A couple of months ago, I bought a new toy.
My first miter saw. Isn't he handsome?
After much research and waffling, I ended up going with a 10" DeWalt Compound Miter Saw. 10 inches because it was lighter than a 12 inch and most of the crosscuts I make are on wood less than 6 inches wide. I chose DeWalt after reading all of the stellar reviews. It basically came down to me choosing between a much more basic DeWalt or a fancier saw from another brand. (By fancier, I mean, a sliding miter saw with a built in laser.) Although bells and whistles are nice, for $200+ I wanted an investment piece I wouldn't have to replace in a couple of years.
It came out of the box almost completely set up (all I had to do was unpack, put on the dust bag, and plug it in). The blade was even squared and ready to go. They send it with a pretty average blade, but for my project it has been cutting beautifully, so I haven't upgraded to a nicer blade yet.
First, I measured and cut all of my lumber for the main bed frame. I am waiting to cut the guard rail and ladder until after I put together the bed. I sanded the pieces for the headboard and put them together with countersunk 3" screws. (I actually bought a Kreg Jig specifically for this bed, but decided since the vertical legs were going to be covered up anyway, it would actually be less work to screw through them instead of through the 2x6 horizontal boards.)
It must weight 200 pounds - solid as a rock and perfectly level. So excited! Now I have to do the exact same thing for the footboard (less exciting).