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DIY Rolling Miter Saw Table With Expandable Support Side Wings

Have you ever waited a really long time — years, even — to buy something or do something that you knew would make your life easier, and then once you bought or did that thing, you wondered why in the world you waited so long? Yep. That. That’s exactly what I’m feeling right now because after years of thinking to myself, “It would make my life so much easier if I built a dedicated rolling cart for my miter saw with expandable wings for support,” I finally did it. And now I could kick myself for waiting so long.

For years now, I’ve been dragging my miter saw all over the place, setting up a folding table or working on the front porch or even working with the saw sitting right on the ground. I’ve been lugging that thing all over the place, and then setting up makeshift supports with chairs, ladders, or stacks of wood when I needed the added support for cutting really long pieces of lumber or trim. All of those years of frustration could have been avoided had I just built this rolling cart a long time ago.

But as they say, better late than never. And I finally have my rolling cart, dedicated specifically for my miter saw, with expandable wings to offer support when I need to cut long pieces. Here’s how it turned out…

For the most part, this is a pretty simple build. I did the whole thing myself, but there is one small part that would have been so much easier with an assistant. But somehow I managed on my own.

So let me show you how I built this. I used a total of about 2.5 sheets of 3/4″ plywood for the whole thing, and I didn’t use the fancy stuff since it’s just a utilitarian cart that didn’t need to be pretty.

I started by cutting the pieces for the actual table top that the miter saw would sit on. I cut these pieces to 30 inches wide by 27.25 inches deep, but you may need to adjust depending on the size of your miter saw. I cut two pieces of plywood to those same measurements, and to the first piece, I added lots of wood glue…

And then I placed the second piece on top, pressed it down as tightly as I could to the glue, and then used 1-inch 18-gauge nails to secure the two pieces together.

Next I cut the two pieces for the sides of the cart. I cut those to 28 inches tall and 28 inches deep. I placed one of the side pieces flat on my work surface, and then cut a strip of plywood to 2.75 inches by 27.25 inches. The purpose of this piece is to create the support for the miter saw table top, and it needed to be attached to the inside of the side piece so that it was flush on the front edge and top edge and had a 3/4″ space on the back edge.

The way that I arrived at the 2.75″ height for that piece was to measure the height of my miter saw from the table to the area where the wood sits while cutting. That gave me a measurement of 3.5 inches high, and then I subtracted 3/4 inch to leave room for trim that would be added later.

Next I cut another piece of plywood that was 11 inches high and 27.25 inches wide, and attached it to the inside of the side piece as well, leaving a 1.5 inch space between the two support pieces…

This completed one side, so I repeated that process on the other side of the cart.

At this point I had a table top made up of two layers of 3/4-inch plywood, and two side pieces that had a slot where the table top would slide in and be secured.

Placing the left side piece with the front edge down on the ground, I inserted the edge of the table top into the slot, and secured it with wood glue and 2.5-inch 16-gauge nails that were shot through the outside of the side piece and into the edge of the table top.

Then I attached the other side in the same way.

You can see above that the table top and the inside supports were cut to leave a 3/4″ space along the back. This was done so that I could attach a back support piece that would be flush with the back edges of the side pieces once attached.

So next, I measured and cut a piece of plywood to fit right the width of the back, and the height of those inside support pieces. I secured it with wood glue…

…and then more 2.5-inch 16-gauge nails…

With the back secured, I flipped the whole thing upside down…

…and then measured and cut a piece of plywood to fit onto the bottom of the cart. I attached this piece with wood glue and the same 2.5-inch 16-gauge nails.

The view in the photo just above is how the cart looked at this point from the back (and upside down), and this is how it looked from the front…

With the basic structure of the cart finished, and while it was still upside down, I marked the placement of the casters, drilled the holes, and attached them with 2-inch 5/16-inch bolts, nuts, and lock washers. Obviously I didn’t need four locking casters, but Home Depot didn’t have the matching non-locking casters, so I just used four locking casters.

And with the casters secured into place, I flipped the cart upright, and tested the miter saw for fit. Everything looked great at this point!

While the saw was up there, I also measured for placement and then marked where the holes needed to be drilled for the bolts that will later secure the saw to the cart.

