Bosch’s new Axial-Glide miter saw (GCM12SD) is one of the most innovative products available in the tool industry. This is not the first miter saw designed around minimal rear clearance, but it is defiantly the first saw to completely remove the industry standard rail system. Hitachi does make a 12″ miter saw with a reversed rail system so instead of the rails being attached to the head, they are attached to the base which eliminates the need for room at the back of the saw for rail travel. Let’s also not forget Festool, who took a similar approach to Hitachi but then only made it available in a 10″ model. Bosch’s approach in creating a sealed bearing system has removed one of the major problem areas in a miter saw. Rails are prone to abrasive damage from particles as well as going out of alignment from day-to-day impact. The cast aluminum arm on this saw looks like it was fashioned out of a transformer’s arm. Not only does it have bulk on its side, it also has sealed bearings; no more rails to go out of alignment and no more rails that sound like nails on a chalkboard.
I think the move away from the rail system and how Bosch has handled it is very well thought out as well as not cheaply executed. They have sacrificed a bit on depth-of-cut compared to the DeWALT DW718 which will cut a 2″ x 16″ at 90° if you remove the back rails where the Bosch GCM12SD is slightly limited to 2″ x 14″. I only say slightly limited as most of the other major players on the market have a maximum cut of 12″-14″ at 90°. Below is a side-by-side comparison of our professional grade 12″ miter saws alongside the Bosch GCM12SD.
|Vertical Cutting Capacity||6-1/2″||4-1/4″||6-5/8″||6-1/2″||6-1/2″||4-11/16°|
|Mitre Range L/R||52° / 60°||52° / 60°||60° / 50°||52° / 60°||55° / 60°||46° / 57°|
|Bevel Range L/R||48° / 48°||47° / 47°||48° / 48°||47° / 47°||48° / 48°||45° / 45°|