Single Vs Double Bevel Miter Saws – What To Choose?

Single Vs Double Bevel Miter Saws – What To Choose?

A miter saw is one of the best woodworking power tools you can possibly have in your inventory.

With their ability to make an array of cuts only found on these types of saws, it’s no wonder why they’re a favorite for woodworkers of all experience levels.

Not enough time to read the entire article? Not a problem. I’ve made an overview below of a single vs double bevel miter saw, for your convenience.

  • Bevel refers to the ability to pivot in both left and right directions, with single bevel only left, and double in both
  • Core features found on a miter saw include the blade, motor, table and miter scale, amongst other components
  • Double bevel miter saws are often more expensive than singles, however both have a good learning curve
  • DeWalt DWS715 is one of the most stripped down versions within DeWalt’s corded class, yet is good money value
  • The Bosch GCM12SD features a patented Axial-Glide System for increased capacity, handy on a double-bevel miter saw

There are many types of miter saws available, from 10” and 12” size differences, to sliding and compound saws. 

Many miter saws are differentiated by their size, and type of cuts they can make – and that’s what we’ll be looking at today – which miter saw in the single and double bevel class, is best for you.

What Is The Difference Between a Single And Double Bevel Miter Saw?

Like I mentioned earlier, a miter saw can make a number of cuts through wood, and this is why it’s a favored tool to use. 

The types of cuts which can be made with a miter saw include miter cuts, compound cuts, cross cuts and bevel cuts.

Firstly, it’s important to understand what the term, ‘bevel’, before going any further. The bevel cut refers to a cut made at an angle, however this is made through the wood at an angle other than 90°. This type of cut is made through the thickness of the wood you’re working on.

Now that we have that covered (and don’t worry, it can be confusing if you’re new), we can look at the difference between a single and double bevel miter saw. 

A single bevel miter saw is a saw that can only bevel in one direction. Typically, this is to the left, and these single bevel miter saws cannot bevel past 90° – so there are some limitations with this model. In saying this, these are perfect for the general hobbyist.

A double bevel miter saw, sometimes known as a dual, is a saw that will bevel not only to the left, but also to the right – meaning it can bevel in both directions. This is known as ‘pivoting’, referring to the motion the saw makes in both directions.

As a double bevel miter saw offers more range of motion, these are usually found in the workshops of professionals, and those who are skilled in their craft. They are also a tad pricier than their single bevel miter saw counterparts, yet this is to be expected.

Has this cleared it up for you? Hopefully it has, and you have a little more clarity on the differences between the two.

Why Are We Looking Into Both Of These Miter Saws?

Both of these miter saws are within the 12” class, and we’ll be looking into these two miter saws as they present the best qualities to assist you when you’re tackling your next project.

Both the DWS715 and GCM12SD are manufactured from respected brands in DeWalt and Bosch, so you’re aware of the reliability and quality they possess – but what features do they include, and how will they impact the jobs you’re tackling and improve the quality of your performance? 

That’s what we’ll be looking at today, as well as pinpointing my favorite feature of each model.

If you have any questions regarding these miter saws, feel free to leave a comment in the section below.

General Features Of A Miter Saw

Like any power tool, a miter saw has a set of core features that immediately separate them from the rest of the pack.

However, if you’re beginning your woodworking journey it can be difficult to decipher what saw is what, what different cuts they can make, and they can impact your work. To make this easier for you, I’ve outlined some of the core features of a miter saw in the sections below.

Blade Size & Motor

Without the blade, you’re unable to cut through wood, and without the motor – you’ll have nothing to power your blade with.

So it’s safe to say that both of these components are integral features of a miter saw, isn’t it?

A miter saw can only cut wood in relation to the blades’ size. Commonly, miter saws are found in sizes of 10” and 12”, with their blades being those sizes respectively. Some blades can have up to 100 teeth, and are more suited for cleaner cuts than those of smaller teeth (24 and 32 tooth blades are commonly packaged with new miter saws.)

The motor of a miter saw provides the blade power for the tool, and is either charged through a power outlet via a cord, or a battery in compact, cordless miter saws. Motors in miter saws are usually within the 15amp range, and can attain speeds of up to 5,000RPM – usually found in top of the line miter saws.

Table & Miter Scale

The table of a miter saw is the large connected base that is attached to the miter saw. This allows you to work with your wood pieces, serving as both a foundation for the saw itself, and your working space. Some additional features are connected to the miter saw and table, such as a dust collection port to capture the dust from your cuts.

The miter scale serves a main purpose for your miter saw, and that’s to decide the angle you’re cutting at – which is incredibly useful for making miter cuts, the saws’ namesake cutting method. 

Miter scales contain an indication of the degree you’re cutting at, and moves when you also move the saw itself. Additional features can be found with miter scales, which are usually exclusive to the brand that had manufactured the miter saw.

DeWalt DWS715 Single Bevel Miter Saw

The DWS715 is one of seven corded miter saws within DeWalt’s line DW/DWS line, and is also one of the most versatile, despite being one of the most standard miter saws available.

