How to Cut Baseboard Inside-Outside Corners with Miter Saw

Types of Joints

But before we dive in, you have to know the types of joints that you can make in a baseboard, and we have 4 types of joints

12. Filling Nail Holes

Some people use wood filler for this step, but because we pre-paint our boards, we’d have to touch up every hole with paint.

The easier solution for this step is to use a putt

The easier solution for this step is to use a putty or fill stick.

How to Use a Fill Stick

How to Use a Fill Stick

Choose a colour that matches your baseboard paint.

After rubbing the stick over each nail hole, you’l

After rubbing the stick over each nail hole, you’ll need a soft cloth to buff away any overfill.Keep a plastic blade handy too:

Keep a plastic blade handy too:

If there’s too much to buff away with the cloth, a

If there’s too much to buff away with the cloth, a plastic blade makes quick work of taking off excess. Easy peasy!

Here’s how the baseboard looks after the caulk and

Here’s how the baseboard looks after the caulk and nail filling is done. It looks pretty impeccable (just remember to lift all the painter’s tape when you’re done)! We missed the piece in the corner before snapping this picture!

This is the same area, zoomed out.

This is the same area, zoomed out.

Video

How to Cut Baseboard Corners with a Jigsaw

Yes, a miter saw is better for cutting and installing baseboards or crown molding, but you can also use a jigsaw if you don’t have another way to cut baseboard corners or crown molding.

Jigsaws are most-certainly cheaper than the average dual bevel miter saw, and maybe you have one in the shed already. 

You can make three types of cuts when cutting a any kind of trim such as baseboard or crown molding.

You can use the miter cut, the scarf cut or the coping cut. While using a jigsaw to cut a baseboard corner or crown molding is rather difficult, it can be done with a high-speed jigsaw model with adjustable speed setting. 

It should have at least 10, if not 15 blade teeth. You need a pencil, a speed square, and a tape measure for making more precise cuts. If you want to make coped joint cuts or coping corner cuts, you’ll need a coping saw too, or you can simply tilt the jigsaw to the side when attempting a coping cut.

Keep in mind though, regardless if you’re working with a jigsaw or a coping saw, the latter will take some practice, especially if you’re working with crown molding.

Step 3 Cut the Inside Angle

Place the vinyl baseboard on the miter saw and adjust the blade to the inside edge and set it at a 45-degree angle. Cut the vinyl baseboard.

How to Make a Coped Corner Joint With a Jigsaw

The coped corner is a good deal harder to make than a simple miter corner, but they are worth it for a seamless looking fit. Even when the joint opens up as the baseboard wood shrinks, as it inevitably does, the opening is disguised by the extra material used in the joint.

Half of a coped corner is a baseboard that’s been cut to fit flat against the wall with no bevel, which is easy enough to do with a jigsaw or even a circular saw.

The overlapping half of the coped corner is first made by cutting the baseboard to length, preferably with a bevel cut that exposes the grain end of the baseboard. This gives the jigsaw or coping saw more material to work with.

In Conclusion

That is how to successfully cut baseboard molding, whether it be your standard baseboard or crown molding without using a miter saw. See, you don’t need a miter saw to make these cuts, albeit you’d have an much easier time with it cutting any molding or type of baseboards. You can use a hand saw and a miter box, which is probably the hardest as you’re also going to have to make the miter box. Plus using a hand saw is rather time consuming when it comes to coped or scarf joints.  

The circular saw and jigsaw methods are easier – if you have these tools, you’re in luck.

With the jigsaw, you have a big variety of cuts, and when you get familiar with them, you’ll make some pretty sweet finishes for your baseboards or crown molding, making installing them much easier.

Keep in mind though, if you plan on installing a significant amount of trim molding or something more complicated such as crown molding, personally, I’d bite the bullet and buy a sliding compound miter saw.

Again, this really depends on your workload and deadline.

The second step is by cutting the inside joint

  • The inside corner joint is also referred to as the coped joint. It cannot be said to be a butt joint because of the presence of a gap between the two baseboard pieces. To escape those gaps you are supposed to construct an inside joint.
  • Put one piece of baseboard against the wall at a right angle.
  • Set the other piece of board and place it down on the floor.
  • Hold and mold the scrap piece of the board perpendicularly and trace its profile by use of a pencil.
  • For you to find a reference point, this will help you to trail and facilitate the completion of the inside corner joint.
  • Cut and shape a 45-degree angle piece of baseboard by use of appropriate miter saw.
  • Rotate the angle to a clockwise direction till it is elevated to the left-hand side and towards the right-hand side of the machine.  Cut all through to create the best corner angle.
  • Cut along the profile and create a bevel cut and short a profile at a 90-degree angle. To connect and engage the cut trim together to identify holes and gaps in between the baseboards.
  • For best and smooth baseboard inside corner, trim accurately one of the boards, hold the other board straight and position it on the floor and allow it to connect with mating piece.
  • The final step is to remove the back bevel that will install a half round and other files till the boards fit the other with no gap.
  • Put some glue before you join the two baseboard pieces before you do finishing.Inside corners are places where 2 walls intersect to create a concave angle.
  • Nail your piece boards and ensure that the boards are correctly set exactly as when leaned to the wall.
  • It’s advisable to use 1.5-inch brads while closing the corners.

