Jigsaw...love it or hate it? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 12Likes
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Ron_J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Central PA
Posts: 433
View Ron_J's Photo Album My Photos
Jigsaw...love it or hate it?

I lean on the "hate it" side of the spectrum. I don't know if it's the fact that I just have an old Craftsman, and not a newer saw, but I have pretty much given up on using it for anything that might resemble a finish cut. If I use a fine tooth blade, it doesn't want to cut. If I use a course blade, it rips the hell out of it.

Am I asking too much from this type of a saw?
Ron_J is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 11:26 AM
Member
 
silvertonebetty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Location: canada
Posts: 44
View silvertonebetty's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron_J View Post
I lean on the "hate it" side of the spectrum. I don't know if it's the fact that I just have an old Craftsman, and not a newer saw, but I have pretty much given up on using it for anything that might resemble a finish cut. If I use a fine tooth blade, it doesn't want to cut. If I use a course blade, it rips the hell out of it.



Am I asking too much from this type of a saw?


Works if you donít have a access to a table saw . But I find they are messy


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
silvertonebetty is offline  
post #3 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 11:40 AM
RAM Man
 
sweensdv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: WI
Posts: 731
View sweensdv's Photo Album My Photos
A jigsaw, being primarily a construction tool and not a fine woodworking tool, does have a place in every shop I believe. Personally, my jigsaw is a tool that I love to use mostly because of its versatility but mostly because it's just fun to use.


I think your main issue is with the saw itself. Older jigsaws are just not as technically advanced as what's available today and therefore don't work as well as today's offerings. Another issue could be your choice of blades. Quality blades, I prefer Bosch, will saw circles around inferior blades and there are plenty of inferior blades out there. Go buy yourself a Bosch T234X and put it in that old Craftsman jigsaw. I'm betting just that blade alone will make that Craftsman perform better.

Dave

Life is like a roll of toilet paper.
The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.
sweensdv is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 01:18 PM
Wood machinist
 
difalkner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: NW Louisiana
Posts: 3,929
View difalkner's Photo Album My Photos
I used to really dislike a jigsaw until I bought a Bosch JS470E. This a truly impressive jigsaw - cuts smoothly, cleanly depending on the blade used and the material being cut, and is easy to use in a precise manner.

You can't go wrong with this jigsaw and it in no way is in the same league as the throw-away models (like I used to have).

Jigsaw...love it or hate it?-bosch-js470e-jigsaw.jpg

David
sweensdv, BigJim, Ron_J and 2 others like this.

David

Curly Wood Shop on Etsy
David Falkner - Woodworking YouTube channel and Instagram
Our music at church - current videos Airline Baptist BC Facebook Live
Romans 3:23
difalkner is online now  
post #5 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 03:00 PM
Member
 
SEMIJim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Location: S.E. Michigan
Posts: 98
View SEMIJim's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron_J View Post
I lean on the "hate it" side of the spectrum. I don't know if it's the fact that I just have an old Craftsman, and not a newer saw, ...
Could be. Then again: "It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron_J View Post
If I use a fine tooth blade, it doesn't want to cut. If I use a course blade, it rips the hell out of it.
I think you may be doing it wrong.

As with any other blade: Yes, you'll want a finer blade for cross-cutting than ripping, but, in either case: If you push the tool too hard you'll get massive tear-out. Also: Most blades on most woods will result in some tear-out when cross-cutting. This is why we use backer material or score the piece in advance.

I've a Makita variable speed jigsaw I bought years ago. I don't use it for much, but there are certain tasks at which it excels.

What, exactly, have you been trying to do with this thing? And what kind of wood?

"There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider price only are this man's lawful prey." -- John Ruskin (1819-1900)
SEMIJim is offline  
post #6 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 04:27 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Florida Panhandle
Posts: 293
View AwesomeOpossum74's Photo Album My Photos
Jig saws have their place ... for rough cutting. But you can make a reasonably straight cut if you use a fence.

The quality of the tool and blade also play a big role. I had a Craftsman / B&D jigsaw from 25 years ago (I think I paid $50-70 when I was "poor"), and recently changed up to a modern Dewalt. Big difference. The old saw bounced all over the place. New one cuts like butter. I'd blame the blades, but I'd used a few different blades in the old one and it still acted badly.

Geoff
AwesomeOpossum74 is offline  
post #7 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 04:42 PM
Moderator
 
John Smith_inFL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 1,535
View John Smith_inFL's Photo Album My Photos
Ron - does your jigsaw have the "reciprocating" action or just straight up and down ?
my first "recip" jigsaw was the Dewalt I got 30 years ago and still have it.
I am considering the Bosh for my next one as it is mentioned often here.
a world of difference between reciprocating action and non-reciprocating.
plus, as mentioned, material being cut, type of blade, your expectations, yada yada yada.

