Radial Arm Saw vs Miter Saw – A Detail Comparison

Radial arm saw vs Miter saw

Woodworking is an art and some tools make it possible. Both radial arm saw and miter saw were invented to lessen the effort in work and complete a project faster. Among these two styles, the radial arm saw is old. When it was invented, that was a revolution in the tool market and lots of professionals grabbed this item. On the other hand, a miter saw is relatively new and has more features than a traditional radial arm saw.

If you have confusion in decision making, this Radial arm saw vs miter saw comparison article might help. Here everything will be explained about each type.


What is a Radial Arm Saw?

A radial arm saw is a powerful tool that comes with versatility which can be used for a variety of works including crosscuts. There is a circular blade mounted to the machine which rotates at high speed and users have to apply the blade to cut the object. Whether you are doing trimming works or need rip-cuts, you can use a radial arm saw. It is used to be bulky and take enough effort to move.

What is a Miter Saw?

Miter saw is a modern designed power tool that has a good capacity of cutting. Most of the professionals use this item for trimming works and miter cut. Also, when you have to cut an object such as a wooden piece, you can choose the angle of the cut. The best thing about this power tool is its accuracy. You can even select the bevel cut with it.

Features Based Comparison for Radial Arm Saw Vs Miter Saw


People are now concerned about the portability of power tools. They want something compact so that it requires less space and can be moved from here to there. Considering this thing, a miter saw is best. Modern miter saws are highly portable and easy to move. If you need to do small projects a lot, a miter saw will help you with that.

On the other hand, radial arm saws are bulky and it is quite difficult to carry from here to there. So, when you are comfortable with a portable one, you must go for the miter saw.

Ease of Use:

No matter how expertise do you have, you should always buy a power tool that is easy to operate. It reduces your effort and you can do more projects. Though radial arm saw is good at work, it can have several issues when operating it. especially, when you are giving too much force on the object, the wooden piece can split back and cause dangerous incidents. There is no option for sliding the blade and no blade guard.

But miter saws can operate in a sliding table and there is less chance of any issues for your fingers and hand. Moreover, all miter saws come with a blade guard that keeps the rotating blade secure and can’t touch the user’s fingers or arm. If safety is a big concern for you, you should go for a miter saw instead of investing a radial arm saw.

Types of Cuts:

If you already have used a miter saw, you know that miter saws allow the user to cut an object from different angles. Based on the product you purchased, the cutting angle may vary. The precise angle setting ensures a perfect cut for different projects. No matter whether it a big project or small, you may need the angle cut. Another thing is the bevel cut which is available in a miter saw.

A radial arm saw also has the facility of cutting an object in a particular miter. But the fact is, most of them are not designed for angle cut and bevel cut. Crosscut is a unique feature which is available in both of these styles. Especially miter saws are being used by professionals for a long time to perform crosscuts.


Whether you are a professional woodworker or it is just a hobby of you, you will like to have the accuracy in work, right? Accuracy in the cut is possible for both of the styles.

But the fact is, radial arm saw requires more effort for the perfection in work. Miter saw is different at this point.

Whichever product you buy; accuracy will be higher than most of the woodwork power tools. If you don’t want to take any chance of spoiling a project, you must avoid purchasing a radial arm saw.


No doubt that when you don’t want to waste your money. When finalizing a power tool for woodworking, consider the price of the product. Though radial arm saws are relatively old fashioned, still it may cost you enough. You can spend tons of money on a single product and there is no point in doing that.

A good miter saw can fulfill all the requirements according to your project. Moreover, this style is comparatively affordable and lasts longer. If you pick the right product from a reputed brand, a single product can serve the best purpose for years. All you have to do is changing the blade frequently which is nothing expensive.

Which One Should You Buy?

If you have read the article thoroughly, you know which type will be best for what. If you don’t have much budget and want all the modern features for the power tool, miter saw would be a good option. On the other hand, if you want rip-cuts and have a higher budget and you are a super expert at work, you can go for radial arm saws.

Final Verdict

This radial arm saw vs miter saw has all the details that need to know as a professional. If you are here to finalize which type will be best, you may have got the answer. If you still have some confusion, must consult with an expert who can properly guide you. Also, whichever style you like, make sure it is constructed with good materials and ensures longevity.

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