If you plan on cutting anything wider like baseboards, picture frames or making moldings to size, a sliding compound saw is the perfect tool. While standard miter saws allow cutting of wood 6 or 8-inches wider, you are likely to struggle to make more comprehensive and accurate cuts due to their inherent weakness.
This is where a compound miter saw comes in. Of course, the saw has all the features as highlighted in this Kobalt 10 sliding miter saw review and one crucial feature is the sliding system that does miter cuts and bevels at the same time.
Kobalt 10” 15-amp Sliding Compound Miter Saw
- Model : SM2517LW
- Power Source : Corded
- Weight : 43 Pounds
- Bevel Type : Duel
- Bevel Range : 48 deg.
- Miter Capacity : 55-L, 60-R deg.
- Cross Cut (90) : 2 x 12 in.
- Cross Cut (45) : 2 x 8 in.
- Blade Size : 10 in.
- Blade Spin : 4450 rpm
- Motor : 15 amp
- Fence Hight : 5-1/2 in.
- Arbor Size : 5/8 in.
- Dust Port : 1-1/4 Inch
- Warranty : 3 years
The saw includes the best of both worlds due to its ability to make a variety of cuts. It uses rails to increase the cross-cut capacity and adds a left bevel for compound cuts. With a 45-degree tilting 10-inch blade, Kobalt is versatile, comfortable and powerful enough to make perfect cuts. Straight crosscuts up to 12” are a breeze whether you are base molding, cutting flooring or even siding.
What Makes It Different?
The big difference is in the width of the material a Kobalt saw handles. It will let you make both bevel and miter cuts by adding rails to allow the saw blade to slide front and back across the material. This significantly increases the saw’s cutting capacity, allowing woodworkers to make deep and thicker pieces of material.
If you plan on cutting anything wider like baseboards, laminate flooring, picture frames or making moldings to size, a sliding compound miter is a perfect tool. While standard miter saws allow cutting of wood 6 or 8-inches wider, you are likely to struggle to make broader and accurate cuts due to their inherent weakness. This is where a compound miter saw comes in. The SM2517LW, of course, has all the features as highlighted in this Kobalt saw review and one crucial feature is the sliding system that does miter cuts and bevels at the same time.
Salvador Haro, an expert in Miter saws from Mexico, says,
“One thing, you get value for your money. I purchased this SM2517LW saw for my siding and laminate flooring projects. The saw has capabilities beyond one can imagine—an excellent, well-made tool. Although my old DeWalt compound miter saw still works, I needed a way to cut wider boards without having to flip the board. This machine handles well a wide range of board widths and is quite precise.
The laser guide works correctly when in a dark room. However, in open daylight, the laser disappears. The side extension arms are strong enough to support the extra weight. Regarding the dust port, it’s not that effective and requires improvement. As a reminder, you get what you pay for”
Positive Things of Kobalt SM2517LW
- Compact and lightweight
- Has a good, sturdy fence
- Easy to adjust degrees
- Accurate cutting
- Good value for money
- Easy to recalibrate
Negative Things of Kobalt SM2517LW
- Lacks side extensions
- Bad bearings
Smart, Powerful Design Cuts
The Kobalt 10” 15-amp Sliding Compound Miter Saw is powered by a 15-amp motor delivering 4400RPM. This is where the real saw meets the wood. It provides enough power that can be used on a variety of applications. The motor is also designed with a power cord that is routed through the rail in the back, minimizing interloping with the slide. Besides, the saws rugged fences, tough detent plate and bevel system are designed to endure the workplace’s rigors.
A 10-inch blade gives a maximum thickness of 5.5 inches wide board. It makes right-angle cuts 5-1/2 inches wide enough for 2x6s wood. At a 45-degree angle, the saw cuts a 2x4s. For wider materials, the SM2517LW allows cutting down to a 5.5-inch level, but you can flip the material for additional cutting. With the same blade, you can cut wood up to 2 inches as compared to a non-sliding miter saw.
Portable and Compatible
This lightweight miter saw weighs just 43 pounds. You won’t struggle to carry it from one point to another inside your workshop. It also features a built-in carry handle that allows you to keep a firm grip for maximum control and safety.
Tall Sliding Fence
An excellent sliding fence is key to the accurate crown and base moldings. With a decent sliding system, this machine is able to support up to 6-inches base moldings and vertical crown moldings of 4-1/2 inches. Besides, it’s tall enough for broader cuts, easy to slide out and adjust.
Adjustable Detent Plate
An easy to adjust detent plate features 11 positive stops on the saw. This makes it quite ideal for beginners. A cam lock handle allows a quick and accurate selection of miter angles. Besides, the cam lock comes with a convenient detent override that makes it easier to adjust the miter without having the saw slip.
An easy to adjust detent plate features 11 positive stops on the saw. This makes it quite ideal for beginners. A cam lock handle allows quick and accurate selection of miter angles. Besides, the cam lock comes with a convenient detent override that makes it easier to adjust the miter without having the saw slip. A work clamp helps keep the stock securely in place hence improves both safety and accuracy.
Bevel and Miter Ranges
Possibly the most impressive features are the positive bevel stops that allow for fast cutting. They are positioned at angles ranging: 0, 33.9, 45, and 48º left and right. There is an extended miter range from 0° to 48° both left and right to accommodate a variety of cuts. The 0° to 55° left and 0° to 60° right miter ranges makes it easy to make molding fast, quickly, and precisely. Instead of moving the wood, you are cutting, the positive stops allow you to move the head, making it more convenient.There is a quick action lever that lets a woodworker combine miter ranges for stock molding positions. This way, one can lock on many angles. The measurements are marked with a distinct red pointer.
Kobalt SM2517LW vs Hitachi C10FSHC 10”. Which is better?
Both the Kobalt and Hitachi have impressive cutting capacities making them ideal for any job. Kobalt features a unique tall fence. However, cutting using the left hand is a challenge due to the placement of the safety switch.
On the other hand, the Hitachi C10fsch features an excellent blade that cuts effortlessly, nice rails and bearings, thus offering accurate cuts. The main drawback with this saw is the vertical handles that are quite uncomfortable, unlike those found in the Kobalt miter saw. In terms of value, Kobalt is highly affordable, while Hitachi comes with a premium price tag.
The Bottom Line
For users in need of a budget-friendly saw, the Kobalt 10 inch 15-amp miter saw is worth every single coin. Regarding features, the saw comes with a quality build and powerful motor to handle complex and large compound cuts, as seen in our Kobalt 10 sliding miter saw review. The speed, adjustable detent plate, high cutting capacity, bevel stops and other features make it value for money.