February 10, 2022
If you’ve ever tried to install crown moldings, you would quickly understand that it is not an easy task. It requires precision cutting that necessitates the use of the right tools. Hence, many homeowners hire professionals to have their homes’ crown moldings installed. But with little instructions and aided by an efficient miter saw, you will be able to pull the installation process off on your own.
Crown moldings especially the flat cut, nowadays, are very stylish. But their original purpose was for a pragmatic reason and not for aesthetics. They originally covered the gaps between the walls and the ceilings. Over time, they evolved and became more elegant and elaborately sophisticated. Besides, the tricky part of installing crown molding is the cutting process. You need to cut the moldings at precise angles to ensure they fit together well. Yet, using a miter saw, you can make the cutting process easy.
Table of Contents
- Most Recommended Miter Saws for Crown Molding
- Factors to Consider When Selecting a Miter Saw for Crown Molding
- Steps on Cutting Crown Molding Using a Compound Miter Saw
- How To cut the Crown’s Inside Corners?
Most Recommended Miter Saws for Crown Molding
Given the many brands and models of miter saws in the market today, you may get a tad confused as to which one to select. But if you are familiar with what the experts recommend, you can quickly narrow down your list to a few top options. Here is a rundown of the most recommended miter saws for crown molding:
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1) DEWALT DWS716 Miter Saw
If you are a DIY professional, you will indeed find DEWALT DW716 an absolute monster when working with crown molding. It features a compound (double bevel) miter saw. This means it is capable of both miter cuts and bevel cuts. Hence, many consider its use perfect for crown molding.
The DEWALT DW716 is indeed powerful. Its motor (15-amp) can generate enough power and can deliver 3,800 rpm. It can handle a maximum cutting length of six inches and cutting thickness of up to six-and-a-half inches. Moreover, it comes with a 60-tooth blade (carbide-tipped). This allows you to cut through most materials. This miter saw is likewise easy to use and is perfect for seasonal DIYers and beginners in woodworking.
The DEWALT DWS716 is durable and robust, with a frame made of stainless steel. It is also lighter than the average miter saws, weighing only forty-four pounds. It also features an ergonomic design, allowing you to tilt its blade up to 48-degree (left and right).
This miter saw also comes with accurate adjustment to provide you utmost precision. Moreover, it is compatible with the laser guiding system of DeWalt. It also comes with 11 positive stops for enhanced accuracy and productivity.
- Comes with a powerful motor.
- Equipped with a tall fence.
- Features crown stops.
- Comes with XPS Light System.
- Lighter than the average miter saws.
- It seems that the old DSW779 comes with a blade of higher quality.
2) BOSCH Power Tools GCM12SD
When unboxing the BOSCH GCM12SD, you will quickly notice its glide arm mechanism. This mechanism is quite innovative in design. Moreover, you will get blown away by how easy you can use it. You only need to properly adjust the saw to experience its excellent features.
This miter comes with a 15-amp (3HP) motor. It’s capable of a maximum blade speed of 3,800RPM. Hence, with this miter saw, you can cut through almost every material. Its expanded cutting capacity (14″ horizontal) is incredible indeed. Plus, it offers you a maximum of 6-1/2″ vertical cutting capacity.
The BOSCH GCM12SD can bevel from 0 to 50° (Left and right). Plus, the miter detents are at 0, 33.9, and 45 degrees. Thus, its use allows you accurate miter and bevel cuts. What truly sets this miter from other miters is its axial glide system. It is incredibly smooth and is easily adjustable.
Moreover, this miter saw comes with a dust collection system. This dust collection system can collect up to 90 percent of the dust. So, you will indeed have a clean workplace when using this miter saw.
The Bosch GCM12SD is not that portable, given its sixty-five pounds frame. So, if you are looking for a job-site friendly miter saw, you better look somewhere else, for this saw may not be your best choice when it comes to portability..
- Its axial-glide system is commendable.
- Durable and compact design.
- With powerful motor, providing 3,800 maximum RPM.
