Learn how to make the angled and curved cuts used in the early stages of making joints.
Angled and curved cuts are used for different purposes from rip cuts and crosscuts, which separate materials. Angled cuts are used mostly in the early stages of making joints. Curved cuts shape wood decoratively.
A miter is probably the most common type of angle cut. A miter usually is made at 45 degrees in order to join two pieces of wood at a 90-degree angle, as in the corner of a picture frame. Cutting an accurate miter is more difficult than it looks because even the slightest movement of the wood or shifting of the cutting tool will throw it off.
Bevels are angle cuts along the edges or ends of boards, often for decorative purposes. Use a sliding bevel gauge to copy and transfer unusual angles.
To transfer a beveled angle to a portable circular saw, unplug the tool and turn it over. Loosen the foot plate, put the gauge in place, tilt the foot plate to the desired angle, then retighten the foot plate. Set the blade depth to cut through the material.
A jigsaw easily follows curved and rounded pattern lines for scrolling cuts. If you have a pattern to follow, trace it onto a piece of cardboard, then cut it out to make a template. Use the template to transfer the pattern to the wood by drawing a cut line with a pencil.
Cutting exact duplicates is fast and easy if you use masking tape to join the workpieces. Mark the cut on one piece, then apply the tape to tightly join the pieces in precise alignment. It doesn't matter where you place the tape --the saw will cut right through it -- but don't hide the pattern line. You also can use double-face carpet tape, which you apply between the two pieces.