I do not own a mitre saw, which seems like the best tool for cutting skinny quarter round shoe moulding at 45 degree angles. While I can manipulate the angle on my circular saw, which worked very well for my baseboard 45s, the quarter round's small size seems to make it difficult.

Is there a carpentry trick/hack that would allow me to cut quarter round with a regular circular saw? Perhaps some kind of a channel embedded in some kind of metal guide that the quarter round would go into and a flat top surface that the saw runs over.


5 Answers 5


Really too dangerous cutting small base shoe molding with a circular saw.

It is so easy to cut that you should just buy one of those cheap wooden miter boxes that you use with a fine toothed back saw.

enter image description here

Sometimes these even come with the saw as a kit.


Or make a simple miter box. Two 2x2s screwed to a piece of plywood, spaced the thickness of your molding, would do. Screw a thin rail down across the top at a 45 to guide your circular saw.

Be sure to hold the piece down firmly and cut slowly with a fresh blade.

  • Great answer & the best method for clean accurate cuts.
    – Iggy
    Commented Jan 5, 2016 at 0:40

Use a Japanese pull saw. Quite versatile.


The best method is to get or make a miter box as others have suggested.

Short of that, the quick carpenter solution for cutting with a circular saw is to use the speed square. The triangular shape includes a 90 and 45 degree angle and there are marks to cut other angles. For the 45, you place the lip of the square against the quarter round, slide the square back until it's the blade is exactly at the mark to cut with the deck of the saw flush against the square, and then you just cut keeping the deck of the saw flush against the square.

For best results:

  • Make sure the saw is kept perfectly horizontal with the trim you're cutting.
  • Place the square over the part of the wood you intend to keep.
  • Clamp the square to the wood if you can't keep a firm grip.

This is more often used for rough cuts, especially with framing. When doing something more accurate like your quarter round, a miter saw or a miter box are the best tools for the job. And for inside corners with quarter round, coping the joint with a coping saw is preferred to a 45 degree cut.

cutting 45 with speed square

Sample image from makezine.com


I honestly might just think about using a hand saw and a miter box like some of the other guys were talking about. Fairly cheap, although I suppose the speed square thing would work fine, I just feel like it would be difficult to use a speed square on something as small as a piece of quarter round.

  • That answer has already been given
    – Chenmunka
    Commented Nov 16, 2017 at 8:48

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