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67 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DeWalt 12inch miter review
The saw works great, simply put. It's very well made, strong, and very accurate. As with any adjustable new power tool, it is highly adviseable to check it's alignment. All you need is a square and torques bit,(not included with my saw). The head tilts very smoothly,(a must for accurate work), the miter detents are right on target. To my knowledge, Dewalt has the only...
Published on September 28, 2000 by Robert P. Haynes, Jr.

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92 of 95 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars At this price point, you can do far better
I owned a DeWalt 705S for a bit more than a week before returning it. For about five years, I owned a starter model Craftsman 10" miter saw, which was fine for simple 45 degree miters and straight cuts for small projects; however, even after extensive adjustments, it never would cut a straight bevel (probably due to lateral weakness in the arm, among other things)...
Published on October 8, 2003 by A. H.


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92 of 95 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars At this price point, you can do far better, October 8, 2003
By 
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I owned a DeWalt 705S for a bit more than a week before returning it. For about five years, I owned a starter model Craftsman 10" miter saw, which was fine for simple 45 degree miters and straight cuts for small projects; however, even after extensive adjustments, it never would cut a straight bevel (probably due to lateral weakness in the arm, among other things). Because I was getting ready to do some extensive remodeling and trim work, I decided it was time to replace the Craftsman with a more serious saw.
I looked around at various saws and picked up the DeWalt. I like to buy American made tools when possible, and that was one of the factors in the decision. The DeWalt does have a nice, smooth action and is fairly solid overall, much better than the Craftsman it was replacing. I have had good experiences with other DeWalt power tools I own (e.g., a circular saw and a drill). After using this saw for a few days, though, I noticed problems. The worst of them is that the locking mechanism is terribly designed on this unit. Other reviewers on this site have noted this (and I wish I'd read their reviews before buying the saw!). The problem is this: when you lock in a miter setting by cranking the knob, the pressure lifts the rotating miter table relative to the "fixed" base of the saw. The table even lifts a bit when you set the saw to a pre-slotted angle; the spring that settles into the detent also pushes the table upwards and out of square.
Now, this may not be an issue for you if you are making straight cuts in 2x4s or building a dog house, but it is a big problem if you're trying to do fine trim work where accuracy really matters. The defect effectively throws off the angles you're dialing in.
At this price point, I don't think a saw should have slop engineered into it. This DeWalt unfortunately does and is therefore an inferior product in my book. (Even the flawed Craftsman saw I had did not have the table accuracy issue that this saw does.) DeWalt customer service offered me no solutions or workarounds and suggested I return the product if I wasn't satisfied. Back to the home center it went. And I did check the display model for this particular issue after I returned the saw. The display model had the exact same issue. Just tighten the knob and watch the table go up. It's even worse when you have the miter set to 45 degrees, where you can really see the contrast between the table and the base after the table rises. DeWalt just doesn't seem to have been able to figure out how to set the table solidly in the base.
After shopping around again and reading more extensive reviews, I picked up a Delta TwinLaser 36-255L instead. Though it is a Taiwanese saw (as most appear to be), it is dead on accurate and needed minimal adjustments out of the box. (To be fair, the DeWalt was fairly well set up from the factory and did not require more than about fifteen minutes of work to get it squared up.) It also seems much more solidly built than the DeWalt overall. The same Delta saw without the laser (36-255) currently sells for the same price as this DeWalt. (The cookie-cutter Porter Cables are also nice, but the Delta incarnation has a two-year warranty instead of a one-year warranty.)
Even if you're a DeWalt fan, as I have been, I would suggest that you shop around before dropping three Franklins on this particular product. Cast a cold eye on the 705S and ride on.
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67 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DeWalt 12inch miter review, September 28, 2000
By 
Robert P. Haynes, Jr. (JONESBORO, GA. United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
The saw works great, simply put. It's very well made, strong, and very accurate. As with any adjustable new power tool, it is highly adviseable to check it's alignment. All you need is a square and torques bit,(not included with my saw). The head tilts very smoothly,(a must for accurate work), the miter detents are right on target. To my knowledge, Dewalt has the only adjustable miter detent settings available. When wear occurs over time, the stainless scale is adjustable , keeping the accuracy in check. The high back fence works real nice when cutting crown molding, especially when used with with the optional crown stops. They are worth the price. A tip here, cut you some angle blocks from pine,what ever,(37.5degrees) an lay against the fence, this will ensure very precise cuts. The standard 60 tooth blade is also very good for most cutting, it has a negative hook for beter control when cutting. I have had this saw for 18 months without any complaints at all. The compound adjustment works very easy, but before sawing on the compound, check your yellow plastic strips as they may be to close, as you will cut into them. They should be as close as possible when normal cutting, but after you change to a compound cut, they wil get cut. When changing the blade, remember the blade retaing bolt is left hand threads. The dust bag works the best on any saw I have tried. Power, it has plenty, and the brushes in the motor are very easy to change, no special tools required. To some up, It's (in my opinion) the best buy of any miter saw, especially when all the features are compared, and it's AMERICAN MADE. what else can I say, but watch your fingers. I now have the 12 inch slider, but that's another story.