.

-- Failure is proof that you at least tried ~ now, go do it again, and again, until you get it right --
John Smith_inFL is online now  
post #8 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 04:58 PM
Interested Observer
 
subroc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Dover, NH, USA
Posts: 970
View subroc's Photo Album My Photos
Just one more tool in the tool box. I trimmed out some windows. I used the jigsaw on the cutout on the stools. Seems like exactly the right tool for that particular operation. I expect it shines cutting a sink hole in a countertop as well.
subroc is offline  
post #9 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 05:24 PM
Nine Thumbs
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: The Very Tip of Lake Michigan
Posts: 305
View Shop_Rat's Photo Album My Photos
The jigsaw is probably one of the most versatile tools around. There are very few things it won't do if you have enough power, the correct blade for the task, and the correct technique for what you are cutting (feeds and speeds). Is it a tool suited for a long straight cut? Not really, but nothing else can cut a curve quite like it (it doesn't have the throat problem like a band saw). And few tools are designed to cut so many different materials. Anything from metal to wood to plastic to tile to shoe leather.

It's small and compact, and myriad different blades are made for myriad different cuts and materials. You name it and a jigsaw has probably blown through it at one time or another. Most modern models have a quick change feature for fast blade changes and a reciprocating action that is adjustable from zero to OMG! A jigsaw makes laying laminate or hardwood flooring a breeze. In short, if you are trying to rip or crosscut a nice straight line... use a circular saw. For a huge number of other tasks, a jigsaw can often be hard to beat.

https://manoffamily.com/what-is-a-jigsaw-used-for/

If you are having issues with your old saw, I submit that it might be time to retire it for a more modern version. And then invest in the correct (and quality) blade for the cut you are attempting. It will be more than capable of making the cut, and then all that's left is a little finesse of your hand!
woodnthings likes this.

Another $000,000,000.02 worth of advice,
Mark

Last edited by Shop_Rat; 01-27-2020 at 05:28 PM.
Shop_Rat is online now  
The Following User Says Thank You to Shop_Rat For This Useful Post:
Onefreetexan (01-29-2020)
post #10 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 06:37 PM
Ole Woodworker
 
BigJim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Chattanooga, Tennessee
Posts: 4,419
View BigJim's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by SEMIJim View Post
Could be. Then again: "It's a poor craftsman that blames his tools"
I think you are joking but if not, I do disagree. I have had some pretty sorry tools and I can for sure tell you, they for a fact made a world of difference in the quality of my work.

I also bought the Bosch Saber Saw years back and have worn a couple of them out. I was sold on it when a salesman was demonstrating one and plunged the running saw blade through a 1X12 and went to cutting. I will have to admit it was either a white pine or spruce board though.

http://www.diychatroom.com/
The Other
BigJim

If you do what you've always done, you will get what you've always got.
BigJim is offline  
post #11 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 06:54 PM
Member
 
SEMIJim's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Location: S.E. Michigan
Posts: 98
View SEMIJim's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigJim View Post
I think you are joking but if not, I do disagree. I have had some pretty sorry tools and I can for sure tell you, they for a fact made a world of difference in the quality of my work.
Yeah, it was tongue-in-cheek. Thus the

For a current example of my own experiences, Re: tool vs. user, see my question about mortising chisels.
BigJim likes this.

"There is hardly anything in the world that some man cannot make a little worse and sell a little cheaper, and the people who consider price only are this man's lawful prey." -- John Ruskin (1819-1900)
SEMIJim is offline  
post #12 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 07:31 PM
where's my table saw?
 
woodnthings's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: SE, Michigan
Posts: 26,387
View woodnthings's Photo Album My Photos
They can also cut aluminum!

Using the proper blade will allow you to make cuts inside the material like these holes for the digital display and the rocker switches on my "restoration project" a 1980 Chevy, 4 X 4 pickup:


https://www.woodworkingtalk.com/f15/...109305/index5/














I used an old Porter Cable barrel grip saw that I've had for 30 years on this project and for all the times I needed to cut sheet metal, including 16 GA.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)

Last edited by woodnthings; 01-27-2020 at 08:09 PM.
woodnthings is offline  
post #13 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 07:48 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 678
View holtzdreher's Photo Album My Photos
Strange. I am old enough that I remember when what was then called a scroll saw was what is now called a jig saw and a jig saw in the 1950's was what is now called a scroll saw. I still call a jig saw. a saber saw, just to keep them straight. Hate them immensely, but there are times when nothing else quite does the job. I use mine about 2x a year.
holtzdreher is online now  
post #14 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 09:09 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: SE, KY
Posts: 113
View homestd's Photo Album My Photos
Although I'm not extremely fond of it, I wouldn't give up my fairly old craftsman jig saw. When the time comes, nothing else will get the job done correctly and I will be using it on my next project because it won't fit in the bandsaw.

