A miter saw is a versatile circular saw mounted on a hinged frame and designed for accurate angle cuts. So what do you use a miter saw for? The miter saw is extremely useful for making all cuts from 90° to ±45°degree cuts on drawers, doors, and face frames. It makes smaller cuts than a table saw and can be used instead of a hand miter box or picture frame miter box.
Like many other types of saws, a miter saw can easily cause accidents and injuries, some of which are fatal. It is your responsibility as the operator to make sure that all safety measures are followed to prevent such incidences. There are several tips on the proper use of miter saws as well as the rules you should follow. We shall tackle all of them in this review.
9 Major Safety Rules of Miter Saw
How do you use a miter saw for beginners? If you are using a miter saw for the first time or you are quite inexperienced in whichever way, then you are in the right place. Your big question might also be what should you do before using a miter saw? Here are some of the dos and don’ts you need to know about before starting your power tool.
1. Getting Safety Equipments
Use safety equipment and gear such as protective safety glasses to protect your eyes from small pieces of the wound from the sliding miter saw.
2. Disconnecting Power Source
You should disconnect the plug from the power source before making any adjustments or when changing accessories. This ensures that the tool does not start accidentally.
3. Using the Right Tool for the Right Staff
Always use the correct tool for the purposed application. The correct tool will do a better job and a safer at the rate for which it is designed. Do not force a miter saw to do the work it is not intended for. Miter saws are intended to cut wood or wood-like products. They cannot be used with abrasive cutoff wheels for cutting ferrous materials such as bars, rods, studs, etc.
4. Using Clamp
To prevent your work from shifting resulting in binding of the tool and loss of control, use clamps or another practical way to secure and support the workpiece to a stable platform.
5. Not Being Closed to Blade
Never cross your hand over the intended line of cutting. A super sharp miter saw blade and most especially a moving blade is very risky to be close by.
6. Testing Activities
Inspect and keep guards in place before using. Check all moving parts to ensure they are working properly.
7. Setting Blade on Right Direction
Ensure your miter saw and other cutting tools are sharp and clean. When mounting saw blades be certain that the arrow on the blade matches the direction of the arrow marked on the tool and that the teeth are also pointing in the same direction.
8. Having Operating experience
Only qualified personnel are allowed to do any tool service. Service or maintenance performed by unqualified personnel may result in misplacing internal wires and components which could cause serious hazards.
9. Following Manual Instructions
Always use only identical replacement parts when servicing a tool and follow instructions in the manual.
Other Awarenesses form Miter Saw Accident
Is a mitre saw safe and what is the margin of safety on a miter saw you ask? Well, just like any other power tool, a power miter saw can be a dangerous tool if used in an inappropriate or reckless manner. And how do you secure a miter saw? You can use clamps to support your workpiece instead of supporting it by hand. If you have to support your workpiece by hand, always make sure that your hand is off the ‘no-hand area’. Refrain from using the miter saw to cut pieces that are too small to be securely clamped. A small piece can cause your hand to slide onto the blade causing a serious injury.
Here are some other safety tips for you:
- Do not reach the saw head or the back of the saw blade behind the fence with either hand to hold down or support the workpiece, remove wood scraps or for any other reason. The spinning miter saw blade may be in close proximity to your hand causing serious hand injury.
- Check your workpiece before cutting. If it is bowed or warped, clamp it with the outside bowed face toward the fence, making certain that there is no gap between the workpiece, fence and table along the line of cut.
- Do not use the saw until the table is clear of all tools, wood scraps and other materials except the workpiece. Small pieces of wood and other objects that contact the revolving blade can be thrown with high speed at you causing an injury.
- Do not use another person as a substitute for a table extension or as additional support. Having an unstable support of the workpiece can cause the blade to bind or the workpiece to shift during the cutting operation pulling you and the helper into the spinning blade.
- Do you have more miter safety advice to share or a scary miter saw story? You can add them to the list or even share with your friends and family to ensure more safety when handling a miter saw.
- Your tool should always be easy to turn on and off. Any tool that is hard to control is dangerous.
Body and Hand Positioning
In order to make easy and fast cuts, position your body and hands properly and observe instructions. These include:
- Not placing your hands near cutting area. The “no hands” zone is the area between marked lines on the left and right side of the base. This includes the entire table and portions of the fence within these marked lines.
- Hold workpiece firmly to the fence to prevent movement.
- Keep hands in position until the trigger has been released and the blade has stopped completely.
The lower blade guard/ safety guard may not open automatically under certain cutting conditions.
- This may occur when trying to cut workpieces that are near the maximum cutting height capacity. In this case, the workpiece can stop the lower guard movement before the downward motion of the arm could pre-open the lower guard.
- When this happens, securely clamp the workpiece to free a hand to raise the guard by the lip just enough to clear the workpiece.
- You can then start the saw and begin your cut.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you Stop a Miter Saw Kickback?
Here are a few tips to prevent kickbacks with miter saws;
- Keep small cutoffs from escaping at the bandsaw.
- Pegs provide positive grip on shop jigs.
- Head off scratches with a light polish
What are the Dimensions of the Miter Saw Safety Stick?
The Miter Saw Safety Stick has a footprint of roughly 18″ X 4″.
Can you Put Miter Saw on the Floor?
Yes, a miter saw can be placed and used on the floor. It may however be challenging to hold the board you are cutting level and in place. Consider buying or building a miter saw stand to avoid having a hard time working with your personal used miter saw on the floor.
What is the Difference Between a Chop Saw and a Miter Saw?
A chop saw makes cuts of 90-degree angles and is larger (the blade is typically a minimum of 14inches), while a miter cut is an angled cut, beveled cut, or a compound miter saw cut. A miter saw is also more versatile because it can rotate, as well as pivot left and right.
In any power tool, certain safety tips and regulations are set to be followed mainly for the safety purposes of the operator. I have provided some of the most important safety measures to ensure that your next miter saw use will be smooth and safe, regardless of whether you are a beginner or pro.