In this miter saw station walkthrough, I’m going to show you how I created tons of storage and organization for my shop by combining upper and lower cabinets into one functional work area.
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Miter Saw Station
In this 40 page detailed plan I’ll show you how to build my miter saw station.
|Materials & Supplies*||Tools*|
|3/4″ 4×8 Plywood (carcasses)||TS55 Track saw|
|1/2″ 4×8 Plywood (doors/drawer fronts)||Magswitch MagJig 150|
|1/4″ 4×8 Plywood (backs)||Kreg Shelf Pin Jig|
|5/8″ 4×8 Plywood (drawers)||Kreg Concealed Hinge Jig|
|Spectape Two Sided Tape||Kreg Pocket Hole Jig|
|Fast Setting Wood Glue||Centipede Work Holder|
|Paste Wax (for screws)||Bessey One Handed Clamps|
|1-¾” Sliding Tee Bolts||Plywood Router Bit Set|
|1 1/4″ min. length screws||Speed Square|
|20” Drawer Slides||Self Centering Drill Bit|
|48” T-Track||True Position Tools Cabinet Hardware Jig|
|¾” Overlay Concealed Door Hinges||Plunge Router|
|Self Adhesive Measuring Tape Left-to-Right|
|Self Adhesive Measuring Tape Right-to-Left|
*I use affiliate links, please see details on my disclaimer.
I have more cabinet building resources listed below. If you want to know how to build base cabinets or how to hang cabinets onto concrete walls, I have full build videos, walkthroughs and plans available for download.
By adding a piece of rigid foam insulation you give yourself a safe place for the saw blade to cut.
Cutting in a standing position is more comfortable and helps you be more accurate with your cuts too.
And the Centipede folds up easily and gets out of the way when your done with it. If you’d like to get one of these for yourself, check it out here: CENTIPEDE WORK HOLDER 4×8
Assembling the Miter Saw Station
To begin the miter saw station I need to level my cabinets and attach them to the wall.
To install my base cabinets, I am using shims.
Because my shop floors aren’t terribly out of level, I thought adding leveling feet was going to be overkill and besides that I want to add base trim to the cabinets so leveling feet would be inaccessible anyway.
I just tap the shims and repeatedly check for level. Once the cabinet is level, I can bolt it to the wall.
Since this wall is cinder block I‘m using tapcon masonry screws instead of cabinet screws.
I have a short video and walkthrough on how to attach cabinetry to this kind of wall so if that’s your situation you can check that out RIGHT HERE.
After the cabinet is secured, I trim the excess off the shims so I can add base board later.
Building the Counter Tops
OK, for the counter top I decided to go with ¾” plywood, and that starts by splitting a sheet in half lengthwise. I’m going to double this up to make an inch and a half thick counter.
Because this is going to be a miter saw station, I’m going to have an 8’ section of counter to the left of the saw and a 4’ section to the right.
Offsetting the placement of the miter saw will allow me to cut full 8,10, or even 12 ft pieces of lumber and have plenty of support.
With all my plywood cut up I can get this centipede out of the way and start building the counters. I’m going to make the counters by sandwiching two pieces of plywood together.
To do this I’m using a drill bit that both drills the pilot hole and adds a countersink so the screws sit below the surface of the plywood. It’s nice when I get to do two jobs at once. Then I go back and add screws to all those holes. I’m not adding any glue, just screws.
And then I get to do the same thing with the 8 ft section of counter.
I’m adding reference lines which mark the area in the middle where I DON’T want to add any screws.
I’m going to be adding a dado for t-track later and don’t want to plow my router bit into an unfortunately placed screw by accident.
Then, I can go ahead and trim the edges square and flush.
Because these are shop cabinets I wanted to add some hard maple edge banding to the counters. These things will take a lot of abuse over time and I want to use something that can stand up to that. Plus, it will match the maple I used on the doors and drawer fronts.
I begin by gluing the ends on first. These are flush with the sides, I’m not bothering with mitered corners. I’m using tape and brad nails to hold these in place while the glue dries.
I then added the long edges and clamped those. I didn’t want brad nail holes on the front edge.
After the glue dries I can flush the edge banding to the top with my trim router. I have a love/hate relationship with this process because It’s so easy to do, but makes such a mess.
I then trim the ends flush with my track saw.
After that everything gets a sanding to 180 grit so It’s nice and smooth.
Then I use some wood cleaner to collect any fine dust still left behind.
Installing the Counters
I’m not going to add any finish to these so I can go ahead and install them.
I double check that everything is still level and found that it was ALMOST perfectly level so I add a shim between the counter and the cabinet to get it perfect.
A four foot level is best for long counters like this. You can see the shim there on the end and there’s one under the counter next to me that you cant see.
I attach the counter top to the base cabinets with screws. I had to drill access holes through the drawer divider to be able to get my screws driven in.
Miter Saw Station Platform Brackets
Next, I need to figure out the height to install my saw platform and to do this I used my square.
I can then attach some cleats to the cabinets with screws and a level.
One tip here is to install the cleat just a little below the distance you need, that way if you need to make micro adjustments to the height you have some room to do that.
I’ll show you how I do that later.
But before I make and install the platform I need to make a groove in the counter top to add some t-track.
Miter Saw Station T-Track
I’m using a long strip of plywood as a guide for my router which I attach with two-sided tape.
Then I can run my router against the guide and make the cut.
It’s best to make this cut as slowly as possible, making sure to keep the router firmly against the guide so you don’t wander off track. Get it…. track? Never mind.
And after cleaning up all the dust I can install my t-track.
These just install with small screws.
Miter Saw Platform
OK, back to making the platform for the saw. The platform for the miter saw is made the same way as the counters, two pieces of ply screwed together with edge banding added to match.
