to help you with answering the question, do I need a jigsaw, here is a short version of the complete answer you will find in this article:
A jigsaw is an investment in my opinion because it is a versatile power tool that can be used to cut free-hand shapes in wood , metal, and plastic. No other power tools in this price range can accomplish all of this.
But is it really necessary, Do I need a jigsaw or can I use alternatives? In this article, I will explore the advantages of a jigsaw, and help you decide whether it is a tool you need in your workshop.
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What Is a Jig Saw
A jigsaw is a power tool that is used to cut materials such as wood , metal, and plastic. A jigsaw gets its name from the fact that it uses a reciprocating blade that moves up and down in a rapid sawing motion with variable speeds and orbital action.
The name jigsaw comes from the fact that this saw was used to cut puzzles into pieces. If you have ever asked yourself, how does a jigsaw work? Or you want to know more about this awesome tool, you better check out the main article about this tool here.
What is a jigsaw used for
A jigsaw is a multi purpose tool that can be used to cut in straight lines, shapes, and patterns. Carpenters, woodworkers, and DIY enthusiasts frequently use it for tasks such as shaping decorative edges and to cut curves in wood.
The jigsaw is typically used as a handheld tool, with the blade adjustable to the material being cut and the desired cut shape. Nowadays, there are also powerful cordless jigsaws on the market, like the one in the picture below. To see the differences with the corded version, check out my article The Great Debate: Corded Vs Cordless Jigsaw – Which One To Buy?
When using the electric jigsaw, be sure to use the appropriate blade for the project you are working on. To help you find the best jigsaw blade, I wrote the article, Choosing the perfect jigsaw blades in 3 simple steps.
Different Types of Cuts You Can Make with a Jig Saw
A jigsaw can make several different types of cuts, including square lines, curved cuts, plunge cuts, and bevel cuts (most models).
Jigsaw Straight cuts
Square cuts are the most basic type of cut that a jigsaw can make. To make a straight cut, simply align the blade of the jigsaw with the edge of the material to be cut and turn on the power. The blade will move up and down in a rapid sawing motion, allowing you to cut straight through the material. When using a square, you can make 45 degree cuts as well.
Jigsaw Curved cuts
Curved cuts are another common type of cut that can be made with a jigsaw. These types of jigsaw cuts are also the greatest advantage of using a jigsaw.
To make a curved cut, you need to use a flexible blade, which allows the jigsaw to easily follow the desired curve.
You can use a jigsaw to make a variety of different curved cuts, including gentle curves, sharp turns , and complex shapes. So if you wonder, do I need a jigsaw, This can be one of the biggest reasons.
More information on cutting curves: How to Cut Curves with a Jigsaw – Quick Guide for Perfect Cuts
Jigsaw Plunge cuts
Plunge cuts allow you to begin cutting in the middle of a piece of material rather than at the edge. This is useful for tasks like drilling holes in the middle of a piece of wood or cutting shapes out of the center of a sheet of material. To make a plunge cut, simply place the jigsaw blade on the desired starting point and carefully lower the blade into the material. As you move the jigsaw along the desired path, it will make the cut.
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Jigsaw Bevel cuts
Many people are unaware that it is possible to make jigsaw bevel cuts, though it is more difficult than straight or curved cuts. A jigsaw bevel cut involves tilting the saw blade at an angle to the material. This enables you to make angled cuts.
To make a jigsaw bevel cut, first, adjust the sole angle. Most jigsaws have a mechanism that allows the jigsaw sole to be tilted to the desired angle. As a result, the blade will tilt. Make the cut as you would any straight or curved cut after tilting the blade.
One thing to keep in mind when making bevel cuts with a jigsaw is that the blade can be more challenging to control at an angle. This can make it harder to follow the desired cut line accurately, so you may need to take your time and make slow , steady cuts in order to get the best results.
Additionally , jigsaw bevel cuts can put more stress on the blade and the jigsaw itself, so you may need to use a higher quality blade and take care not to overwork the tool. Making a cut like this can also cause the blade to bend. See more about jigsaw blade bending reasons can be found here . If you have this problem, this article will help you find the reason for that problem and help you to fix it.
Do I Need a Jig Saw?
Now, answering the question, do I need a jigsaw is difficult for me to definitively, as it ultimately depends on your specific needs and circumstances.
A jigsaw is a useful tool for many different tasks, such as cutting wood, cutting metal , and plastic, as well as shaping and forming materials. However, it may not be necessary for everyone.
A jigsaw tool can be a valuable addition to your tool collection if you are a DIY enthusiast, woodworker, or carpenter. It is a versatile tool that can be used for a variety of cutting and shaping tasks with variable speed , and it can save you time and effort when compared to other machines like a handsaw or coping saw.
It is also a cheaper option to cut wood than a table saw or band saw. So if you are on a tight budget, or you are a beginner woodworker , this tool can be ideal for you. On top of that , you can store this tool in a small space in your workshop, like a drawer or cabinet.
On the other hand, if you only occasionally need to cut or shape materials, or if you only need to make square cuts, a jigsaw may not be the most cost-effective or practical choice. In that case, you may be able to accomplish your tasks with other tools that are more specialized or better suited to your needs.
Ultimately, the decision whether to buy a jigsaw or not will depend on your individual needs and circumstances. It can be a useful tool , but it may not be necessary for everyone.
If you think the jigsaw is for you, You should check out my buying guide where I have selected the best jigsaws on the market.
For the best corded jigsaws, check out my guide Find Your Perfect Match: Top 6 Best Jigsaw Saws For Every Budget!
For the best cordless jigsaws, check out my guide Cut Like a Pro: Top 6 Best Cordless Jigsaws for Precision Woodworking
What Is a Good JigSaw Alternative?
One of the frequently asked questions is when you do not have a jigsaw, or if you need an alternative tool for a specific task , what the different options are that you can consider.
The first alternative to a jigsaw are circular saws. Unlike the jigsaw , which has an up-and-down moving blade, the circular saw uses a circular blade to make square lines. However, this tool is better suited to making straight an square lines, while the jigsaw can also make curved cuts. Compare a jigsaw vs circular saw by reading this article.
Another alternative to a jigsaw is a band saw. A band saw is a power tool that uses a continuous loop of flexible blade to make straight and curved cuts.
It is typically more accurate and precise than a jigsaw, and it is well suited to tasks such as resawing, which involves cutting thicker pieces of wood into thinner slices.
A coping saw is a third option to a jigsaw. A coping saw is a portable saw used for making intricate cuts and shapes in wood. It is made up of a thin, flexible blade held in place by a frame, and it can make both straight and curved cuts.
Overall, the best jigsaw alternative for you will depend on your specific needs in your workshop and the materials you are working with. You may need to use a combination of different techniques in order to get the best results. That is why I suggest you should read my article Jigsaw Who? 7 Innovative Jigsaw Alternative Tools That Will Amaze You now! You will find a lot of information and inspiration in that article, do not miss that!
Do I Need a Jigsaw – Conclusion
If you find yourself reaching for alternatives to the jigsaw while working on your projects, it may be time to invest in one. I have one in my workshop and can tell you that I use it far more than I anticipated.
I could recommend a jigsaw here, but because everyone’s needs and desires differ, I think it’s better to give you advice on what to look for when looking for the best jigsaw for your budget and projects.
As a result, I advise you to read How To Choose A Jigsaw – The Best Jig Saw Buying Guide. There is all the information you need to make sound decisions.
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Christophe, founder of Christofix.com
Woodworking | DIY | Home decoration