replete with flip stops for ease of use and
repeatability. Yet, I do use the laser when I'm cutting to pencil
marks. [BTW, the laser duplicates the saw kerf - either 1/8 or 3/32 -
so the laser doesn't obliterate the pencil line. You put the laser to
the EDGE of the pencil line.] So, I like having the laser. But for
$80 I'm just as happy adding it on myself and letting Makita do what
they do well. That 1013 is a fine saw!
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