Hitachi Miter Saw – C10FCG Review

hitachi miter saw

Hitachi is probably one of the lesser-known brands of miter saws – at least in the United States. But it’s one of the better ones in terms of its overall effectiveness. If you’re not familiar with the brand – you might want to take a closer look. Starting with the Hitachi Miter Saw Model C10FCE2 10′ It packs quite a punch into a relatively compact unit.

Note. The Hitachi C10FCE2 is no longer in production as Hitachi is now branded as Metabo, the  replacement for this Hitachi miter saw is the Metabo C10FCGS 

The Metabo compound miter saws are basically the same saw as the Hitachi saws.

A Relative Unknown – But A Solid Performer

Over the years, I’ve used a lot of different miter saws of all different sizes and capabilities. What struck me about the Hitachi C10fcg 10 inch miter saw is that it’s one of the more lightweight and therefore portable miter saws on the market. But the quality of the machine and the results it delivers is comparable to many of the better-known brands.

hitachi miter sawIt’s true. Clearly, Hitachi engineers understand what people want in a miter saw. So to its compact size, limited weight and low price point, some say it’s designed for home renovators and do-it-yourself types. At most, they claim, the Hitachi C10fcg 10’ miter saw would make a decent backup saw for a professional installer or remodeling contractor.

But I contend that the Hitachi 10 inch saw will stand up to daily use in any custom cabinet shop too. I know because it was a staple for years in my small commercial shop. While I no longer own that shop, I wish that I’d kept that Hitachi workhorse instead of making it part of the sale along with all the other equipment in the shop.

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Let’s Look At Some of The Hitachi Miter Saw Details

Angle adjustments on the Hitachi C10fcg 10’ miter saw range from zero to 52° – on both the left and right sides.  How many other manufacturers provide such a wide range of mobility? Not many. This saw also features positive stops at 0° 15° 22 1/2° 31.6° and 45° – making it fast and easy to lock in those angles and cut your stock accurately.

Its compact footprint of just 15 inches x 13 inches means it’s easy to pack up and load in your vehicle to take it to the job site. The built-in handle is another factor that helps make the Hitachi chop saw more portable than other brands on the market today. The fact that it’s available at a bargain price should make this a no-brainer purchase for a lot of people – even as a secondary saw.

With one of the longest warranty’s in the industry at five full years, you can move forward with confidence. After all, no manufacturer in their right mind could stand behind a poorly made product for that kind of duration and survive.

Always Check For Accuracy

It doesn’t matter what miter saw you ultimately buy. You need to check it for accuracy first and re-calibrate if necessary. For a saw to perform accurately, it needs to be perfectly aligned before you rely on your machine to cut your actual stock pieces. Set it and test with the most accurate machinists square you can find. By the way, not all squares are square and this is particularly true of general carpentry and woodworking squares.

Cut various angles and test them on a scrap piece of wood before cutting your finished stock. That’s something you should always do anyway. It’s what the pros do and it’s something I recommend you do too for the best possible results.

Useful – But Is It Right For You?

Although this Hitachi miter saw is a powerful and precise little saw, it may not be the best option for everybody. For example, if you work consistently with wider boards, you’re going to need a bigger saw – probably one with a sliding arm option, rather than a fixed position chop saw.

A sliding arm saw gives you the greatest capacity in terms of the width of the cut provided. But it’s also the most expensive type of miter saw on the market. Conversely, the Hitachi is one of the least expensive you’ll find. The fact that it’s a well-made piece of equipment from a quality brand makes it even more appealing. But it does have its limits – and the size of material it can cut in one go is one such limitation.

Its compact size means it’s somewhat limited as to what it can do. However,  it’s an excellent tool for framing carpenters, woodworkers, picture framers, weekend warriors, do-it-yourself enthusiasts, and finish carpenters.

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Under The Hood

Hitachi deploys a capable 15 amp motor that delivers reliably and consistently. By the way, a 15 amp motor is the maximum the average house current can handle, without constantly tripping the breaker. It operates at 5000 RPMs – faster than virtually every competitor. It’s a workhorse of a motor and there’s no hesitation… no stuttering… and no lagging even when you’re working with solid hardwoods like red oak.

As every long-term tool owner knows, eventually the brushes on the motor wear out and need to be replaced. With easy access to those carbon brushes on the Hitachi, changing the brushes is something you can easily do on your own. And by doing so, you extend the life of your saw.

This Hitachi saw features a 10-inch blade with a 5/8 inch arbor  – so any standard, 1-inch blade will fit. There’s also little to no blade vibration on this saw either. It operates smoothly and cleanly. The built-in handgrip is comfortable to hold and it reduces vibration and slippage during sawing operations.

Hitachi designed the C10fce2 with a table surface that’s large enough to provide good support for whatever materials you’re working with. There’s also an extension arm for either side to provide added support.

