Dewalt Chop Saws and Mitre Saws: Buying Guide

Published : 07/6/2022 09:24:18
Categories : Mister Worker , Professional working tools guide

Domenico Esposito

DeWalt, the leader in the production of corded and cordless power tools, offers a range of chop saws and mitre saws, able to withstand all the professionals requirements. 

Do you want to buy a DeWalt chop saw or miter saw but don't know which one to choose? Read the tips of our experts! Today on the Mister Worker™ blog we are in the company of Domenico Esposito, Commercial Training Manager of the Stanley Black & Decker group, to help choose your new DeWalt mitre saw.

What is a chop saw?

The chop saw is a power used to create extremely precise square and angled cuts. This tool is equipped with a large, powerful abrasive cutting disc that can cut through material by simply pushing down on the handle. Chop saws usually are divided into four types: 

  • Standard chop saws: which cut only in a downward-directed mode, so they can only cut angles in a single plane. 
  • Compound chop saws: this type makes all the standard cuts and the blade can tilt to one side from vertical. This makes it possible to cut angles in one or two planes.
  • Dual-compound chop saws: these are similar to compound chop saws, with the only difference being that the blade can be inclined to the right or left. Due to this, you can obtain oblique cuts in either direction without flipping your wood over.
  • Sliding-compound chop saws: the blade and motor unit can slide forth and back during cutting, allowing even the widest lumber to be cut in only one pass.

If you're wondering what is a chop saw used for, it is generally employed for cutting non-ferrous materials, such as aluminum, metal, wood, as well as molding and decking. So that the chop saw can perform, it is very important that the width and the depth of the objects to be cut fit the dimensions of the tool. Moreover, this article is able to cut thick material and thin-walled sections without tearing. Using a chop saw offers you many advantages: besides ensuring precise and flawless cuts like highly-precise cuts, it is also fast.

What's the difference between chop and miter saw?

Chop saws and mitre saws are commonly confused with each other, since they have similar features, like motors, blades, fences and clamps. But the two models differ on performances and capabilities:

  • Chop saws can only produce straight-cuts, while mitre saws can create straight, miter, as well as oblique bevel cuts.
  • Chop saw is the ideal tool for cutting metal, whereas the mitre one is perfect for working on wood
  • Chop saws have generally larger dimensions and more power than mitre saws and can operate slowlier 
  • Mitre saws are compact and can be transported from one place to another easier than a chop one

Can I use a miter saw as a chop saw?

Since the two models in question have their own peculiarities and are normally used to cut different types of materials, it is strongly discouraged to use a mitre saw in place of a chop saw or vice versa. For example, the chop saw blade usually has more teeth and can move at different speeds. Therefore, interchange the two blades can be dangerous. 

Which DeWalt mitre saws and chop saws are included in the catalog?

The range of DeWalt cordless mitre saws and chop saws counts many different models, each with specific characteristics. Below are some examples:

  • DCS727N-XJ 54V XR mitre saw with double bevel slide
  • DWS780-QS compound mitre saw with XPS tracking system
  • DHS780T2A-QW Flexvolt 305mm corded/cordless mitre saw
  • D28730-QS abrasive chop saw 2200W 3800 RPM 355 mm
  • DW872-QS abrasive chop saw 2200W 4000 UPM
  • D28715-QS chop saw 2200W 4000UPM with keyless mitre adjustments

Few companies can boast the experience that DEWALT has in the design and construction of cut-off machines. There are countless innovations that the company has made since its foundation in 1924, starting with the invention of the radial arm saws.

Thanks to this machine, for the first time in the history of construction it was possible to reproduce cuts of construction timber in series with absolute precision, leading to an increase in production and a reduction in costs and time previously unthinkable. A lot has changed since then, but not the principles and objectives that guide DeWalt’s projects: to make work more efficient, profitable and safe.

After the radial arm saws, portable DeWalt chop saws were born in all the various models that we know today. For each specific use there is an ad hoc machine, able to offer users the best combination of cutting capacity, ergonomics, precision and versatility.

What are the advantages of having different models of DeWalt chop saws and mitre saws?

Dewalt Mitre Saws

A tool must guarantee maximum time savings as well as the best results to be evaluated positively and earn the respect of the user. This is why very often professionals have more than one chop saw machine or mitre saw, and each time choose which tool to use according to the situation.

For example, there are machines with high cutting capacity useful for carpentry work and construction of wooden roofs, often required in the construction sector. These saws have features suitable for carrying out complex, combined cuts quickly and accurately, but this is sometimes at the expense of ergonomics. There are also table top miter saws which provide high precision cuts and, therefore, are often preferred by furniture makers and carpenters. Then there are the combination saws, able to meet the expectations of those who have to carry out custom-made work directly on site, such as exhibition stand fitters and builders, furniture installers in commercial buildings, naval furniture, and so on.

