Soon I will sell my Makita LS1013 miter saw. Not because it’s junk , far from it. It’s still the best miter saw I’ve ever used. But I don’t need it anymore. During the last five years, I’ve started using miter boxes a lot more. And my Makita is just taking up space in my shop.
In an upcoming issue we’re featuring an article by Ron Herman on how to select a miter box, so I don’t want to steal his thunder here on the blog. But there is an important bit of miter box news that I wanted to share with you.
If you’ve tried to buy a miter box you’ve probably discovered the following:
1. The boxes are cheap and plentiful.
2. Many times the boxes are missing their saws.
3. A fair number of the saws are rusted, bent or have been sharpened too many times to work in the box.
My first miter box was a small Langdon model that I use for mitering mouldings and cutting rails and stiles to length. However, last year I sharpened the saw to the point where the teeth wouldn’t cut through the work.
To temporarily remedy this, I installed a new bed on the miter box, which raises the work up. But that diminished the depth of cut of the saw.
So I asked Thomas Lie-Nielsen if his company ever made custom saws for miter boxes. He said they had made a few and were considering making more. I ordered one and have been using it since January. Boy is it sweet.
This week Lie-Nielsen announced the company would take orders for custom miter saws. So if you have a good miter box with a crappy or AWOL saw, now is your chance to remedy that.
Lie-Nielsen said the custom saws should cost $185, regardless of their length or depth (within reason). Eventually the company may adopt a price list based on a sliding scale, he said.
The saws can be customized to fit your box, including the plate thickness (which is critical) and the depth below the spine (very critical). So you’ll need to take some careful measurements when discussing your order with the company.
A custom saw should take about a month to make, though that could be longer if the company has to order oddball materials for your saw.
This is great news for those of us who use miter boxes. And for those of you who don’t, this eliminates one of your major excuses.
To order a custom saw, call Lie-Nielsen Toolworks at 800-327-2520 or send an email via firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Christopher Schwarz
Thirsty for More Information on Saws? Me, too.
– The Norse Woodsmith is a great place to learn about sharpening and making your own saws. norsewoodsmith.com.
– Vintage Saws is a great place to learn about restoring and sharpening saws. Plus you can buy sharpening equipment there. vintagesaws.com.
– Andrew Lunn at Eccentric Toolworks chronicles his sawmaking operation (and the occasional pizza fire). eccentrictoolworks.com.
– Our book “Handtool Essentials” has a lot of good information on saws and is dirt cheap. Get if here from our store at the WoodworkersBookshop.com.