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A jigsaw can be one of the most useful power tools to have on hand. Its ability to cut both straight and curved lines is unique, while its capacity to cut through a wide array of materials only adds to its usefulness.
It is one of the most popular power tools available, which explains why so many manufacturers have created different models for consumers. In this article we take a good look at some of the best jigsaw tools on the market to help you choose the right one.
The Best Jigsaw
SKIL has a loyal following of users in the United States, and this product comes with a mid-range price. You get a 6-amp motor, so decent cutting power is provided. The handle has been molded for comfort and a built-in laser guide is useful for precision cuts.
Beyond that it is missing a few features like a LED light and a dust blower. It also has no vibration dampening features to speak off. Still, it is a competent little jigsaw if you are looking for a product with decent power for a reasonable price.
6 Amp Motor
4 Position Orbital Control
- Weight5 pounds
Simple to Use
Mid Range Price
No Dust Blower
This is an excellent jigsaw from Black and Decker, a manufacturer that needs little introduction. It comes with an entry-level price tag, but it is still packed with useful features.
The big stand out has to be the extremely powerful, 5-amp motor. That allows the blade to move at speeds up to 3,000 SPM (strokes per minute). That is sufficient to tackle just about any material from ceramics and tiles to denser woods. An accurate trigger that is nice and large controls that speed.
The body of the jigsaw can be set to various angles to aid with angled cutting whilst the new and improved wire guards improves sight lines for precise cutting. The blade is quick release and can be changed without tools.
As a low priced tool it is missing a few top end features like an LED light for example. But it is still a top, top quality corded jigsaw with an insane low price.
Built in Dust Blower
5 Amp Motor
Tool Free Blade Change
- BrandBlack & Decker
- Weight5.2 Pounds
Entry Level Price, Premium Level Performance
Very High Power
Body Tilts for Angled Cuts
Missing Some Premium Features, i.e No LED Light
This Makita Jigsaw has a 3.9-amp motor that may be a little underpowered compared to other models, but when that motor is combined with the excellent built-in vibration control measures, you get a tool that is very well suited for smaller cutting jobs where accuracy is more important than power.
The tool is also around 4lbs in weight and has a very well designed ergonomic handle. That makes it easy to use and will reduce hand fatigue. A 3 orbital setting plus straight cutting setting allows for plenty of cutting options whilst the die cast aluminum base is strong, sturdy, and effective.
4.3 Amp Motor
3x Orbital Settings
- Weight4.19 Pounds
Small and Ergonomic
Excellent Vibration Control
Perfect for Accurate Cuts
This is a product with a premium price and as such comes packed with features. DeWALT is another company that needs no introduction, with its yellow and black branding famous the world over.
The biggest stand out is a very powerful 6.5 amp motor. This kicks out a phenomenal level of power, though the DeWALT is well up to handling it. It has a variable speed delivery of between 500 to 3,100 SPM, making it perfect for safe and accurate cuts on a huge variety of materials.
All that power is funneled through an extremely tough all metal gear case, which also features a keyless blade holder. An extra large rubber grip and a counter balance mechanism both work to reduce vibration for precise cutting.
This tool has a high price tag, and at 10lbs is quite heavy. But it is a tool that gives incredible power with excellent levels of control.
6.5 Amp Motor
Extra Large Rubber Grip
All Metal Gear Case
- Weight10 Pounds
Very High Power
Excellent Speed Variability Levels
Made In Mexico
Our next entry is this jigsaw from Hitachi. It is the first example of a cordless jigsaw to make its way onto the list, though of course it won’t be the last. There are a number of advantages (and disadvantages) to cordless versus corded tools, which we’ll discuss more in depth further below.
For now let’s just celebrate this tool because frankly there is a lot to like here. The motor is compatible with 18V batteries. This allows it to kick out up to 2,400 SPM, not a bad figure for a cordless jigsaw. The blade is changed without tools and is designed to be very simple and easy to use, cutting back on downtime during changes.
Where this tool really excels is in terms of comfort. The handle is rubber coated for comfort and to help control vibration. It is also very light, with a total weight of around 4lbs even with the battery attached.
Tool Less Blade Change
Comfortable Soft Grip Handle
Built In LED Light
- Weight4.7 Pounds
Very Light and Comfortable
Decent Power Levels for a Cordless
Very Useful Built In LED Light
No Charger or Battery Included
Next up we have a high quality jigsaw from Bosch. As you would expect from a manufacturer like this is it fully stocked with great features.
A 7-amp motor is the eye catching one of course. That is a very impressive level of power that will allow you to cut efficiently through a huge range of materials. A variable speed dial allows you to accurately set the blade speed whilst built in vibration dampening measures allow for a precise cut. The die cast foot is strong and sturdy and the blade clamp is very well designed and tool free.