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57 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Smooth, powerful, a must have, April 19, 2001
By 
R. M. Jones (Las Vegas, NV United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I've been researching compound miter saws for about 18 months now, (its not that I'm that non-committal, its just silly things like "the kids need food", and similar issues).
I was intially impressed with the features of this saw. Yet over time I looked at, and used others, and ulitmately came full circle which increased my level of appreciation for this fine tool.
I've done a bit of finish work using a Hitachi 10" compound. Nice saw, and got the job done. The safety switch on the straight handle took some getting used to and the small fence was a challenge for 4" crown and 5" base. Which I ended up adding my own fence to increase capacity. The detents are not that positive, a little play (+ or - 1/2 degree). The mitre adjustment had a lot of leverage to swing the table around. The only problem is there isn't a lot of saw to counteract that leverage, even when bolted down.
I looked at the Porter Cable 12" compound. Nice postive lock on the miter adjustment. Its heavy which can be an issue, not unless you keep having the rookie move your tools for you. The miter gauge although stamped, with no signs of ever losing your marks, I didn't like the idea of having the actual degree mark being roughly 1-2 degrees thick, (I use mine to build furniture as well.)
Which leads me to the DeWalt. Silky smooth blade travel, and plenty of power. The D-handle is an ergonomic dream and the "really big trigger" is nice. Big sliding fence, accurate and postive detents, but not so "positive" that you can't sneak up on a few of those ahem, problem cuts. 3 screws and you miters are set. 2 bolts and you compounds are true.
The extension wing is plus and helps stabilize your work, and the dust bag is nice to store loose change (token effort, I guess). The blade is good for trim work once you get "the feel" on how quick to pull this bad boy down without tear out. But invest in something better (Forrest) for finer work.
Many similar features on smaller saws, Delta for instance. Which I would have bought if I didn' t need the extra capacity of the 12".
Spend the extra dollars and you'll be dangerous (in a good, accurate, craftsman-type way).
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Most versatile chop saw on the market, September 28, 2000
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I am a contractor who does a variety of carpentry jobs from framing and decks to crown and trim moldings. The Dewalt is a very versatile saw and has the power to cut pressure treated 2x6 yet precise enough to shave down the outside corner on 4 5/8 crown for a perfect fit. The saw is durable yet lightweight and has the capacity to handle a wide variety of cutting applications well. The DeWalt is easy to transport with a convenient top handle grip and feels solid unlike cheaper chop saws. The handle is ergonomic with a wide trigger that doesn't block your view of the work. The base slides smoothly with precision and a clear plastic insert over the degree scale allows for making cuts in 1/2 degree increments. I especially like the smooth motor and control of the electric brake which makes the saw very safe and controlled even when cutting off short lengths. My previous chop saw ,a Craftsman, was noisy, a backbreaker at 60lbs and would hurl scraps of wood, especially shoe molding, across the room, actually denting the drywall once. I would highly reccomend the 96 tooth Freud Ultimate Cutoff Blade for finish work, the price hurts but the results are beautiful planed smooth cuts. The high fence makes all but the widest crown a breeze to cut and eliminates the extra time and margin for error that sliding saws pose not to mention the extra weight(except the Hitachi 8 1/2") I bought the Crown Stops as an accessory and they greatly improve speed and accuracy. DeWalt really did their homework in designing this saw which is why every manufacturer had to redesign their saws to this much higher standard. Bottom line, If you do a wide variety of jobs the DeWalt is the best saw for the money and for molding and trim finish work it can't be beat. Complaints: Mitre settings should go to 50 degrees. Have heard the new 15 amp saw has a problem with runout. My 13 amp cuts true.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DeWalt has done it again!, February 25, 2001
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I recently helped a friend install oak crown and base molding as well as new door and window casings throughout his entire house. He bought me this saw as a present for doing so! Throughout that entire job, I was completely thrilled with this saw's performance. I had already owned a 10" Delta saw which I was pleased with, but DeWalt has once again come up with a better mouse trap. The larger blade capacity makes it possible to work with BIG trim that my Delta couldn't handle. I also feel that DeWalt leads the market with the comfort of their horizontal handle design. The 60 tooth blade which was included is of decently high quality and made acceptably smooth cuts. Dust collection could be better, as is the case with every power miter saw I have ever used. The DeWalt has an ingenious fence design which I liked alot, and the cast aluminum base is SO much lighter than my Delta's cast iron base. One more small but luxurious feature is the fact that the DeWalt saw has a carrying handle on top which makes carrying the folded down saw a one handed operation. This saw will no doubt serve me well for years, and my back will be glad to quit hefting my Delta saw in and out of my truck!!!
