12-in. Compound Miter Saw 36-412 - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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12-in. Compound Miter Saw 36-412

Delta - 12-in. Compound Miter Saw 36-412

This version of Delta’s 12-in. double-bevel miter saw has a large cutting capacity.

$400 (As of 7/1/2004)

(2 user reviews) Write a Review

Editor's Review:

by Mike Guertin

review date: July 1, 2004

If you’re looking for a double-bevel saw to cut wide stock, this tool is for you. At 9 1/4 in., this saw has the largest 0º (90º) cutting capacity of all the saws we tested. And with the secondary retracting-blade housing (photo below), the saw can cut 6 3/4-in.-wide 1x boards standing up against the fence.

The front-mounted bevel lock and cam-style sliding fence locks are quick and easy to use. This saw has a sliding bevel-stop plate for 33.9º and 45º bevels, and release pins behind the pivot head allow the saw to reach 48º bevel angles. The release pins reset when the saw is brought back past the 45º mark. The only flaw is the 0° bevel stop. It is imprecise and requires the user to double-check the setting.

The bevel scale is accurate and easy to read. The indicator has a diamond-shaped viewing area that reads single degrees on the inside of the diamond and 5º increments on the outside pointer. And because the indicator is close to the scale’s surface, the view angle doesn’t affect the reading as much as it does on some of the saws.

One of the best features on this saw is the flip-up stops that hold crown molding in position against the fence. They can be adjusted for different-size crown molding, and they make holding pieces tight against the fence a breeze when cutting crown in position. The handle on this saw was the most comfortable of all the saws, and its miter-lock system requires only a quarter-turn to lock or disengage. The Delta 36-312 is a single-bevel version of this saw.

Editor Test Results:

Runout N/A
Accuracy of Cut N/A

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer Delta
Manufacturer's Web Site www.deltaportercable.com
Manufacturer's Phone Number 800-223-7278
Crosscut Capacity 9 1/4 in. at 0°
Maximum depth of cut Upright: 6 3/4 in.
Maximum width of cut 45° x 45°: 6 1/2 in.
Maximum Miter/Bevel 48° left and right/48° left and right
Double Bevel Yes
Horsepower N/A
Amps 15
Volts N/A
Blade Size N/A
Blade Type 60-tooth carbide
Blade Tilt
Product Warranty 2 years
Laser No

When you're sneaking up that last piece of prefinished crown to install on that square cabinet under the crooked ceiling, and shaving a fraction here and there, you'll really appreciate the front bevel release and the crown stops. Never buy a chopper without these two features if you're a picky cabinet guy! On the negative side, 1. this saw spews dust in your face like no other, and 2. the black metal fence latches are a real pain. They make the fences very awkward to reattach after your tricky compound miter cuts. I had no prob with the zero detent. The crown stops make up for my 2 gripes. With the exception of the 2 probs I mentioned, I think the ease of use features of this saw are excellent, and many mfrs can learn a lot from this design.

I've had this saw for 7 months and have used it for crown mouldings and it is just excellent. The combination of the tall fence and the flip up mouldings tabs makes it a great tool for "bottom up" crown mouldings cuts.It has plenty of power, the handle is comfortable to use, it mounted perfectly to my Ryobi miter saw stand (a great stand, by the way), is is accurate, and the standard blade is adequate. The lift handle makes it easy to transport. And of course, it is a double bevel model.Construction is very solid.I wish Delta sold a laser for this saw, but since they don't, I added a LaserKerf device to it (I'm a gadget hound) and it works pretty well with the saw.I paid $220 for it at Menards on closeout and feel I got a great saw at a great price. Granted, that 10" Hitachi slider at 2X the price would have been a little nicer, but then for almost $500, it had better be. For 12" compound miter saws, I don't think the 36-412 can be beat.

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