How to Cut Wood at an Angle with a Circular Saw

Circular saw is a handheld power saw used to cut a variety of materials. It has a blade mounted on an axle which can be swung in different directions. The device allows you to make simple cuts as well as angled cuts by adjusting the base angle.

What makes the circular saw a customer’s choice is the versatility offered along with efficiency. You can utilize it for rip cuts, crosscuts, miter cuts as well as bevel cuts.

Angle or bevel cuts are the one in which one line of the plane inclines toward the other at a specific angle. Such types of cuts are required for crown molding tasks. Besides, custom trims also require bevel cuts.

To get angle cuts from a circular saw has been a long practice. But getting them accurately requires skills. This article is to brush up your operating skills so you won’t face a flaw in your final product.

Steps to get Angle Cuts by a Circular Saw

You will need:

  • A circular saw
  • Engineering pencil
  • Speed square
  • Saw Horses
  • Measuring tape

Step 1: Check the End

The end from where you hook your measuring tape should be a perfect square. To check that, you can align your speed square with the corner.

If the end is not perfectly squared, mark the line with an engineering pencil following the perfect square margin. After that, chop the wood down from that margin.

Step 2: Adjust the Depth of Circular Saw

The depth of your circular saw should be deep enough that it completely passes across the board. Moreover, most of the circular saws can cut through a depth of 2 1/2 inches at maximum. Therefore, adjusting the depth according to variety of the wooden pieces isn’t a problem.

To adjust the depth, unplug the saw and retract the blade guard. Unfasten the depth adjustment knob so the blade moves easily. Now place the saw alongside your board and adjust the blade’s depth such that it exceeds the bottom of the board by 1/8 inches or 0.3 cm. When decided, fasten the adjustment knob or lever.

Step 3: Adjust the Base of Circular Saw

The base of the circular saw comes with a bevel angle adjustment mechanism. This allows the user to easily manipulate the cutting angles. Along with it, the accuracy provided by a circular saw is flawless.

By using the adjustable knob, you can tilt the base plate and lock it at the desired angle. This will project an angle from the table base to the blade of the saw. And hence, you will end up getting the precise bevel cuts.

Step 4: Take the Measurements

By a measuring tape, measure the length of your board right from the corner to the point where you want the bevel cut. Mark that point with an engineering pencil. Make sure that the point is visible enough to be seen out clearly.

Step 5: Mark the Perpendicular Line

Since the angle cuts are made square across the board, the only thing you need is to draw a straight line.

Take a speed square and adjust its base with the margin of the board at 90°. Make sure the base of the speed square is tightly held. Afterwards, take out your pencil and trace the straight line.

Step 5: Adjust the Saw Horse

A sawhorse is a frame used to give firm support to the board while sawing. It consists of a horizontal crosspiece laid on a pair of spreading legs to give a stable base.

Set your board on your sawhorse such that the edge being cut exceeds the base of the sawhorse. As the cutting edge is held away from any obstructing material to avoid kickbacks.

Step 6: Start Cutting

Angled cuts are more difficult and require a firmer grip than the miter cuts. Make sure you stand away from the direction of the circular saw and your feet are on stable ground. By doing so, you can grip the board tightly while cutting.

Plugin the circular saw, and start cutting while holding the board tightly by the other hand.

In case you find it difficult to hold the board, you can fix it on sawhorses with a nail. However, make sure the nail is fixed tightly to avoid an accident while operating.

Step 7: Do the Final Touch-Up

After you are done cutting, you will find a rough edge. In order to remove the excess grains of wood, take out your rasp or a coarse file and start scraping.

After finishing, you will get the required bevel cut on your work piece. By following this method, you can get the angled cuts just like a bevel miter saw.

Safety Precautions

Although the circular saw seems like a handy device, it can get sometimes out of control.

  • Make sure to keep the path of the blade clear of all obstructing materials. In case the blade comes in contact with one, it will come back towards you with an opposing pace.
  • Also holding the board firmly is important, as displacing the board leads to displacing the circular saw with a continuously revolving blade.
  • Wear a face shield containing safety goggles to avoid dust infection in your eyes.
  • Protecting your respiratory system should be the topmost priority. Wear a dust mask to ensure this.
  • Circular saws are designed to operate by the right hand. If you are using your left hand, make sure to maintain a firm grip and operate consciously.


Circular saws have a tendency to provide versatility in a single hand. However, operating them accurately is not a child’s play. The above guidelines are to ensure perfect results along with safety measures strictly adopted. As there is no benefit in getting ease if you are on the verge of facing perils.

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