While other miter saws strive for strength, the Ridgid MS1290LZA 12-Inch Sliding Compound Miter Saw takes a different approach. In fact, it needs competition to get the job done—just the right mix of features and finesse. Case in point: Show me another miter saw whose miter adjustments can be made with your pinky finger? Can't find it? Welcome to Rich.
While other saws play tough, the 12-Inch Sliding Ridgid MS1290LZA Miter Saw takes a different approach. In fact, only the right combination of features and finesse can make a competitor competent. Case in point: show me another miter saw whose miter angle can be changed with just your pinky finger? Can't find it? Welcome to Rich.
When we first saw the MS1290LZA, we didn't think much of it…but when we started using it, we quickly realized our mistake. To see how the similar but more modern Ridgid R4120 miter saw fares against the competition, check out our best 12-inch miter saw review article.
Ridgid MS1290LZA Miter Saw Build Quality
Starting at the top, Ridgid's sliding compound miter saw is heavy. It's not as heavy as the Milwaukee 6955-20 12" Miter Saw. It's really heavy enough that you don't want to lug it from station to station, unless you're a glutton…or maybe have something to do with some ex-California governor.
This weight (along with the huge table) makes the saw very stable. The blade glides from bevel to bevel like it's flying through soaped glass. The bevel angle extends from 65 degrees to 65 degrees – well beyond the range of most saws. Using the palm of your hand, you can easily activate the switch interlock button. Even lefties will have no trouble pressing the trigger.
Unlike the popular Dewalt DWS780 miter saw, the clear blade guard lets you see the cutting edge clearly from any angle. We'd like to see this apply universally to all miter saws.
Maintain and set depth of cut
The MS1290LZA has user replaceable motor brushes that are easily accessible from each side of the motor. Adjusting bevels is almost as easy as mitering. Just one touch of the miter locking lever secures the saw at the desired angle, and the miter index pin makes it easy to find those perfect crown molding miter positions.
You can lock the blade arm with the depth adjustment clip. It has a hole to lock the head and set various cut depth limits. We found it easy to move the clamp. Just pull it out, rotate it, and let it snap back into place.
Ridgid MS1290LZA Convenience Features
Ridgid included a clip with the saw. It has a quick release so you can easily lock it into place, then screw it on for a secure grip. Ridgid has also included a beautiful "Repeat-a-Cut" writing surface on the left side of the desk. On it, you can mark with a pencil to record multiple cutting measurements. This saves us a lot of time re-cutting. These markers are also easy to erase when you're done. innovative? Yes.
On the right side of the Ridgid MS1290LZA Miter Saw there are two wire wrap holders. We found this very convenient and sensible. The included hybrid Allen key/Phillips head screwdriver is stored on the right rear leg of the saw.
Ridgid MS1290 12" Sliding Compound Miter Saw Specifications
- Speed (No Load): 4,000 RPM)
- Maximum Bevel: Left/Right 47°
- Max Miter: Left/Right 60°
- 45° Crosscut: 9.5 inches
- 90° crosscut (left/right): 13.5 inches
- Spindle: 1 inch
- Mitered brake release and bypass thumb wheel
- expandable table
- Exactline Laser Alignment Systems
- Repeat-A-Cut Marking Surface
- 2-1/2" dust port with collection bag
- Weight: 68.46 lbs.
- 3-year warranty and lifetime service agreement
- Includes Miter Saw, Exactline Adjustable Laser Guide, Carbide Blades, Dust Bag, Dust Guide, Work Clip, Blade Wrench and Hex Key
- Price: $499
For anyone looking for a professional miter saw, this is one of the better models we've seen at this price. It actually embarrassed (or should) embarrass some of its competitors and came up with some innovative and exciting features that we believe over time will become standard fare for competing brands. Now you can benefit from the Ridgid MS1290LZA Miter Saw while everyone else is catching up.