Weighing in at just 26.3 pounds, this is one of the lighter miter saws you’ll see these days. But it’s also one of the better ones. You may be as surprised as others are, at the reliable service this Hitachi saw delivers – day in and day out.

If you want to be able to make solid and straightforward crosscuts, accurate miters and achieve a smooth and true finish on those cuts – consider the Hitachi 10 inch saw (with the appropriate blade, of course).

What’s In The Box?

Here’s what’s included in the box, along with your 10-inch compound miter saw:

– Vice assembly to help hold stock flat on the table surface

– 10 inch 24 tooth carbide-tipped blade (good for general purpose use)

– 10 mm box wrench (for changing the blade)

– Pivoting foot fence (extended fence)
– Dust collection bag (don’t expect it to collect much dust – relatively speaking)
– Stock support extension (Included here, but it’s an additional purchase with some brands)

What Can You Cut With The Hitachi C10FCG?

Any kind of wood that fits can be cut with this miter saw and the appropriate blade. Hitachi works well with any softwood (pine, cedar, redwood) hardwood (birch, beech, black walnut), plywood, decorative panel, soft fiberboard, hardboard, even soft aluminum.

You may already have a larger, sliding arm miter saw – If so this would make an excellent companion tool. looking for a one-saw-does-all crosscut tool? – it really depends on the types of materials you’ll be working with most frequently. If it can be handled by a 10 inch chop saw – the Hitachi can easily manage the job.

Quality Engineering Is Evident

Intelligent engineering becomes more obvious through the experience of actually using the C10FCg saw. The D-handle, for example, is comfortable and feels better than other brand handles. There’s also a large carrying handle that makes it easier to move about. Additionally, there’s a stabilizing bar at the back and bottom of the base to help keep the saw stable on a workbench or table.

Another example is the blade change wrench mounts directly to the side housing for easy storage. This was incorporated into the design so users could easily access the wrench when they needed it. Big deal, you say? In my view, it’s a clever built-in solution. It’s something most manufacturers overlooked or simply didn’t bother with. And it’s one of those things that turns buyers into lifelong fans.

What Buyers Like Most About The Hitachi Saw

– Easy set up (in minutes, you’re up and running)
– Rugged construction – Hard plastic housing is built tough
– Lightweight and portable (lightest miter saw in its class)
– A strong motor is a powerful performer for virtually every operation – 15 amp motor delivers a stable current constantly – which means consistent operations without slowing
– Easy to adjust with a smooth gliding mechanism

– Cuts cleanly and accurately – without bogging down
– Stable angle positions – both the miter and bevel lock into place and are easy to use
– Durable, carbide-tipped blade provided is useful for general purpose cutting
– Features a solid lock to hold down the arm containing the blade when not in use

– Easy blade changes – simply lock the shaft in place, pull back the safety cover, and use the onboard wrench to loosen the existing blade and lock down its replacement.
– It’s comfortable and intuitive to use and operates smoothly
– Predefined angle stops make it quick and easy to cut at angled positions

– Bargain price makes it an exceptional value

What Some Buyers Didn’t Like

– Appears to be plenty of small places where sawdust can build up (It’s best to use any chop saw in conjunction with a dust collection system while occasionally using an air compressor to blow away excessive dust.)

– Designed and engineered in Japan – but now manufactured in China
– Not big enough to handle larger pieces (no 10 inch saw is)
– Base is quite lightweight – therefore you need to anchor it down when using
– Clamp mechanism works – but it’s not easy to switch from right to left, or vice versa( and sometimes it’s just in the way)
– Extension arms for extending support on either side are not included

– Quite possibly the worst written instructions I’ve ever encountered with a power tool.  (Clearly technical writing and translating is not one of Hitachi’s strengths)

The Verdict

After using this saw for years, I can tell you the Hitachi miter saw is a steady performer. It’s small but mighty – a workhorse in a compact design. There’s not a lot to mess with – it’s easy to set up right out of the box. You can count on it to power through and cut cleanly on just about any stock you’re using. It’s so inexpensive, some folks might question its quality. But this saw is a sure-fire winner.

The fact that it may be the lightest miter saw in its class makes the Hitachi a popular option among a wide variety of consumers. I’m convinced that it would be even more popular if more people know about the brand.

But it’s not just for homeowners and devoted DIYers. Many contractors love Hitachi miter saws for their powerful and smooth operations and consistent reliability. And due to its precise accuracy, it’s also a great choice for framers, cabinet makers, picture frame shops, trim carpenters, and anybody else who requires consistent accuracy.

It occupies a small footprint relatively speaking compared to other chop saws this is an important consideration for anyone who has limited shop space to use.

There isn’t much I don’t like about the Hitachi C10fce2 10’ miter saw. If accurate cutting is the most important requirement for you as it is for me, you’ll be impressed. There’s no wobble to the cut here. If you push against the handle the only thing that moves is the handle. Everything else remains square ensuring that your cat is perfect, unlike the cut you get with a cheaper model of miter saw.

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