How To Use A Miter Saw? [Beginner’s Guide]

Using a miter saw isn’t as difficult as the machine itself might indicate. Here is a quick overview of how to use it:

Step 1

You need to place the miter saw in a balanced and firm place. It is necessary to maintain a steady position while cutting the wood piece with the desired angle. You can also choose one of the Miter Saw Stands for this purpose.

Step 2

Adjust the piece of wood by setting the angle from three different positions. (Miter table, bevel and compound miter angle)

Step 3

Adjust the angle of the miter gauge to 90⁰ degrees and the bevel angle to 45⁰. It is the most basic cut performed by the miter saw.

Note You can change the angle of the miter saw according to your need.

Step 3

Connect the miter saw to a reliable power source and press the button stick to the grip handle to start the saw.

Step 4

When you have cut the wood, leave the button and wait for the miter saw to stop completely, and now you can safely remove the wood piece.

Isn’t that four-step process pretty simple? Let’s elaborate on it for further clarification.

Also Read: How to use a Stihl Saw

Different Types of Miter Saws

Miter saw comes in different shapes and sizes, all are used to cut precise wood pieces. You need to choose the miter saw according to your requirement. Most miter saws are only supposed to cross-cut the wood piece, while others are able to cut wood pieces from a different angle as well.

There are three types of miter saw:

Sliding Miter Saw: It can cut the wood by sliding on the rails for large pieces.

Compound Miter Saw: It only cut the wood piece with no rails to slide over.

Sliding Compound Miter Saw: As the name says, it can cut simple wood pieces as well as large wood piece because of the additional rails to support that cut.

Also Read: How to measure a Chainsaw Bar?

Assembling the Miter Saw

The assembling of a miter saw is simple and easy. It already comes in assembled form with the only minor fixing of associated parts.

You will get the miter saw with its parts dispersed in the box. Unpack the unit and assemble the detached parts by following the simple bolt and screw method.

Here are the main parts and the right method of fixing:

  • Attach the blade
  • Screw up the blade guard
  • Install the angle gauge
  • Use a balanced surface for cutting like the ‘miter saw stand.’

Basic Working of the Miter Saw

Miter saw is used to cut wood at different angles. Miter saw blade size would determine the cutting and molding of wood pieces at different angles. (Blade comes from 7-14 inches in size, depending on your needs).

Also Read: How to Sharpen a Miter Saw?

The best miter saws support the back-and-forth movement of the machine to cut the long piece of wood. Here’s how you can operate your miter saw after assembling it:

how to use a miter saw

Different Cuts of Miter Saw

Take the piece of wood and place it on the miter saw surface, set the angle from three different positions (cross-cut, bevel cut, and compound cut), and then press the button stick to the handle.

Don’t Remove the Blade Guard

You don’t have to remove the blade guard before cutting the wood piece, as it serves an automatic capability of covering and uncovering the blade. (To save you from mishaps)

Use of long pipes for wood waste

Attaching a long enough plastic pipe with a little opening for dust particles is suggested. (Helps in keeping up a clean workplace)

Safety Measures

You must not ignore the safety measures while operating the miter saw. Here are a few important things you must not ignore:

  1. Eye protection
  2. Hearing protection
  3. Dust protection

Beware of loose clothing

Also, make sure that you don’t have loose clothing, hair, or any kind of jewelry while using this powerful tool.

Keep the safe distance

Always keep your hands 6-10 inches away from the blade just to maintain a safe distance.

Wait for the Miter saw to stop

After cutting the piece to desired shape and size, take out the wood only when the blade is completely stopped and covered in its guard.

Different Angle Cuttings Briefly Explained

Crosscut: It allows the user to cut the wood piece simply from the center. There are miter saws in the market that only allow crosscuts which means you can cut the wood into two pieces.

Miter cut: Place the wood piece in the center of the miter saw and adjust the angle from the bottom of the miter saw; the two cut pieces will form a perfect angle of 90⁰.

Bevel Cut: It is the type of cut which allows the miter saw to cut the face of the wood. By adjusting the angle from the back of the miter saw, a bevel cut is made by tilting the miter saw.

Compound cut: A compound cut is the combination of miter and bevel cut. It cuts a wood piece from both the edge and face of the wood.


Miter saw is a power tool known for precise and accurate cuttings. It is the most common tool professionals use to cut wood pieces at different angles and shapes.

A simple saw is also used to make unique cuttings, but a miter saw makes the cutting much faster. It will save you time and energy.

As Miter saw comes in different types and sizes,  you can select the perfect one based on your needs. The sliding compound miter saw is the most updated power tool, which forms the cutting at various angles.

Leave a Comment