Unlike many of the alternative miter saws DeWalt have introduced in this series, it doesn’t hold many of the shiny features the other miter saws do, instead focusing upon an extended power and durability rather than shiny, additional features.

This makes this model an absolute steal for beginners, especially if you’re a little unsure of what features are necessary for the jobs you’re looking to complete within your workshop.

As well as being great value for money, this miter saw is quite lightweight – which is one of my favorite aspects of this model, so it’s also a great fit for contractors who are looking for something a little more compact without being cordless, perfect for constant movement when in transit from site to site.

Specifications

  • 15 amp motor, RPM max speed of 4,000, blade diameter of 12”
  • 45° bevel cut capacity – 2” x 8” 
  • 45° miter cut capacity width of 2” x 6”, height of 4” x 4”
  • 90° cross-cut capacity height of 2” x 8”
  • 11 positive stops on miter detent plate

Features & The Compact, Lightweight Design

The great thing about this model is its design. It’s one of the lightest miter saws found in Dewalt’s line that is not classed as a cordless model. Weighing in at 47 lbs, it’s perfect for contractors moving site to site, containing a built-in carry handle that makes movement from sites a breeze.

It’s a lightweight model, yet this doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a powerful motor, with a 4,000 RPM max speed able to cut through a majority of woods without affecting the quality of your cuts, and also the wood itself.

The miter system on the DWS715 is also another great feature. Of course, all miter saws contain this feature, yet the miter system on this model is incredibly accurate, with a cam lock miter handle and a detent override assisting you in making those miter cuts as precise as you need them to be.

The DWS715 features a bevel ability of 0 – 48° to the left, and a 0-3° to the right – so it can bevel in both directions, although not as much as a specialized double bevel miter saw.

Another noteworthy aspect of this model is the tall sliding fence. This supports crown molding up to 5-¼” nested, and base molding up to 6-½” vertically. When you’re looking to make bevel cuts, the fence can easily slide away, another tick for versatility.

This would be a great addition to anyones’ inventory, especially for those who are looking for a miter saw from a trustworthy brand that won’t break the bank.

Bosch GCM12SD Double Bevel Miter Saw

To finish off our single and double bevel miter saw review, we have the Bosch GCM12SD 12” double bevel miter saw.

This is another model manufactured from a trusted brand, which is important for many people who are looking for both reliability and years of service with their power tools.

Being a 12” double bevel miter saw with some extra features, the Bosch GCM12SD is a bit more expensive than the DeWalt DWS715 – yet it’s definitely not out of reach when it comes to affordability. This is a bonus, as this miter saw doesn’t need a great deal of experience to operate, making it perfect for any experience level.

I’ve listed the specifications and features below, as well as adding what I believe is the best feature of the model.

Have a read of these and let me know your thoughts in the comments section.

Specifications

  • 15 amp, 3 HP motor with an attainable RPM speed of 3,800
  • Total weight of 65 lbs, width of 26.5”
  • Bevel angle range of 47° left, 47° right
  • Miter cut capacity at 0° is 4 x 14, cut capacity at 45° both left and right is 2 x 14 
  • Miter angle range of 52° left, 60° right, five positive stops

Features & Axial-Glide System

Let’s discuss the Axial-Glide feature that Bosch have included in this model, as it’s one of the standout features, and my personal favorite out of a long list found on the GCM12SD.

This is an exclusive, patented feature found only within the Bosch miter saw models. Essentially, this system means you’re able to work on longer pieces than you usually would with other miter saws.

This works by using a bending arm, that not only provides a smoother cutting motion, but also increases the accuracy of your work, and eliminates a ton of space in your workshop. An integrated base extension will allow 60% more left to right wood support than that of other saws. How good does that sound?

Precision will always be assured with the GCM12SD, thanks to the pre-aligned, SquareLockfence, which aims to to maintain accuracy throughout the life of the miter saw. 

Working ergonomically is an important aspect for any woodworker, so you’ll be happy to know that this model contains a soft-grip handle that can be used for both left and right handers – as well as an integrated dust chute and vacuum adapter to help capture and clean any dust that will be caused from your cuts.

The Final Say

Now we’ve explained the differences between a single and double miter saw, you should have a better understanding of what is more suited for you and your woodworking needs.

Single bevel miter saws are usually cheaper than double bevel miter saws, yet they’re perfect for those who don’t need a two-directional pivot ability – such as the DWS715 from DeWalt. This model won’t disappoint you should you look to purchase this, and will provide many years of reliable service with its’ reliable motor and quality cutting ability.

The Bosch GCM12SD can be seen as a superior miter saw thanks to being a double bevel miter saw with a patented Axial Glide System, and is great for any experience level – as both of these miter saws are. Yet, these are more than often found in the workshops of experienced woodworkers who require both a left and right bevel ability.

Whichever you choose, you won’t go wrong, and as I’ve stated numerous times in this article, it’s important to understand what you’ll be using these miter saws for, and how often you’ll be using them.

Did you think I missed anything through this article? Or perhaps there’s some tips are thoughts you’d like to share with your fellow readers. Whatever it may be, leave your comments in the section below – it would be great to read them.

James Thomas

James Thomas

Tool Enthusiast

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