How to Use a Mitre Saw? [6 Steps To Follow]

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A mitre saw is a type of saw that uses a mounted blade to make precise crosscuts and mitres in a workpiece.

This is accomplished by lowering a mounted circular saw blade onto a flat surface beneath the object. It may be dropped at various angles onto a board that is positioned against a backstop called the fence.

Trimming and moulding, as well as mitres and crosscuts on a workpiece, are all common applications.

It can cut metal, stone, and plastics, as long as the appropriate blade is utilised for the job. It will help you make clean, precise cuts and a range of angle cuts on components wherever you go.

The mitre saw has a few limitations, one of which is that it can only create angled and bevelled cuts.

Since it can cut anything, it lacks adaptability. They are more expensive and have a broader variety of capabilities, which makes them more difficult to use and inappropriate for beginners.

Types of Mitre Saws

  • Compound Mitre Saw: This sort of mitre saw has the extra benefit of allowing the blade and head to be inclined at different angles to the workpiece. This allows for bevel cuts. A bevel cut is a ramped, angled cut into the side of a piece of wood. A compound cut is a combination of a mitre and a bevel cut that’s commonly utilised in home trim work.
  • Dual-compound Mitre Saw: When both the left and right sides of a dual or double compound saw are inclined, the head rotates. This means that all angles can be attained without the workpiece needing to be relocated.
  • LED Mitre Saw: A laser guide is built into some saws for more precise cutting. The laser, which is positioned on the saw blade and lights the cutting line, is a disc-shaped washer. Some saws also have an LED light that helps to illuminate the work area more effectively.
  • Sliding-compound Mitre Saw: Sliding mitre saws, like radial arm saws, use a sliding rail to move the saw head back and forth. The size range of a board that can be sliced increases as a result of this. For straight and pull-down cuts, this type of saw may also lock the rails.
  • Power Mitre Saw: A motorised variation that can perform straight crosscuts on a piece of work from a variety of angles. They’re commonly used to make 45-degree framing straight cuts.

Applications of Mitre Saw

Mitre saws are most commonly used for cutting wood trim and moulding, but they can also be used to cut metal, masonry, and plastics if the right blade is used for the job.

They also feature consistently precise and accurate cutting. The mitre saw will help you produce smooth, precise cuts anywhere you want, regardless of the material you’re dealing with.

How to Use a Mitre Saw?


If the stock isn’t tight on the fence, the blade will slam it back and forth in an unanticipated direction, causing a kickback.

The hold-down (also known as a vertical or mitre saw clamp) prevents wood movement by keeping your hands away from the blade. It can be switched to the left or right while cutting material such as crown moulding.


To produce a basic mitre cut, unlock the mitre gauge and adjust the angle to your specifications.

Most saws allow you to mitre both ways, so double-check the cutting angle before spinning up the blade. The mitre gauge on most saws has detents at common angles.

These securely hold the saw in place. Detents are most common at 0°, 22.5°, 31.6°, and 45°. There may be some differences between saws. If you need a different angle, simply drag the arrow to the required angle and lock the table in place to prevent it from shifting throughout the cut.

When performing a bevel cut, lock the bevel gauge and leave the mitre gauge at 0°.

Detents on most saws make it easier to establish typical angles. The most frequent stops are 0°, 33.9°, and 45°, but your saw may include more. The lock, like the mitre gauge, can be used to specify the angle between the detents.


If long pieces aren’t supported while being cut, they’ll tumble off the saw. Your instinct to catch a falling object may cause your arm to become caught in the blade, or the blade may catch and kick the falling object. Make sure you keep control of the material throughout and after the cut.


Cutting is simple if your mitre saw doesn’t slip. Speed up the process of the saw to its maximum.

Allow the blade to fall to the ground and make contact with the wood. Continue lowering the blade while keeping the saw at a high RPM until the cut is complete.

Pull the blade out towards you and begin your cut at the front when employing the greater capacity of a sliding mitre. Then, pushing the blade through, maintain high RPMs.

Allow the blade to come to a complete halt before allowing it to rise back to its resting position. One of these instruments is a blade brake, which immediately stops the blade.


Always cut with a sliding mitre saw from front to back, even if it seems obvious. This works with you to push against the fence by matching the blade’s spin.

Oppositely cutting the material forces it back toward you. It can also be used to reverse the blade. If it twists, it can produce kickback similar to that of a table saw.

With a hold-down, cutting with a mitre saw is a one-handed job. Keep your other hand out of the way as much as possible.

Make sure your hand is outside the hold-down clamp if you find yourself naturally resting on the material.

If the saw “bite” the wood and propels it ahead, you don’t want your fingers near the blade. Your hand may come into touch with the blade as a result of this. Also, when using a mitre saw, never cross your arms in front of you.


Before raising the blade and motor, wait for it to come to a complete stop. A saw that is still less dangerous. You can still nick your teeth at 4,000 RPM, but the nick will be significantly shallower.


It creates precise crosscuts and mitres in a workpiece by attaching a mounted blade to the board. Following the procedures mentioned above, you can learn how to use a mitre saw.

Related: How to Cut Skirting Boards with a Mitre Saw


Is it possible for a beginner to use a mitre saw?

Beginners will find the mitre saw to be one of the simplest tools to grasp. It’s also great woodworking equipment for beginners, and I learnt how to use a mitre saw properly while doing so.
With the option of angled cuts ranging from 45 degrees to 90 degrees, it assures clean, exact cuts every time.

What is the maximum thickness of wood that a 12 mitre saw is capable of cutting?

There are also 12-inch models with a maximum cut of roughly 7 1/2 inches, wide enough for two-by-eights. This larger saw can cut up to 3 1/2 inches thick, which is adequate to cut through four-by-fours.

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