Just about everyone is familiar with a miter saw, but not as many people are familiar with a sliding compound miter saw. Although this tool does seem to have somewhat of an excessively large name, it’s truly a tool that belongs in every workshop. That’s because they have the versatility of a compound saw, but they have a radial arm saw that allows the blade to be moved backward and forwards. This can be used to increase the length of the cut quite easily. To illustrate the effectiveness of these miter saws, we’ve included the ten best ones below for our readers to check out.
Best Sliding Compound Miter Saws – Top List
10Makita LS1018 10-Inch Dual Slide
A powerful 13-Amp direct-drive motor drives the heart of this sliding compound miter saw and allows it to spin the cutting blade at up to 4,300 RPM. This tool also delivers exceptional cutting capacity and accuracy, too. Although it weighs under 50-pounds, it’s capable of delivering the cutting capacity you would expect out of one of these saws. And since it has a soft start, it starts smoother and doesn’t damage the material it’s cutting. Another great feature found on this saw is its electric brake that adds not only added performance to this saw but also improves safety conditions for the operator.
9Milwaukee 12-Inch Saw With Digital Miter
Although it doesn’t feature a laser line and costs more than mid-range sliding miters, this tool does provide professional results. It features a powerful 15-Amp motor that delivers 3.3-Hp of power and allows this tool to cut through a variety of hard lumber. It also features a miter angle fine adjust, a miter angle digital readout that’s accurate to 0.1 degree and dual integrated job lights to illuminate the workpiece. Another cool feature found on this tool is its integrated dust channel that’s capable of captures three-fourths of all of the dust and debris produced while cutting wood or other materials.
8Hitachi 9.2-Amp 8.5-Inch Saw
Weighing just over 31-pounds, the Hitachi C8FSE may be the lightest tool in this category and in its class. However, even though it weighs less than comparable miter saws doesn’t mean that it isn’t capable of delivering power because it is more than capable. This tool has a 1,050-Watt motor and has an 8.5-inch blade, so it’s capable of delivering a number of professional-quality cuts. This saw is able to cut crown molding and trim and to do a variety of crosscuts and of course, miters. Its gliding system allows large workpieces to be easily handled, which makes it a great tool for woodworkers, carpenters, and framers.
7Festool Kapex KS 120 (561287)
Although its price-tag may put it out of the reach of some people, this Festool sliding compound miter saw is truly a great saw that delivers professional results. It has a rail-forward design that allows it to retain a compact footprint but also gives it the precision the operator needs to perform complex cuts. This tool can be aligned from the left or the right using the dual laser, and it has a micro-adjustable bevel angle that can be operated via a rotary knob. Other features found on this saw include a saw diameter of 10.25-inches, a dust extraction hood, and a lightweight design.
6Hitachi 15-Amp 12-Inch Dual Bevel (C12RSH2)
What makes this Hitachi saw exceptional among most other miter saws is that it has a compact slide system that eliminates the need for rear clearance. This compact slide system allows the saw head to track precisely along its fixed rails, and thereby eliminating the need for clearance. Although its slide system is top notch, however, it’s not the only feature worth mentioning on this saw. It also has a 15-Amp motor that gives the blade plenty of power to go through tough woods, and it has a large sliding fence that allows crown molding up to 7.5-inches vertically to be cut.
5Bosch 120-Volt 12-Inch Saw
The power of this dual-bevel glide miter saw is derived from several of its key features. This includes its 14-inch expanded horizontal cutting capacity and its 6.5-inch crown capacity. It also has a patented axial-glide system that gives the operator a high level of control over their work, even when they’re working in smaller workshops. This tool also has a quick-release fence that can be aligned 90-degrees to the saw’s table. It’s also equipped with a base that makes it quite stable. And finally, this powerful tool also has an ergonomic trigger handle that makes it exceptionally easy to use, even for longer periods of time.
4DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel
Equipped with a razor sharp 12-inch carbide blade, an integrated XPS cross-cut positioning system, and powerful 15-Amp motor, this sliding compound miter saw is capable of handling almost any job thrown at it. This tool has sliding fences that are tall enough to support a 7.5-inch nested crown or 6.75-inch base molding vertically. This tool’s motor provides up to 3,800 RPM of no-low speed that can power through just about any wood. And this tool also hands a handle that makes it easy to use on a regular basis. All of which makes this a professional tool worth checking out.
3Dewalt DW717 10-Inch Double Bevel
As any carpenter or woodworker will attest, the size of a miter saw’s motor and blade are only two things that must be considered when buying one of these tools. It’s also important to consider the features which may or may not make one of these tools more accurate. For example, this tool has a special bevel detent system with seven positive stops that allow the operator to perform repeatable and reliable cuts again and again. It also has an adjustable stainless steel miter detent plate with eleven positive stops, and it has a 45-degree bevel cut capacity, too. Which all just mean that this tool is as accurate as it is powerful.
