Sliding Vs Non-Sliding Miter Saw: Everything You Need To Know

If you are a woodworker, you understand the importance of having the right tools and making accurate cuts. This is why you need a competent saw to facilitate making well-measured cuts.  Miter saws are essential equipment that you need in your workshop. They are used for making accurate crosscuts and miters. In this article we will learn the difference between sliding vs non-sliding miter saw.

There are two types of miter saws that you can find. They include sliding and the non-sliding miter saws. Sometimes deciding which saw is right for you can be difficult.  In this article, we are going to look at the main differences between a sliding and non-sliding miter saw. This will help you understand them and therefore make the right pick.

Note: Click here to check our Top 10 miter saws that we reviewed recently.

Difference between Sliding and Non-Sliding

These two miter saws are almost the same in the functioning and their structure. Even though there are quite some notable differences. We are going to look at the most common differences between the two. It will help us understand the two types of saws well. Though they have the same aim of cutting. The main difference is seen in the structuring of the miter saws.

Sliding miter saws can move back and forth while in use. You do not need to remove the saw to move to the next position. All you need is to slide the saw. This happens on the sliding rails. When the sliding feature is engaged. The user pulls the heard, turns on the saw, and then pushes the blade backward.

A non-sliding miter saw is somehow different. Unlike the sliding saw, the non-sliding saw has no rails on it. The blade in this saw can make cuts at an angle of 45 degrees. Through this, it can make cuts for framing objects like pictures. Thus, it is not able to make more complex cuts as the sliding saw. Commonly used framing purposes.


A sliding Miter saw is a saw which operates in the use of sliding rails. This is why it is called a sliding miter saw. It can move the head back and forth on a sliding rail. It’s functioning is similar to that of a radial arm saw.

Increased Length

This saw increases the size capacity in which a board can be cut. This is why the sliding miter saw is more efficient. It can be able to cut an object at the workplace easily. The type of saw can also allow for the locking of the rails.

The feature is to make it useable for straight, pull down cuts (like chop saws). With the sliding feature engaged. The user can pull the head forward then turn on the saw and push the blade back into the wood.

Useful Sliding Feature

The occurrence of a sliding feature helps to increase the length which the saw can be able to cut at a given time. Currently, in many homes, there is an increased demand for bigger boards. As a result, the demand for a saw that can be able to shape such boards also increase. This is why the sliding saw is suited for such functioning.

The Anti-flip Usage

Unlike in non-sliding saw where you need to cut a board twice. This is with the fact that you will need to flip the boards over and over. Which might be very tiresome to many. That is not the case with sliding saw for you do not need to flip over the board to cut. You can cut it just as it is without any interference.

An Extended Distance of reach

Moreover, the sliding saw can extend the distance of reach. The feature is essential to increase the rate of work. With the saw, you will find yourself making faster and cleaner cuts in an efficacy way. The saw increases the number of boards that a user can cut.

Cuts wider piece of wood

A sliding miter saw is known for being able to facilitate cutting of wide woods. The presence of wide blades facilitates the fact. The blades stretch easily, and hence one can make cuts in wide objects. Therefore, with this saw size will not be a matter of worry.


  • Allows movement of the blade forward and backward.
  • Makes cuts easily without a need to flip over.
  • It has an increased length of cut that it provides.
  • It saves time used to cut boards.
  • Increases the rate of work with the help of the sliding rails.
  • It cuts a wider piece of wood.


  • The saw is very big and heavy (it is not easily portable).
  • It is expensive to purchase.

YouTube Video Credit Building Guru


A non-sliding saw operates without the use of rails on it. The blade in this saw can make cuts at an angle of 45 degrees. Through this, it can make cuts for framing objects like pictures. Thus, it is not able to make more complex cuts as the sliding saw. Commonly used framing purposes.

sliding vs non-sliding miter saw_Compound saw

Lacks a sliding Option

The saw comes without a sliding option. The fact is because it does not have rails in it. This might make it look like a less functional saw, but this is not the case. The reason as to why it has no rails is because it used to make small cuts and not the wide ones. Hence, no need for rails.

Cutting Joints

Consequentially, the saw is used to make cuts of the joints of an object. It is because Non-sliding saw is perfect for cutting 45-degree. When you combine two such blocks which are perpendicular to each other.

It becomes easy to glue them together. This is very important in the making of frames. Hence, a non-sliding saw facilitates the making of cuts to join together boards or wood.

Four Basic Cuts

Moreover, the saw can be able to make four types of cuts. The crosscut, compound, bevel, and angle cut. The types of cuts are very beneficial in helping make relevant cuts when necessary. Depending on what you are making/ trimming, the above type of cuts will ensure you get the best cut.

A Suitable saw

The saw makes cuts on woods about 6 inches. This is very small compared to the sliding saw. You might think this is a limitation, but it is not. This is because most of the woods and boards that are used to cut are usually about 4 inches. It is, therefore, got you covered and you need not worry about all the cuts it is meant for will be accomplished.

Can make Arcs

Unlike a sliding saw which cannot make arcs the non-sliding saw can. It can be able to make arcs efficiently without any difficulty. Because these saws do not have rails, they are not limited to straight lines. As a result, you can be able to make an arc. Thus, the saw is of great efficiency when it comes to making circular shapes.

Equipped to make joints

The non-sliding saw is used to make joints. The reason for this is because it makes cuts at an angle of 45 degrees. Hence, it facilitates the joining of two blocks of wood. Through this, one can be able to join up to for woods/ boards to have a frame. Additionally, it has no rails which might hinder accuracy in angles. Therefore, ensuring that the joints are well attached.


  • It is used to make arcs.
  • Facilitates the joining of different woods.
  • They are not heavy hence easily portable.
  • It is pretty compact and lightweight.
  • It offers high quality and durability.


  • It has a small length of reach.
  • It cannot be used for angles above 45 degrees.

Which One Is The Best?

It is difficult to jump to conclusions on which is the best. This is because they each have unique importance. You, therefore, cannot say there is one which is better than the other yet it cannot perform the function of the other. We have been able to see that each saw has key uses.

Therefore, to know which is the best for you. You will need to consider what activities you are going to perform with it. If you want to make frames, you will find the non-sliding saw favoring you. Unlike when you want to cut a large object where the preference changes to the sliding saw.

Additionally, to know the best, you need to consider how you will use it. Here you will ask yourself this question. Will it need to be portable or not? Another crucial consideration is on your budget. The budget you have will be a great determinant to see which suits you best.

The right miter saw to choose is the one that meets your needs and cutting requirements. So, after checking the main difference between the two types of miter saws, I believe you will find it easy to pick the most suitable.

Relevant Resources

Hi there, technology lovers and DIY enthusiasts! My name is Alvin, and I am an admin for this blog. I am a techno-geek and a DIY enthusiast, making this blog the right place to share all my knowledge with you to make your life easier in terms of technology.