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  • Miter on table saw or miter saw?

    I am thinking of upgrading my miter saw and was curious what most of you prefer for cutting miters for items like picture frames and like items.

    What is your technique?

    Jim

  • #2
    I prefer the miter saw myself.
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    • #3
      a little confused by the question...

      But following dbhost, if you're talking about table saw vs miter saw for cutting miters, for me it comes down to practicality and economics. If the work i'm mitering is not that long (less than 3') and I already have a good contractor/cabinet saw with a good mitre guage. I would spare the expense of buying a new miter saw. It also depends on whether we are talking about one or two picture frames or if you're doing this professionally. I guess you could justify the expense if you were doing this professionally or if economics is not a concern. And this may sound insignificant, but do you have the room for it. Being that my "shop" is a two car garage, space is always a concern. I hope I didn't overthink this for you.

      -W
      Last edited by weilin; 11-29-2011, 03:36 PM.

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      • #4
        I typically use the miter saw for most miters including anything longer than 2 feet or so, but I occasionally used the table saw back when I still had a decent miter gauge for smaller pieces.

        For picture frames and other items where an airtight miter is required it is hard to go wrong with a Lion Mitre Trimmer. They are a bit pricy at over $200 new, but you can sometimes find one used or catch a sale.

        If all you are worried about is picture frames and the like you could probably get away with keeping your current miter saw and using the Lion to fine tune the miter angle. I absolutely loved mine.

        Jeremy

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        • #5
          Thanks for the reply dbhost.

          That is a pretty nifty little unit Jeremy.

          Weilin, you did not overthink the question that is generally my approach to everything.

          Like you my shop is my two car garage and I don't leave my wife's nor my vehicle out at night. In answer to your questions I currenlty have a Cman 21289 saw and an older Cman 10in single bevel miter saw. I don't make picture frames often but do strugle to cut nice miters in various sizes with any consistancy on my table saw. I love the portability of this table saw but seem to have a hard time dialing this saw in.

          If I bought a 12" dual sliding miter for about $400.00 and kept my current table saw for rips and normal cuts would I be better set up than selling my current saw and adding the money to the $400.00 or so and buying an upgraded table saw and using it too cut miters?

          Alot to think about but currently HD has the Dewalt for $399.00 so I am thinking fast.

          Jim

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          • #6
            For me I use the miter saw for longer stock. I also use this when the cut doesn't have to be too clean. My miter saw blade is for rough lumber. (still need to get a good fine crosscut blade.)

            For cleaner cuts I use the table saw. I've got a better blade that I use with a zero clearance plate. Dust collection is also better on it.
            -Justin


            shepardwoodworking.webs.com


            ...you can thank me later.

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            • #7
              If you aren't getting good miters, why not just try adjusting your saw and putting a better blade on it. That may be the cheapest solution.

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              • #8
                I use a miter sled on my table saw to good effect...


                plus wood filler!

                JR
                JR

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                • #9
                  Both are capable, but a decent TS inherently has a more robust design than a miter saw, and is more accurate. A good miter gauge on a well tuned TS is the way to go IMO, assuming the piece fits well on a TS....for longer pieces I use my CMS. As mentioned, a good blade is key either way.
                  Last edited by Knottscott; 11-29-2011, 05:44 PM.
                  Happiness is sort of like wetting your pants....everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth.

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                  • #10
                    A couple of things to note...

                    #1. Like any saw, your 21829 needs to be properly tuned to work right. I need to see if I can find the link now that he redid his web site. Lee Styron has a good short article on a BT3K alignment jig that helps you set it up on his web site... Maybe he will chime in with that link... Once set up, setting your sliding miter table for various angles is a breeze assuming you have accurate bevel gauges / drafting squares etc, to reference your angles...

                    #2. When I say I cut my miters on the miter saw, it is because I am CHICKEN to crosscut in any way, shape or form long stock on my table saw... Miters are just another sort of crosscut... Short stock though, under 2' gets cut on the table saw.

                    #3. While I haven't built one of my own, a Crosscutting / Miter Sled might be well worth considering.
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                    • #11
                      +1 on Jeremy's comment about Lion Mitre Trimmer (and look-alikes). Old technology, but gives perfect miters. Grizzly sells one for $160.

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                      • #12
                        Do you have some method to assure your workpieces end up at the correct lengths - i.e. that the top & bottom pieces are identical and the left & right sides are identical? If the parts aren't sized properly, precise 45.000 degree miters won't "close" properly anyway.

                        I found using a hand plane and a shooting board to finalize workpieces far more accurate. I use either the BT table saw or a Rigid compound miter saw to cut the miters slightly long... then I trim the workpieces on the shooting board. Making a shooting board with a 90 degree corner piece (like a crosscut sled for a saw) makes it easy to handle profiled workpieces that may not otherwise want to sit flat depending on the miter orientation. If I had a permanent long table extensions on the miter saw - with an adjustable stop - this might not be necessary. Right now though I don't have long table extensions for the miter saw (nor space for them) so it's difficult to get identically sized workpieces. Ergo I intentionally make them a tad long and use the shooting board to trim them to perfection.

                        mpc
                        Last edited by mpc; 11-30-2011, 01:05 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by mpc View Post
                          Do you have some method to assure your workpieces end up at the correct lengths - i.e. that the top & bottom pieces are identical and the left & right sides are identical? If the parts aren't sized properly, precise 45.000 degree miters won't "close" properly anyway.

                          I found using a hand plane and a shooting board to finalize workpieces far more accurate. I use either the BT table saw or a Rigid compound miter saw to cut the miters slightly long... then I trim the workpieces on the shooting board. Making a shooting board with a 90 degree corner piece (like a crosscut sled for a saw) makes it easy to handle profiled workpieces that may not otherwise want to sit flat depending on the miter orientation. If I had a permanent long table extensions on the miter saw - with an adjustable stop - this might not be necessary. Right now though I don't have long table extensions for the miter saw (nor space for them) so it's difficult to get identically sized workpieces. Ergo I intentionally make them a tad long and use the shooting board to trim them to perfection.

                          mpc
                          I agree with making a shooting board and using a hand plane. Seems like the hand plane would also have more uses compared to the Lion Miter trimmer quoted above. Spend that $200 and get a plane for shooting.

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                          • #14
                            Easy and cheap miter sled:

                            http://www.woodworkingformeremortals...table-saw.html
                            Joe

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                            • #15
                              Great replys, thanks.

                              I have decided that I am not going to spend the money on a new miter saw. That is just too much wood and I have got several new toys including the new Shark Gaurd this year anyway.

                              I verify the length of pieces when making frames or items that have to "close".

                              I see the use of sliding miter/panel sleds but other than using the SMT on the 21289 I have not figured out a way to use a sled on this type of table.

                              I do agree that a well tuned table saw is the way to go but the problem I seem to run into is that I have to tune this saw every time I set it up. I works well for ripping and any other cuts using the fence but the SMT seems to be a crapp shoot at times.

                              The shooting board is something that I have made use of and enjoy using but this is not reasonable on larger items.

                              Maybe I am expecting too much for accuracy.

                              Jim

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