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Dedicated crosscutting machinery really started with the old Radial Arm Saw which emerged around the 1930s. In its day this was a revolutionary saw and for anyone who could afford one, it really picked up the production of the shop by leaving the table saw to do mostly the ripping, which is what it is best at. When the Radial Arm got really popular when it reached a price point more people could afford, it was realized just how dangerous this saw could be without proper instruction. Radial Arm Saws are great, but they are unforgiving if you make a mistake or slight miscalculation. Fortunately, as things go, the Radial Arm slowly got replaced with a much safer Chop Saw and later the Sliding Mitre Saw, but don't ever get complacent with these saws either, all saws are dangerous and need to be treated with utmost respect.
Watch it on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/embed/slihLQgldEs
Of course, like most tools, woodworkers are always adapting and making attachments and jigs to make these saw work even better, and often safer too and here are just a few of the things that can be done to make chop saws and sliding miters even more effective ...
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