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Someone doesn't know how to use their saw!!!, January 11, 2005
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I work at a used tool store and have been contemplating buying the 12" compound miter saw. I read mostly the negative reviews on the saw; most complain about a problem with the table raising when you crank the knob. Well I conducted a little test with the six DW705's we have in stock. You'll be glad to hear that every single saw table did raise the harder you turned the knob. I was really disappointed since I could get a new saw for just $35. Then I thought, "How tight does that knob really have to be when cutting an angle other than a posi-stop. I hooked up a in/lb torque wrench to the knob and all be darned if it took less that 30 in/lbs of torque to very stoutly hold the miter in place!!!

I positioned a machinists square against the fence and found not even a smidgen of a gap. Then I attached a old fishermans scale to the knob and pulled all while starring at the sclaes reading waiting until the miter position overcame friction and slid into a posi lock position. It took 33lbs of pulling pressure to slide the miter off its original position. ALL WITH ONLY 30IN/LBS OF TORQUE!!!

So to all those people wandering if the table raising problem is as bad as some of these people say, it is; if you crank on that miter knob like a Gorilla!!! If only everyone had their own tool store this would of never been an issue.

Oh yeah, I just built a beutiful sleigh bed for my girlfriend in an arts and crafts style and made every cut I had to make with my new miter saw. It is an absolutely fabulous tool!!!
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars DeWalt DW705S, February 14, 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I bought the DW705 (Type 6) about two years ago after watching a guy who was supposedly an experienced finish carpenter use one to butcher a job of installing window, door and baseboard trim for a new addition I was working on. I just couldn't believe that the saw was responsible for that hack job. After using it for a while, I can tell you that the problem was not with the saw.
At around forty pounds, the DW705 is so much lighter and easier to carry than the old cast iron 9" Delta saws I had used in the past that it is perfect for use both in the shop and at the jobsite. As with any tool that has been in transit, when I first got the tool out of the box I checked it over and noted the blade square and bevel settings. They were close but required just a little fine-tuning, which is not uncommon. I do a quick check before each job and it is usually dead on. The sliding side extension is a welcome feature. The 15-amp motor turns at 4000 RPM and has plenty of power to cut thick hardwoods. If you're using it with an extension cord, always use one that is at least 12-gauge or you will notice a big reduction in power due to voltage drop. A 12-inch thin kerf blade like the one that comes with the saw isn't good for much, except for maybe straight cuts. If you try to use one for bevel and compound miter cuts, especially in thinner stock, you'll have a hard time trying to get them square because of the runout caused by blade flexing. You would swear that the saw was out of square, motor bearings were bad or the blade arm was racked, even though they are fine. I find that with a 12-inch saw, a blade with a thicker kerf is needed, which provides a damping effect to reduce this flexing. Quality blades like the ones made by Forrest are expensive, but from my experience there really isn't any other way to get precision bevel or compound miter cuts for fine woodworking without one no matter how accurate the saw adjustments are set. Dewalt now makes a woodworker series of blades too but I haven't tried any of them yet.
I bought the optional crown stops because the saw has built in stops at 31.6 degrees for cutting crown molding. In addition, the available Dewalt quick-release clamp is almost a necessity. When using the clamp with thin stock, it has a tendency to push the work piece upward and lift it slightly off the table. Flipping the clamps pressure plate upside down seems to make it hold more securely and help prevent this lifting.