Price wise, the cost of the machine is surprisingly low, having a mid range price. For such a high quality machine by such a reputable manufacturer that is very impressive. As always it will work best with branded Bosch replacement blades. They aren’t cheap though, so you could end up paying a little more over the course of the lifetime of the machine in new blades.
7 Amp Power
Variable Speed Dial
Sturdy Die-Cast Foot
- Weight10.1 Pounds
Bosch Quality Construction
Low Vibration Design
Very Well Constructed
Branded Replacement Blades are Expensive
We have a Milwaukee jigsaw to show you next, and it should be noted that this is one of the more basic models that Milwaukee produces. It does have a somewhat expensive price tag, well toward the top end of the market, but a lot of that is the Milwaukee build quality.
The big stand out here is that this jigsaw offers no less than five-position orbital cutting. That allows for accurate cutting across five different degree angles, more that will be found on many other models. Aside from that the top handle is well molded and comfortable whilst the shoe is designed to be non-marking to protect the cut surface area.
Aside from that, it is a pretty basic tool really. It is quite heavy, weighing in at around 6lbs even without the battery. All in all, though, it’s a well made, yet somewhat simple, battery-powered jigsaw.
5 Position Orbital Settings
Tool Free Quick Release
- Weight6.76 Pounds
Simple & Easy to Design
High Degree of Cutting Versatility
Easy to Use
Made in China
No Battery or Charger
No Storage Case
This jigsaw comes from Porter-Cable, another brand with a well-earned reputation for quality. This is a very good-looking machine that packs a punch without being overly large.
It is equipped with a 6-amp motor which is capable of generating up to 3,200 SPM. That is a very useful level of power. It is controlled with a nice big trigger and has a sevenposition integrated speed dial to assist with control. Considering the power it puts out, the weight of the tool is very impressive. A total weight of a shade over 6lbs makes this tool easy to hold and maneuver.
It is a more basic tool than many others on the list. It has no built in lights or dust blowing abilities for example. That said it is still a very high-quality tool with a very reasonable price tag.
6 Amp Motor
7 Position Speed Dial
4 Orbital Settings
Up to 3,200 SPM
- Weight6 Pounds
Very Good Value for Money
Excellent Speed Control
No Dust Blower
If it’s light green then it has to be a Ryobi! Perhaps as famous as the DeWALT yellow and black color scheme, Ryobi are also as famous for making quality tools at very reasonable prices.
This is a cordless jigsaw offering from this manufacturer. It is coming in with a pretty low price tag, but is still packed with useful and innovative features. For example, it has a built-in dust blower to keep debris off your cutting surface. You don’t often see that on items at this price point.
It can also be lowered on its steel footplate so allow you to use the entire blade for cutting. That’s pretty cool as it allows you to extend the lifespan of your blades. It can generate up to 3,000 SPM for a very useful level of cutting power and it is relatively light and comfortable to hold.
Up To 3,000 SPM
4x Orbital Settings
Built in Dust Blower
Built in LED Light
- Weight4.9 Pounds
Lots of Features
Small Price Tag
Ryobi Quality Tool Construction
No Battery, No Charger
Considering that this next tool from Wen is actually one of the cheaper items on our list, it is still packed with features. We have to admit, Wen is not a brand we were very familiar with, but they certainly got our attention with this high quality corded jigsaw.
A 6.6 amp motor is at its heart, which is used to deploy up to 3,300 SPM. A very useful power level that should work its way through most materials up to and including Walnut wood. There is a front mounted light and laser to help with accurate cutting, while the device can bevel up to 45 degrees on its footplate.
Control is provided by a 6-position speed dial. This is a very powerful and well-designed tool. It doesn’t quite have the high-end refinements that you would find on a more expensive, premium model. There is precious little vibration dampening, for example, and the handle is not the most comfortable or ergonomic.
Still, for the price, it is very impressive indeed.
6.6 Amp Motor
Front Mounted Light and Laser
- Weight5.4 Pounds
Huge Array of Features
Lots of Power
Excellent Value for Money
No Storage Case
This is the second Bosch jigsaw to make the list and this model is a cordless version. Not only that though but it is an extremely stripped back design, with the emphasis very much on user comfort and maneuverability.
It achieves that aim very well, being one of the smallest jigsaws not only the list but also that we’ve ever seen. It has a small but efficient 12-volt motor, the bevel and footplate can adjust through 45 degrees for angled cuts and the counterbalanced plunge mechanism is designed to dampen vibration.
It is missing a lot of the features you would find on a bigger tool. There is no LED light or dust blowing for example. But it is a nice simple tool with Bosch quality engineering at a decent price. So at the very least, it is excellent value for money, and perfect for smaller-scale cutting jobs.
