36 - Miter Trimmer, страница 15

36 - Miter Trimmer, страница 15

SELECTING TOOLS

accomplish the same thing with a single roller. These rollers support the back of the blade just like the one on the Porter Cable.

But what's different is there's a groove running around the edge of each roller. The sides of this groove fit closely around the blade, so there's no side-to-side "play."

Bryan: There's one other thing that's worth mentioning about both types of rollers. They're part of a mechanism that can be adjusted to "kick" the blade forward at the same time as it's cutting up and down. This way, the blade cuts in more of an orbital motion. (See drawing on page 14.)

SI Why would I want to do that?

Kurt: It's great when you're making a rough cut and you want to get the job done in a hurry. By adjusting the saw for the maximum orbit, the blade really chews through the workpiece.

Bryan: But sometimes the orbital action is too agressive. So if I'm working with materials that chip easily (like plastic laminate),

I adjust the saw so there's no orbital motion at all. This way, the blade cuts straight up and down and reduces chipout.

Chris: Another way to prevent chipout is to attach a plastic insert to the base of the saw. (See margin.) The insert fits closely around the blade. So the blade doesn't lift the wood fibers on the upstroke.

Bryan: It's not only the chipout I'm concerned with. If the metal base on the saw gets nicked, it can scratch the surface of a workpiece.

So I was pleased to see that each saw except the Porter Cable comes with an extra plastic base that protects the workpiece. (See photos at right.) That's good insurance when I'm working with delicate materials like plastic laminate or hardwood plywood.

m How about tilting the base of the saw to make a beveled cut?

Chris: It's not something I do very often. And if I owned the Porter Cable I wouldn't do it at all. That's because it's the only saw

< Snap-on Base Plate.

To protect surfaces that get scratched easily, the Milwaukee and DeWalt have a plastic base plate that snaps quickly onto the metal base of the saw.

Replaceable Base Plate. The plastic base plates on the Hitachi, Makita. and Bosch also protect the surface from getting scratched. But before you can attach them, you need to remove the metal base on each saw.

k Dust Control. A blower in each saw directs dust away from the blade so you can see the layout line as you make a cut (left). In addition, the Bosch (right) and Milwaukee each have a port for hooking up a shop vacuum.

with a base that doesn't tilt.

Kurt: What I like about the tilting base on the DeWalt is it has a built-in lever that only takes a few seconds to adjust. All the other saws require a separate wrench.

|U Is dust a problem urith these sabre saivs?

Chris: Not at all. Each one has a blower that directs air at the layout line. (See photos at left.) So I'm not constantly puffing the dust away when making a cut. Also, two of the saws have a port to hook up a shop vacuum. The only drawback is having to drag the hose across the workpiece. iL

To prevent chipout, all the sabre saws except the Porter Cable have a plastic insert that fits in the base.

Chris: Picking one sabre saw out of the bunch is easy for me. I'd choose the DeWalt.

It's one of the least expensive saws. But I get more for my money — plenty of power, speed control built into the trigger switch, and a quick blade change system. All in all, it's a pretty tough saw to beat.

Recommendations

Biyan: It's hard to choose between the DeWalt and the Bosch. I like the speed control in the DeWalt. But I can get the same thing in the top handle model of the Bosch.

In addition, I like the blade change system better on the Bosch. And it's the smoothest running saw of the bunch. So I'd buy the Bosch top handle saw.

Kurt: I picked the Milwaukee for one basic reason. All through the test, it stood out as a solid, strong running saw.

It has all the power I need. And its quick blade change system puts it a step above the rest.

Since I like a top handle saw, I'd get that model instead of the barrel grip saw that we tested.

No. 36

ShopNotes

15

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