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Old 06-08-2014, 08:43 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by ToolSeeker
Mort how do you rip any board with a miter saw?
Umm, real short ones?

You wouldn't, obviously, I mean I do that with my table saw. The OP's project list doesn't really require a lot of ripping, and what little it might could be accomplished with a circular saw and a jig.


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Old 06-12-2014, 12:20 AM   #17
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In a perfect would, you would get a miter saw for chopping boards to specific lengths (cross cuts), and doing miter cuts, and a table saw for ripping long boards and plywood.

The problem is at least threefold: Cost, space for these tools, and all the other stuff you'd need with them. A miter saw is good, as is table saw, but you also really need decent out feed stands, etc. for most longer pieces. And other accessories. And so on.

The miter and table saws allow for two things that a circular saw doesn't do well. Actual angle cuts / miters, and ripping thin pieces. Other than that, I think your best bet for what you probably want to do most of the time is a quality circular saw with a variety of accessories to make up for some of it's sore points. All in, the whole collection will give you flexibility for less than the cost of a quality miter or table saw.

* Quality circular saw. (We could argue for hours about brand, but any decent brand would do.)

* A $35 Kreg Rip Cut. This attaches to your saw and lets you make long rip cuts on plywood. What some folks do with plywood is buy inexpensive, (but bulky to get home), 4'x8' piece of foam core and lay that on the group. Then you just cut on that. Eventually you'll wreck it, but it makes it easy to manage.

* A $12 Kreg Square Cut. For just cross cutting some basic boards you've got clamped to a work table or whatever, this will let you quickly have a cutting guide to make short work of such cuts.

* If you need to make occasional miter cuts for trim or picture frames, you can get the old fashioned hand miter box and saw. For under $25, you've got miter capability; though this won't get you compound miters, but unless you think you're going to do a ton of crown molding, this shouldn't matter. You can find these at of the big box home stores.

* Optional: A Rockwell Jawhorse is about $150, or $200 with the plywood extension. This is an amazing portable vice / stand, etc., that could hold all kinds of wood products for cutting. It's reasonably light, but it is still 43lbs. It's an amazing tool for holding stuff if you're working alone most of the time.

* Spare saw blades: For $20 - $40 each, you can get two high quality blades; one for rip cuts, one for fine cuts.

The idea here is that any of the 'big tools' like miter or table saw will be at least $200 - $500 for anything reasonably decent. And then will have additional costs for accessories from push blocks to special blades to stands, etc. etc. (And you'll still want the portable circular saw anyway.)

Just to get started, maybe all you need is the circular saw with good accessories. (And as you'll learn, you can never have enough clamps!)

* Lastly, you may want to consider a Kreg Pocket Hole Jig for doing some of your joinery. After you cut, you have to put things together after all.

So again... for the cost of a GOOD miter saw or Table saw, you could have a good circ. saw plus all the accessories to make it work for you.

I'd also suggest considering the book "How to Build Anything with 3 Tools, 3 Boards, 3 Steps." It ain't quite fine furniture building, but should give you basic skills and ideas.

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Old 08-05-2014, 06:19 AM   #18
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i bought the hitachi 12" dual bevel compound sliding miter saw. perfect. has dual sliding action so you can have it up against a wall and it will still slide. cuts perfect every time. plus its belt driven.
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Old 09-15-2014, 12:14 AM   #19
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I take groups of people to Baja Mexico to build free houses for poor families. To date we have built 3,000 homes. There is no power there except a generator I bring. For framing all those homes I have only used the Dewalt 18v circular saw, Sawzall, a small compressor and generator, a Hitachi nail gun, a drill, cordless screwdriver, shingle nail gun, router.

I put these tools in the hands of complete amatures, and with good supervision they are able to do a good job. I can't say enough to recommend buying and using these basic tools. Further down the road you might want to buy some of the other tools. To me a good value brand is Ryobi, usually available from Home Depot.


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