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  • New User with sliding mitre saw quesiton

    Hello All,

    I've been trying to decide on a couple of tools to purchase in the very near future. One I like a lot is the sliding mitre saw (Ridgid), but I have a question. Is it possible to make dado cuts with that tool? I've read the user's manual and it details that one can cut two grooves (on either side of the dado), then use a wood chisel to remove the rest of the wood. However, is it possible to cut the complete dado with multiple passes instead of chiseling out the rest? I do have a Hitachi table saw, but seem to feel a lot more comfortable making dado cuts with something like the sliding mitre. Any thoughts?

    Thanks in advance for the help,

    Pete

  • #2
    I don't have a sliding miter saw so I'm curious. How do you lock in the depth of the cut? Wouldn't it be easier, faster, and safer to use a dado blade on your table saw? Assuming the Hitachi is designed to handle a dado blade.
    Lorax
    "Did you put the yellow key in the switch?" TOD 01/09/06

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    • #3
      Hi,

      I have a DW708 12" SCMS but this should apply to most if not all miter saws.

      #1 - You can not nor is it recommended that a dado be used on a SCMS or MS of any type that I know of. Way too dangerous and the saws do not have a guard designed to work with a dado.

      #2 - It is possible to complete 95% of the dado using the saw. You can make two passes to define each side of the dado with the saw, then go back and make additional passes to remove the remainder of the material. If necessary clean up with a chisel by hand. You of course are limited in dado length to whatever the crosscut capacity of your miter saw is, and actually slightly less if you want a clean, square cut all the way across the board as the blade radius may not cut to full depth on wider boards. To control depth with repeatable accuracy, my DW708 has a depth stop which can be quickly adjusted for making such limited depth cuts, then flipped up out of the way for making regular cuts. The depth setting is retained so you can easily go back without having to reset the depth of cut. I imagine most other saws have a similar type depth stop too.

      #3 - As far as it being easier/faster to perform dado cuts on a TS, I say it depends on the work piece size and number of cuts. If you only need a couple dado cuts it is easier and faster on the MS. I can set up and cut a dozen dados before you even get the dado blade installed on your TS. Also, for long work pieces ( >8 ft. ), it is much safer and easier to hold the work steady and move the blade...try using a TS to make a dado (which is a crosscut operation) in a 12' or longer board... you've got work piece support problems out the ying-yang not to mention does your shop have room to accommandate moving a piece this long w/o crashing into something.

      #4 - If you have a Radial Arm Saw you CAN install a dado on most of these provided you have the proper guard, usually a combination moulding head/dado gaurd on all the models I have seen. Best to check the RAS manual for information on usinf dado blades with each particular model.

      [ 11-06-2004, 07:59 AM: Message edited by: Bob D. ]

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      • #4
        Lorax, I believe Bob answered both of our questions in the above thread.

        Bob -- thanks so much for the info.

        The other day I was trying to make some dado cuts against the grain of a piece of wood that was approx 4 feet long by 10 inches wide. I didn't dare try that on a table saw. I just didn't think I could keep a board that size straight when making my cuts. The next option was a router -- however, I quickly learning that using a router is not as easy as it appears. So, I thought a mitre saw with a siding capability would do the job admirably. I believe your response supports my thoughts. BTW -- I will only be making only a few dado cuts at a time.

        Thanks again all for the responses!!!

        Pete

        Comment


        • #5
          I have the Hitachi SCMS and NO, you can not use a dado blade on the saw.

          Addressing the 12' board example in the previous post; I would reccomend using a router.

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          • #6
            Well, if a router is available and you are doing precision work that would be the preferred method for me. Setup of the router to make a couple dados is pretty simple. If you were doing framing type work the MS method would be the fastest I would think. Making a 10" dado cut on a 4 foot long board should not be difficult on the average TS with extension wings or other support, you of course need more than the tiny surface of the miter gauge to support your work, a sled or similar jig would probably be best.

            Originally posted by die_kruzen:
            Lorax, I believe Bob answered both of our questions in the above thread.

            Bob -- thanks so much for the info.

            The other day I was trying to make some dado cuts against the grain of a piece of wood that was approx 4 feet long by 10 inches wide. I didn't dare try that on a table saw. I just didn't think I could keep a board that size straight when making my cuts. The next option was a router -- however, I quickly learning that using a router is not as easy as it appears. So, I thought a mitre saw with a siding capability would do the job admirably. I believe your response supports my thoughts. BTW -- I will only be making only a few dado cuts at a time.

            Thanks again all for the responses!!!

            Pete

            Comment


            • #7
              I also use my SCMS for Dados in longer boards. Several passes do the job.
              info for all: http://www.hoistman.com http://www.freeyabb.com/phpbb/index....wwtoolinfoforu --- "I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me."

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              • #8
                Again, thanks for the responses.

                I have find some time to practice with the router a little more. I've looked at a couple wood working books and they always seem to use a router for dado cuts. I really would have thought either a SCMS or a table saw would be the better option (better precision), but that doesn't seem to be the case.

                Pete

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                • #9
                  Routing a dado cut does not have to be difficult. Simply clamp 2 straight edges to your workpeice and run the router in the "channel". Use the router itself to precisely set the second guide from the first. If you frequently cut dados, you can make a simple jig/template that makes it even quicker. Use some thin plywood or plastic on the bottom of your jig and plunge your router through it. Then you can then set the jig precisely on you marks without having to measure an offset (at least for one bit size). This also works well for routing stair treads into stringers. The time invested in templates can often be justified if it saves even one board/panel from being ruined.

                  You should be aware that router base plates are not always concentric with the bit. If you rotate the router body as you cut, you can change the cut line or worse and open it up too wide. A square base plate works better since it also clears debris better. I can easily cut 3/4" wide x 1/2" deep on one pass with my PC Speedmatic. I strongly advise multiple passes though when using a 1/4" shank bit or a smaller router.

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