10 Inch vs 12 Inch Miter Saw: When To Use Each and Why

10 Inch vs 12 Inch Miter Saw: When To Use Each and Why

If you’re into fine woodwork, you probably understand the importance of having a miter saw with a good blade to perform an array of functions.

Miter saws on the market come with a variety of blade types and sizes. You can easily find a blade as small as 71/2 inches and as long as 20 inches. However, the two most common miter saw blade sizes are 10 inches and 12 inches. But, does a mere 2-inch difference matter? Well, of course, it does. And, that’s what our experts will tell you in this guide.

Since both blades are different, it’s critical for you to meticulously look at every detail before choosing the one that best suits your requirements. So, before you blindly spend money on either of the two blades, read this guide and get your questions answered.

In the 10-inch vs 12-inch miter saw comparison guide, our experts will discuss both types of blades in detail, list their pros and cons, and help you find the best 10 inch and 12-inch miter saws on the market. Read on to know more.

Main Differences Between 10 Inch vs 12 Inch Miter Saw

The main differences between 10 inch vs 12-inch miter saw are:

  • 10 inch spins faster, whereas the 12 inch miter saw is slower due to its heavy blade.
  • 10 inch is cheaper due to its clear cut option, whereas 12 inch miter saw is more expensive because the blades have teeth and that increases the value of a saw.
  • 10 inch comes with a 13 amp motor and uses less electricity, whereas 12 inch miter saw comes with 15 amp motor and uses more electricity.

My Top Picks:

The 10-Inch Miter Saw

The 10-inch miter saw is the most popular miter saw on the market today. It works well with both hardwood and softwood and is powerful. The quality of the blade is typically good, and the design allows smooth wood cutting.

You can easily cut past a 4×4 using a 10-inch miter saw, but you may have to flip over the material to complete the task. But, at any given point, if you feel the 10-inch blade isn’t enough, don’t shy away from upgrading your blade.

The 10-inch miter saw is suitable for woodworking projects such as cutting plywood or any material around the maximum recommended depth and thickness of your miter saw.

Another interesting thing to note is that the 10-inch blade spins almost as fast as the 12-inch blade. Even though the spinning speed does not matter when it comes to fine cutting, a fast-spinning blade can compete with a bigger miter saw blade to perform deeper cuts.

Advantages of Using a 10 Inch Miter Saw

Here’s a list of advantages of using a 10-inch miter saw:

  • As per the basic principles of physics, the smaller the surface area, the greater the pressure applied. Since the 10-inch blades are smaller, they exert greater pressure while cutting wood.
  • The small size of 10-inch blades allows them to spin faster and cut different materials easily.
  • As the blades are smaller in size, they’re portable and easy to store.
  • They are durable and versatile.
  • They come with other exciting miter saw features such as dual-bevel sliding behavior.

Best 10 Inch Miter Saws on the Market – Our Top 3 Picks

There are lots of 10 inch miter saws available on the market, but our experts have shortlisted a few powerful 10-inch miter saws based on their personal experiences, the performance of the products, and existing customer reviews and ratings – Bosch CM10GD, DEWALT DW713, and Hitachi C10FCG. Let’s look at each one in a little more detail.

Hitachi C10FCG

Hitachi C10FCG 10 Inch Miter Saw

If you’re looking for an affordable, budget-friendly 10-inch miter saw on the market; it has to be Hitachi C10FCG. It’s a good quality miter saw which is also value for money.

The miter saw comes with a 15amp motor which is powerful and can be used for difficult cutting jobs. Hitachi C10FCG is lightweight, portable, and sturdy. The cutting miter angle is spot on, and the cuts are clean and precise. If you’re a woodworker who demands accuracy, reliability, and versatility, Hitachi C10FCG can be a great pick.

All in all, Hitachi C10FCG is well-designed and made of superior quality materials. The miter saw has the look and feel of a more expensive machine. When folded at 45-degree bevel and miter, the saw becomes compact and saves a lot of space wherever you store it.