Small, Simple Design
Counterbalanced Vibration Reduction
- Weight3.3 pounds
Very Easy to Use
Small and Lightweight
Good Value for Money
Lack of Features
No Battery or Charger Included.
Can less ever be more? Sometimes it can, and this corded jigsaw from Tacklife is positive proof of that. It has a very low price tag and yet comes packed with features.
In all honesty we’re not sure where to start. It could be the built in dust blower. It could be the laser guide, the LED light or the built in protective guard that protects you from dust and debris. It could be fact it has an extra long power cord or the always-useful feature of a tool-less blade change.
It could also be the motor, which at 6.7 amps of power is one of the stronger motors out there. It can deliver up 3,000 SPM to handle a range of materials. Control is via a six-stage speed adjustment and the tool can shift through 45 degrees on its bevel.
The storage case is frankly terrible but aside from that you are getting an awful of jigsaw here for a tiny price.
6.7 Amp Motor
Up To 3,000 SPM
Laser & LED Light
- Weight7.45 Pounds
Loads of Added Extras
Long Power Cord
Poor Quality Case
Too Many Features?
Lets take a good look at this Black & Decker cordless jigsaw next, which comes in with a price tag below what we would expect as mid range or average. It is, in truth, very much an entry-level model, both in terms of price and features.
That also extends to the power output. Sure, 20V is a reasonable power level for a cordless jigsaw, but a max output of 2,500 SPM is not going to knock anyone’s socks off. There is also a lack of built in LED light, though the fact there is a dust blower is nice to see.
On the other hand you do get Black & Decker build quality for a very, very low price. If power is not the number one consideration for you then you can pick up a quality tool here for a very good price.
- BrandBlack & Decker
- Weight4.65 Pounds
Compact & Portable
Good Value for Money
Simple but Effective Design
Very Simple Design
This Makita jigsaw comes with a premium price tag and is one of the most expensive tools on our list, but it comes loaded with a range of high-end premium features for that price.
In particular, the vibration dampening features on this model are outstanding, producing up to 40-percent less vibration than many other models. It is also remarkably quiet too. The built-in LED light is useful for accurate cutting, and the blade change system is fast and very easy to use.
The tool has a 6.3-amp motor, but despite that only produces between 800 to 2,800 SPM. That does mean it is a little underpowered, at least when compared to some other models. Still, the power is very well controlled and the whole device is of the exceptionally high-quality construction that would expect with a Makita jigsaw.
6.3 Amp Motor
3 Orbital Settings
800 to 2,800 SPM Range
- Weight8.46 Pounds
Simple & Easy to Use
Built in LED Light
Excellent Vibration Control
Surprisingly Under Powered
Best Jigsaw Buying Guide & FAQ
In our buying guide, we’ll take you through the features that you should keep an eye out for when picking out the best jigsaw for you. After that, we’ll take a look at how best to use your new tool and answer some of the most frequently asked questions about this extremely useful product.
What to Consider When Buying a Jigsaw
One of the biggest factors to consider is the motor size. Most corded models will give out the motor size in Amps, whilst cordless jigsaws will be Volts. Many jigsaw review articles just say to buy the biggest motor you can. Well, you need a high power motor if you are going to cut through tough material like metal and dense woods.
But the stronger motors are going to be heavier and more expensive. If you are only cutting MDF, other compressed sheet wood or plastics you can save money and weight by going for smaller motor.
- Grip & Trigger
You are going to holding the tool by the grip, and it is going to weigh anything from five to ten pounds. So ideally you want a grip that is ergonomic and comfortable.
The trigger should be nice and large so you can easily get a finger (or to) on it. If the device has variable speed (which it should!) make sure the trigger is nice and deep so it can offer a wider range of movement and speed control.
- LED Light
Not all tools will come with an LED light, but it is a feature we really like to see (like to see? Get it?) An LED will illuminate the blade, allowing you easily see the markings and the cutting area for precise cuts.
- Laser Guide
Some people really like a built in laser guide, but we are not huge fans. The whole point of a jigsaw is that it is great at cutting at various angles and curves. A laser guide only works in a straight line, so whilst it can be useful sometimes it won’t be at others.
- Dust Blower/Vacuum Attachment
Cutting any material will generate a lot of dust, though this is especially true with wood. A dust blower can help to blow dust out of the way so you can see the blade more easily. Again this help with getting a more accurate cut.
A vacuum attachment looks like a short pipe at the rear of the tool. It allows you to attach a vacuum hose that will suck the dust instead of blowing it. The advantage here is that it keeps mess to a minimum. Of curse, you do need an industrial vacuum cleaner in your workshop in order to use this function.
Who Needs Jig Saws?