But before I actually bolted the saw down, I needed to finish trimming out the cart. I started by cutting a piece of 1″ x 2″ lumber to fit along the back top edge of the cart, and glued and nailed that into place.

You’ll notice that I didn’t bother with miter cuts on this trim. I wanted trim because I don’t like raw edges of plywood (too many splinters), but it’s still just a utilitarian cart and not a fine piece of furniture. 🙂

Next I measured, cut and attached the same trim to the front edges of the sides of the cart…

Then I did the same for the two horizontal pieces…

And finally, I attached the trim to the top edges of the sides.

Keep in mind that 1″ lumber is actually only 3/4″ thick, so this is where the 3/4″ difference came into play. If you’ll remember, I cut those initial top plywood support pieces to the height of my table saw minus 3/4″. This is why I did that. Once that trim was added, that made up for the other 3/4″ to make the sides level with the miter saw.

So at this point, the sides of the cart sat at the same height as my miter saw…

That completed the build of the main cart, so then I was ready to turn my attention to the wings.

For these, I cut four pieces of plywood (two per wing) that measured the height of the plywood side of the cart minus three inches. Now with the plywood bottom and the top trim attached, that gave me a side height measurement of 29.5 inches (not including the height of the casters). So for my wings, I cut the plywood to 26.5 inches wide. I also wanted my wings to be a total of 12 inches deep, so I cut the plywood to 10.5 inches. Then I glued and nailed two pieces of plywood together for each wing, just like I did for the cart table top.

I forgot to take a picture of the next step, but I cut and added trim around the edges of the wings to cover the raw plywood edges just like I did on the cart. Again, I didn’t bother with mitered corners.

And with that, the two wings were ready to be attached to the cart. I turned the cart over on its side, and attached the wing using a continuous hinge (i.e., piano hinge), making sure that the top of the expanded wing was flush with the top edge of the side of the cart.

And I repeated that process on the other side. Then I sat the cart upright, and here’s how it looked…

But those wings are pretty much useless without something to hold them up, right?

So to do that, I created a support that folds out like an accordion. It’s made of three pieces of plywood, with each piece cut to 25 inches high and 8.5 inches wide, and then one piece of 1″ x 2″ lumber cut to 25 inches high. I secured all of those pieces together using continuous hinges so that they would fold up accordion-style when closed.

And on the very last plywood piece, I screwed in a little wooden knob into the top edge of the plywood. This knob could be screwed in and out for fine adjustments of the wings.

And now this was the challenging part where I sure could have used a helper. I attached the accordion-style support just behind the wing by gluing and nailing the 1″ x 2″ strip of wood to the side of the cart.

But to do this, the wing had to be lifted and the accordion support had to be extended. I used my shoulder, my head, and my knee to hold everything in place. I’m sure I looked like a circus act, but I got it done.

Here’s the view from the top…

And of course, I repeated that same thing on the other side, keeping in mind that the accordion support needed to be assembled in just the opposite manner for the opposite side of the cart.

To keep everything secure while the wings aren’t being used, I attached neodymium magnets to secure the wings to the sides of the cart. I attached them with super glue and just surface-mounted them.

I also used the same magnets on the wing supports, but for these, I used my 1/2-inch spade bit to drill shallow holes so that the magnet would be recessed into the support pieces and not hinder the accordion fold of the supports.

That way everything stays secure and tucked away on the sides when the wings aren’t in use. This is especially handy when the cart is being moved so that the supports aren’t expanding and flopping about when trying to position the cart or move it through doorways.

And there it is! My finished rolling miter saw cart that I should have built ten years ago! 😀

And maybe you can see in the picture above how those little wood knobs can be used to screw them in or out for fine adjustments of the wings.

And here it is with the wings down and everything all compact.

For now I’ll be using the lower shelf for my air compressor, but I eventually want to built a separate cart for it with a retractable hose reel. But that’s way down on the priority list for now, so for now it has a home right there. When I do eventually build that air compressor cart, I can add drawers or other storage compartments in this lower section to house specific tools.

I’m so excited to have this now! And I used the largest casters I could find so that it can hopefully be rolled across grass and dirt. That would be so helpful for those times I need to roll it into the front yard to work on projects there.

And here’s one last view from the back…

It’s finally done. It may be 10 years later than I should have done it, but at least I did it. 🙂



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44 Comments

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Peggy
    September 18, 2018 at 10:45 am

    Your ability to build from scratch and have it look so good makes my brain hurt.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Marianne in Mo.
      September 18, 2018 at 12:44 pm

      DITTO!!! Where math is involved too much, my brain turns to mush real fast. Good job again Kristi!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Barbara H.
    September 18, 2018 at 10:49 am

    Congratulations! It’s a very useful rolling cabinet that looks good, too. Wheels – they make life so much easier.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Morgane
    September 18, 2018 at 10:51 am

    This is awesome! functional and compact. The little knob is such a good idea, shimming is bound to happen!
    I totally need one like that. My only difficulty is stairs, and with 2.5 sheets of plywood, I bet it is pretty heavy.

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Marianne in Mo.
      September 18, 2018 at 12:46 pm

      I bet Kristi could teach you how to build a dumbwaiter for it! LOL!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    LORETTA
    September 18, 2018 at 11:03 am

    Oh my I love it!! I carry mine all over the place an it is so heavy. That is awesome !!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Eileen
    September 18, 2018 at 11:10 am

    I’ve been helping me husband move his miter saw for Years. What a great idea. You have clever nailed!!!!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Coleen
    September 18, 2018 at 11:23 am

    That is awesome and the best part is that you were able to build it out on your “carport”!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Frances
    September 18, 2018 at 11:33 am

    Bless you! I’ve been saving miter saw cart instructions on Pinterest, but you give the most complete step-by-step procedure. Again, bless you and many thanks.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Brette
    September 18, 2018 at 11:45 am

    You should see my crude miter setup. It’s two saw horses placed end to end with a miter box clamped to one end. I use a hand saw. I imagine Tommy and Norm from “This Old House” secretly watching and shaking their heads. I recently had a wood floor installed and had to replace two pieces of quarter round the installer put in. The ends looked like they’d been chewed off by a teething puppy. He was using a miter saw, but there had to be something very wrong with that blade. My quarter round looked much better than his.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Devra Shear
    September 18, 2018 at 11:55 am

    Wow!!! I’m so impressed . Maybe you could put a shop vac on the bottom shelf so you can get rid of the sawdust as you go.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Lucinda
    September 18, 2018 at 12:01 pm

    Kristi

    You Rock!!!!!!! Your post today and the bedside table that Ana White posted yesterday is EXACTLY what I need. Thank you so much for your clear helpful direction and visuals so we (your cheer leading team) can duplicate your inspiration.

    Now I need to get moved so my husband and I can get building and renovating our new DYI which was built in 1918 and still has the original windows plus kitchen and bathroom from the 50s.

    Full steam ahead.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Christine Czarnecki
    September 18, 2018 at 12:43 pm

    An incredibly well thought out, perfect, useful cart. I am especially impressed by the magnets to keep everything from flapping open when you move the cart. Brilliant.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Margie E
    September 18, 2018 at 1:32 pm

    I love it!!!!! I need one just like it! Now I just have to make it! Sigh 🙀

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kathy
    September 18, 2018 at 2:20 pm

    I love how you see a problem and design and build your solution. How gifted you are!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Julie S
    September 18, 2018 at 2:37 pm

    Amazing how you built that, and I can’t believe you’ve been living this whole time without one!!! We did some decent renovations in our home last year and ours was worth its weight in gold.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Andrea
    September 18, 2018 at 3:24 pm

    You NAILED it! I totally *saw* that one coming. All puns aside. This is absolutely fantastic! My saw came with a basic stand but I can totally see this allowing me to use it more often, especially with the added supports. Thank you for sharing.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Susan Fye
    September 18, 2018 at 4:35 pm

    As with everything I’ve seen you do, AMAZING!! just one question, when do you sleep?

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Irene
    September 18, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    Brilliant! You rock.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kathy
    September 18, 2018 at 5:34 pm

    Kristi,
    I noticed your compound miter saw is a Ryobi. It looks like a sliding saw, too. What size is it? 10” or 12”? I’m just about ready to splurge and buy one. They are so useful and I love the way you can move yours around now. Brilliant!

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi
      September 18, 2018 at 6:54 pm

      It’s a 10-inch, and I really like this one. I almost never find that I need a bigger blade for the types of projects I do.

      • Reply To This Comment ↓
        Kathy
        September 18, 2018 at 9:56 pm

        Thanks, Kristi! I’ll be sure and check it out in Killeen soon.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    em
    September 18, 2018 at 5:54 pm

    Very handy!

    I was just chopping some wood for a table and could’ve used that!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    KathieB
    September 18, 2018 at 6:42 pm

    Kristi, you have mad skills, an eye for details, and an imagination to put it all together into a handsome, useful addition to your arsenal of equipment.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Kelli
    September 18, 2018 at 6:52 pm

    This may seem like a stupid question, but I was wondering about the thought process behind the accordion sides. When I’m looking at building/buying utilitarian items, one of my main concerns is durability/longevity. In my mind, the more hinges you have, the more likely something structural (sagging, rust, splitting of wood where the screws go in, ect) may go wrong.
    I think that I would have been more likely to attach a 2×4 or similar to the side of the cart with a single hinge at the bottom of the plank and that magnet at the top. Then hidden it under the wings by making the trim that you put on a bit thicker so the wings were still flush with the side of the cart. A string to keep it from over extending, the trim would give it a place to “seat”, and less metal to rust, less hinges to go “wrong”, less materials to use, and less cutting. Kind of like this, except with the leg attached to the cart instead of the wing: https://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http%3A%2F%2Fhilariwilliams.co%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2018%2F06%2Famazing-of-folding-wall-dining-table-ideas-about-mounted-on-mount-fold-out-from-foldable-moun.jpg&imgrefurl=http%3A%2F%2Fhilariwilliams.co%2Ffold-out-table-from-wall%2Ffold-out-table-tables-smart-phones-aircraft-from-wall-diy-down-mounted%2F&docid=mfSXYXgM2tatTM&tbnid=TdSdV4RMotr3FM%3A&vet=1&w=600&h=600&itg=1&hl=en-us&source=sh%2Fx%2Fim
    You’ve done an amazing job on the cart! I just couldn’t make so many cuts, keeping them all even and the same size 😂 It just seems harder to do it your way, and I can’t see myself being able to do it 😂😂😂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sue
    September 19, 2018 at 7:38 am

    That looks pretty handy and should be easy to push wherever you want it. Nice work and I’m sure it will save your back from some stress, as well.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Karyn M
    September 19, 2018 at 7:39 am

    You always amaze me! Great project 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Carol Willis-Holden
    September 19, 2018 at 10:12 am

    You are amazing, from conception to completion! I stand in awe of you!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Sharon
    September 19, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    As Peggy Noonan once said, “Little wheels are your friend.” She said it about a suitcase but it applies here!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Rebecca Neustel
    September 20, 2018 at 4:54 am

    Amazing, as always! Do you have room for a drawer underneath the saw for holding your saw blades, etc?

    • Reply To This Comment ↓
      Kristi
      September 20, 2018 at 10:32 am

      Not right now, but when I make my dedicated rolling cart for the air compressor and move it off of this cart, I can use that lower section to add drawers for things like that.

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Shauna Steadman
    September 20, 2018 at 9:17 am

    I don’t view too many blogs and hardly ever respond to one, (because I am just too busy with my 7th restoration – this one, my third historic preregistration – there are two registered with The National Trust; also a Riad in Essaouira Morocco while serving in Peace Corp) – but your blog is:
    an exception/inspiration/truthful/balanced/helpful/honest rendition of the power of women. YOU dear lady, have my 77 year old heart!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Cheryl Smith-Bell
    September 20, 2018 at 9:20 am

    Wow! Love it You rock! This will for sure save your back! Excellent tutorial!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    TrudyLynn vanGiessen
    September 20, 2018 at 9:06 pm

    you amaze me how you just ” figure it out” i made one a few yrs ago following a a plan i found in some magazine. I put those hinges on the flaps that lift up and then (hold up to 50 lbs) you just raise the flap to them fold down. I wish i had more of your creativity!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Joyce
    September 21, 2018 at 1:22 am

    You are amazing! That takes a lot of thought, or at least it would for me!

  • Reply To This Comment ↓
    Chelle Ellis
    December 31, 2018 at 1:12 pm

    Hi Kristi,

    Hubby was wondering what table saw you are using?

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