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Old 10-15-2012, 02:17 AM   #1
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


I have seen some contractors cutting trim by placing a small thin piece of wood under the trim board while cutting the 45

I have searched the net and can't find a video on it...youd think there would be one since cutting trim is such a common DIY

I know the contractor was doing this so that the 45 is better and a little more "back - cut" and fits together better...

I'm lookin to do this myself soon, but would like to see it on a video or something so I get it right...

any help is good!
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Old 10-15-2012, 04:53 AM   #2
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


I understand what you are speaking of---that would be a technique worked out by that craftsman---used to make a correction without adjusting the saw--- Most saws are easier to adjust than the bit of wood that your trim guy uses---but you must do what works for you --- Always be safe--a 'trick' like that could back fire on a novice and put your fingers or eyes in jeopardy.
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Old 10-15-2012, 06:13 AM   #3
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


He is basically doing that to change the angle so as to not have to adjust the saw as Mike noted. It's one of those quick cut methods you learn.

I would not advise it....especially if your doing your own stuff. Contractors are on the clock....us DIY'ers have plenty of time. I've been doing wood working (as a hobby) for 30 years. I still take the time to adjust the saw to the angle I want. I like my fingers....and still have all of them.
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Old 10-15-2012, 07:54 AM   #4
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


You could achieve the same result by just giving it a quick touch up with a random orbital sander with some 80 grit paper.
One name for it is back cutting, it was very common years ago and all doors used to be done that way on the latch side of the door.
There trying to have less full wood to wood contact that might leave a gap.
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Old 10-15-2012, 04:02 PM   #5
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im sorry d dawg is very misunderstood. hes saying that technique is unsafe.. theres nothing dangerous about it.

basically all your doing is putting a peice of something 1/8" thick under the material on the table of the mitre saw to tilt it up which creates a back cut which allows the face of the mitres to meet up air tight. the reason being the drywall at the corners of rough openings is never perfectly flat because of framing that might not be flush causing drywall bulges and what not, this causes the miter to be open on the face yet the angle is perfect.

i run a fair amount of trim both for new construction and high end complete remodels and do this.. though i dont put a stick under my stock,, its just something else to keep track of in an already full nail bag. i just set my saw on 1 degree, i use a bosch which has an upfront bevel lock which is much easier than the other models on the market where they adjust at the back


a similar technique is used when cutting baseboard and crown molding.. if you have a 90 degree inside corner and your not coping i cut my base on 44 degrees so its tight on the face. and for outsides i cut it on 46 degrees. that little adjustment makes for much tighter joints any small gap where its against the drywall will always get caulked no matter what anyway.. if not the paint just cracks and leaves a dark line
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Old 10-15-2012, 07:49 PM   #6
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


I think it would be unsafe if its late in the day...a few too many beers and your getting tired...but if thats the case anything bad can happen...

So instead of using the 1/8 piece of wood to back cut, (I definetly know my drywall insted perfectly straight), then youare saying to cut it at 44 degrees on inside corners and 46 on outside...can you explain this to a total beginner?

Thanks
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:44 PM   #7
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


Quote:
Originally Posted by hellothere123 View Post
.... but would like to see it on a video or something so I get it right...
any help is good!
hello, I can't help on that specific video but
for Trim techniques my inspiration has been Gary Katz.
He also is the founder of a free online magazine for carpenters
http://www.thisiscarpentry.com/
Hope this helps
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:55 PM   #8
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u clearly stated the reason behind cutting 44 on 46 angles for baseboard.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:06 PM   #9
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


just cope your base so you dont have to mess around with cutting 44's 46s or whatever. makes wayyy nicer joints and 100s of videos online
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Old 10-16-2012, 07:12 PM   #10
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and twice as long to do, for stain grade always, for paint grade with mdf just mitre it, the joint isnt going to open up as mdf is a stable engineered product. plus mdf is too delicate at the tips of coped joints for it to stay intact

ive done it both ways, ive run thousands upon thousands of feet of base. if the joint is more than 1/8 open recut it so its tight
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Old 10-16-2012, 07:33 PM   #11
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Coping is great, I use it often in certain situations, is not good in a production environment where it should be fast, in order to put food on the table.
In a case where you are trimming new houses with paint grade and getting paid by the square foot. Although, is sometimes faster to simply cope it then deal with the issues you see.

Back cutting is a good trick to learn, I simply tilt the saw for this and not shim the trim.

Years ago, use to do a lot of stairs, now days just sub it out.
I would use a helper to hold a 16' oak rail, I would cut a block to use as a jig, then a combination of tilting the saw, the jig and the helper instructing to lift or lower his end, move it to the left or the right ..... hold it there! ... whack it quick.

I also find knowing your limitations of your saw helps. I use a 12" blade on a old dewalt saw. If doing stairs all the time, I would go back to a 8" saw.
Reason is the deflection in the blade on hardwoods.
The 12" is larger around and more flexible surface area. While cutting through a tough oak rail, you will notice how the blade will deflect and give you a bad cut.

While the 8" blade is going to be stiffer and less flex in it. You will get a cleaner cut.
You get same reaction from cutting standard trim, A big saw can give a poor cut in basic 2 1/4" trim, but is such a small surface area you do not see it often, but back cutting it will take care of the deflection in the blade.
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Old 10-16-2012, 08:42 PM   #12
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your right! i hate using 12" saws that dont cut true or that the blade deflects.. if you have the saw tilted on a bevel the deflection will create a scoop effect making a radius cut as opposed to a square cut on the face... i have yet to see a dewalt slider that doesnt do this..... they really have to start putting better bearings on them.. along with a better locking system for holding hte angle of the bevel when its not a deadstop angle on it
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Old 10-17-2012, 06:31 PM   #13
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


the more you cope the faster you can get. unless your doing cookie cutters i find coping is the way to go. lots of customers are very picky and will point out the slightest opening at the joint. on the outside angles i miter bond the corners before nailing them on making perfect corners. take that extra 5 min and you'll have zero call backs and the painters coming behind you will love you!
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Old 10-17-2012, 07:30 PM   #14
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Tips for Cutting Baseboards and Door Trim


Quote:
Originally Posted by woodworkbykirk View Post
im sorry d dawg is very misunderstood. hes saying that technique is unsafe.. theres nothing dangerous about it.
So....where do I say that it is unsafe....I believe I said...."I would not advise it"....

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Originally Posted by ddawg16 View Post
He is basically doing that to change the angle so as to not have to adjust the saw as Mike noted. It's one of those quick cut methods you learn.

I would not advise it....especially if your doing your own stuff. Contractors are on the clock....us DIY'ers have plenty of time. I've been doing wood working (as a hobby) for 30 years. I still take the time to adjust the saw to the angle I want. I like my fingers....and still have all of them.
The average DIY'er most likely does not keep a $50+ sharp 60 tooth blade on their compound miter saw....

If the moulding is not sitting square against the rip fence and down firmly on the base.....and your blade is not sharp.....'things' can happen...

I never said the technique was unsafe....I just don't advise it for the beginning DIY'er.
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Old 10-17-2012, 08:03 PM   #15
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by placing a 1/8 shim under the stock its not going to make anything less unsafe. it only becomes unsafe when your shimming material off hte fence by anything greater than 15 degrees.

there are situations on high end trim packages that require cutting angles that are upwards of 70 degrees. when this happens special on site made jigs are required if you dont want to make the cut with a hand saw

i have hundreds of hours spent on the mitre saw and the only close calls ive had are on saws that had something wrong with them.. upon the incidents the tool was either tossed or sent for repair
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