Mother is the necessity of most invention.
homestd is offline  
post #15 of 34 Old 01-27-2020, 10:14 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Posts: 5,482
View FrankC's Photo Album My Photos
I think there has been both an improvement in the saws and the blades over the years. I would never give up my Makita, it just works for so many cuts that would be difficult with any other type of saw.

Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something -Plato

FrankC
http://sawdustmaking.com
http://woodworkerglossary.com
FrankC is offline  
post #16 of 34 Old 01-28-2020, 02:13 AM
Ancient Termite
 
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Huntington Beach, California
Posts: 626
View NoThankyou's Photo Album My Photos
Oh gawd!

In the mid 1960s I worked for GE in Phoenix. They allowed employees to purchase used / repaired / remanufactured "small" appliances. I bought the power tool set. One changeable motor, with jig saw, sander and drill. (Non reversible but with speed control) $42

We were living in a tract where building was still going on. Almost like living in a lumber yard. In the utility room, I converted half of it to a photograph dark room using the jig saw. (Really a sabre saw.) The saw sucked at cutting 2x4 square. Some of the 2x4 I used were hopelessly warped. So the door was cut to follow the warped 2x4. I built cabinets w/shelves and a curved counter top. Absolutely the worst effing power tool I ever owned. I sold it at a garage sale about 40 years later for $40.

Then I bought a Craftsman jig saw. Their good one. As in good being relative. I understand where the "Crapsman" nick name came from. Finally I bought a Bosch jig saw. OK, it is a jig saw. But ya know it is a damn good jig saw.

Rich
In furniture 1/32" is a Grand Canyon
NoThankyou is offline  
post #17 of 34 Old 01-28-2020, 07:08 AM Thread Starter
Senior Member
 
Ron_J's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Central PA
Posts: 433
View Ron_J's Photo Album My Photos
Guess I'm not the only one that doesn't care for them.

Mine is not a reciprocating jig saw, but it is variable speed (suppose that was a big deal 30+ years ago).

Normally, I only use it for inside corners that will be covered by trim. Like this past weekend, I used it to cut the holes in the wall boards for outlets, and the inside corners on laminate flooring.

I do agree, blades make a BIG difference. It took me years (stubborn) to spend for the better blades. I guess it does what it is designed to do, but it doesn't do it very pretty.

Might have to put one of the Bosch saws on my "gotta get" list.
Ron_J is offline  
post #18 of 34 Old 01-28-2020, 10:16 AM
Cat Herder
 
ChiknNutz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Triad, NC (from the PNW)
Posts: 538
View ChiknNutz's Photo Album My Photos
I have a Bosch 1591EVSL Jigsaw that I've owned for several years now. Coupled with good blades I find it a joy to use, a tool that produces very nice cuts.

Chris A.
Live a life worth celebrating!

Ridgid R4221 12" CMS, R4330 Planer | Bosch MRC23EVSK Router, 1591EVSL Jigsaw, PB360S Power Box | JDS Air-Tech HP air cleaner | Grizzly 14" bandsaw (Laguna LT14 clone), Jet DC-1100VX-CK Dust Collector | Festool Rotex 150/5 FEQ, CT 36 E, ETS EC125/3, TS75, Domino XL | Incra "Works" LS25 router table | Grizzly G1023RL
ChiknNutz is offline  
post #19 of 34 Old 01-28-2020, 11:24 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: East Anglia
Posts: 161
View fareastern's Photo Album My Photos
I find a good jigsaw invaluable.By good I mean with a controllable reciprocating action,quick release blade change and a base that can easily be returned to exactly square.My Hitachi comes very close and I would also be pleased to have a Bosch or Makita.A cheap,basic saw has some use but it also has some limitations that you have to work around or just put up with.
fareastern is offline  
post #20 of 34 Old 01-29-2020, 09:56 AM
Senior Member
 
Noek's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Orange County, Ca
Posts: 269
View Noek's Photo Album My Photos
To me a jigsaw has value when I need it. I don't always need it but its not like it's extremely expensive or takes up a lot of room in the shop.
subroc likes this.
Noek is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome