How to cut shoe molding at an odd angle

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Old 04-19-14, 07:13 PM
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How to cut shoe molding at an odd angle

Ok so I have been trying to install shoe molding throughout our home, were about to put it on the market. I have one room that has an angle that is not 90 degrees. I've had no problem cutting and coping the normal corners. However, in an upstairs bathroom there is a built in "seat" in one of the corners.

How do I cut and cope to make these two angles? I do not have a way to measure the angle, but if a simple tool needed to be bought from Lowe's or Home Depot, I could do that.

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Old 04-19-14, 07:21 PM
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I have already cut the vertical wall piece, and the horizontal wall piece. But the ends are just a straight 90 degrees. I have not cut the piece that runs along the "seat."
 
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Old 04-19-14, 07:45 PM
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Assuming both sides of the seat against the wall are the same length...then what you have is 2 45 degree angles. Just like you cut molding for a 90 degree corner at a 45, you would cut moulding for a 45 degree corner at a 22.5.

It's always best to start at one point and work your way around the room. Since you have already cut the 2 wall pieces at a 45...if you try to trim them to a 22.5, they will probably be too short.

Take your longest piece (assuming your drawing is somewhat proportional) and re cut it for the already cut short piece, but cut the end at 22.5. Take the already cut short piece and recut it to fit the front of the seat. Get a new piece and cut it for the long run.

I am no pro...but I like to take some scrap pieces and cut the angles I THINK it should be, then check fit before cutting my full piece. A trim carpenter I helped trim out a new bartop at a club I used to frequent never measure a single piece. He held it in position, marked the corner joint, then cut it. Lightly sand the end if needed, cut the next piece to butt up..then mark the next corner. Of course those were all outside corners.
 
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Old 04-19-14, 07:50 PM
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Personally, I would have mitered all the corners, especially if it's going to be painted. But to answer your question, I would suppose that a sliding t-bevel is a tool that would help you if you don't have one. You can use it to duplicate the angle, which can help you transfer that angle to the miter saw.

So you are asking about the piece in front of the seat that will need a cope on both ends. First, you almost never want to work your way around a room so that you wind up having a piece that's coped on both ends... you should always try and have a cope on just one end of a piece. You double the difficulty level of that last piece unnecessarily otherwise. You would do this by always making the cope on the same side (example always on the left side) of each piece as you go around the room, while the right side butts into the wall tight.

And if you plan to cope those angles, you should not have left the pieces at 90 where the butt into the seat, you should have matched the angle so they fit that angled wall exactly. Then when you cope, you bisect the inside corner... exactly the way you would do if you were creating a mitered inside corner, but then you cope out the resulting "waste".

The sliding t-bevel will give you the ability to figure out most angles fairly easily, using your miter saw to dial up the angle of the sliding t-bevel.. If a straight line could be pictured as a 180 angle, a sliding t-bevel is helping you figure out what part of that angle is. If you set it on the miter saw with the handle against the fence and turn the saw blade to match the t-bevel blade, the resulting angle, plus 90 is the real angle of your corner. (Let's say its 120, just for an example.) The complimentary angle to that would be 60. Complementary angles add up to 180. Half of that is what you would set the saw to if you wanted to bisect that angle... so in that example, 30 is what you would set the saw to in order to bisect that angle, which is what you would need to do if you wanted to cope that profile exactly on a 120 angle.

If that's not right, chalk it up to being very tired.
 

Last edited by XSleeper; 04-19-14 at 08:06 PM.
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Old 04-19-14, 07:52 PM
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Gunguy is correct. Use your now scrap pieces as test pieces. Use that 22.5 degree cut then adjust as needed. Inside or outside a little bit of molding by eye is not uncommon. Also many capenters aren't afraid to use wood filler in those joints that don't match up just right.
 
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Old 04-19-14, 08:21 PM
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Gunguy, thanks! I was worried that the angle was not going to be perfect, but the 22.5 degree cut, then coped, was perfect.
 
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Old 04-19-14, 08:25 PM
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Well it might need a dab of caulk but other than that it looks perfect!!!
 
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Old 04-19-14, 08:37 PM
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Glad you got it....sometimes we over think things that are pretty simple. I'm pretty good at trim...I just can't get down on the floor too easy any more...damn age and bad knees.

Give me door casing anytime...lol.
 
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Old 04-20-14, 03:38 AM
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I would add that the judicial use of caulking will make a less than stellar job [not saying yours isn't] look great. That's part of what I did on a regular basis throughout my painting career
 
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