Miter Saw Tune Up

By Robert Robillard on Workshop tips

Miter Saw Tune Up

Upgrades for Your Miter-saw

A miter saw that is adjusted and set up properly will give incredibly accurate cuts.  Performing a miter saw tune up is easy.  Here’s a few tips you can do to increase the performance of your miter saw:

1. Install a 60 -80 -100 tooth carbide blade.

A good quality, multiple tooth blade is probably the best single upgrade you can make to your miter saw and can make a crucial difference in the quality of your cuts.

2. Adjust the saw fence so that is is [90 degrees] square with the blade.

Every tool manual shows how to make these adjustments. Also check to make sure your degree indicator is set to zero. Many models have a small screw that allows you to reset the degree indicator.

Below I am checking to male sure that the rear fence is square [90 degrees] to the blade when set at zero degrees.

Miter Saw Tune Up

If this fence were off I would loosen the two nuts [see index finger] and adjust the fence in or out to get it back in square.

Miter Saw Tune Up

3. Adjust the saw blade so that it is perpendicular with the table.
Many saws offer you the ability to “plumb” your blade.  This adjustment assures that your cut is a true 90 degrees and not a slight bevel.

Miter Saw Tune Up

4. Make and install a zero clearance insert.

A zero clearance insert prevents tear out. Tear out occurs when the blade exits the wood. the wood is unsupported next to the blade and the wood fibers tear apart. To avoid this you need the table [insert] next to the blade.

The yellow insert that came with the saw is way to wide.

Miter Saw Tune Up

I removed it to use as a template for the new zero clearance insert.

Miter Saw Tune Up

I traced it’s profile onto a piece of scrap 1/2″ MDO plywood.


Miter Saw Tune Up

The yellow insert was very thin. I had to relive the underside edges on the plywood in order to get it to fit.

Miter Saw Tune Up

Test fit.

Miter Saw Tune Up
I counter sunk the screws and tightened them below the surface of the plywood to avoid scratching the wood to be cut.

Miter Saw Tune Up
Once the zero clearance insert is secured in the saw turn on the saw and slowly cut into the insert. Now your ready to make nice cuts with no tear out!

Miter Saw Tune Up

See more Mitersaw tips

If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed!

About the author

Robert Robillard

Carpenter / Remodeler / Editor

Rob Robillard is “The Concord Carpenter” Rob is a builder, general contractor, carpenter, woodworker, and editor of Concord Carpenter and ToolBoxBuzz As a General Contractor and carpenter, Rob owns and operates Concord Carpenter LLC. A full-service remodeling and construction company. Rob is a recognized leader in home building best practices and a source for how-to information for building professionals. On this website, Rob covers all aspects of home construction, building science, home improvement, woodworking, remodeling, and some of the best product and tool reviews. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review series - Concord Carpenter Videos where we post all of our tool reviews and video tutorials. Rob approaches remodeling and building construction with a pragmatic and problem-solving approach. He enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate building professionals as well as DIYers on best practices in the construction and remodeling industry. He's a strong advocate for "raising the bar" in the construction trades and promoting the trades to youth. #BeAMentor #Green2Great Craftsmanship, quality, and pride guide his journey on this channel The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

All posts by Robert »

Not what you're looking for?

Search for more articles here. Enter keywords like roof leak, bookcase, deck, etc to find your topic.

© Copyright 2019 A Concord Carpenter · All Rights Reserved