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All About the Jigsaw

The jigsaw is a great tool to have in your collection of tools. It is awesome for creating patterns, intricate designs and cutting out shapes. I use my jigsaw a lot when I'm putting a piece of wood against a wall and I need a hole for an outlet. I use it to cut numbers, letters and smaller circles. I also use it to cut my circle tables out.

WHICH SAW SHOULD I CHOOSE?

Scroll saw vs. Jigsaw

The main difference between the two is that a Jigsaw is used for thicker material and larger cuts. Scroll saws are typically used for smaller precise intricate cuts.


Orbital vs. Reciprocating

When looking to purchase a jigsaw, orbital jigsaws move up, down, back and forth. Think of it as like an elliptical machine. Whereas a reciprocating jigsaw only moves back and forth. Now what does that mean? Usually the orbital motion creates a smoother cut and the reciprocating jigsaws are more for demolition purposes, when you don't care so much that the wood being cut is chipping or leaving a jagged edge.


Variable Speed

The more advanced jigsaws have the option to vary the speed of the blade. This is helpful when you are cutting different materials. The Hart Jigsaw I use has 4 speeds ( 0 recommended for cutting metal, 1 recommended for cutting PVC pipe, 2 recommended for cutting thicker wood boards, and 3 recommended for cutting hardwoods)


Motor Power

For battery operated jigsaws the more volts the more power. For corded jigsaws the more amps the more powerful.


Corded vs. Battery Operated

I think we all know that battery operated tools are the preference. You don't have to be limited to where an outlet is. In the case of the Jigsaw I think that it is even more convenient to have a battery operated one because usually you are moving every which way to cut your shape or curved line and the cord gets wrapped around or in the way easily.


Blades

Purchasing the right blade is just as important as purchasing the right jigsaw for your needs. Make sure you are purchasing a blade for the right material you are working with and changing them out when they get dull. These two things will drastically affect how your project turns out and the ease of accomplishing it.


Trigger Lock

This is a great feature that allows you to lock the trigger down so that the blade is moving without pressing the trigger. It is great for large projects where your hand might start to get tired. It can also be very dangerous because the blade will not stop until it is unlocked so make sure to be extra cautious.


BASICS ON HOW TO OPERATE

-First of all always make sure you are wearing eye protection when using your jigsaw. Wood pieces tend to fly up toward your face.

-When you are cutting your wood you want to make sure you are holding your piece firmly to avoid it from jumping around.

- To cut a piece of wood out in the middle you need to drill holes to allow the blade to have a starting point.

-Make sure the plate is sitting flat on the board you are cutting. Some of the plates have the ability to tilt.

So if you want a beveled edge tilt accordingly.


Cutting a hole for an outlet....

Cutting a curved edge....



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