A 22.5-degree angle cut is hugely popular in woodworking since it’s a quarter of a 90-degree angle and a half of a 45-degree angle. This makes it ideal for trim work, octagonal features projects, or for constructing anything that requires less sharp angles. Now, let’s learn how to cut a 22.5-degree angle on a miter saw without breaking a sweat.
Guide on Making 22.5-Degree Angle Cut With Miter Saw
In today’s post, I’m going to cover:
- the most notable advantages of a miter saw;
- how to use a miter saw to cut angles (and what the most common angles are);
- safety measures;
- step-by-step tutorial on cutting a 22.5-degree angle with a miter saw.
Why is a miter saw a better choice?
With a table-top miter saw in your arsenal, you’re looking at the following advantages:
- making accurate, sleek miter and bevel cuts at basically any angle;
- ease of use: with the right precautions, even a beginner can handle it in no time;
- time-saving performance: a miter saw cuts wide, and, therefore, deals with large workpieces faster. Since it’s so versatile in terms of cuts, you can save time (and money) on using extra tools like bevel gauges or miter boxes.
Miter saws can be used not just for cutting wood but also plastic, low-carbon steel, and a variety of metals.
Understanding the angles on a miter saw
So, how to change the angle on a miter saw to get the right results? Check the half-moon-shaped miter (angle) gauge on your tool: this is where the settings for the angles are.
There’s also a knob/lever that locks the desired angle in place for you. Also, don’t forget to pay attention to the settings on the bevel gauge under the blade, as you will need them for certain cuts.
These are the common angles:
- Crosscut. A basic 90-degree angle cut across your workpiece. How do you get one? By stabilizing the workpiece against the miter saw’s fence, and then lowering the blade to make a straight cut across. The blade is already at a 90-degree angle, so no tilting is needed.
- Miter cut. It is commonly used to create seamless right-angled corners, moldings, pipes, and the majority of polygon structures. A miter cut goes across the width of your workpiece. Making a miter cut means cutting at any but a 90-degree angle, essentially. How do you get one? By setting up the angle you need on a miter gauge, and locking it in place. This doesn’t tilt the blade but rotates the base (turntable).
- Bevel cut (commonly used to create «softer» edges: for better aesthetic, safety, or both). Another cut was made at any but a 90-degree angle. However, unlike with miter cuts, bevel cuts go not across your workpiece, but in-depth under the desired angle. As a result, the top won’t be perpendicular to the edges of the cut.
How do you get one? By setting up the angle you need, this time on a bevel gauge. Now, this will tilt the blade (and the motor), but not the base.
- Compound cut (commonly used to create complex and tricky angles, such as for projects with outward slopes). As the name suggests, this is a miter-bevel combo. A cut like this definitely requires a bit of practice, but with the right tool for the job, you’re eventually going to ace it. How do you get one? By setting up both miter and bevel gauges to their respective angles.
Note: not all miter saws support bevel and compound cuts. Look for “compound” models, which rotate and tilt the blade at numerous angles.
Preparation and safety tips
Now, are miter saws constructed with your safety in mind? Absolutely. But there are precautions you must follow before cutting angles on a miter saw, such as:
- Safety gear. Protect your: eyes, face, and airways (with goggles and face shield), as well as ears (with hearing protection);
- Clean, well-lit surface. Absolutely nothing but your miter saw and your workpiece should be on your working surface;
- Clean and well-maintained machinery. Regularly remove any debris, dust, or stains from the surface and the working parts of your miter saw. Do regular checkups, keep the blades sharpened, and never use the saw if anything seems off;
- Fixed workpieces. Laying the piece flush against the fence is not enough: hold it down with clamps to prevent it from moving or wobbling.
- put your arms, hands, face, or hair anywhere near the working blade;
- work on the ground or any surface lower than your waist height;
- adjust anything while the saw is running;
- ever release the trigger switch and handle;
- remove the workpiece before the blade is completely still;
- wear loose clothing and jewelry;
- work with pieces that have any foreign objects or visible defects, especially on the way of the blade.
These safety measures are major, but the list is not even complete, so please check the manual of your miter saw for additional information.
Cutting 22.5-degree on miter saw: Step-by-step guide
To cut a 22.5 miter angle, follow these steps:
- Unlock the head and the turntable of your miter saw. Lock the bevel without making any adjustments on the bevel gauge.
- Set up the 22.5-degree angle on the miter gauge (most miter saws these days come with that mark already on the scale).
- Lay your workpiece against the fence and make sure the cutline you marked on the said workpiece is aligned with the blade. Use the clamps to hold the stock in place. Raise the blade toward you once more.
- Press the switch trigger and let the blade reach full speed. Using the handle, slowly lower the head of the miter saw, pushing the blade through your workpiece.
- Once you’re done with your 22.5 miter cut, release the trigger. After the blade comes to a full stop, bring the head up and remove the stock.
In this section, I will answer the most common questions about how to cut a 22.5-degree angle on a miter saw. Read on to know the details on the topic.
Why is 22.5 on a miter saw?
22.5-degree angles are commonly used to create 8-sided woodwork objects or to prepare two pieces that need to form a 45-degree angle. The 22.5 positive stop on a miter saw helps you cut those swiftly and precisely.
How do you join two pieces of wood at a 22.5-degree angle?
To get a 45-degree angle, clamp the angled edges of the two 22.5-degree wood joints together. Use super glue and nylon band clamp for assembly and pressure. After the glue completely dries, remove the clamp and shoot a 1″ pin nail through each miter joint.
How do you construct a 22.5-degree angle?
This is going to be easy after you learn how to change the angle on a miter saw. Just look for a 22.5 mark on your miter gauge before setting it up. Make sure to do some test cuts if you’re new to the game, or working with a new model or material.
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- How to Cut Trim With a Miter Saw
Cut a 22.5-Degree Angle Like a Pro
Investing in a good miter saw is, quite honestly, one of the greatest decisions you can make for your workshop. It helps with your creative freedom and saves you a great deal of trouble when it comes to angled cuts.
Do you feel like recommending a good miter saw model, or do you have some other tips for perfecting that 22.5-degree angle cut? Please, share your thoughts below — knowledge is the greatest tool!