I checked the sliding fence on my saw with a machinist square it was perfectly square to the base and in alignment with the fixed side. The rotating miter table also has no free play in it and the front doesn't lift at all no matter what position it is in or how hard the locking knob is tightened. Overall, I am satisfied with this saw and would likely buy it again.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best deal going, January 8, 2001
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
I recently bought my third 705 saw. The reason I keep coming back is that no one makes a better non slide saw yet and most of the competition is made in Taiwan. I've had them all and nothing beats the Dewalt. It has the best capacity in the industry. It is very tough. It is easy to adjust when it gets dropped or knocked out of whack. It has enough power for anything you want to throw at it whether its 2x10's (You have to lift the board at the end of the cut which is not really recommended)or scribe mold. The dust bag is almost useful. Throw it in the trash can and hook it up to a dust collector or a shopvac. The extension wing is a great addition. Probably the best feature on this saw is the huge fence. It will support a 2x6 standing up or if you need to make a bevel cut ,simply slide it out of the way. The only thing slicker is the flip fence on the Makita Slide saws. I have the LS 1212 which is truly a high end cutting machine and I love it. But for every day banging around when I don't need the capacity , I bring this dependable work horse of a saw.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Saw, September 28, 2000
By 
Daniel P. Marchetto (Glenview, IL United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: DEWALT DW705S 12-Inch Heavy-Duty Compound Miter saw (Tools & Home Improvement)
You'll never regret this purchase. I have owned this saw for about 2 years and have used it for countless large (massive deck) and small (interior trim)jobs. I have been pleased since day one. The horizontal handle gives you greater control than the pistol grip saws. It also has good ergonomics for portability and with the 80 tooth blade, handles any job from rough to fine. Improvements I would recommend are: increase the motor size to 15 amps (wet 4x4 treated wood slows it down a bit) and put knobs on the extension adjustments instead of the bolt and wrench combination currently used. All in all a great value.
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20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars You can do better for this money, November 4, 2003
By 
I owned a DeWalt 705S for a bit more than a week before returning it. For about five years, I owned a starter model Craftsman 10" miter saw, which was fine for simple 45 degree miters and straight cuts for small projects; however, even after extensive adjustments, it never would cut a straight bevel (probably due to lateral weakness in the arm, among other things). Because I was getting ready to do some extensive remodeling and trim work, I decided it was time to replace the Craftsman with a more serious saw.
I looked around at various saws and picked up the DeWalt. I like to buy American made tools when possible, and that was one of the factors in the decision. The DeWalt does have a nice, smooth action and is fairly solid overall, much better than the Craftsman it was replacing. I have had good experiences with other DeWalt power tools I own (e.g., a circular saw and a drill). After using this saw for a few days, though, I noticed problems. The worst of them is that the locking mechanism is terribly designed on this unit. Other reviewers on this site have noted this (and I wish I'd read their reviews before buying the saw!). The problem is this: when you lock in a miter setting by cranking the knob, the pressure lifts the rotating miter table relative to the "fixed" base of the saw. The table even lifts a bit when you set the saw to a pre-slotted angle; the spring that settles into the detent also pushes the table upwards and out of square.
Now, this may not be an issue for you if you are making straight cuts in 2x4s or building a dog house, but it is a big problem if you're trying to do fine trim work where accuracy really matters. The defect effectively throws off the angles you're dialing in.
At this price point, I don't think a saw should have slop engineered into it. This DeWalt unfortunately does and is therefore an inferior product in my book. (Even the flawed Craftsman saw I had did not have the table accuracy issue that this saw does.) DeWalt customer service offered me no solutions or workarounds and suggested I return the product if I wasn't satisfied. Back to the home center it went. And I did check the display model for this particular issue after I returned the saw. The display model had the exact same issue. Just tighten the knob and watch the table go up. It's even worse when you have the miter set to 45 degrees, where you can really see the contrast between the table and the base after the table rises. DeWalt just doesn't seem to have been able to figure out how to set the table solidly in the base.
After shopping around again and reading more extensive reviews, I picked up a Delta TwinLaser 36-255L instead. Though it is a Taiwanese saw (as most appear to be), it is dead on accurate and needed minimal adjustments out of the box. (To be fair, the DeWalt was fairly well set up from the factory and did not require more than about fifteen minutes of work to get it squared up.) It also seems much more solidly built than the DeWalt overall. The same Delta saw without the laser (36-255) currently sells for the same price as this DeWalt. (The cookie-cutter Porter Cables are also nice, but the Delta incarnation has a two-year warranty instead of a one-year warranty.)
Even if you're a DeWalt fan, as I have been, I would suggest that you shop around before dropping three Franklins on this particular product. Cast a cold eye on the 705S and ride on.
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