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Hitachi C12LCH 15 Amp 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw with Laser and Miter Bevel Digital Display

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The tool gauntlet has been thrown, and sawmongers — us included -- couldn’t be happier. When we saw the specs on this beauty, we couldn’t wait to give it a run. First off, expect to make adjustments out of the box to the fence as well as the tilt LCD reading, but adjustments are simple and then you’re ready to go. We absolutely love the LCD readout! It computes your miter and bevel angles for you, without your having to do the hunch-and-squint over a hard-to-read gauge. It’s about time someone came up with this, and it doesn’t surprise us that it was Hitachi. Laser cutting guides aren’t the novelty they were a few years ago, but it’s still a nifty feature, and this one’s clear and bright. One caveat: If you’re cutting molding vertically, your workpiece can actually block the laser because of where it’s positioned. We mention this only because the large pivoting fence raises your fence height to 5-1/8 inches specifically for cutting crown molding vertically. It’s not a huge drawback, we don’t think, but something you should be aware of. Aside from that, we found the laser to be dead-on accurate. We’re partial to a horizontal handle, and this one’s exceedingly nice to grasp because of a soft, comfortable grip. The table’s plenty big and offers great stock support, and unlike other saws in its class, this one has a neatly geared tilt mechanism to take the strain off the user. This is a great, accurate saw perfect for the job site, the professional’s shop and especially the home woodworker, who will especially enjoy the LCD bevel and miter display. We bet you’ll be seeing more of these on the market, but remember you saw it here first.--Kris Jensen-Van Heste

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Hitachi C12LCH 15 Amp 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw with Laser and Miter Bevel Digital Display