- Very versatile.
- It isn’t as portable as the other options.
3) Hitachi C12RSH2
Another excellent option if you’re looking for a compact system is the Hitachi C12RSH2. It features a compact slide system that lets the saw head slide along its fixed rails. Thus, it does away with the rear clearance. It also features a miter angle that ranges from 0 to 57 degrees (to the right) and 0-45 degrees (to the left).
The Hitachi C12RSH2 features sizeable sliding fences, which you can raise from five-and-one-half to seven-and-a-half inches. Hence, it is perfect for cutting more extensive molding with accuracy.
Moreover, it is pretty compact with zero rear clearance, allowing you to stack it right against the wall. This feature is perfect if you have a cramped workshop. Besides, this machine comes with adjustable depth stops. It also features positive stops for easy setup.
The Hitachi C12RSH2 has a dust collector along with a dust bag. It also features an elastomer grip for reduced vibrations. Moreover, this feature allows for more precise cutting and more control. It is also heavy at 59 pounds.
- Has a powerful motor (15-amp).
- Comes with elastomer grips for better control.
- Features large sliding fences.
- Comes with zero clearance.
- Features a laser marker.
- Quite heavy
4) Makita LS1040
If you are looking for an excellent miter saw, you can always consider the Makita LS1040. It is a perfect miter saw for making cleaner cuts. It comes with a narrow-tipped blade that can cut fast and cleanly. This miter saw comes with a simple design, sans any laser. It also doesn’t have other mind-blowing features, so it is not complicated to operate.
Nevertheless, it comes with innovative features like blade brakes for more enhanced safety when using it. With its simple design, it looks pretty compact and lightweight at 27.3 pounds. Thus, it is very portable.
The Makita LS1040 also features nine positive miter stops while offering bevel cuts to the left up to forty-five degrees. Moreover, its aluminum base is precisely machined to provide accurate cuts.
- Comes with carbide tips that offer clean and smooth cuts.
- Relatively easy to set up and install.
- Comes with blade brakes.
- It has a simple design, sans those fancy features.
5) Metabo HPT C12RSH2S
The Metabo HPT C12RSH2S comes with a less complicated design than other miter saws. It is capable of making miter cuts at a 57° maximum angle to the right and 45° to the left. Its straightforward design comes with lockdowns and positive stops consisting of a knob and a simple lever setup.
You would surely love its vertical handle that allows for reduced head deflection and improved cut quality. Moreover, it allows for ambidextrous operation. It also features a rail system with zero clearance to let you position it right beside the wall.
The Metabo HPT C12RSH2S also comes with an adjustable laser marker that you can easily adjust for higher precision cuts. With this laser marker, you can assure yourself that you will get accurate cuts through your materials.
- Offers ease of adjustment and precision cuts with its laser marker.
- Comes with excellent safety features like the blade brake.
- Offers smooth glide on its fixed rails.
- Doesn’t come with a dust collection system.
Factors to Consider When Selecting a Miter Saw for Crown Molding
You might get confused as to which miter saw is best for crown molding, given the myriads of options at hand. You can narrow down your choices, however, if you know the following important factors to consider when selecting a miter saw for crown molding:
Stops and Angles
When cutting crown molding, you need to measure out precisely the angles you would cut. A miter saw with angle stops would be perfect for such a kind of job. Such a miter saw will allow you to set up the proper angle cut quickly. If you don’t get the angle stops on your miter saw, you will find making accurate cuts challenging.
Speed and Cutting Capacity
Another factor to consider is the cutting capacity and speed. Miter saws may come with different cutting capacities. Moreover, you need to take note of speed variables. These two aspects of the miter saw may affect the cut finish and the manner you would cut the material. However, if you want efficiency in cutting and versatility in speed, you might as well bear these two factors in mind when choosing a miter saw for crown molding.
