|WEN 70711 Miter Saw|
View Amazon.com's Price
|Our Rating: 8.3/10
Type: Sliding Compound Miter Saw
- Low price – this is probably the cheapest saw I’ve seen. Ever).
- Great customer service
- Comes with carbide tipped blade (some standard blades are real cheap and nasty)
- Powerful motor
- Sliding function
- Worked well after setting up out of box
- Can only swing to left
- Dust bag doesn’t really work
- Slide a bit rough (had to use a solid lubricant)
- Doesn’t feel like it would stand up to being used commercially (to be expected)
Introduction To The WEN 70711 Saw
When it comes to anything more than a small D.I.Y project – a miter saw is pretty much essential. Any other type of saw is just too imprecise and too slow, especially if you are cutting some big pieces of lumber (and I make some pretty crazy stuff down in my garage!).
I haven’t purchased many Wen brand products, but the main reason I purchased this was because I needed one quick, and I didn’t want to pay a huge price. I knew it wouldn’t compare to something 10x the price, but it blew me away how good it was for the price. I also needed the sliding function, so this one fit the bill perfectly.
As soon as the product turned up on my doorstep (online purchases are great huh), this is what was included with the saw:
- 10-Inch carbide tipped blade
- Hold down clamp
- Table extension supports
- Dust collection bag
- One blade wrench
Pretty much exactly what you’d expect (although it is a bonus having the right blade with the product so you know exactly what size to get next time).
It came all packaged perfectly, and after I assembled it, I followed the instructions (believe it or not). After using power tools for as many years as I have you come to know that most tools “out of the box” aren’t perfect.
I tightened up all the bolts, set it up and did a few test cuts to make sure that it dropped at the right angles. Pretty easy stuff – but if you don’t do it then even a $1,000 saw can feel like a piece of junk.
The Cutting Specs & Overview
This is a bench saw, so you’ll need to mount it. It rocks a maximum cutting thickness of 2.75 in, which is more than enough for most D.I.Y projects. At 44 pounds, it’s transportable but it won’t stand up to being thrown around in vans and utes like a more expensive saw.
WEN’s Powerful Motor & High RPM
The 15 amp motor is like a mini V8 when it is operating, it has got torque to boot and sounds like a high quality motor. The high RPM (5300 no-load speed) is a blessing and makes cuts quick and easy. There is nothing like a saw stopping halfway because it lacks grunt – and this saw has grunt aplenty!
Bonus reading: customer opinions on Amazon.com – worth reading.
Sawdust Extraction System
If you are only doing a few cuts here and there, you won’t worry about collecting dust. If you are operating it every weekend building a deck or other major project, you’ll notice that the sawdust catcher isn’t that great. It’s too small to be of any use, but don’t let that throw you. You could buy/make a bigger one if you are doing larger projects.
This is just the cost of a cheaper saw – you’ll have to sweep up the dust afterwards.
What is the best thing about the Wen Miter Saw?
There is no doubt that the price is the best thing – this saw is so ridiculously cheap that it makes it worth it to purchase a miter saw even if you only use it a few times per year.
It is sturdy and will attach to any workbench and stay true. It has positive stops at 0, 15, 22.5, 30, 45 which makes most cuts dead simple, a solid clamping system to hold the timber in place and of course an electric blade brake.
You can’t expect as precise cutting from a Wen as you would from a Makita or Dewalt, but this thing is pretty close. I’ve worked on a ton of building projects with other guys and used their miter saws, and I’ve got to say that the Wen is a great substitute for one of the “big name” ones if you are just using it casually.
The manufacturers also offer a 1 year warranty which is impressive for a cheap saw. My advice? Get one if you are a D.I.Y sort of chap, and if anything happens to it, cash in on the warranty.
What didn’t I like about the Wen 70711?
Well, for the price it is pretty impressive. The dust bag is good to have (but it doesn’t work as well as one on a more expensive saw). What I did was just customise it a bit – pretty easy really. If you are doing any major work you should hook up to a vacuum to get rid of all the sawdust, or just wear a mask and sweep up at the end of your session.
The slide isn’t as smooth as what you’d expect on a saw 10x the price, but to be honest, it never bothered me. I’ll tell you a trick right now that saved me (a carpenter mate told me this) – put some graphite or other dry lubricant on the slide and give it a bit of a wiggle around and it will help. Trust me, this is a great way to help this problem.
I contacted customer service asking about it (I knew there wouldn’t be anything they could do, but I just wanted to see if they responded). They got back to me within 1 day and were professional and advised that for me to send it back if it was inoperable, but to be honest I’d rather keep it and put up with a small issue like that.
If you were a carpenter using this rig every day, I’d advise against it because it will get to you after a few months. For the D.I.Y man who would operate it every weekend or just a couple of times a week, this wouldn’t be a problem at all.
What would this saw suit?
I’m not going to claim this saw would suit everyone. If you are a full time chippy, contractor or wanting a hardcore piece of equipment that does a perfect job for years on end – you’ll probably go through a few of these.
On the other hand if you are a part time carpenter doing odd jobs, a hobbyist or wood work enthusiast, this would be a good place to start. It will help you learn a lot and ensure that you know how to set up a machine properly.
D.I.Y projects, loaning it to friends, small framing projects etc would be well suited to this rig. Take a look at Amazon.com’s price on the WEN 70711 Miter Saw if you’re interested.