Repeating a cut on a miter saw seems easy enough, but measuring and marking rarely yields pieces that are evenly sized. To get better results, This Old House DIY Expert and House One editor Jenn Largesse shares three easy ways to cut multiples.
How to Make Multiple Cuts with a Miter Saw
1. Use the First Cut as a Template
The first and most obvious way is to use the first cut board to size the next cut. Do this by placing the cut board on top of the uncut board with the ends flush.
Lower the blade slightly, and then slide the two boards until the cut boards hit the side of the blade, remove the board and then make the cut.
The key is to keep using the same board, not the most recently cut board so that the measurement doesn’t slightly “grow” over time. The downside of this method is that the blade can shave a bit more off of the subsequent cut, so there can still be a bit of variance.
2. Cut Multiple Boards at the Same Time
The second way to make repetitive cuts it to “gang cut” or cut multiple boards at the same time. To do this, stack the boards with their ends flush and then cut through all the pieces with one cut. The upside is that you get perfectly even cuts.
The downside is that this isn’t possible if you making multiple cuts from one board or if you have so many cuts that you have to work in groups because stacking all the pieces doesn’t safely fit under the blade.
3. Set up a Stop Block
The third, and most reliable solution is to set up a stop block. To do this, make the first cut. Lower and lock the blade in place.
Slide the stop block to the end of the cut board and clamp it securely in place—either to the fence or to the work surface. Raise the blade, remove the board, and slide an uncut piece into place to make the next cut.
The upside of this is very evenly cut pieces with little room for error, while the downside is that this can be difficult if you don’t have you saw sunken into a miter station with level planes on both sides or the boards are too long to accommodate a stop block on the surface of the station.