Miter Saw vs. Sliding Miter Saw

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Forum topic by Tim_456 posted 12-07-2009 08:53 PM 51713 views 1 time favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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173 posts in 4601 days

12-07-2009 08:53 PM

Topic tags/keywords: miter saw

Hello all,
I’m looking to buy a miter saw and I’m debating whether or not to get a non-sliding or a sliding miter saw. I’ll probably go with a 10in but I was wondering if there were any other benefits to a slider other than a larger capacity? Are there any other benefits or pro’s/cons between the two? I’ve never used a slider so I’m not sure if it’s worth the extra coin for one but I don’t want to buy something and think later “doh! I should’ve gotten the other one!”. I guess I don’t even know where to start with asking/answering questsions for this decision.

thanks for the help,

27 replies so far

View nailbanger2's profile


1041 posts in 4150 days

#1 posted 12-07-2009 08:57 PM

As usual, it depends on what you want to do. If you are cutting large crown, a slider is a must. The cons are cost and room. Sliders need more than 2’ from front to back. I’ll take this opportunity to make a plug for Hitachi SCMS, have had my 10” for about 8 years, and love it. There are better out there, but not for the price.

-- Wish I were Norm's Nephew

View WayneC's profile


14359 posts in 5103 days

#2 posted 12-07-2009 09:15 PM

What kind of work do you do? Do you cross cut a lot of wide stock? Do you have a good tablesaw?

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View a1Jim's profile


118161 posts in 4583 days

#3 posted 12-07-2009 09:33 PM

If you can afford the cost difference a sliding compound does a lot more than just a compound miter saw. All so a good sliding compound can replace most of what a radial arm saw will do so you can sell you RAS and free up floor space. This really depends on what you use your RAS for. If your going to be moving it from job site to job site your also have to take into account that a sliding miter usually weighs 20-25lbs more the a standard Miter.


View CKM's profile


73 posts in 4103 days

#4 posted 12-07-2009 09:54 PM

I’ve got a Makita sliding miter saw and it has been one of the most reliable tools I’ve owned. I originally purchased it when doing some remodeling and it gave me a lot of capabilities in terms the types of cuts I could make, however, it is heavier and not the easiest tool to transport. As stated above, it does require a fair amount of front-to-back space in the shop, which since my shop is a bit narrow this was problem for me when laying out where I wanted my tools placed. With all of that said though, I would by this tool again because it gives me more options with a single tool. Just my $.02.


-- CKM - Minnesota

View WilliamEarl's profile


7 posts in 4098 days

#5 posted 12-07-2009 10:34 PM

I suggest the sliding style if the cost and room required are not objectionable. I run the DeWalt 12” and I am very happy with the quality and features. If there’s an interest I can post the enclosure I built that controls almost all of the dusting

View WayneC's profile


14359 posts in 5103 days

#6 posted 12-07-2009 10:38 PM

I also have a Makita and to get around the space Issues I use a mobile stand. It assembles pretty quickly once your familiar with it. The photos are not the best.

1 - Storage Position

5 - Extend rollers and supports

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View gerrym526's profile


299 posts in 4814 days

#7 posted 12-08-2009 12:41 AM

I have a 10yr old Hitachi SCMS-it’s great. What the guys here said about it’s ability to crosscut long, wide boards-easier to do it with an SCMS than a table saw. Also it’s crosscuts are a lot more accurate than using a handheld circular saw.
If you set it up on a long table with movable stops, you can repetitively crosscut-a real advantage when you need to cut a bunch of long boards to the exact same lenght.

-- Gerry

View WhittleMeThis's profile


125 posts in 4379 days

#8 posted 12-08-2009 12:55 AM

For furniture building I am not a big fan of sliders, for general carpentry where you don’t have to carry it back and fourth everyday they work well. I find sliders to be less then precise, though some are better than others. Sliders often have some slop when the slider is fully extended and angle repeatability can often be a headache (for angles with no stop). If you go with a slider do a lot of homework.

View ND2ELK's profile


13494 posts in 4780 days

#9 posted 12-08-2009 03:18 AM

I have a 12” makita slider and would not be with out it. Most of my cutting is for face frames, moldings and trim on my cabinets but it is nice to be able to cut 2 X 12’s, 4 X 4’s when needed. It is very acurate cutting miter saw. Look at my tool review and miter saw counter which is listed on my site.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 4828 days

#10 posted 12-08-2009 03:23 AM

I have owned both and do not regret the money spent on my Hitachi 10” slider. Given a choice between the two the slider would win hands down for me.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View gundog007's profile


5 posts in 4099 days

#11 posted 12-08-2009 03:34 AM

A sliding miter saw is one of those purchases you make, that a month down the road you wonder how in the world you ever got along without one. GET THE SLIDER!! Even if you own a radial arm saw, you still can’t make the compound angle cuts required in so much of todays trim applications. You will think of many other uses for the saw once you buy it and get some experience behind the blade than you can think of off the top of your head right now. Just my opinion. Good luck

-- Rick, Missouri,

View WoodyG's profile


33 posts in 4179 days

#12 posted 12-08-2009 03:46 AM

I have a Dewalt 12” and a Delta Saw Buck and I have never run into anything I couldn’t do with them and I have a lot of miles on both. I like the “saw buck” with its nearly 24” capacity and it has wheels and a very large platform. The drawback with it is 4” is the max thickness I can cut. The 12” Dewalt is the most accurate miter saw I have ever owned. I can see a need sometimes for a big slider but then I get around it back at the shop with a tablesaw.

-- WoodyG

View Julian's profile


884 posts in 4532 days

#13 posted 12-08-2009 04:10 AM

I normally use a dual bevel 12” miter box as my daily use saw when trimming. I use the 12” slider only when cutting mop boards, or when doing over sized base and crown molding.In the shop I rarely use the miter boxes. I make most of my cuts on the ts or bs.

-- Julian, Homewood, IL

View MedicKen's profile


1615 posts in 4468 days

#14 posted 12-08-2009 04:37 AM

Buy the Festool so you can do a review on it for us… It also takes up less front to rear space than the conventional slider. The downside is the $1300 price tag

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View KellyS's profile


78 posts in 4238 days

#15 posted 12-08-2009 05:12 AM

Do it man! Go all in! Buy the 12 inch Sliding miter….Unless you’re just cutting crown molding with it. I have a 12 Inch Bosch sliding miter and love it. I think I just read where Makita is coming out with a new slider that is more compact that its predecessors, might want to take a look….And then… And then build you a shooting board and buy you a Lie Nielsen Low angle Jack plane. See, this way you can clean up all those cuts you make:) Sorry, it’s the beer bringing out the inner Galoot in me.


-- He who dies with the most tools wins!.....Just wait, I'm going to win!..ERR my wife will at least.

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