Another crucial factor to consider is the blade size. Miter saws, of course, come in several sizes; yet, the most common sizes are 10″ and 12″. It will be good to note that the 10″ miter saw will be sufficient to cut almost all trim board types. You can cut almost every six-inch wide and three-quarters thick trim board using the ten-inch miter saw.
On the other hand, if you would deal with thicker boards like a 1.5-inch-thick board. I would suggest that you get a twelve-inch miter saw to cover various board thickness and width types.
Dust Collection System
A miter saw can produce billow of dust if you don’t have a dust collection system at hand. Such surge of dust may prove to be a health hazard if not contained. Most miters feature a dust collection system with varying dust collecting capacities.
Some dust collection systems can collect about 75% or up to 90% of dust produced by the miter saw. The collected dust goes directly to the dust bag found at the back of the miter saw.
LED marker or Laser Guide
You will often find a LED marker in a miter saw. This LED marker serves as a guide point for cutting. You will also find miter saws with laser guidance. This laser guidance system produces a laser line that delineates your line of cut. Such a feature can indeed facilitate the cutting process. However, you can purchase an additional aftermarket miter saw’s add-on laser guide if the model you purchased doesn’t come with the built-in laser guide feature.
Another critical factor you must consider is the power option for the miter saw. You can choose, for example, between corded and cordless miter saws. If you often work, for example, away from a power outlet, you might as well go for a cordless miter saw.
Cordless miter saws may come in 10, 12, or even 15-amp motors. These miter saws usually run on rechargeable batteries (20V lithium-ion batteries). Nevertheless, you should check their run-times before making a choice.
You can likewise choose a corded miter saw. The corded miter saw will provide you with enough power and efficiency to accomplish every cutting task at hand.
One succinct factor to consider, among others, is the efficiency of the motor. This factor is crucial in your choice of a miter saw. The motor, of course, provides the power to the miter saw to accomplish the cutting process. Moreover, it is essential to the performance and longevity of the machine. You can choose a miter saw with a 15-amp motor, and such a motor will be enough to power your miter saw through all your cutting tasks.
Steps on Cutting Crown Molding Using a Compound Miter Saw
You need to use a compound miter saw when doing the crown molding because every end cut comes with a bevel angle and a miter angle. You can also use, of course, a standard miter saw, yet it only tilts to the left, so you will have a hard time using it. On the other hand, the compound miter saw allows you to incline it to cut a bevel. Then, you can swing it to the right or left to cut miter. Thus, you can make both angles quickly. Here is a rundown of the steps to follow when cutting crown moldings using a compound miter saw:
- At the onset, you must ensure that you are safe when engaging in the cutting process. Thus, you need to wear the proper protective gear like a mask and glasses.
- Then, make sure that you anchor the miter saw sufficiently before even switching on the equipment. Afterward, start measuring the angles that you would like to cut. Then set the miter saw angle before cutting.
- Afterward, position the molding exactly and firmly. Check the blade’s position before cutting. Inspect everything for the last time before beginning to cut the molding.
How To cut the Crown’s Inside Corners?
To make the outside corner joint, you can set the blade at 45° to the left. Then, cut the molding first length. Rotate the saw to 45° to the right. Then cut the second mating molding. When doing an inside corner joint, you can square-cut the primary molding piece.
Afterward, butt it tight onto the corner. Then, miter-cut the next piece to 45°. Afterward, highlight the molding leading edge using a pencil. Then after, cut along the leading edge. Smoothen the cut edge using 100-grit sandpaper.
Whether you have a non-compound or compound miter saw, the cutting process for crown molding may be quite tricky, for it requires utmost accuracy if you want professional finishes. It will help if you also double-check every measurement you have before cutting.
Finding a suitable compound miter saw would be necessary to make excellent crown molding cuts. You will find the best miter saw for your needs if you know the abovementioned essential factors to consider and the most recommended compound miter saws in the market today.
Jason is a 40-year-old woodworker and carpenter who have been involved in the woodworking and woodcraft industry with 17 years of experience. He is expertise in technical aspects, woodcraft and furniture building projects.