In the world of professional miter saws, everything counts: features, capacities, accuracy, mobility and dependability. And not necessarily in that order.
The Bosch 5412 12″ dual bevel slide miter saw, with its up-front controls meets most of those requirements head-on. And slightly better in a couple of them than their model 5312, which otherwise is the same saw. Definitely worth the slight difference in price.
The biggest difference between the two models is the 5412 has a rotating main handle, giving you the possibility of four different positions for comfort and control. With either hand. And it comes with a nice little length stop, which can be mounted on either side, for repetitive cuts of the same short length. Plus a quick, lever-action workpiece clamp. All the other features we’ll discuss here are common to both models.
The first feature that puts this saw in a special class is the up-front bevel controls. If you’ve ever used a bevel slider without this advantage, you know how nice it would be to have it. No more reaching around the back of the saw to un-lock and lock the bevel.
Next, is the wedge and slot miter detent system, for sure miter settings. And as the saw wears – which it will over the years of its long life – this design assures that the detents will still be as accurate as the day it was new. The wedge-shaped bar that goes into the slot automatically centers itself due to its shape.
Another thing you’ll notice at first glance is the two extensions. While a lot of good miter saws have them, these are a little different, in that the tops of them are cast, not wire. When pushed in, they become part of the base. Extend them all the way, and you have a total of 40 inches of support. If you don’t want them extended all the way – like when you want to use the length stop mentioned above – they have clamping levers to lock them in wherever you want them.
The miter scale on the Bosch 5312 and 5412 is cast into the base, not just painted on. It won’t wear off. Of course the same can be said of the scales on the fences and the bevel scale – all are easy to read and durable.
The sliding fences on this saw are nice, too. They’re 4-1/2 inches tall and the upper portions slide out as far as the table extensions, to give you more support and more accurate cuts on things like crown moldings.
Speaking of crown moldings, the manufacturer says you can cut them up to 6 inches angled against the fence and 10-1/4 inches lying flat. And board stock up to 12-1/2 inches wide and 4-1/4 thick can be cut at zero bevel/zero miter, giving this saw good capacity.
At 59 pounds, the Bosch 5312 and 5412 are fully 13 pounds lighter than a comparable Jet saw and about the same as a 12 inch Makita or a DeWalt 718. Not light but not heavy, either.
The main drawback to these saws I can see has to do with the housing for the drive belt. When you want to cut on a 45 degree bevel to the right, it gets in the way of any stock taller than 1-3/4 inches. Unless you’re also mitering to the left, that is. Beveling left, it gives you another inch of clearance. This is probably a problem with most dual bevel miter saws, whether belt or gear driven.
Another shortcoming is they don’t come with a laser guide, a little surprising considering all the thought that went into them. I would have thought when Bosch upgraded from the 5312 to the 5412 they would have included this feature that’s become so common on professional miter saws.
What Buyers Say
On the CPO Bosch site (my recommended dealer) there are only four reviews. But all four gave it five stars. On Amazon, you can’t really tell because they mixed up reviews for 3 or 4 different models. However, of the total of 50 reviews, 32 gave it five stars.
The Bosch 5412 is a well-designed and well-built miter saw, not unusual for this famous German company. And at about $100 less than saws like the Jet 12SCMS and $50 less than the Makita LS1216L, the 5412 is a bargain. Unless you need the laser, that is.
I’d give this saw five stars if it had a laser and didn’t have that clearance problem on the right side.
To read the full specs and feature list (most of which are pretty standard for a sliding dual-bevel saw in this class) and to buy this impressive tool, click the link here: