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If the speed square measures the amount of an angle past the square (zero deg), and some mill saws measure the same angle up to square (90 deg), what terminology assures that an angle is measured and cut according to the same method.
Who ever desinged the first Mitre Saw decided that 0* on the scale would indicate a 90* cut to the fence. It was clearly arbitrary, since in reality you are making a 90* cut.
Why do we use inches and feet while the rest of the world uses Metric ? Metric is a much simpler system. We use SAE since that is what we were taught & are too stubborn to change.
For instance - What is the correct way to indicate the swing of a door -- For years it was manufactureres preference, I STILL draw a swing diagram to indicate swing.
The speed square was designed for framing use and became a universal hand tool for Carpenters. Prior to that Protractors were commonly used. Therefore all degree angles are taken from Plumb - 0 pitch = O degrees
12" pitch = 45 degrees. This corrosponds well to the scale on a chop saw but not on Table saw gage,
Therefore the Terminology you use to describe your cut determines what to use to cut it.
Post this on Gaty K's Website - see what he as to say .. We've discussed this many times .
Whenever someone starts talking about miter-saw gauges, my ears ***** up--even if I'm across a room or in the next forum! Maybe it's a cat thing. I'm still looking for that guy, the one who made the 'arbitrary' decision about making 90 degrees '0'. I don't mean to do him any violence (well, it might not have been a him, huh?). I just want to confirm that he wasnt' a carpenter. If anyone has a lead on him, pass it along. I'm convinced that my 30+ year problems with angles originate with ill-conceived miter-saw gauges that have no relation with protractors, and not genetics.
Don't you love these new forums? You can select a 'hot word' and you automatically get emailed whenever anyone uses it!
I don't know who the carpenter was who decided this one. It goes back at least as long ago as I was using a Miller Falls miter box with a "back saw". It had '0' and 45to the right and left. I didn't even know there was such a thing as a power miter saw in those days.
One tripping spot for me is using my Bosch angle finder. I have to use my Construction Master to find the proper cut on the saws miter scale. Mr. Tate would shake his head if he saw me using a calculator.
It could be worse though. The fellow could have used 180 or 360 as a starting point.
I sort of understand the logic of this thread, but really. Straight up was designated 0° for the simple reason that that happens to be its orientation in mathematics: straight up! Labeling -90° (to the left of "plumb) or more accurately 270° as anything other than 270° is somewhat a stretch, but understandable (call it a working "convenience"--the reasoning there must have been that carpenters mostly can't figure past 90 <g>).
By the way, my wife and I are moving back to Wisconsin soon. I have a line on a hot (intelligent, dilligent, super hard-working) 19-year-old Latino in the Santa Cruz CA area if anyone's interested. I've another week or so of retro work for this guy on what I think will be my last project in this area. His name is Aaron, and if nothing better crops up I intend to turn him over to Granite Construction.
This kid is raw but he just oozes potential. Anyone with interest may email me for more info.
I know that sounds as if we're headed in the wrong direction . . . but as it turns out both of us hail from Wisconsin, we're near (semi)retirement, plus property back there is about half or less than what it is in northern Cal, so Wisconsin it is. We're thinking something modest with a few acres in the country around LaCrosse or thereabouts.