Hitachi C10FCG 10" Single Bevel Miter Saw
$169.99
This is a basic saw that is designed for woodworkers, carpenters, and framers. It's reliable and precise which was Hitachi’s focus when they created this miter saw. You can make miter cuts, crosscuts, bevel cuts,... with ease.
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We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you. 10/30/2020 04:28 pm UTC

Pros

  • A good choice for beginners
  • Value for money
  • Affordable
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Easy to use
  • Good quality construction
  • No wiggles or vibrations

Cons

  • The laser is dim
  • The miter angle measurements can be a little off at times

DEWALT DW713

DEWALT DW713 10-inch miter saw

DEWALT DW713 is also delivered ready to use out of the box. It comes with a sturdy build and proper calibration for accurate, effortless, and quality cuts.

The 15amp motor is powerful and uniquely designed. The cam miter lock and stainless steel miter detent plates provide great precision and versatility with easy adjustments. DEWALT DW713 is a lightweight 10-inch miter saw with a built-in carry handle to portability.

This sliding compound miter saw sliding fences support crown molding and is suitable for a variety of applications and cuts neatly through 2-6 inches thick dimensional lumber – thanks to the 45-degree bevel cut option.

 

DEWALT DW713 10 in. Portable Compound Miter Saw
The DeWalt DW713 10-inch compound saw features a 15-amp motor that is capable of delivering up to 5000 RPM. This, of course, is more than enough power for a vast array of different applications.
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Pros

  • Can be used right out of the box
  • Powerful motor
  • Provides accurate and clean cuts
  • Lightweight and portable

Cons

  • Blade replacement is a cumbersome process

Bosch CM10GD

Bosch CM10GD 10-inch Miter Saw

Bosch CM10GD is one of the best miter saws on the market. You can use it right out of the box and cut for several hours without making any adjustments or changing the calibration.

The miter saw is stable and firmly holds the cutting material in place. The Bosch-exclusive Axial-Glade system helps improve alignment and helps in wider crosscuts. All in all, Bosch CM10GD provides impeccable accuracy and great cutting control at different angles.

The size is the only issue with this miter saw. It’s somewhat bulky and less portable. So, if you have space constraints, Bosch CM10GD will not be a good option for you. Nevertheless, if the performance of the miter saw is all that matters to you, then you shouldn’t be worried about its size.

Pros

  • Cuts accurately and smoothly
  • Easy to calibrate
  • Intuitive design
  • Can be used out of the box
  • Durable and sturdy

Cons

  • Large size and bulkiness make it less portable

The 12 Inch Miter Saw

If you think the size is the only factor that determines the performance of a blade, you’re wrong. So, it’s not necessary that a 12-inch blade will be better than a 10-inch miter saw blade at making deeper cuts. Nevertheless, when you dive deeper into the 10-inch vs 12-inch miter saw comparison, you’ll see that the 12-inch miter saw is better when it comes to the finesse of the cut.

A 12-inch miter saw’s ability to make fine cuts is determined by teeth per inch (TPI) rating. 12-inch blades can be found with TPI ratings such as 24, 60, and 80. You won’t find such varied TPI ratings in the case of 10 inch types of miter saws.

While a 10-inch blade cuts across the grain of a 4×4 and requires a multi-step cut, a 12-inch blade can easily outperform the 10-inch miter saw blade by ripping apart the same chunk of wood.

So, does that mean you need a 12-inch miter saw for all woodworking jobs? Well, certainly not. If your woodworking projects do not involve 2 x 12 board cross-cutting or 4×4 cutting, you probably do not require a 12-inch miter saw. A superior quality 10-inch miter saw can perform well in the case of small projects.

