I just bought a dewalt 12" single bevel compound miter saw, my
craftsman was just not staying accurate. I'm starting to wonder though
if I should get a dual bevel. I'm relatively new to furniture
building. Is there anything that I can't do with this saw that I could
do with the compound bevel? Is the advantage just convenience?
You will get some disagreement with the following opinion but this is
cyberspace and we all get to speak with impunity.
In my opinion, if you want to build quality wood furniture there are
too fundamentals to follow. Make every piece is as flat and square as
possible and sand, sand, sand. Bottom line first; I have just had too
many heartbreaks with bad cuts from a miter saw to ever want to use
them for anything as accurate as a fine piece of furniture; crown
molding 5 feet over my head, sure, but not furniture (insert flames
Therefore, I never worry much about the accuracy of a cutoff saw
because I am only using it to make big pieces smaller before I cut them
to final size (rip, cross cut and bevel/angle cut), typically on the
table saw. Yes there is the odd time the cutoff saw is the best tool
for a certain cut, and of course the wily ole bandsaw, but I'll always
just dial it in for that one cut, so most saws will hold a setup for a
cut or two.
Many of the designs that I produce over and over are assembled almost
without the use of a square. If the parts are square, the piece will be
square. Of course large open boxes require a quick check across the
diagonals but that's done with a tape anyway.
I also sand the boards flat with maybe 80 or 100 depending on their
state, before I rip or cross cut. Then I sand with 150 after all the
milling is done and before I assemble anything. Then I'll ease the
edges with 320, not for the smoothness, just so I can control how much
material I take off.
No argument from me.... I do not even own a Miter Saw... and have been
a serious woodworker for over 40 years now and really do not have a
need for one... Now if I were a trim carpenter ... lol.
Couldn't agree more... a chop saw is virtually useless for anything
that needs more accuracy than a fence or deck. Not sure why
though... three things I noticed:
- For some reason blade deflection seems to be a big issue, even
with beefy-plated blades. I definitely wouldn't use it with a thin kerf.
- On my dewalt, only the left fence can be made square with the
blade. The right side cannot -- although it's one piece!
- The cut always has saw marks. Don't know why. Might be the same
reason as the first, bearings seem pretty tight and so forth.
Most people never take the time to set up their miter saw to get it to
cut correctly. You can adjust fences, stops, tilts, etc. on just about
all of them, but almost no one I know takes an hour (or two) to set
their saw up correctly.
I have a 12" Rigid that I use for decks and the like, and it is OK.
With a great blade, you can do some really good work after tuning even
on large, painted crown molding.
My 10" Delta never would "get right". I worked and worked on it with
my engineer's square, and no matter what, I couldn't get it
satisfactorily square. Close, but no cigar. So... OK for baseboard,
decks, door trim, etc.
My 8" Delta is a great "handy" saw, and is super for running small
house trim and shoe molding. It will match it own cuts as in a scarf
joint, but will not, cannot cut square. After using it for the last
few years off and on I am sure that never was a design concern.
My 10" DeWalt is actually one of the few DeWalt tools I like. I came
reasonably square from Taiwan, and it has plenty of adjustment screws
and room. However... the right side of the pivot base on the one I
bought was around 1/64" out of whack no matter how I tried to square
it. Finally after adjusting, testing, aligning, etc. for about two
hours I went to my shop and got a large wood mallet, set a 2x4 across
the offending offset and smacked it a couple of times.
It is now square, I am happy to report. It will stay that way until
someone knocks it over, or jams it up when they let the material move
while cutting, or forgets and tosses it in the truck bed at the end of
the day instead of in the front seat with me.
Once I got it squared to my satisfaction, I don't let anyone use it at
the shop or out on the job unless it is an emergency.
BTW... I never have seen a dual bevel that you could get nicely squared
on both sides of the blade. Some are better than others, but none seem
to be great.
Thanks for your reply --- that is my saw, and that's exactly what's
wrong with the right side. I didn't try the bigger hammer approach
though, I'll try being a little less subtle :-)
I actually figured there was some deeper reasoning DeWalt had by
factory adjusting it that way that I couln't fathom (like, maybe, it has
dual use as a jointer fence)
I'm usually pretty careful with it, but I loaned it to to a guy to lay
a few kilofeet of maple flooring and it came back with the yellow
plastic "throat plate" in the middle all cut to shreds by the blade...
how's that for *massive* blade deflection?
Didn't seem to hurt the saw, but the blade was "consumed" ... I'm sure
it didn't help that it was the 25-year Aluminum Oxide coated stuff.
Which is a good tip... I always keep a good supply of trashy blades
(usually the ones the machine comes with) just in case someone wants
to borrow your stuff. I always manage to get myself into situations
where I can't just say no, so this is the next best thing :-)
Apparently you've never used a good miter saw. I've made 12 sided
polygons that fit together "perfectly" (quotes to indicate nothing is
perfect) without the pieces needing any touch up. The miter saw is a
At the time I was looking for a solid, non-disposable saw. Other than
the accuracy (which nailshooter has given me some hope that I can
improve) I'd definitely still say it's a good saw.
I'm not sure any miter saw is really marketed or designed as a
heirloom-quality-furniture-making saw... they generally seem to be a
construction-grade items. Sometimes, though, I guess you get lucky.
There you go. I use my Makita LS 1013 every day and it is just a
fantastic piece of equipment. That Freud LU85R doesn't hurt either.
I might spring for a for Chopmaster one day, but I can't foresee a
If you're referring to the DW705S vs. the DW706, I believe the
former has a gear drive and the latter a belt drive. So even
if you don't need the double bevel action, you might prefer the
drive and the balance (since it's mounted behind the blade
rather than along side).
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