12-in. Compound Miter Saw 4212 - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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12-in. Compound Miter Saw 4212

Bosch - 12-in. Compound Miter Saw 4212

Bosch’s new 12-in. miter saw features all the main controls on the front of the saw.

$350 (As of 7/1/2004)

(4 user reviews) Write a Review

Editor Choice-Best Overall

Editor's Review:

by Mike Guertin

review date: July 1, 2004

Until now, some of the most frequently used controls on compound-miter saws have been awkward because they were on the back of the saw. On this new saw from Bosch, all the controls are on the front of the saw. The bevel lock, the double-bevel release knob, a switch for bevels beyond 45º, and a bevel-stop override are on the miter-table handle, leaving users with little reason to reach around to the back of the saw. In keeping with the idea of
up-front controls, Bosch also positioned a 33.9º bevel-stop pin just beneath the bevel scale.

While most of the saws have a detent override for the miter scale, this saw goes one step farther with a detent-override lock. The simple thumb-operated lever is great for one-handed operation and for preventing settings that are close to the detents from slipping into the detent position.

The D-shaped handle has a unique repositioning capability. It can be set horizontally, diagonally, or vertically, and there are conveniently located switches for both left- and right-handed operation. Most of the other saws cater only to right-handed operation. And all the operation knobs, buttons, and switches are spotted easily by their red color.

It is aggravating to have to bend down repeatedly to read a bevel scale from a particular angle. This saw’s bevel scale is angled upward toward the user’s line of vision, making it easier to read.

This saw was precise out of the box, and only the crown stops (for holding crown molding tight against the fence when cutting it in position) needed to be inserted before going to work. The saw has only average cutting capacities, but a superior miter-angle capability at 52º left and right.

Editor Test Results:

Runout N/A
Accuracy of Cut N/A

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer Bosch
Manufacturer's Web Site www.boschtools.com
Manufacturer's Phone Number 877-267-2499
Crosscut Capacity 8 1/8 in. at 0°
Maximum depth of cut Upright: 4 1/2 in.
Maximum width of cut 45° x 45°: 5 5/8 in.
Maximum Miter/Bevel 52° left and right/47° left and right
Double Bevel Yes
Horsepower 3 hp
Amps N/A
Volts 120v
Blade Size N/A
Blade Type 40-tooth carbide
Blade Tilt N/A
Product Warranty 1 year (30 days cash back)
Laser No

Tremendous usability BUT refuses to stay square because of poor fence design. I have owned this saw for around 24 months. I love it's versatility and ease of use, there is probably nothing finer on the market. But in the end, after many trips to the Bosch repair center, this unit will NOT stay square for good clean cuts.Let me point out it's good features:1. One of the best size tables around2. 60 degree cuts are possible with ease.3. Hold downs are fast, solid steel, super fast to use.4. Front end controls absolutely are the best thing going.5. Adjustments, or fine tuning is actually straight forward6. Fantastic matching rolling stand with rollers.7. The MOST versatile handle for left and right cuts.8. Easy to read scales and they are never obscured.It is these reasons that keep me with this saw. BUT....Here's the problems:1. Shallower depth of cut than expected for a 12" in blade only 4.5" height. So you either have to lay your moldings flat (booo!!!) or use Bosch's miter clamps. These clamps are OK but again it's another item to be compromising your cut.2. As are most belt driven miter's, it will bog in heavy wood and will burn your wood on one side.3. The fence CAN NOT truly be adjusted to be square to the table because of it's an aluminum casting that is NOT machined.4. The fence CAN NOT truly be adjusted to be square to the blade because of inferior NON- machined aluminum castings again. You will ALWAYS burn or score one side of your cross cuts with this saw.5. Much too much left to right play in the plastic/aluminum housed sliders for such a big saw. This means that wide boards (12") will never truly be square to the cut no matter how hard you try.6. One sided lasers are a joke. Don't even bother.Now, if your a fine woodworker building shelves, furniture, etc. you actually use this saw to make "rough" cuts. Then finish the repeatable cuts on a miter sled at the table saw. It's just SO annoying when you need to make just a couple of cuts that need to be square and accurate that you just can't count on this saw for that. BBosch's service is always excellent but the technicians in my area (Chicago) will tell you themselves that they have to use a hammer!! to get it square - AND EVEN THEN, THEY WON'T GUARANTEE IT!!I'm sure some saws are delivered and they are just right. But that is absolutely NOT the norm. I have had two of them brand new in boxes but no luck. Too bad, it really deserves top honors in every other category. A little more precision machining and the next version should be perfect.Hope that helps.

Never compromise! Seems to be the Bosch company slogan. Wow....can you remember the tingling feeling when you opened your x-Xmas gifts as a child.....the deal even included a Bosch made stand with folding legs...sturdy as ...well you know, it looks/feels nuke proof. Well, it almost felt as the perfect CMS when I did my virgin cuts. BUT after some extensive hardwood cutting things started to happen. Noticed that some of the pieces didn´t fit when I was doing 45 degree angles ...we´re talking about minor changes in degrees BUT it IS a tool used by pros/advanced D.I.Y.'s...and what irritated me most was that even straight cuts deviated (2-4 degrees). After I thoroughly investigated the manual (probably written by a non-technician) I didn´t get any wiser. Located the bolts that "could" be the ones for tweaking/adjusting the saw ...this took time but now it´s up and running...not PERFECT ...but close! This is after all a VERY good tool ....almost excellent!

I bought the Bosch 4212 to lay laminate floor in our irregularly shaped dining room. The only change I made initially was to buy an Oldham 80 tooth blade for the laminate. The saw worked flawlessly, although this was my first major job with it. It did come with a laser guide which is great. The line shoots on the left side of the kerf, but with just a little experience, you can allow for it for precision cuts from the right as well. Thus far, it has had plenty of power for anything I've thrown at it. The only addition I've made lately was a Delta stand with extendable ends; it's made material handling a lot easier. My brother-in-law, a full time contractor, has always used DeWalt miter saws, but after helping my on my project and using it for a couple of his own, said he might convert.Karlos

I bought this saw about 3 months ago an am very pleased with all the excellent features, I use it daily on hardwood trim an hardwood 1 by an it never seems to bog down, I started out with a thin kerf blade cause I was concerned with power but it handles a full kerf blade with no problem. the only draw back on this saw is the depth cut of only 4 1/2 inch's but I do all my crown molding laying flat so it's not a problem. the only saw that even comes close to this saw is dewalt 716, an the only reason it comes close to this Bosch is because of the 6 1/2 inch depth cut. I have been in the finish carpentry trade for 30 years an this saw comes highly recommended from me..

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