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12" Compound Mitre

$30 - $120

Time Needed

12" Compound Mitre

For a burly saw with a big blade, DeWalt's 12-inch compound miter saw is surprisingly lightweight (40 pounds) and portable. This saw makes smooth cuts through the thickest of stock, crosscuts a two-by-eight with ease, and--with its extra-high adjustable fence--miters crown molding up to 6-5/8 inches nested vertically against the fence (a timesaving feature that's reason enough for some trim carpenters to buy one). The fence also slides away for bevel cuts.

What impressed us the most was the weight and balance of this saw: the blade lowers easily into the cut, bevels are easy to set, and the miter gauge swivels smoothly. The saw's nine positive miter stops (detents) let you lock into the common angles quickly, but you can still dial in a 1/2 degree off the detent without the gauge dropping back into the stop. The detent plate is made of sturdy stainless steel, too, so it's hard to imagine it developing any slop even after years of use. The gauges are easily accessible and easy to read (what's more frustrating than having to lean around the saw to set on angle?). The saw miters up to 48 degrees on both sides and bevels left to 45.

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