JIG SAW AS THE MULTIPURPOSE POWER TOOL FOR EVERY DIY-ER
In the home or shop, you can use your jigsaw for a wide range of cutting applications. With a bulkier circular saw, for example, you’re limited to straight cuts. From making holes in a counter or cutting openings for electricity sockets, a jigsaw is a truly multipurpose tool. But how to find the best jig saw for sale?
If you are working on larger projects, handsaws and hacksaws are all well and good. The thing is, using them demands time and effort. Opt for a jigsaw and take care of diverse cuts without breaking a sweat.
A Lightweight And Portable Jigsaw Makes The Best Choice Out There
Many serious woodworkers want the full stable of band saw, scroll saw, circular saw and router. If you are just starting out or working on a budget, a jigsaw can offer much of the functionality of these tools in one lightweight, portable unit.
The portability of jig saws means they are perfect for working in tight areas. If you are a contractor, you can carry your portable jig saw from job to job in a compact case.
When you’re on the hunt for the best jigsaw, you’ll initially need to choose between the three main jigsaw types. There’s no right or wrong answer here. It’s a question of which type of jigsaw best suits your needs.
With a corded jigsaw, you’ll need to be close to a power outlet. With a range of 3 to 8 amps, electric jigsaws are usually pretty powerful. If you will be using your jigsaw regularly for heavy-duty cutting of thicker materials, go for a corded model. For professional contractors, there’s also no need to stop work to recharge as you’ll enjoy continuous power. On the flip side, these jigsaws are obviously not very mobile. The cord can be a nuisance and even a safety hazard. If this style best fits your needs, look for a rubber cord rather than a plastic one. Watch out also for metal gear housing.
Battery-operated cordless jigsaws are not normally as powerful as their corded counterparts. In return, though, they are ultra-portable. You can cut with a full and free range of motion. Carrying them around is a breeze. Batteries vary from 12 volts to 20 volts.
Lithium-Ion batteries are the smart choice. Brushless motors are designed to lessen friction and increase power. If you don’t mind the limits of cordless jigsaws and you want this tool for light, infrequent cutting projects at home, you’ll be rewarded with an invaluable addition to your toolkit.
Pneumatic jigsaws are not as widely used as the standard corded or cordless. They use air rather than electricity as a power source. These pneumatics are hyper-light and easy to handle. You can also use them safely in wet areas. Despite their lightweight nature, you will also need an air compressor. Factor this in to your decision if you need to carry it from job to job. If you want a versatile powerhouse for your commercial workshop, a pneumatic jigsaw is worth consideration. For standard woodworking at home it’s not the best option.
Who Needs Jig Saws?
Now we’re done with our 5 best jigsaw reviews, it’s time to explore what you should focus on when coming to your decision.
Jigsaws are indispensable tools for the home enthusiast and professional contractor alike.
If you need to make a variety of cuts in many different materials, a jigsaw hits the spot.
Unlike most other power saws, you can cut in a straight line or curve with equal ease. You can bevel or make rip and plunge cuts into the bargain.
A jigsaw gives you the freedom to work with wood or particleboard, plastic or metal. Some jigsaws will even eat their way through ceramic tiles. You really are spoiled for choice.
From small DIY jobs in the house through to sustained cutting on the jobsite, buying a great jigsaw could be the best investment you make.
What sort of tasks does a jigsaw come in handy for?
- For cutting all types of wood
- With concrete jigsaw blades for working with fiber cement or porous concrete
- Using a soft material blade to cut carpet
- Making curves for pipes on ceramic tiles
Finding the best jigsaw is no different than making any other purchase of power tools.
You need to be absolutely honest when analyzing your requirements. Ask yourself how often you’ll use your jigsaw and what main tasks you will use it for. Think about your budget and stick to it.
Once you have this clear in your mind, you’ll have already narrowed your options considerably.
Reading through user feedback is a useful way of finding out some impartial opinions from people who have bought and used the product you have in mind.
You’ve already had a first look at our reviews of the best jigsaws on the market. Look back through again and see if any of them meet all your criteria.
We’ll show you now some crucial things to take into account when you’re looking for the best jigsaw you can find.
- Blade size
Jigsaw blades are absolutely critical to the performance of your tool. Blades come in all sorts of lengths and thicknesses. As a rule of thumb, make sure the length is an inch or so more than the thickness of your material. The width and the thickness reflect how mobile and how flexible it will be. Thin, narrow blades are superb for any fiddly, detailed work. You’ll get more accuracy and a better finish but less durability with thin blades.
- Blade type
If you plan to work with multiple blades, you should focus on searching for the best miter saw that offers an easy blade replacement feature. This is necessary when you work with varied materials which require the use of different compound blades.
- Blade teeth
The measurements for teeth on your jigsaw blade are given as TPI or teeth per inch. This is important for the type of material, the speed and fineness of the cut. A blade with up to 20 teeth works very well with softer materials. If you are working with wood, paper or cloth, these blades are ideal. The finish will need some smoothing out. For steel, ceramic or other hard materials, you’ll require a higher TPI rating. Blades with up to 36 teeth come into their own here. The finish will be fine but the cutting rate much slower. Teeth sets come either ground or milled. The ground sets come out sharper but wear out more rapidly. Blunter milled sets deliver rough cuts very quickly.
- Blade material
Jigsaw blades are made from an array of materials. The tougher the blade, the harder the material it can comfortably deal with. Some blades work equally well with hard or soft wood. Others are designed for one specific material. From high-speed steel (HSS) to high-carbon steel (HCS), tungsten carbide to carbide grit, there are many different blade materials depending on what you want to cut. There are also a few specialty blades from thin scrolling blades for intricate cutting through to dedicated plunge cutting blades. Think about how you will use your jigsaw and choose the most fitting blades.
Measured in strokes per minute (SPM), the speed of a blade is determined by how often it moves up and down in 60 seconds. Typical speeds start out at 500SPM ranging up to 3000SPM and beyond. As with many aspects of finding the best jigsaw, there’s not one speed that suits all. Think about how you’ll mainly be using it and focus on getting one with a fitting speed.
The greater the power, the more easily you’ll slice your way through hard materials. 500W is adequate for most cutting needs. For any heavier-duty projects, you might want to look for a jigsaw kicking out 700W or more.
- Handle style
Jigsaws are designed with either a barrel handle or a D-shaped handle (sometimes called a top handle). While the barrel handle is not quite as comfortable, you’ll be able to get a better grip on it. This comes into its own for making reverse cuts. With a D-style, you’ll be able to hold it properly with one hand. This allows you to exercise more control and make more intricate cuts.
- Orbital functionality
If you want to control your jigsaw in all directions using a circular motion then look for enhanced orbital functionality. In addition to improved speed and accuracy, this also helps to keep wood chips out of harm’s way. Simply select the optimum orbital setting with a lever and you’re all set. You want less orbit if you’re making curved cuts or tight scrolls. For swift and straight cuts, more is required.
Usage and Maintenance Tips
Start by practicing slowly with your jigsaw on some scrap material. Take your time to familiarize yourself fully with the instructions and guidance offered by the manufacturer.
If you are a visual learner, check out some videos on using a jigsaw.
Maintenance with a jigsaw is almost non-existent. With some power tools like table saws or miter saws, you need to keep on top of things a little more. Jigsaws are pretty much plug-and-play.
Aside from making sure everything is safe and secure with the blade, there’s nothing else by the way of upkeep.
Ease your way in gently with your jigsaw. Work slowly until your confidence grows. In no time at all, you’ll be up and running perfectly!