On the back of the platform I cut out a notch to allow for a vacuum hose and power cord.
I did this with my jig saw and used a square for a straight edge. I then cut out the majority of the waste.
Then I sanded the curves smooth.
This will give the hose plenty of room to move around when I change the angle of the miter saw.
Now I can slide it into place.
Then attach it to the cleats with screws.
Installing the Miter Saw
Next I can add my new miter saw and line it up so the fence just in front of the t-track.
To micro adjust the height, I use a straight edge and some playing cards to find out how much I need to raise the saw to be at the same height as the counter.
Once I find the right number of playing cards I place them under the feet of the saw before I attach it to the platform.
Pretty nifty trick, right?
After the saw is bolted into place it’s not going anywhere!
Just double check to make sure the compression from bolting it down didn’t change the height. If it did, just repeat the process again.
Hanging the Upper Cabinets
I already have a full write up on how I hung these cabinets onto my cinder block walls. To see all the details and watch the video, check out the following page:
✅️ HOW TO HANG CABINETS ON CONCRETE
Making Stop Blocks
To make the miter saw station truly functional I add some adhesive measuring tape to both the right side and the left side of the saw.
The last little detail to add to this miter saw station is to add a stop block for the t-track.
To do this I glues two pieces of 5/8” Baltic birch that I had left over from making my drawers. Also, ¾” ply would be ok to use here if that’s wat you have scraps of.
After that’s dry I trim everything to length and width. I’m making two of these stops, on for each side of the miter saw.
Next, I cut a notch across the middle to hold a hardwood runner that will slide in the t-track.
To install the runners I just add some glue and tap them in.
This runner should fit without any wiggle into the t-track you installed in the counter top.
A clamp will hold everything in place while they dry.
The next step is to drill a ¼” hole in the center of the runner.
That hole will hold the t-bolt.
But first I need to mark the edges of the bolt.
I cut at my lines using a hand saw.
I then popped that out cleanly with a chisel.
Don’t worry about any tool marks, this is the underside and won’t be seen.
Now I have a nice recess for the t-bolt.
The t-bolt slides in the t-track and when this thing clamps down it’s not going anywhere.
That runner riding in the t-track means that this thing will never wonder off square. It’s rock solid. I need to go back and make a flip stop version eventually, but I’ll save that for later.
Well that’s it for the miter saw station. Its complete and it’s time to move on to storage and organization!
Pull Out Tool Trays
To start, I wanted to add some pull out trays which are basically shallow drawers.
So, I get the measurements of my existing drawers first.
The bottom of the trays will be ¾” ply which will make them able to hold a lot of weight in case I want to store heavy things them.
I then cut some very shallow sides, just enough to keep things contained but still easy to access. My crosscut sled is perfect for making these repeated cuts accurately.
I glue on the sides and then added screws for extra strength.
These screws will be hidden by the drawer slides and I don’t have to waste clamps on them while the glue dries.
I can use those clamps to add the front and back of the trays. I wont be adding screws here because they would be visible.
Using ¼” strips of plywood as spacers, I add the drawer slides.
Then slide in the lower tray.
I want to make sure I have enough room to add a gallon of glue to the bottom tray so I use a gallon of glue to measure how high I needed to place my next tray.
I then cut a scrap of ply to that exact length and use that as a spacer to place the upper set of drawer slides.
This is a neat little trick that can be used for installing multiple drawers in one cabinet.
With the top tray installed I double check my work to make sure the glue bottle still fit and is easy to access.
I add my glue bottle and make sure it fits and is easy to access.
You can see I was serious about loading these up with weight.
This cabinet will hold all my glues and epoxy. In the top, I’ll keep my tape and applicators.
Now I want to show you my dirty secret. This is my current fastener drawer. This is like level ZERO organization. OK, maybe level 1. At least everything is in the same drawer, right?
But I’m not just going to dump all this into one of my new drawers. To fix my fastener disaster I’m using these small snack containers.
These are cheap and they are stackable.
I just add some labels to let me know what’s inside.
And now everything is nice and tidy and this makes it super easy to take the fastener of choice right to my project and then return it when I’m done.
Saw Blade Organizer
Another thing I want in my new cabinets is a place to organize all my saw blades.
I’ve seen lots of ideas for doing this, but I’m going with a low profile pull-out style organizer. This gives me easy access to my blades and I can organize by type of blade. I have my ripping blades, my crosscut blades, my combo blades and my dado stack.
To make this organizer I lay out four blades on a piece of plywood to figure out the spacing I need.
I then drill four holes at those locations and add 5/8” dowels to each hole.
A little glue to hold them in place is good, but not needed.
These fit pretty snug on their own with a friction fit.
One important step is to sand each dowel, which slightly reduces the diameter so the saw blades slide on and off without getting stuck.
You want the blade to drop freely onto the dowel with no hang-ups or resistance at all.
And adding a little wax will help the blades slide easily over time.
I then add a pair of drawer slides to the back side using a scrap of ply as a spacer.
Next I add two-sided tape to the back of the drawer slides.
And attach the organizer to a second sheet of ply.
The tape will hold the slides in place for me while I screw them into place.
This way the two sides of the slides will always match up perfectly.
No matter what these slides will always go back together now, perfectly aligned.
I can then screw the stationary piece of ply to the inside of my cabinet.
And then add the organizer, easy peasy.
Then I can begin loading it up with every blade I own.
I added a handle at the end to make it easier to pull in and out.
My hardware positioning jig makes quick work of this.
Having all my saw blades right at my finger tips and taking up such a small amount of this cabinet space is a KILLER addition to this miter saw station!
For the bottom of the cabinets I added some ½” baseboard to clean up the look.
I used brad nails to fasten the baseboards to the cabinet.