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Before there was the miter saw, there was the miter box. An Amazon store has the Stanley 20-800 Miter Box and saw for $36.21. Why would you want one of these setups? That’s easy — because if you have no power, you have no miter cut without one.

The saw is held in a guide to precisely cut angles in molding, trim and smaller lumber. Theoretically it’s more precise than the slotted guide box, and the blade is thinner than a standard miter saw so there is the distinct possibility that you will cut a little straighter — if a little slower.

Via Amazon [What’s This?]


12 Responses to Dealmonger: Stanley 20-800 Miter Box

  1. Gary says:

    I have an old Miller Falls mitre box with a Disston saw. The blade is thicker and the box is cast iron, but you’d be suprised how quickly and accurately a box like this will cut. I’d assume the modern version works pretty well too.

  2. Gough says:

    I had one of these and gave it up for the cheapest power miter saw I could fine: what an improvement. Its biggest drawback was its inability to shave off small amounts of stock: something that the electric version does very well. If I had to do a small amount of trim work in a place without power, this would work OK used in conjunction with a sharp handplane for the final fitting, or better yet, a Lion Miter Trimmer!

  3. Sean says:

    I just used one of these last weekend to cut some 1″x3″ pine. I was unimpressed, would have been easier to drive home and get my electric. There are too many gizmo’s on it. A old school plastic, wood, or metal one would be alot easier. The only good thing about it was once you finally got through a piece of wood, after struggling for some time, the cut is pretty clean. I give it a D-.

  4. Gary says:

    Well, guess I’m wrong about the new ones. Try a vintage version with a sharp saw some day, I think you’ll like it.

  5. Old Coot says:

    Where’s the laser?

  6. Rich says:

    Used to have one of these. The flexing of the blade during cutting made the cuts inaccurate compared to its replacement, a power miter saw. Probably also some inevitable slop in the guide, too.

  7. fred says:


    We have an old Lion Trimmer somewhere burried in the shop. We used to do a lot of scratch-built mantels and fieplace surrounds. The slicing action of the Lion’s knives – made for perfect miters on even the smallest detail moldings.
    I have few clients these days who would be willing to pay for this sort of fine work

  8. PutnamEco says:

    You get what you pay for, If you want better quality, you may want to try a Nobex or Jorgenson.

  9. Jim K. says:

    I have a Jorgenson model which now seems to be out of production. Nicely built, no flex problems, accurate cuts, etc. I have to say that it’s definitely been the right tool for the job in a lot of cases. That said, for production work where I’m cranking out a ton of miters I’m really happy to have our dewalt in the shop.

  10. Jim Crockett says:

    I have had one of these for years and I find it works very well. While I wouldn’t choose this tool if I were framing a house, Although I also own a compound miter saw, I use the Stanley miter box regularly for a single or a few angled or 90 degree cuts. I find it quick, quiet and accurate.

  11. DonV says:

    The shipping on this thing is $20.50 for a grand total of $56.71. No deal. On Amazon you have to watch to make sure that Amazon is the seller and you can receive free shipping on orders over $25. The third party sellers usually have pretty bad shipping rates.

  12. Ezgoing says:

    I’ve had this saw for many years now, and although it has a few draw-backs over a power miter saw, I’m totally satisfied with it.

    I’ve made several projects with only using this saw, including several picture frames and a coat rack with a multi-angled shelf including trim above it.. Using care, the miters are nice and tight (being obsessive about such things, that is very important to me).


    If you take your time and do not force the blade one direction or another, letting the saw do the work, it’s right on the money as far as accuracy.

    The extra wide blade helps to eliminate deflection, but you can not ‘force’ the cut or the blade will ‘drift’, usually to the right in my experience on my saw.

    With a sharp blade, the ‘hair’ on the back side of the trim piece is pretty much eliminated.

    Positive stops at most common angles used.

    Very light weight and easy to transport.

    There are multiple ‘pin holes’ for locking in the material in place, as well as using them for cutting crown molding accurately and being consistent with the cuts needed.


    There is more ‘slop’ in the saw guides than I’d like to see, but again, if you let the saw do the cutting, not forcing it one way or another, it’s dead on.

    As someone already suggested, ‘shaving’ just a hair off a piece of stock is next impossible. Your better off either cutting a new piece or sanding off that sliver to shorten the piece.

    The bed, although accurate, is a bit short for my likening.

    The rod style extension stop, is about worthless. Too much deflection to keep things accurate.

    If you need a ‘special angle’, you need to set the saw guide up and clamp it in place as there isn’t any ‘locks’ for them.

    Bottom line, if your stuck with no electric power available, or you are a weekend warrior only doing a few projects now and in need of such a saw… I’d be happy to suggest this saw set-up. Less than $40 beats the tar out of several hundred for a power miter saw that is sloppy due to poor quality and workmanship like we find on the market today.

    Just my 2 cents on the subject.

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