Cutting Quarter Round Returns

In this photo you can see the finished quarter round return or end cap.

When cutting quarter round returns the result is more pleasing to look at, as seen in this photo. This is a good way to finish off the quarter round when it ends at a door jamb or at the end of a wall.

Click on photos to enlarge

Here the quarter round is ended with just a straight cut. It should end with a return.

I snapped this photo on a job where I was installing laminate in another part of the home. Here the installer cut the quarter round straight off where it meets the door jamb. Not too pretty.

Here is a return done in a wood grain quarter round.

This looks much better. I hope you agree. There are folks out there that have never heard of a quarter round return. I will explain here how you can do this.

Tools Needed

  • Miter chop saw
  • You will need this saw for cutting the returns, it is quicker and easier. Or you can use a hand tool called a miter box which has a little hand saw to make the cuts.

  • Nail gun or the means to attach 1/4 round
  • Adhesive caulk or wood glue
  • I use adhesive caulk for gluing the return in place. If your installing wood grain 1/4 round you can use wood putty or colored sealant.

  • A good set of Goggles

  • Cutting The Return

    I want to cut my return here so I make a mark at the door jamb on the quarter round.

    In this first photo I want to end the quarter round at this door jamb with the return. I make a mark at the jamb. The portion to the right will be cut off.

    Make a mark where the 45 degree cut will be made for the return on the quarter round.

    Here I am showing where the cut will be made at a 45 degree angle up to the mark I made. You may have to make the cut a little big and trim small amounts off to get it just right.

    Precautions should always be used when cutting small pieces on the miter saw. Use goggles 

    Here I cut the 45 degree angle for the return on this quarter round.

    I cut the 45 degree cut for the return. the piece on the left will be the one we will use. Next we have to cut the return that fits in this little space. Where the cut ends at the bottom should end up where we made are mark.

    Here is the mark on the quarter round where we will cut the return.

    You may need to study this photo a little to see what I am explaining here.

    The black mark in this photo is where the cut will be made. The small triangular shape to the left is our return. When cutting this on the miter saw be careful as the small piece may fly off.

    This is the return for the quarter round after the cut.

    This is after the cut is made the small piece is the return we will use. The cut on the saw was a 90 degree straight cut right on the mark we made.

    After I cut the return I fit it into place with the quarter round to be installed.

    Here you can see how the return fits together with the quarter round that will be installed. The return needs to be glued on with a good adhesive caulk or some wood glue. After the piece is installed use some caulk to fill in any gaps that may show.

    Here we have the finished quarter round with the return installed.

    The is the finished product. The quarter round is installed with the return.

    Cutting Quarter Round Molding
    How to cut quarter round at a 45 degree angle for inside and outside corners

    Installing Quarter Round on Round Corners
    Some homes have outside corners that are rounded, while others are square. Here I describe how to cut quarter round on rounded outside corners

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