Sabre Saw Vs. Jigsaw: an Essential Tool to Have in the Toolshed

Sabre Saw Vs. Jigsaw: an Essential Tool to Have in the Toolshed

When it comes to DIY, there are some tools you just need to have.

While you can get away with doing some jobs without them,
saws are an essential tool to have in the toolshed.

Let’s take a look at two different types of saws and how
they compare.

Why Use a Saw for DIY?

Firstly, let’s take a look at what these two saws are.

Wikipedia explains
that a sabre saw is electric powered hand-held saw. It is larger than its
popular counterpart, the jigsaw.

Sabre saws typically have toothed blades, which has its
advantages which we’ll look at below. However, due to the sabre saw missing a
couple of essential components that the jigsaw has, it has less
controllability.

Let’s look at what a jigsaw saw is. Wikipedia
describes a jigsaw as a power tool that uses an electric motor and a
reciprocating blade.

Scroll saws used to be referred to as jigsaws as well, but
there is now a differentiation.

The jigsaw came about in 1946 when a man named Albert
Kaufmann swapped the sewing needle on his wife’s sewing machine out for the
blade of a saw.

This saw model prototype began to gain traction until it was
mass produced in 1947 by Scintilla before being bought by Bosch. In 1966 a
couple of adjustments were made, and by 1989 the modern jigsaw was complete.

Advantages of Using a Sabre Saw

Let's take a look at the benefits of using a sabre saw for
DIY home projects.

Do It Yourself explains that a cordless sabre saw, in particular, is an
excellent tool to have around the home. This is because having a saw without
the cord that you can carry with you around the yard is convenient.

using sabre saw in work

Power cords all too often cause unnecessary complications
and even injuries. Additionally, you won’t ever have to think ahead about
whether there’s electricity on site or not.

Another advantage to using a cordless sabre saw is that it's
safer. This is where the injury issue comes in. When you don't have random
power cords lying about on the floor, you are less prone to injury.

It also makes for a cleaner job site, too. Most power cords
come in one color – black – making them hard to distinguish. If you do not have
to deal with this part of the problem, your job is going to be much easier.

Disadvantages of Using a Sabre Saw

Now that we've looked at the advantages of using a sabre saw
let's cover the weaknesses.

Do It Yourself continues by explaining that while the sabre saw is powerful and convenient, it does have its drawbacks.

sabre saw

The most significant disadvantage here is the fact that it is battery run. The type of battery you typically get with a cordless sabre saw doesn't last for very long, which means that you have to charge it while you're working continually.

When people use a cordless sabre saw, many of them charge it overnight to ensure that they have a full charge for the work day ahead. However, it can be hard to remember to plug your sabre saw in at the end of a long working day.

Another disadvantage to using a sabre saw is that they're
larger and bulkier than their commercial counterparts. When you're using a
battery to power your sabre saw, you're going to end up with a more substantial
power tool that takes up more space.

When using a battery powered sabre tool, it takes up more
energy. Because it’s heavier than cordless models, you exert more energy when
you work.

The battery attached to the bottom of the sabre saw also
inhibits the primary advantage of a sabre saw – its ability to get into awkward
places. The battery makes it bulky and less likely to fit.

DIY Jobs to Use a Sabre Saw For

So, what are the best DIY jobs to use a sabre saw for? Let’s
take a look.

  • Indentations:
    Do it Yourself explains that a sabre saw is excellent for making
    indentations in walls. When you're renovating or building and need to do a bit
    of wiring in the walls, a sabre saw is an ideal tool when making indentations
    for the wires.
  • PVC
    Piping:
    all too often piping is found in the foundations of the walls and
    other places that can be hard to reach. A sabre saw is a great option when
    trying to work with PVC piping.
  • Nails or
    Pins:
    nails and pins can often be tough to pull out, especially if they've
    been in the material for quite a while. While you may have tried other tools to
    extract objects like nails, a sabre saw is sturdy enough to do so effortlessly.
  • Tree
    Branches:
    a sabre saw has the benefit of durability and power, making it
    the perfect candidate for cutting down tree branches in your yard. Because the
    saw itself doesn't need a lot of manpower, you can make the job simple and
    straightforward.
  • Fitting
    Windows:
    as we've mentioned, the sabre saw is excellent at getting into
    awkward and tight places. Use it to cut perfect angles when fitting a new
    window.

Advantages of Using a Jigsaw

Now that we’ve looked at the sabre saw let's discuss the
advantages and disadvantages of the jigsaw.

color yellow jigsaw
  • Ease of
    Use:
    Stop the Prop explains that jigsaws are great for cutting smoothly
    through wood. They do most of the work for you – you don’t have to exert much effort. Changing the blades is also straightforward.
  • Safety:
    jigsaws are a good DIY tool because they have a high safety rating. So high, in fact, that they're safe for kids to use, too. With adult supervision, kids can
    quickly get used to this tool because it can be rested on a flat surface.
  • Efficiency:
    jigsaws are known for their ability to cut odd angles and curvy lines. You can use it for any DIY project, from carving out a complicated wooden project to renovating your basement.
  • Power:
    wood isn't the only material that a jigsaw can work well with. In fact, it's so
    powerful that it can cut through much harder materials, like fiberglass and
    even steel. Just remember to correlate the right blade with the material you're using.
  • Portability:
    many jigsaws on the market today don’t come with accompanying cords.