Combination mitre saws unite a mitre saw with a table saw, in order to reach the highest levels of versatility and cutting precision. Finally, there are various machines with lower cutting capacity and weight, particularly suitable for quick installations that require lower cutting heights and widths.

Those who purchase chop saw machines and mitre saws are often in difficulty because these tools are complex, very technical and specific. Knowing how to interpret the technical data sheets is not always easy, especially with regard to machines designed for carpentry. This is why professionals often place their trust in well-known brands, such as DEWALT, that never disappoint their expectations.

How to choose the best DeWalt mitre saw or chop saw

Dewalt Mitre Saws

There are usually more factors to take into account when choosing a chop saw machine or a mitre saw. Let's see them together below:

  • The cutting capacity and the accuracy of the machine 
  • The quality of the blades provided: although they are required by law, these items are sometimes of relatively low quality and unreliable. 
  • The dimensions of the cutting machine are also relevant, since their portability can be a plus. 
  • The saw must ensure high safety levels so that you can carry out your work without accidents. 
  • The type of motor of the machine must be carefully observed. Induction motors are much quieter and require no maintenance, making them ideal for use for extended times. On the other hand, given the same motor power, brush motors are lighter and more compact than induction motors and feature higher starting torque. As a consequence, the latter are ideal for portable machines, as well as for cutting hard or thick materials and laminates. 

Depending on the type of activity carried out, the materials to be used and the works to be performed are mostly standardized. For example, the measures of a stair, riser and tread, are on average 170mm (riser) and 300mm (tread). For those who install stairs, it is therefore important to have a machine able to make cuts of these dimensions. Instead, those who install roofs and wooden structures should choose a machine keeping into consideration the most common measures of construction joists and battens, and the fact that complex combined cuts will be required.

Here is a table of the DeWalt miter saws available on Mister Worker™, with some suggestions about the recommended applications and the most important characteristics:

Dewalt Mitre Saws

Among the technical data available, the diameter of the blade can give us an approximate idea of the cutting capacity of the saw. Larger capacity machines usually have a 305mm (12”) diameter blade. Saws with a 260/250mm diameter blade are defined as medium capacity machines. These saws are preferred by those who have to perform light carpentry installations. The machines with blade between 216/210mm are used for light installation and finishing works for interiors, parquet, skirting boards and planks, pre-finished parquet. Machines with smaller diameter blades are intended for light applications, frames, baseboards, laminated parquet.

Which DeWalt mitre saw is to be considered as the best?

The brand has a strong worldwide reputation for the performances and the high-standards of the power tools it offers. Its mitre saws are no exception. Without any doubt, the best Dewalt mitre saw are the following:

  • The DWS780 model, since it provides outstanding cutting results in both small profiles and large construction timbers up to 110 x 303 mm. Its 15-amp motor, capable of delivering 3800 rpm, is powerful enough to cope well with all the most complicated tasks. The extraordinary cutting capacities of this mitre saw are possible thanks to the radial sliding of the blade on two parallel chromed steel tubes guides in complete absence of friction.
  • The mitre saw DWS774, equipped with a powerful 1400 Watt motor for cutting in every material. The base and fence of this DeWalt mitre saw are created to meet the accuracy requirements of the most demanding applications.
  • The mitre saw 305 mm D27112-QS, which features a 1600 Watt universal motor for demanding applications.

Which new technologies can we find in the DeWalt miter saw sector?

Professionals are increasingly interested in the use of cordless tools. This is now largely possible on many power tools, but there are still some difficulties with regard to those machines, such as miter saws, which require great electrical powers and high autonomy.

DeWalt has patented the FlexVolt© technology which, thanks to a new 54V motor and 12Ah batteries, was used to develop a range of tools with extraordinary performance. Thanks to FlexVolt© technology, the brand is now able to offer a range of cordless saws with the same power and capacity of corded machines.

The DeWalt 54v mitre saw DHS780T2A-QW, for example, has the same capacity and performance as the above-mentioned cordless mitre saw DeWalt DWS780-QS, but has a hybrid motor, so it can work both corded and cordless. Moreover, the Dewalt Flexvolt mitre saw DHS780T2A provides excellent cutting results in both small profiles and large construction timbers

The FlexVolt technology makes it possible to work on a construction site completely free of wires, offering many solutions in all application fields.

What safety features do DeWalt mitre saws offer?

Dewalt Mitre Saws

DeWalt, as a company present all over the world, makes extremely rigorous choices regarding the safety of its machines, especially when it comes to cutting machines, which are among the most potentially dangerous. In addition to complying with all European directives (CE), it relies on internationally recognized certification bodies such as the TÜV and prestigious global safety bodies such as the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission), continuously updating the machines to implement the most recent directives and the most advanced technologies.

