When you’re considering buying a compound miter saw, you may not know straight away which type of saw you should go for. There is a multitude of different types and models with many differences. If you’re not informed, it can be quite daunting! But if you’re looking for a saw that will make bevel cuts, that’s a step in the right direction. From there, you know you’ll need to buy a compound miter saw (click here for the top 10). At this stage, things can get a little hairy.
A single-bevel compound miter saw will usually suffice if you’re working on a project that requires you to make angle cuts between two planes (for example, in crown molding and picture frames). This type of saw will pivot, allowing you to make angle cuts on the left or the right. It can also make bevel cuts but only in one direction, hence the name “single bevel.”
This saw can also be manipulated when you need to make compound miter cuts. However, if you need to make matching cuts, you’ll have to flip over the workpiece and reset the angle. This will ensure it’s accurate before moving on to the second bevel cut.
A good example of a single-bevel miter saw is the Craftsman 10″ Single Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw. This device comes with many features to do the job well, including a powerful 15-amp motor that delivers high torque and speeds up to 4800 rpm. It performs well and slices seamlessly through all densities of wood.
This miter saw provides precise, smooth cutting with laser-guided protection. It uses smaller blades that are easier to maintain but still delivers the capacity to spin through boards up to 12-inches wide. The 0-50 degree miter adjustment includes common positive stops, and the blade guard protects it from accidental bumps during use.
Dual-Bevel (Double Bevel) Sliding Compound Miter Saw
A dual-bevel compound miter saw allows you to make compound cuts in both left and right directions without having to turn your piece over. Instead, you use the pivoting arm to flip the saw. So if you’re planning to make a lot of crown molding that requires compound miter cuts, this tool will give you the most convenience and the fullest range of compound angles that are both right and left. You won’t have to hand-manipulate the moldings on the saw to cut them.
An example of a good dual-bevel miter saw is the Milwaukee 6955-20 12″ Sliding Dual Bevel Miter Saw. This device is designed to make setting precise bevel and miter levels easy with a miter angle fine adjust. In addition, it features a detent override: a digital display to show you the correct angle down to one-tenth of a degree.
Bevel vs. Miter
Bevel cuts are made by tilting the blade at a specific angle. So instead of cutting along the width of your wood, you’ll be cutting diagonally against the thickness of it. With a miter cut, you cut along an angle of wood, with the blade coming down vertically.
It really comes down to convenience. A single bevel compound miter saw can handle the same work as a dual bevel but with a little more manual manipulation and time. A dual bevel compound miter saw will save you time and is easier to manipulate, but it will cost more money. Many woodworkers will say that they started with a single bevel compound miter saw. This helped fine-tune their skills because they learned how to adjust their work manually to get the cuts right. However, once they upgraded to a dual bevel compound miter saw, they noticed a considerable increase in convenience and time-saving.