Disadvantages of Using a Jigsaw

Interestingly, we could only find one downside to using a
jigsaw for your home DIY projects.

While Woodworking Toolkit describes the additional advantages of using a jigsaw, including versatility, they could only come up with one disadvantage that you must consider.

sabre saw

They believe that a jigsaw is not very accurate when it comes to DIY projects, mainly when working with wood.

They say that because they are hand-held saws, they’re not going to be as precise as sabre saws. You’ve got to account for human error when embarking on a power tool project, especially if the tool is controlled
with your hand.

DIY Jobs to Use a Jigsaw For

Now that we've covered the advantages and disadvantages of
using a jigsaw let's get into what they're good for around the home.

a man using jigsaw
  • Cutting Wood: The
    Family Handyman explains why a jigsaw is a great power tool for
    cutting wood. You can make compound or beveled cuts through wood with a jigsaw.

When you press the jigsaw down against the wood firmly, it will glide through effortlessly, creating sharp, straight cuts. It's important to remember to keep the blade moving at a pace that allows it time to cut, without being too aggressive.

  • Cutting Countertops: because a jigsaw is known for its versatility, you can also use it when renovating your kitchen. It will allow you to make precise cuts through hard kitchen countertops without forming chips at the edges. Drill a hole in the surface of your countertop first as a starting point for the jigsaw. Because of its down cutting blade, you can cut through the laminate surface easily.
  • Ceramic
    Tile:
     it's recommended that you use a particular type of blade with your
    jigsaw to cut through ceramic tile. This type of blade is called an abrasive
    edge. It will allow you to make curved cuts in the tile that can be up to a quarter inch thick. Use a light mist of water to lubricate the saw itself. This will help to prevent any jarring of the tile.
  • Metal:
    one of the most considerable advantages of a jigsaw is its ability to cut
    through metal. It's recommended that you clamp the piece of metal you're working on in between two sheets of plywood. This will keep it stable and prevent any shredding when you run the blade through. Make sure to drill a couple of initial starter holes in your metal sheet to avoid any rough beginnings.

Price Comparison for Sabre Saw and Jigsaw

Now for the million-dollar question: which is more expensive, a sabre saw or a jigsaw?

Looking back at Wikipedia, we know that when it comes to a sabre saw, you've got a more straightforward product. While it might be larger than a jigsaw, there are fewer components to it.

This means that when purchasing a sabre saw you don't have to think about multiple parts. When buying a jigsaw, however, there's a lot more to think about – and it can quickly add up.

This is because a jigsaw comes with multiple blade options,
that you’ll have to keep replacing. These include TPI blades, or blades with
teeth, blade edge, thin blades, cranked blades, and push stroke cutting blades.

Another addition to the jigsaw that makes it more expensive
is the use of a battery. While you can get battery powered sabre saws, they’re
more popular in jigsaws. Rather than relying on one cord that will last a
lifetime, you’ll instead need to continually replace the battery pack,
increasing its overall price tag.

To summarize, the sabre saw, while larger than a jigsaw, is simpler.
This means that you will be able to pick up a sabre saw for less. However, a
jigsaw is capable of more DIY tasks, making it versatile and worth more than a
sabre saw.

If your projects are heavy-duty, it’s worth paying more for
a jigsaw. However, if they can be accomplished with a less powerful tool,
choose a sabre saw.

What’s the Difference: Sabre Saw and Jigsaw?

We've learned all about the different uses of both the sabre
saw and jigsaw. What, then, is the marked difference between these two DIY
power tools?

Chris Baylor of The Spruce Crafts says that the jigsaw evolved from the scroll saw,
which is known for being used as a tabletop tool. While the jigsaw has a
different blade system than the scroll saw, it also utilizes the tabletop to
get jobs done.

sabre saw and jigsaw

The stationary jigsaw that you could carry around with you
evolved into the sabre saw. This type of tool is notable for having an open
blade at one end, as opposed to a down-facing tool.

As manufacturers modified the sabre saw, they placed a knob
on the top to give you more control when turning the blade for intricate tasks.
When it comes to handheld power tools, a sabre saw doesn’t have this knob,
while a jigsaw does.

You will also find that sabre saws are often called
reciprocating saws, depending on who the manufacturer is.

Owning and Using a Sabre Saw or Jigsaw

Purchasing and owning a bladed power tool for all types of
DIY tasks is a great way to get the job done.

While the jigsaw is typically more expensive than the sabre
saw, it can be worth it for the additional features. However, if you’re not
looking to embark on any heavy-duty projects in the future, you may want to opt for the cheaper option.

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