12 inch miter saw advantages

Advantages of Using a 12 Inch Miter Saw

Here’s a list of advantages of using a 12-inch miter saw:

  • The maximum cutting width is 12 inches, which is a remarkable feature.
  • The large size of the blade allows you to use it for cutting larger stock material and complete more work in less time.
  • The large size of the blade allows you to make longer, vertical cuts.
  • Most 12 inch miter saws come with a 15 amp motor which allows the miter saw to work for a longer duration and enhances its efficiency. Higher power will increase the RPM and allow smooth cutting of hard material.
  • All 12 inch types of miter saws can slice through 4×4 treated pine without any difficulty.

When Should a 12-Inch Miter Saw Be Used?

You can use a 12-inch miter saw in the following instances:

  • When you want, a miter saw to cut harder materials such as plywood.
  • To cut laminated lumber into multiple pieces.
  • You are making furniture.

Best 12 Inch Miter Saws on the Market – Our Top 3 Picks

Just like the 10-inch miter saws, our experts also tried and tested a few best-selling 12-inch miter saws on the market and were able to narrow down their choice to the following miter saws – DEWALT DWS 715, DEWALT DWS 780, and Hitachi C12FDH. Let’s explore them one by one and see what our experts have to say about each.

DEWALT DWS715

DEWALT DWS715 Compound Miter Saw

DEWALT DWS715 is one of the most affordable 12-inch miter saws on the market at the moment. It comes with a plethora of exciting features and is value for money.

Some useful features of DEWALT DWS715 include a crosscut capacity of up to 2 x 8-inch lumbar, a built-in carry handle for easy portability, and a 15 amp motor which is durable and allows you to operate the miter saw for extended durations.

However, DEWALT DWS715 is suitable for minor woodworking projects only due to its limited cutting capacity. It’s simply not designed for complex woodworking projects.

All in all, DEWALT DWS715 sliding compound miter is an affordable, good performance miter saw with a sturdy build. You may find it somewhat bulky and less portable if you’re looking for a portable miter saw.

DEWALT DWS715 12-Inch, Single Bevel Miter Saw
$319.97
The DW715 12-inch single-bevel miter saw has a strong 15 amp rotor which offers an amazingly fast speed of 4000 RPM. This will make your cutting tasks very easy and quick to finish.
Buy Now Learn More
We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you. 10/30/2020 04:29 pm UTC

Pros

  • Value for money
  • Durable and sturdy
  • A big, high sliding fences that support crown molding
  • Comes with good compound angle indents and secure locks
  • The blade provides clean cross cuts
  • Ergonomic handle

Cons

  • Bulky and less portable
  • Hard to set up
  • Lacks cutting capacity
  • The folding lock is a small aluminum knob

DEWALT DWS780

DEWALT DWS780 12-inch miter saw

The DEWALT DWS780 is another top-rated 12-inch miter saw on the market. It is an excellent product with precision and powerful cutting. Moreover, it has adjustable plates, great speed, and a powerful motor.

The unique belt-drive and gearbox design increase the vertical cutting capacity. The integrated XPS crosscut positioning system comes with an adjustment-free cut path indication.

All in all, DEWALT DWS 780 is a great product with some commendable miter saw features. It comes with a massive cutting capacity and allows you to cut lumber up to 2 x 12 at 45-degree and 2 x 16 at 90-degree angles.

The machine is durable and comes with a sturdy build. The stainless steel miter plates, accurate castings, and a rugged blade guard are designed to withstand wear and tear. So, if you’re looking for a 12-inch miter saw with impeccable features and great cutting capacity, you have a clear choice in front of you.

Go With Double Bevel - DeWalt DWS780
$589.76 ($0.65 / oz)

Double bevel miter saws are suited for everyone from contractors to homeowners and are built for heavy-duty tasks that single bevels just won't do. The Dewalt DW715 is marked as the best Double Bevel Miter Saw by many users and it comes at a great price packed with a ton of features.