Step 2: Bevel Cut the Second Piece

Take your next piece of baseboard and make a 45° bevel cut with a miter saw. This reveals the profile of your baseboard.

How to Cut Baseboard with a Coping Saw

If you plan on cope cutting your molding, you’ll need to grab a few extra items including a coping saw, sand paper and/or wood file. As one reader points out, a jig saw can be used in lieu of the coping saw when you have the right attachment.

The directions are pretty straightforward but this technique takes a little skill. Practice a few corners before you begin your project, and I’d suggest keeping a test piece nearby.

How to Cut inside Corner Trim

Step 1: Install ½ of the Corner

Measure and cut one baseboard so that it fits on your wall and meets up with the corner. This will be straight cut, also called a butt cut.

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Tips for Cutting Baseboard Inside Corner

  • Measuring and marking steps are very important. If you do this step wrong, all the following steps are “considered” abandoned.
  • The miter saw is essential. You can’t get a standard cut with a poor saw. If you want to cut fast and decisively, you need to invest in the best miter saw.
  • If the cut angle is not perfect as expected, you need to cover the difference with caulk or something like that.
  • You should focus 100% while cutting to avoid unnecessary mistakes.

How Is A Miter Saw Used?

Safety

Before you commence performing your woodwork tasks, ensure you are working in a clear, clean, and safe working area. Wear protective clothing including goggles for eye protection.

Operation

Most of the best miter saws are powered by the handles. The blades begin rotating when the handle engages are compressed. Ensure your baseboard pieces are safe and well supported by the best portable miter saw stand or table where necessary.

Baseboard cuts

Baseboard cuts

All marked and well-measured baseboards are supposed to be aligned accordingly. Hold the handles down to engage the blade at all means. With the baseboard piece still in position, lower the blade accurately in a chopping manner. Allow the blade to run through the board. To stop the blade, disconnect the handle. Remove your cuts and raise the blade when done rotating.

You can cut baseboard pieces at an angle by shaping or sliding the saw heads. Miter saws are different, but for shaping both inside and outside corners, it’s advisable to review the manufacturer’s instructions for your model.

Coped Corners – Complex Molding and Tight Joints

If your baseboard profile is complex, cutting tight miter joints in a miter box may be a problem. You may need to resort to a process called coping to make tight joints with complex trim profiles.

Coping is a method of fitting joints together using a back cut that follows the trim’s profile. On inside corners, cut one piece of the trim to fit flush with the wall. The second piece is miter cut to length. The edge is coped or cutaway following the edge profile using a coping saw. Coping sounds complicated, but a few steps can have you making coped joints like a pro.

Step 1: The Tools You Need

To make good, coped joints, you will need a few tools.

  • A miter box
  • A backsaw
  • A coping saw
  • A tape measure or carpenters rule
  • A pencil or scribe
  • A round file

Step 2: Measure the Space for the Baseboard

If you are filling in between two walls with two inside corners, cut the baseboard’s length to the width between the walls. Don’t cut the length to fit between the two pieces of baseboard already installed.

Step 3: Cut the Miters on the Ends of the Trim

Using your miter box and backsaw, make the miter cuts on each end of your baseboard material. Be sure to cut to the correct side of your marks and that the miters are going in the right direction.

Step 4: Coping the Miter

Coping is the tricky part and may take some practice. We suggest that you make some trial coping cuts on scrap trim before trying the real thing.

Use your coping saw to follow the profile of the trim along the edge. Go slow and work carefully at this point. There are some tips you should remember to make this process easier

  • Rest the coping saw blade on your thumbnail to make the first cuts.
  • Make relief cuts at any tight corners or angles
  • Be careful when cutting sharp or exposed tips or points to avoid breaking
  • Keep the coping saw angled backward at a 30-degree angle
  • It is better to leave a bit of wood at the edge than to cut into the profile. You can always sand any excess away for a tight fit.

Step 5: Adjust and Clean the Coped Cut

No coped cut is perfect. A bit of sandpaper and your round file are the tools for adjusting and perfecting your coped joint. Work carefully and test the fit of your trim often.

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How to Cut Baseboard Corners

There are a few different cuts needed when installing baseboards. Here are the steps to coping and mitering the ends.

STEP 1: Fit inside corners with a coped joint

First, use the miter saw to cut a 45-degree angle on the end of the trim board. Using the edge of a pencil, rub the profile along where the primer meets wood exposed by the cut. This will leave a dark line along which you’ll need to cut to cope the joint.

Then, clamp the piece of molding to a worktable. Use the coping saw to cut along the dark line that marks the profile. Be sure to hold the saw at an angle in order to backcut the saw, removing the material behind the joint to ensure a snug fit.

Finally, Test fit the joint and adjust the shape and contour of the coped board. Use a rasp, file, or sandpaper to fine tune the profile. A sharp utility knife is also helpful, especially for backcutting the joint and shaving small bits of wood for a tighter fit.

STEP 2: Fit outside corners with a mitered joint

Whereas a coped joint is recommended for inside corners, a mitered joint is appropriate for outside corners. For a clean mitered corner, it’s a good idea to cut your baseboard about 1/16–inch longer than necessary. Doing so ensures a tight fit by enabling you to “spring” the next board into position.

When you’re installing baseboard—or any trim, for that matter—expect to do some re-cutting. Trial and error is all part of the game. When in doubt, it’s always better to cut a board too long than too short and trim it if you must.

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