Author Topic: Miter Saw recommendation?  (Read 2487 times)

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Offline rjboch

  • Posts: 27
Miter Saw recommendation?
« on: September 15, 2020, 08:35 PM »
Hi Festool’ers,

Looking for some sage guidance from the community. Since we are pretty much just hanging at home these days, I have been going gang-busters remodeling our home and building new cabinets, installing built-ins, trim work, and new floors throughout the house. I have an old basic Dewalt single bevel miter saw that needs to be upgraded.

As a Festool junkie (or at least big fan) I dream of owning a Kapex (and I came pretty close to pulling the trigger), but I can’t justify spending triple the price of other quality saws. After some research, I did order a Makita LS1019L 10" Dual-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw (from Amazon). However, the Makita has been lost in transit for the past two weeks and Amazon offered to refunded my purchase. I assume the fires are disrupting the shipment since it was being shipped from Portland to San Diego and UPS stopped tracking the shipment on Sept 9. I am now back at square one and need to either reorder the Makita or consider another saw. I also strongly considered the Bosch 10" glide, but I kept reading that it had horrible dust collection.

Any recommendations for an excellent quality dual-bevel miter saw with GREAT dust collection? Or should I just go with my original choice and reorder the Makita? Or does anyone have a 50% off Kapex coupon that they can share?

Cheers and stay safe!


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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2020, 08:44 PM »
If you have made up your mind not to get the Kapex (for whatever reason), get the Makita.

The Bosch glide which I have had only very brief experience is 6.5 or 7 out of 10 when compared to my Kapex (if the Kapex is 10/10).

The Kapex (EB) was on sale (20% off? Can't remember now, it was last year) after the REB was released, but everything was gone in no time. Even the showroom one (price further reduced?) was taken when I happened to be there.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2020, 08:49 PM by ChuckM »

Offline afish

  • Posts: 211
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2020, 09:45 PM »
Well miter saws are notorious for being hard to control dust.  I would not recommend the Makita I had one and (12") and sold it. My main issue was it didnt cut 5.25 base standing up. It also had some locking issues on the miter scale. Having to reach back and mess with the bevel drove me nuts and it was harder to dial in precise angles on that tiny scale.  Sold it and went with the Dewalt 12" sliding so far I like it waaaaay better than the makita I had.  It kind of depends on what you plan on using it for. I keep mine on a gravity stand since I use it more for trim and casing then cabinet building. 

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3239
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2020, 03:19 PM »
My experience with tool compromises is that they are costly. You buy the cheaper tool as a compromise and end up dumping it later to but what you really wanted.

If you are going to use the saw indoors, the Kapex is great for dust collection. Not perfect, but great.
Birdhunter

Offline rjboch

  • Posts: 27
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2020, 04:22 PM »
To be honest, I have not ruled out the Kapex. I agree, that if you have the ability,  you buy the best tool you can (vs. sub-par equipment and needing to keep replacing things). Also, quality tools are generally a pleasure to use and why most of us are here or buy Festool (and other better engineered products). I just need a good reason why I should take the plunge and a good defense to explain to the wife why I just spent $1,500 on another Festool order :)

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2020, 04:51 PM »
Any local store where you can take a test drive?

A few things to look at: dust collection (one of the best, if not the best), the bevel control (the best out there), the speed control, the laser, the ease of pushing amd pulling the saw (frictionless), the weight (the Bosch glide I once used was heavy!) and the hold-down (again, the best). Edit: The trench/dado cuts, too, unbelievably easy to do.

If you're still not convinced after that trip, move on and get something else.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 12:19 AM by ChuckM »

Offline cubevandude

  • Posts: 94
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2020, 05:02 PM »
The DEWALT DWS780 is a really nice saw. Weights just a little less than the Makita.  If I was going to get the Makita I would go cordless - Makita DLS110Z 18Vx2 LXT.  Buy a Forrest blade, its sharp as it does not flex.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2020, 05:11 PM by cubevandude »

Offline RKA

  • Posts: 1980
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2020, 08:33 PM »
The upcharge for a Festool is hard to swallow.  If cost was a significant factor, I would reorder the Makita.  Plan to spend some time tweaking the rails (in an unorthodox fashion) to get the blade inline with the rails.  But short of that, it should be a fantastic saw once you've got it dialed in.  The one thing that I really appreciate with the Festool in comparison to the Makita is the weight and footprint.  I move my saw around by myself (in and out of the basement) and the Kapex isn't an issue.  But the Makita is heavier and a little larger making it unwieldy.  If you're just putting it on a rolling stand and moving it in and out of your garage, no issue.  But if you plan on moving it up and down stairs, you'll feel it. 