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We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase at no additional cost to you. 10/30/2020 04:28 pm UTC

Pros

  • Can withstand wear and tear
  • Durable and robust
  • Excellent cutting capacity
  • Powerful motor
  • Easy to use
  • Hassle-free operation
  • Precise cuts without recalibration

Cons

  • Does not come with a miter saw stand
  • Not suitable for beginners

Bosch GCM12SD

Bosch GCM12SD Miter Saw

The competition between Bosch GCM12SD and DEWALT DWS780 is neck to neck. What attracted our experts the most about this 12-inch miter saw is its innovative glide mechanism. Other 12 inch miter saws on the market by top brands come with the slide rail system.

The gliding mechanism allows the miter saw to provide neat, smooth cuts. Not only this, but the cuts are also wider. The design is space-saving and unique. The pre-aligned Square lock fences help a great deal in maintaining the saw’s precision.

Bosch GCM12SD miter saw handle comes with a soft grip and is ambidextrous. The dust collector and vacuum adaptor enhance user comfort. All in all, the miter saw comes an excellent cutting capacity, easily readable bevel and miter scales, and easy to understand controls.

Pros

  • Unique Axial Glide system for wider, precise cuts
  • Easy to operate
  • Comes with a 60 tooth blade
  • Less noisy
  • Durable and versatile
  • Soft trigger handle
  • Two Squarelock quick-release fences
  • Stable base

Cons

  • The crosscut setting is not at 90 degrees out of the box
  • Does not include a laser guide

10 Inch vs 12 Inch Miter Saw: Quick Comparison Table

 

10 Inch Miter Saw

12 Inch Miter Saw

Price

Cheaper

Expensive

Speed

Small blades, fast speed

Large blades, slow speed

Wobble and Deflection

No

Only in the case of cheap and lightweight blades

Portable

Yes

No

Suitable for

Small woodworking project, beginners

Professional woodworking projects such as cutting laminated lumber, furniture making, cutting plywood

FAQ’s About 10-inch vs 12-inch Miter Saw

How wide can a 10 vs 12-inch miter saw cut?

A 10-inch miter saw will cut pieces that are 5 1/2 inches wide, while the 12-inch miter saw will cut 7 1/2 inches wide.

Is a table saw better than a miter saw?

You can perform complete and clear cuts with both machines. While table saws make longer cuts than miter saws, miter saws create angle cuts as well.

Can you use a 10 inch blade in a 12 inch miter saw?
Yes, you can assuming that the arbor holes are the same size. That said, you can’t put a 12 inch saw on a 10 inch miter saw.

Can a 10 inch miter saw cut a 4×6?
While a 10 inch miter CAN cut thru a 4×6 in two or three steps, it’s not necessarily the most practical. A better fit for a smoother and faster cut is the 12 inch miter saw.

Conclusion: 10 Inch or 12 Inch Meter Saw?

What you need to focus on is getting the right miter saw for the right job instead of looking for a one-size-fits-all solution. As you’ve seen in the 10-inch vs 12-inch miter saw above; both blades are suitable for different purposes. Both miter saws are different in what they can achieve.

Even though they may seem interchangeable, the results are not good if you switch between them for specific projects. A 12-inch miter saw can help you achieve deeper cuts and is suitable for hardwood. On the other hand, a 10-inch miter saw is suitable for thin wood.

Everything depends on the usage. So, if you’re confused between a 10 inch and 12-inch miter saw, the intended usage should be your primary consideration. If you want a miter saw for use at home or around your workshop for minor projects, the 10-inch miter saw will be perfect. But, if you’re a professional who’s more involved in large projects, a powerful machine like the 12-inch miter saw will be an ideal choice. A large miter saw is more efficient and can help you finish the task quickly.

We hope you found our 10-inch vs 12-inch miter saw guide useful. If you have any questions, please post them in the comment section below and we’ll follow-up as soon as we have the answers!

Further Reads

Jodie Chiffey

Whether it’s a minor home-fix project or a turnkey home renovation project, Jodie can help you. She’s an avid blogger as well as a home renovation expert. Having helped renovate numerous properties in the past, she understands what bothers homeowners, and works on useful tips, and recommendations to help you take your home renovation project to the next level.

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