For the Love of Woodworking

I run an art center. This means that we are always open to ideas. That is why we keep our doors open so that anyone with a good idea can bring it on the table for consideration. Now, I have realized that many artists would like to incorporate woodwork in their skills. They say that woodwork is art. This is why I have decided to set up a woodwork center so that whoever wants to hone their skill in woodwork, they can find the space. I am now looking for the right tools and one of the tools is a miter saw.

What is a miter saw?

Well there are many things to say about this question, but it mostly depends on whom you ask. One of the things we can say is that a miter saw is stationary, so you are the one that will have to take the wood to it. It is very good for cutting boards and making crosscuts on wood.

It is also accurate to a fault such that when you are cutting out joints, you can be sure that they are going to fit very well. The accuracy of a miter saw comes in handy when you have to make ornamental cuts in wood. This is a great tool for professionals as well as hobbyist woodworkers.

When you are looking for a good miter saw to buy, you also need to read the best router table reviews since you are going to need one. I read good reviews here: https://www.woodworknation.com/best-router-table-reviews/. In fact, many people prefer to look for a miter saw router table combo. These are just some of the most vital woodwork tools that you need to get started on your wood projects.

It is also important to understand how a miter saw works. It is very simple and in any case, you will figure it out fast. Besides, any miter saw that you order online or even buy locally will come with its user manual.

When cutting, you may need to make fast adjustments to the cutting angle. You can set the miter gauge to common angles such as 15°, 30°, 45°, 22.5° and so on. You may also need to make angle adjustments degree-by-degree. Ensure that the miter saw that you buy allows for such adjustments.

Since miter saws are designed to cut across the grain of the wood, they use specialized blades that are 10 inches or 12 inches long. These blades are usually made of carbon steel, so they last a long time. Besides, should you need to change the blade, you will find it easy to do.

When you buy your miter saw, you will see that is quite the workhorse that any wood workshop needs. Now, you may be wondering about how to find a good miter saw. It is not too hard.

Here are two miter saws that you can buy with confidence:

Homecraft H26-260L

Homecraft H26-260L

What a perfect name for a hobbyist miter saw! This is a 10-inch saw that comes with a single bevel. However, there is a lot more to it. It is quite affordable to buy such that most people wonder whether it is really worth it. The answer is yes, it is more than worth it. The ten-inch blade is going to handle most handyman jobs. It has some safety features too, one of them being the electric brake that stops the saw soon after you lift your finger off the trigger.

Pros

  • Price is affordable
  • Can be used to make compound cuts
  • It has a laser guide
  • It is portable – you can move it from place to place easily

Cons

  • Saw dust catch could be better

Hitachi C10FCE2

Hitachi C10FCE2

If you are looking for the best miter saw, get this one. It is going to give you the best value for money and it will make the most compound cuts. With a laser guide, you are going to make accurate cuts all the time. It also has a 15-Amp motor, which is incredible for most wood cutting jobs. Besides, as a sliding miter saw, you will find that making different types of cuts becomes easier.

Pros

  • Laser sighting for accurate cuts
  • Has a high quality casing
  • It is easily portable
  • Good price

Cons

  • It is only good for hobbyist jobs

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Miter Saw Uses

What good is buying a tool that you will never know how to work with? Many people do not know that most of the woodwork tools they have can do much more than they currently do.

Thankfully, as they say, it’s never late to learn a good skill. At the art center, the miter saw has been quite intriguing to many people. They could not figure out what it could do. Thus, I have been teaching them how most of the woodwork tools that we bought for the art center work. The miter saw seems to be the most fascinating to them.

Here are some of the uses of a miter saw that I have been telling them about:

Making cross cuts

Carpenter doing wood work

Cross cuts are just cuts that are perpendicular to the grains, which mean that you cut the wood across. If you have ten feet of wood and you need to cut it up into three pieces of three feet each, you will make cross cuts. What many people do not know is that there are different types of cuts. The crosscut we have already discussed. The rip cut goes along the wood grain. There is a special saw for that, called a band saw.

You cannot use a miter saw for rip cuts or for cutting long pieces of wood. However, you will find it quite powerful for regular crosscuts. Because of the stability of the saw. You will find that it can cut just about any wood or board that you put it to. If the saw has a laser guide, you can make very accurate cuts.

Cutting at an angle

Picture measuring piece of wood

Woodwork needs some powerful joints and they do not come any better than when they are angled. And making them this way is not too hard either. You just need to turn the saw to one side; it can be the left or the right side and the more you turn it, the bigger the cutting angle becomes.

When you are making 90-degree angles, you know better than to use straight cut pieces of wood. That would be a very weak joint. However, when you cut two pieces 45 degrees, you can make a nice 90 degree angle. You can set the angular cut easily.

If you get to repairing your wood floors, you will find that there are many angles to cut, including at the corners. When you are cutting different types of trims for your home improvement projects, you will find the miter saw quite handy.

Making repeated cuts

When you are handling a big home improvement project with woodwork, you will have to make many repeat cuts. Now, you do not want to have to keep resetting the miter saw every now and then. Thus, you can just make a stop to one end of the work table and then cut your pieces to that length. That should enable you to do faster work without wasting time.

Considering all the features that a miter saw comes with, it is possible to make accurate cuts all the time. With a laser sight, you can cut your boards at the same angle, length and so on, without missing a beat. Just read the user manual to know how to use the saw.    


Maintaining a Router Table

Since I realized that we need a wood workshop in our art center, I have been buying different tools, some of them cheap and some quite expensive. However, I do not want to be in the stores every year looking for new tools, I want to be able to maintain these in prime condition all the time.

This is why I have been looking for the best maintenance tips for wood tools. Thankfully, woodwork is one of the most popular subjects among people that love to work with their hands. Thus, there is a lot of information online about how to maintain the woodwork tools.

One of the tools that I am particularly interested in knowing how to care for and maintain it in prime condition all the time is the router table. It is costly, but it is also a very helpful tool to have in the workshop. Luckily, I have found it to be quite popular and here, I will share some of the maintenance tips that I found, with you.

Cleaning the router table top

Wood working helper with dust collector

Cleaning is where everything starts. You see, as you work on wood, a lot of dust is going to collect on the table top. Thus, you would need to vacuum this off. It should be easy for you to do that. Just remove the fence so that you can vacuum the table. If there isn’t a lot of dust on the table, you can clean it off with a damp piece of cloth. Just wipe the table with outward motions toward the edges. Ensure that no water gets to the router bit.

Cleaning the base plate and router bit

A lot of dust gets to the router bit and so with time, you should remove the dust and keep it clean. You also need to know that the base plate can wear out fast, so you also need to keep a keen eye on it. For the router bit, you will need to apply lubricating oil on it. Check it out carefully so that you can spot any signs of wear and tear. If it needs to be replaced, do it.

You should also check the base plate and the table and ensure they are in the same plane. If they are not, you can use an Allen wrench to set them right. Also, if you can raise the base plate a bit, you will be able to see whether there is dust underneath, which you can remove and lower the plate again.

The fence

Wood working helper with fence and lift

Whether it is the solid or the split fence, it needs to be maintained with care. Thankfully, this is not too hard and the sooner you do it, the better you will get at it. Among some of the things that you can do is lubricate the fasteners with grease, and get rid of he dust that may have collected on the fence on the cutting side.

Apart from knowing how to clean the router table, you also need to know how to store it just right. Thankfully, all of this information is going to be included in the user manual, so refer to it all the time.