Although the company does its best to make the machines safe, the user's attention remains an essential aspect to minimize the risk of accidents. When using cutting tools, such as DeWalt 18v mitre saws, DeWalt battery chop saws and so on, you must always keep the utmost attention and observe all useful behaviors to minimize risks.

Tips for working safely are included in all our use and maintenance manuals. It is always a good idea to read the instructions thoroughly before starting any tool.

In addition to being a legal obligation, building safe tools should first of all be a moral obligation. The media often updates us on the numbers of accidents that occur at work. This reminds us of the risks that many professionals have to face every day while carrying out their work. As pointed out before, the well-known brands on the market are the most reliable and should be preferred when purchasing a saw. 

How to boost the performances and the longevity of a DeWalt mitre saw

DeWalt miter saws are designed to minimize maintenance interventions and even when these should become necessary, we always suggest taking the machine to our service centers. In any case, it is useful to carry out simple operations at the end of the working day, to ensure that the saw is always efficient and safe, and to avoid certain behaviors that could compromise its correct functioning:

  • Always keep the miter saw clean, simply vacuum the dust that has settled during the day and, if necessary, blow to eliminate the any residues between the interstices of the body and the motor.
  • Do not use lubricants or solvents to clean the machine or the parallel tubes of the sliding saws, use only compressed air at low pressure.
  • Always check before and after use that there are no damaged parts or exposed cables. In this case, immediately contact an authorized service center.
  • Lock the sliding mechanism of the DeWalt sliding mitre saws and fix the head in the rest position using the special key before moving the machine.
  • Always transport the machine by means of the side handles avoiding lifting it by the head, even when this is fixed in the rest position.

In any case, it is always good to consider if, after many years of honorable service, it is necessary to replace our faithful work partner. How many years have passed since we bought our mitre saw? The latest generation machines are equipped with technologies and safety devices that did not exist in the past. We do not necessarily want to wait for our beloved tool to stop working before replacing it with a new one, certainly more reliable and safe.

For example, newer models, such as the D27113-QS table top mitre saw, feature a particular tracking system called XPS (Cross Cut Positioning System). By means of two high intensity LEDs, the shadow of the blade is projected directly onto the piece, ensuring at the same time maximum cutting precision and safety. The work area is well lit in order to effectively identify the cutting line in any condition. This device is now installed on several mitre saws, and is highly appreciated by professionals all over the world.

How to unlock a DeWalt mitre saw

If you have one DeWalt mitre saw, you must know how to unlock it. The process is very simple:

  • First of all, you have to pull down the handle.
  • Then, grab the spindle with your hand and remove it from the guide to which it is connected. Remember to pull it out as far as possible (2.5-5.1 cm.).
  • Once the saw is unlocked, the blade can be freely moved.

When you need to do this task, you should also follow these additional tips:

  • Remember to disconnect the cutting machine when you are unlocking several things in it.
  • Be careful not to touch the blade when unlocking the saw, as it is sharp and can cause serious incidents.
  • If you’re unable to release a part of the saw or the whole machine, we strongly recommend asking an expert for help.
  • Do not apply too much pressure on the pin, because it may cause permanent damage to the parts of the miter saw.

Which accessories are available for DeWalt miter saws?

Dewalt Mitre Saws

In addition to a rich range of circular saw blades for every type of material and finish, DeWalt offers a specific range of blades for cordless and hybrid machines, the EXTREME RUNTIME range.

These blades are designed to minimize friction during cutting operations, increasing efficiency by up to 50%. This results in an equal increase in autonomy when used on cordless mitre saws, and a higher cutting speed on corded machines, as they are perfectly compatible with both versions.

Among the most requested accessories are Dewalt mitre saw stands, such as the DE7033-XJ workstation, which allows you to hook the mitre saw in a stable and safe way, and to make repetitive cuts in a simple and fast way. The DE7023-XJ model can accommodate up to two machines at the same time, and can be expanded with a series of accessories that increase its potential.

For those who also want to move the miter saw with minimum effort and maximum comfort, there are folding stands, equipped with wheels, such as the Dewalt mitre saw stand DE7260-XJ. This model is especially appreciated by those who do not need to move the machine often, as it is screwed onto the support, and by those who use table top miter saws, since its slightly lower height facilitates trimmings.

Our range of DeWalt mitre saw accessories also includes adapters. Look for example at the DCB500-QS DeWalt XR Flexvolt 220V adapter: it is compatible with AC generators and can be used with low and high voltage. This model comes with a 3.2m cable, offering thus an incredible flexibility. 

The ongoing research that DEWALT carries out to identify interesting and useful solutions is confirmed by the constant introduction of new tools and accessories. This innovations facilitate the operations of professional installers and increase their productivity and safety. Read this other article in our blog to find out which DeWalt tools you absolutely must not give up.

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