I need some quick and easy tips for cutting quarter round moulding with a miter saw. I simply cannot figure out how to place the quarter round to consistently get basic inside and outside cuts for the woodwork. Any suggestions? Thanks.
First off the back of the moulding should be registered against the fence with it's bottom on the table.
For outside corners lay out the cut line using a marking knife based on the measurements taken from corner to corner, i.e. inside of joint. Make sure the piece is held down firmly against the fence, cutting mitres causes the stock to "creep". Depending on length of the moulding, I will cut it 1/64th to 1/32nd over so I can "snap" the piece in for a tight fit.
Miller, when I cope a joint I will mitre the end as if I were going to do an inside corner mitre. I then scribe the outside of the mitre profile with a pencil and then back cut to the line using a coping saw starting at the bottom at roughly 70° - 90° to the mitre. I then will pare to the point with my jack knife. The adjacent moulding is cross cut and installed first then the coped joint over that, looks like a perfect inside mitre every time.
Miter saws usually have a big gap in the fence. Whenever I cut small moldings on a miter saw, I install an "auxilliary fence" which is simply a board, like a ,with another board, like a 1x2, attached to the edge in an "L" shape. I clamp this arrangement to the saw table so the first board is on the table and the second is against the fence. This gives me a "zero clearance" fence. My first miter cut into this wood fence creates a cutline that I use to line up my future cuts.
Be careful not to put fasteners in the path of the saw, and don't cut all the way through the table board (my saw has a depth limiting adjustment that I set to just below the top surface of my table board)
I get cleaner cuts and fewer pieces ricocheting around the shop this way.
Thanks for the help everyone. WoodMangler, the picture was helpful thank you. The detailed instructions are great, but it is still difficult for me to visualize the cuts at times. What a frustrating process. I am going to go and try it again. Miller
That made me laugh out loud. I have been lurking here a few times and noticed that not only do you have a great sense of humor, but you know what you are talking about too. (Not that I would know, I am just really slowly getting into woodworking). Anyway, it's still clear you know what's up.
p.s. Coping a joint is a lot tougher than it looks, IMHO. I have replaced a ton of shoe molding when I refinished the oak floors in my first house. I ended up using your "snap" fit rather than coping them. I tried to cope the joints on the window sill guides when I ripped out 12 double-hung windows and stripped them down to the bare wood, then refinished them. Since the sill guides (is this what they are really called?) were basically cheap to replace and way too labor intensive to strip and restore, I replaced them. Anyway, it was a royal pain to try to cope those joints. I ended up, again, cutting long and trimming in.