The one con with the Festool is the limited vertical capacity.  Since I only do work around my house (or friends/family), I don't mind the extra time it takes to cut trim flat.  I've actually grown to like cutting it that way.  But, if I needed to knock out work fast, I think I would gravitate toward something with more vertical capacity so I could cut trim nested or flat against the fence to speed up my workflow. 

But these are finer point in what are two very good choices.  It's hard to ignore the budget implications.  Only you (or the SO) can make that decision.   [tongue]
-Raj

Offline afish

  • Posts: 211
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2020, 08:34 PM »
Yea the Dewalt is hard to beat for the money I have the 779 (no laser) I dont have or need lasers on my saws. Im old school that way but otherwise its the same saw as the 780.  I have never used the Kapex but I cant imagine it being worth the cost difference to me anyway. Im not a die hard Festool guy but not afraid to buy Festool when needed.  I do tend to buy Festool for the things I cant get elsewhere.  Domino, conturo, LR32 etc. More basic type tools saws, routers, drills I look elsewhere.  As far as DC on a mitersaw I wouldnt be cutting with either in a finished customers house which I consider to be the true test.  If Im cutting outside or in a unfinished new construction home then the difference would be hard to justify the 3x+ cost.  Then I have to worry about it running off between cuts.  For myself I would rather have the dewalt and money left to buy something else CT48AC, domino, or what not.  Point is 1000+ would buy something else pretty nice and you would still have a excellent saw.  Or if you where really smart you would take the 1k and buy the wife something sparkly.  I will say the saw is excellent but the Dewalt stand sucks. It came free with the saw so ill take it but I actually prefered my Ridgid MSUV or whatever it was called.  I had my Makita on the ridgid so when I got the dewalt I used the ridgid to mount my tile saw on since that thing is a bear to move around.  I will probably upgrade the dewalt stand at some point but for now I will make it work.  If I used it everyday  i would have already upgraded it though.  At the end of the day it all depends on your needs and the way you will use it.  Here in S. Florida theft is a real issue if my 400 dollar saw disappears it sucks if my 1500-2000 kapex runs off from a job site Im going to be beyond ticked.   

Offline mkasdin

  • Posts: 360
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2020, 11:03 PM »
Dewalt DW715 12” mitersaw dual compound doesn’t slide. The stock blade is ok and I bought a Freud industrial blade which cuts well. I think where the Kapex shines is the micro bevel  and dust collection. So if you were coping baseboard the the microbevel is not as big of a deal? I upgraded from a worn out 22 year old Hatachi.  It would t die but would not cut accurately at a 45 degree after 15 years. Amazon rated the dw715 very highly 91 5 stars. Once the blade gets dull the saw cuts good 97% not 100% flawless. I guess that’s how it is?

Offline jcrowe1950

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  • Posts: 138
    • Woodcraft Chattanooga, TN
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2020, 11:21 PM »
Any local store where you can take a test drive?

A few things to look at: dust collection (one of the best, if not the best), the bevel control (the best out there), the speed control, the laser, the ease of pushing amd pulling the saw (frictionless), the weight (the Bosch glide I once used was heavy!) and the hold-down (again, the best).

If you're still not convinced after that trip, move on and get something else.

Chuck is right in this assessment. However, make sure if you go to a Festool dealer for a demo that they have somebody competent to demonstrate the Kapex. Like most Festool tools, it has more features than the average sliding compound miter saw but they are not always obvious and proper setup is also not obvious. I personally have the Bosch (because I can't justify the Kapex yet), and it is as Chuck said, heavy. The Kapex dust collection out of the box is better than most and with the addition of a short 36mm hose, it is approaching as good as it gets. I do get to use a Kapex at work both for practical purposes and for demos. I really like it....and as always, YMMV. Also, if you ever get the chance to take a course from Greg Paolini, you will learn how to use the Kapex with some nice little, non-obvious tricks.
Festool Specialist at Woodcraft, Chattanooga, TN

Offline rjboch

  • Posts: 27
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2020, 06:10 PM »
Thanks everyone for their comments and guidance! After a few of you recommended going to a dealer, I ended up picking up a Kapex at a local dealer here in San Diego today (it was their last one in stock). I figure I have 30-days to try it out. And if I don't like it in the long-term I could always sell it.

