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Learn How To Use A Miter Saw

Last Updated: 07 June 2021

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What Is A Miter Saw Used For?

This tool is a top-rated tool among woodworkers. A lot of carpenters swear by their miter for their trim carpentry. It is quick, accurate, and is a beautiful power tool for cutting molding and trims. They may look small and portable, but they are powerful machines that can make crosscutting wood pieces a sheer pleasure.

Crosscutting of wood is particularly useful for making doors and framework. So, if you are someone who wants to crosscut wood pieces at selected angles, you must go in for these large backsaws or miter. The power miter saw has mounted circular blades with handles on them that can be brought down onto the board for quick and precise cutting.

How to Use A Miter Saw?

How to Use A Miter Saw?

As we hop malls and in and out of furniture showrooms, we often wonder how much creativity woodworkers have to transform a single plank or board of wood into so many shapes and sizes! Let us solve this mystery for once and all. The frames, molds, and the trims that we see making up exquisite furniture is all made using this!

It is often preferred by a lot of different names. In the UK and in Australia, it is called a miter saw. In some European countries, it goes by the name of the drop or a chop saw.

Cutting Process

Here Is How The Cutting Process Is Using A Miter Saw

You will come across a lot of tutorials telling you how to use a miter saw but none is so much detailed as this step-by-step guide.

If you still think what is a miter saw used for? or what can you do with a miter saw? You will be surprised at the end of this blog as to the usefulness of this tool. Stay with us as we take you one step at a time.

Step 1: Miter Saw Safety

Miter Saw Safety

The best circular saw may make it look like a child’s play, but in reality, these are powerful machines, and they can cause grievous injuries and irreversible damage if proper care is not exercised while working with them.

Before we enumerate all the safety precautions that you will need to make compulsorily, let us tell you of a real-life incident where a very cautious woodworker almost saved his life with a whisker when he accidentally and inadvertently sneezed while bringing the circular saw blade down. Thankfully, he was wearing his complete safety gear, and he laughed to tell to us.

According to the US Safety commission, there are nine out of ten grievous injuries that take place while using woodworking tools. Every year in the US, nine people lose their finger, or a limb because of careless carpentry.

Therefore be smart, be safe!

  • Read the manual carefully. You must not attempt to use it without knowing how to operate it. Read the instruction manual back to back and make sure that you understand the saw’s applications as well as its limitation before you begin.
  • Safety is always a priority. Use goggles or a safety mask that will cover your face and protect you from kickbacks if any. A lot of dust can also fly into your eyes, and a goggle can save your sight.
  • Wear a protective mask on your nose and mouth to prevent the dust from being ingested. Also, have an adequate dust extraction system in place.
  • Plug your ears for safety.
  • Adjust the worktable at waist size. This is an ideal situation to avoid any injuries because the work is directly in the line of your sight.
  • Wear proper footwear while working in your workshop to avoid smaller injuries like splinters entering your skin.

Step 2: Mark Material

Marking of the material is a crucial step when you are using this powerful tool. The miter angle that you need has to be drawn using a pencil so that you know exactly where the blade must be brought down and aligned.

Experts will recommend that after marking the material, you must bring the blade on towards the waste side of the wood and not the side that you are going to be using.

Step 3: Position Clamp Securely

Always make sure to affix the miter saw to a sturdy workbench or a work table that is a minimum of 2 inches thick before you feed it with wood and start operating it. The work table must not be higher than your waist level.

If you want to use to make a miter saw angle cuts in a remote place, make sure that you affix it first to a sturdy work table and clamp both of them down with a C clamp. If the clamps are loose or not in a position, do not start the tool! It could lead to fatal injuries. As a rule, always make sure that you follow all the miter saw safety precautions before you begin to use it.

Step 4: Start Sawing

Start Sawing

It is worth reiterating that before you begin working with it to make those prized miter angles for that crown molding jig for a miter saw that you recently watched on Youtube, you must make double-check all the adjustments even when the machine is still off.

Make sure that the blade rotates in the correct direction and is clean and sharp for easy cutting.

Keep the blade guards and all the other fences and guards in place before you attempt a miter saw cut.

Step 5: Make a Miter Cut

Make a Miter Cut

Remember to work one wood piece at a time. Use some small scrap piece of wood first to make your miter cut. Once you are confident that you can make the perfect miter cut, you can go ahead with the DIY project that you are dying to make!

You will need to calibrate the miter saw to set the miter blade at the desired angle. After you have set the blade, you must remember to pull down the lever and lock it. A moving blade can spell catastrophe for your project. You don’t want to haste and make waste, do you!

Step 6: Make an Angled Cut

Make an Angled Cut

You can use both the gears on the machine to create angled cuts. There are various types of miter saw on the market today, but the most popular tools are where the circular board is brought down to cut the wood.

When you set the miter gear and the bevel gear together, you will get what is known as a compound cut. There is so much that you can do with a miter saw. Suffice to say that the sky is really the limit!

Step 7: Release the Trigger

Once you have placed the wood with the markings such that the blade is well-aligned with it, you only need to hold the trigger and bring it down gently. Once the cut is made, release it only after the blade has stopped circulating.

Precaution When Using A Miter Saw

Precaution When Using A Miter Saw
  • Follow the instruction for lubricating and changing saw parts. Wear and tear must be checked before using the machine. You must change the miter saw blade if you see even a little less sharpness.
  • Keep the work area, especially the work table adequately lit.
  • The work area must be mainly kept uncluttered in order to avoid accidents.
  • Keep the other hand away from the bench while working the saw.
  • Check to see if the switch is off before you plug in the saw.
  • Always use genuine spare parts or quality spare parts in order to avoid freak accidents.

Is there a precaution that you want to add to our list that you know from experience? We would like to so hear from you on Homemakerguide. Ciao for now!

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