If you cut material – especially wood – for projects then a jigsaw can be a very useful tool to pick up. If you ever have to make cuts at any angle other than a completely straight line then a jigsaw is frankly invaluable.
That after all is the big stand out of function of a jigsaw. It can cut at different angles. Depending on the power and blades it can make these cuts across a wide range of materials too.
How to Choose the Right Type of Jigsaw
There is a range of feature that can be found on a jigsaw, which we’ve looked at above.
One other consideration though is the type of jigsaw you want, and in this instance we’re thinking of power supply. This could be corded or cordless.
The advantage of a cord lies in power delivery. All you have to do is plug into a power outlet and your tool is ready to go. No charging required, no risk that the power level will drop over time. On the other hand, you are tethered to that power outlet, so if you need to cut outside or in a different location you need to unplug every time and find a new power outlet closer to your work area.
Of course the big advantage of cordless is the fact that it adds mobility to the jigsaw. Simply place a battery pack into the tool and you’re ready to go. Or least you are if the battery is full charged. That is the drawback of cordless jigsaws, the fact you are always at the mercy of the battery.
Best Jigsaw Brands
As you will have no doubt noticed on our list above, there is a wide range of manufacturers of jigsaws out there today. Picking the best one can go a long way toward helping select the right tool for you.
Here is a breakdown of some of the most popular brands out there right now:
They are fast approaching their 100th birthday having been founded in 1924. Their famous Black and Yellow branding has long been a byword for high quality tools and can be seen on worksites across the country.
This brand is even older than DeWalt, but it is only in recent years they have really started to take a slice of the power tool market. Today they are well recognized for producing professional grade tools.
Hailing from Germany, Bosch have a long and very well earned reputation for producing tools of the every highest quality. They are often a little more expensive than their rivals, but they reward that investment with tools that are well designed and built to the highest standards.
- Black & Decker
Finally, we have Black & Decker. They are more of a consumer level manufacturer, and you won’t find many professionals using this brand. Still, they produce very good quality tools for a lower price tag than the other big manufacturers out there.
Jigsaw Usage & Maintenance Tips
Jigsaws are pretty easy to use, being one of the simpler power tools out there. These easy tips will help you get even more out of your tool though:
- Make sure you use the right blade for the material you are cutting.
- Also, if you are cutting on angles use a thinner, more flexible blade.
- Take care when changing the blade, especially if you are swapping out a blade you’ve just cut with. They can get very hot and be a real burn risk.
- Mark out lines in pencil before you begin.
- Set the speed to the appropriate level for the material you are cutting. The tougher the material, the more SPM you should be aiming for.
- With corded jigsaws, always be aware of where the cord is during cutting. The last thing you want to do is cut through it accidently!
- Always try to clamp the material down before cutting so you have a stable cutting surface that won’t move suddenly.
Best Jigsaw FAQ:
Q: Do jigsaws work well on different materials?
A: They can, provided they have both the Amperage (motor power) and also the speed control. To cut things like plastic, you ideally want to be able to drop the SPM to 1,000 or less as faster speeds risking melting the plastic.
For harder materials like stone, metal and tougher woods like Walnut you need raw power. That means a high amp motor producing a good SPM of 3,000 or more.
You also of course need the correct blades for the material you are cutting.
Q: Will I need a specific saw blade for certain cuts?
A: Yes you will.
For example, cutting different materials will require different blade constructions and sizes. As a jigsaw is also ideal for cutting curved lines, you will need a thinner more flexible handle to tackle angled cuts like that.
Q: Can I sharpen my jigsaw blade?
A: Well… you could, but the better question is why would you want to? The blades are very small and fiddly, and since they have teeth (instead of a straight cutting edge) it will be difficult and time consuming to sharpen them all.
Which again makes us ask why would you bother? Replacement blades are pretty cheap really, and also long lasting. Put your time to better use and pick up a brand new set when you need them.
Q: How difficult is it to swap the blade?
A: If it is a quick release, tool less mechanism it is very easy, and takes a minute or two at the most.
A jigsaw with a tooled blade release will take a little longer.
Q: What size extension cord should I use?
A: Just make sure it can handle the Amp rating of your jigsaw and it will be fine. Ideally the cord should be rated to handle much more than the motor in the saw to allow for some spare capacity.
Our Top Pick
Choosing the best jigsaw for our list was a real challenge. In truth this was mainly because as we were looking around for the best models we were amazed at the scope of the available tools out there today. Even narrowing them down to our guide above was tough, so then picking the best of this lot was even tougher!
But we don’t shirk from a tough task here at Car Bibles, so we sat down, went through the options and have chosen the Skill 4495-02 Jigsaw.
For us, it just gives so much for such a good price. The handle is comfortable, and the built-in laser guide is great for precision cuts. Overall, it's competent with decent power, making it a great option.