I'll unbox and put it to work tomorrow.

Cheers!

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2020, 06:21 PM »
Congrats...but please keep the saw no matter what so jcrowe and I could get the referral fees! What is the name of the dealer again? [big grin]

P.S. Make sure that you use a 36mm dia. short hose for dust collection.

Offline rjboch

  • Posts: 27
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2020, 06:47 PM »
I'm just bummed that it did not come in a giant systainer. I could have lived in it after my wife kicks me out for buying another Festool  [big grin]

Online Thompmd

  • Posts: 169
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2020, 07:34 AM »
Congratulations on buying the Kapex, you’ll never regret and a year from now you’ll have the same amount of money as you do today. We’ve all been there

Funny about the systainer, make sure you keep custody of the Kapex.

X2 on the shorter 36mm hose



Sawstop Industrial Saw, TS75,2 1400 rails, CT36, Rotex RO 150 FEQ, CT-VA-20, Carvex PS 420 EBQ, Carvex acc. ZH-SYS-PS 400, Kapex KS 120, CT Cyclone Dust Collection Pre-Separator CT VA 20, DF 500 Q Set, Domino 1,060pc Tenon Assortment, UG-KA-SET Portable Imperial Stand & Extensions,OF1400 EQ-F-Plus, MFT/3, MFT-SP, FS-HZ 160

Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3239
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2020, 05:44 PM »
Congratulations on the Kapex. Read the Supplemental Manual. Also, be sure to let the blade stop completely before lifting the head. Not doing so can cause kick backs.

Listen to the saw. If it starts to bog down, back off. That’s usually a warning of the saw binding. Not good.
Birdhunter

Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2020, 06:07 PM »
And to that, may I add this: Change the habit of how you use the miter saw -- use the hold-down clamp whenever possible.

The screw-type clamps are impractical and that's why people don't use them. The pricey hold-down clamp ($128 Cdn!) is a different animal. I use it 95% or more of the time when I operate the Kapex. For shorter pieces, I use a shop-made bridge (I have made several to cater for different thicknesses of stock). I never put my hand inside the "Danger" zone as marked on the table, though I've seen many people do that on videos.

If you decide to keep the Kapex, get one of these too (you can also use it on the cross-cut sled):

Declaration: I am not associated with Fastcap, and won't get a commission if anyone buys a stick from them after reading this. [big grin] [big grin]

« Last Edit: September 18, 2020, 08:56 PM by ChuckM »

Offline SRSemenza

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  • Finger Lakes Region, NY State , USA
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #17 on: September 19, 2020, 12:43 AM »
That 10 Million Dollar stick from FastCap is great!  I got one a short time ago. Yes, you can make something similar or rig a holder, I've done that plenty of times, but this thing really works well. Holds well, handy, time saver.

Just get one.

I'm not associated with FastCap either so I am borrowing ChuckM's declaration.  [big grin]  [big grin]  [big grin]

   Declaration: I am not associated with Fastcap, and won't get a commission if anyone buys a stick from them after reading this.

Seth

Offline CeeJay

  • Posts: 209
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #18 on: September 19, 2020, 01:28 AM »
Agreed. The $10m stick is great for cutting short stock on the mitre, and for use on the router table. The two points of contact makes for much more control.


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Offline Birdhunter

  • Posts: 3239
  • Woodworker, Sportsman, Retired
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #19 on: September 19, 2020, 06:17 AM »
Convincing. Just ordered one.
Birdhunter

Offline pettyconstruction

  • Posts: 615
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #20 on: September 20, 2020, 08:01 PM »
I think you will like and keep the saw.