2Dewalt DWS709 12-Inch Saw
Portability, power, and accuracy are all well represented by this high-quality saw from Dewalt. It features a 15-Amp motor that delivers 3,800 RPM of no-load speed and has an oversized bevel scale. It also has sliding fences that are tall and is equipped with a special back fence design that allows it to make cuts that some other saws simply can’t replicate. This tool’s fence system is capable of supporting crown molding up to 5.5-inches and base molding up to 4.5-inches vertically. And this saw can miter 60-degrees to the right and 50-degrees to the left. And all of these features can be found on a machine that weighs just a little bit over 50-pounds.
1Dewalt DWS779 12-Inch Saw
A great number of different features can be found on this Dewalt sliding compound miter saw, and any of these features make it a great tool for just about any workshop. For instance, it could be mentioned that it has a 15-Amp 3,800 RPM motor that can cut through just about any wood. It can also be mentioned that this tool has a back fence design that allows it to easily cut 2×16 dimensional lumber at 90-degrees or 2×12 dimensional lumber at 45-degrees. This tool also has a dust collection system that’s capable of collecting up to three-fourths of all of the debris produced by the cutting process.
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Sliding Miter Saw Guide
To make sure you get your hands on a sliding miter saw that is capable of creating the unique angles and cuts you need it to, it is important to find a quality option. This isn’t as easy as you might think. Although there are plenty of great products that will enhance your workshop there are also some that can prove to be a letdown.
To prevent yourself from making a bad decision, the following slider miter saw guide is here to help. Not only does it clear a few things up but it helps to make sure you buy a product that lasts for many projects.
What To Look For In A Sliding Miter Saw
- Power – It should come as no surprise that power equates to a lot of what makes a sliding miter saw so good. A lack of it will certainly make a simple cut less simple. Cutting through thick lumber can be easy when you have around 10 amps plus to play with. Professionals will argue that you should start at 15 but for those using a sliding miter saw in their garage, you can get by with less.
A lot will depend on the type of work you are doing and how often because you’ll need more power to get through tougher materials.
- Speed – After power is the speed at which the blade turns. This needs to be able to keep up with the power and a starting point should be around 4,000 RPMs (Rotations Per Minute). This ensures a smooth cut and there is no harm in going a fair bit higher if your budget allows.
- Positive Stops – These are markers that help to make cuts accurate and usually come as standard.
- Saw Size – The majority of sliding miter saws use either a 10-inch or 12-inch saw. As you might assume, the 12-inch blades are better for bigger, tougher materials which is why the 10-inch saw is enough for many people’s needs.
The only exception to this is portable sliding miter saws which are less powerful and in turn, require a smaller saw.
- Blade Tooth Count – The more teeth the blade has the smoother the cut can be although a blade with fewer teeth is often better for harder materials.
- Dust Collection – When you are cutting through hardwood or other materials, the dust and chips have to go somewhere and anything that can stop it from falling onto your workshops’ floor will be a valuable asset. This not only stops you from having to spend as much time cleaning, but it also protects anyone in the room from breathing it in.
- Features – A lot of the time, you get what you pay for so don’t expect a budget sliding miter saw to come with all the added extras of the more expensive models. Still, if this is what you are after there are a few features that can make life a little easier.
Some products come with a laser guide that helps to keep your line accurate and an LED light can help you to really focus on the right area, even when the light is not so good. Clear cutting guards are another that increases visibility but don’t always come as standard.
- Wrantyar – A sliding miter saw can be a big expense, especially when you are buying one of the more upmarket products. These tend to come with a warranty but to protect your purchase, make sure it comes with at least a couple of years.
- Portability – For a lot of people, a sliding miter saw will stay in the same place on the tabletop in your workshop. For everyone else, try and find a product that you feel comfortable carrying from job to job. Around 60 lbs are often thought of as being light enough to move with relative ease.
Sliding Compound Miter Saw Vs Sliding Miter Saw
The versatility that comes with both products is what makes them such an appealing option for many woodworkers but the main difference is in the compounds version to cut at both left and right angles. This means you don’t have to mess around with turning the wood to get the angle, and the machine can do the work.
They can both cut longer boards that other types of miter saws and give you plenty of cutting options.
Sliding Miter Saw Safety
A lot of people take their safety for granted and get too comfortable when operating a power tool. This is how a lot of accidents happen so taking precautions is the first step towards your safety.
Remember to wear protective goggles and not loose-fitting clothes or jewelry. Only ever use the sliding miter saw for its intended use and use the appropriate blades for the materials you are cutting.
In terms of the products, some are better at keeping you safe than others. A saw guard is an extra layer of protection from the blade and an electric brake can stop the turning of the blade in a couple of seconds.
The best way to stay safe is to be alert at all times.