Delta has put a new twist on miter saws by mounting the motor vertically, instead of horizontally, on its new 36-412 12-in. dual-bevel compound miter saw. The result is increased capacity. This machine will crosscut a 2x10 at 90 degrees, surpassing the capacity of other 12-in. miter saws by about 1-1/2 in. Its street price is around $399. Other user-friendly features include a bevel lock that's located on the front of the saw so you don't have to reach around the back of the machine when adjusting for bevel cuts. Flip-up crown-molding stops are built into the table and greatly simplify cutting crown molding. The fence halves are locked in place with cam levers, slightly more convenient than the thumbscrews found on most miter-saw fences. The 36-412 uses a 15-amp motor, comparable to those on other miter saws, and comes with a good quality 60-tooth blade and a dust bag. The saw table angles to 48 degrees left and right. Positive stops at 0, 15, 22.5, 31.6 and 45 degrees (left and right) firmly click into place. Hash marks on the angle protractor are large and very easy to read. The angle indicator includes 1/2-degree lines, so it's easy to fine-tune the angle in small increments. The saw bevels to 48 degrees left and right, with positive stops at 0, 33.9 and 45 degrees. The 36-412 is slightly more expensive than other 12-in. compound machines, but it has everything you'd want in a top-of-the-line machine and is a pleasure to use. While its capacity is greater than other miter saws' capacity, it's less than on sliding miter saws. But you'll pay about $100 more for a slider. The 36-412 is expected in stores in November.
Delta Machinery, (800) 223-7278, www.deltawoodworking.com, 36-412 compound miter saw, $399.