Makita is no stranger to circular saws of this size, but it is their first 12V max li-ion cordless version. Retro illustration of a circular saw cutting log of wood set inside oval ellipse with sunburst.
10 Circular Saw Secrets You Should Know Before You CutMost novice do-it-yourselfers feel perfectly comfortable using an electric drill or jigsaw, but nearly all of them are hesitant to pick up a portable circular saw. American ArtistAdvertisement - Continue Reading BelowMost novice do-it-yourselfers feel perfectly comfortable using an electric drill or jigsaw, but nearly all of them are hesitant to pick up a portable circular saw. It looks to be quite a bit more compact than Craftsman’s Nextec trim saw of the same blade size, and is perfectly sized for quick cutting operations. We found compatible general purpose and plywood blades by Oshlun, Makita, Shark, Porter Cable and Oldham.
And that's not surprising when you consider that drills and jigsaws are relatively safe, quiet and easy to control.
However, to improve your DIY skills and advance the size and scope of your weekend projects, it's important to learn to cut with a circular saw.
Remember to unplug the cord or remove the battery before loosening, tightening, or changing the blade.2. I recommend using a thin-kerf carbide-tipped combination blade, which can be used for crosscuts and rip cuts in solid wood and plywood. When fitted with the proper blade, the saw can also saw through various types of metal, and through masonry such as brick, stone and concrete.3.


Find the Proper Saw PositionThere's no hard-and-fast rule regarding which direction to make the cut, but whenever possible position the saw with its motor facing toward the larger section of board that isn't falling away when cut. That way, the saw's base plate, or shoe, will be fully supported throughout the cut and you won't have to hold up the weight of the saw as the severed piece drops away.4. Make Easy, Accurate CrosscutsMaking perfectly square crosscuts with a circular saw is easy, if you guide the saw with a layout square (a framing square or Speed Square will work). Then slide the square against the saw's base plate, and press it tightly against the edge of the board.
Check to be sure the blade isn't contacting the board, then squeeze the trigger and allow the saw to reach full speed. Prevent BindingWhen cutting sheets of plywood or paneling, it's important to provide the proper support to eliminate dangerous kickback, which can occur if the blade gets pinched in the cut. Place four long 2 x 4s underneath the sheet you're cutting, spacing one 2 x 4 close to each side of the cut line. Then, when you make the cut, both halves of the plywood will be fully supported by two 2 x 4s throughout the cut. When cutting lumber on sawhorses, plan the cut outside the sawhorse pair (not between them). Allow the shorter piece to fall away, while the longer piece stays supported on the horses.
Make Precise RipsA rip cut is simply a cut that runs parallel with the grain of the wood, as opposed to a crosscut, which goes across the wood grain.


Here's how: Again place the best side face down, meaning the side of the door that will be most visible once it's hung. Now when you make the cut, the wood fibers will break off cleanly at the scored line, leaving a smooth, splinter-free cut. I recently put this advice into practice when explaining how to build a classic wooden storage bench.8.
Stack, Clamp and CutWhen you need to cut more than one piece of plywood to the same size, try a technique know as gang cutting. Stack four or five sheets on top of each other, making sure the edges are perfectly aligned. Clamp the pieces, then adjust the saw blade to its maximum depth of cut, and saw through all the sheets at the same time.9.
Safe Bevel CuttingAll circular saws can be adjusted to make angled bevel cuts up to at least 45 degrees. However, when the base plate is tilted all the way over, the lower blade guard has a tendency to catch on the edge of the board. Gravity-Fed SawingAt some point, you may need to make a long, straight, vertical cut into a wall, and the circular saw is right the tool to use.



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