My reasons for getting the Kapex are :
1. Weight , for a 10” saw it’s manageable
2. Compact size , can use against the wall and it stores well.
3: accurate cuts
4: dust control, weather inside or out , the lack of dust is very pleasant . Short 36mm hose.
Btw, I went with a non anti static Festool hose , I read that the saw is ground. Seems to work just fine.
Enjoy,
Charlie
 


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Offline rjboch

  • Posts: 27
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #21 on: September 20, 2020, 09:11 PM »
After unboxing, I used the new Kapex throughout the weekend in support of my current projects (e.g., remodel of a bath, laundry room, and building new laundry cabinets). I have one word to describe – AWESOME! This is seriously in a different league than any previous miter saw experience…and in a great way. I am now looking for new excuses to use it :) 

I am so happy that I decided to go for it. It’s basically driving a Ford your whole life and then getting a BMW (basically same analogy could be used to describe most Festool experiences). Life changer and more reason to continue with my Festool addiction. I have a 36mm hose on order, as recommended, and should kick the dust collection up a notch from my 27mm hose.

Lastly, I recognize and I am grateful that I was able to make this purchase and so happy to add this machine to my shop.

Offline threesixright

  • Posts: 600
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #22 on: September 21, 2020, 02:17 PM »
Good for you. I had same dilemma, but can say very happy with my KAPEX!


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Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #23 on: September 26, 2020, 05:37 PM »
Convincing. Just ordered one.

The million $ stick can also be used on the table saw with the cross-cut sled or panel sled.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 06:15 PM by ChuckM »

Offline rmhinden

  • Posts: 378
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #24 on: September 26, 2020, 07:04 PM »
Based on the discussion here, I got a million $ stick for my Kapex.

One thing I noticed, is that when use the stick to apply pressure to hold the board, the wood moves a little (away from the stick).

Suggestions on how to avoid this?




Offline ChuckM

  • Posts: 2192
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #25 on: September 26, 2020, 08:08 PM »
Apply downward pressure, not forward or sideway pressure. When you start, apply light to medium pressure to ensure the stock doesn't move, and then firm up the (downward) pressure a little bit. Over-pressuring could move the piece. If the stock is very thick, you can place a spacer block on the other end of the stick.

Practice it by holding down on a scrap on a surface without any fence and with a fence. Try it with both the single finger and double fingers.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2020, 08:24 PM by ChuckM »

Offline rmhinden

  • Posts: 378
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #26 on: September 27, 2020, 02:27 AM »
Apply downward pressure, not forward or sideway pressure. When you start, apply light to medium pressure to ensure the stock doesn't move, and then firm up the (downward) pressure a little bit. Over-pressuring could move the piece. If the stock is very thick, you can place a spacer block on the other end of the stick.

Practice it by holding down on a scrap on a surface without any fence and with a fence. Try it with both the single finger and double fingers.

That helps, thanks!  It requires the right touch.

Bob

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #27 on: September 28, 2020, 10:31 AM »
Based on the discussion here, I got a million $ stick for my Kapex.

One thing I noticed, is that when use the stick to apply pressure to hold the board, the wood moves a little (away from the stick).

Suggestions on how to avoid this?

    I notice that too. Need to be a little careful when pressing down. I found that it has to do with the stick flexing a bit when force is applied.  It is easy to check / watch if it moved if the saw has a laser. I think that it probably holds well with less pressure than seems necessary.  The tendency is to push hard on things that are made to hold things in place. I found that if I back off a little the piece doesn't move. Not trying to pin down a wild animal  [big grin]

Seth

Offline Bugsysiegals

  • Posts: 567
Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #28 on: September 28, 2020, 02:50 PM »
How do you know which size hose you got ... I've the CT 36 but not sure where on the hose you measure?

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Miter Saw recommendation?
« Reply #29 on: October 02, 2020, 09:55 AM »
How do you know which size hose you got ... I've the CT 36 but not sure where on the hose you measure?

Measure the ID of the hose.  The Dxx are the ID in mm.  D27 = 27mm ID. 

If your CT36 is new and has the new style hose it is actually the new tapered hose. 32mm ID at the vac end and 27mm ID at the tool end. The tapered hose is currently supplied with all the vacs except the auto clean ( AC ), CT15,  and the CT-SYS.

Seth
« Last Edit: October 02, 2020, 10:04 AM by SRSemenza »