A Guide on Selecting Reciprocating Saw & Its Blades
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There are a lot of specifications of reciprocating saws, however, all of the specifications that a manufacturer is presenting in a brochure or datasheet don’t directly translate to user experience.
Before figuring out what you should look for in a reciprocating saw, you should note down the details of what you are going to use it for. Following main specifications and features play the most important role in user experience,
You need to assess if portability is a key factor for you. If it is, you should look for a cordless reciprocating saw preferably with a brushless motor as they are 5-10% more energy efficient than conventional brushed motors and therefore run slightly more before you need a battery recharge.
You need to assess if you are going to be working in very tight spaces. If you are, look for compactness in the reciprocating saw you are buying. The most compact saws weigh around 4-5 lbs and have a length of 14-15 inches.
The most compact reciprocating saw we have found is Milwaukee 2719-20 M18 FUEL Hackzall and PORTER-CABLE PCC670B Cordless Reciprocating Saw is the runner up in compactness.
Others that take good points in compactness are DEWALT DCS387B & DEWALT DCS367B Cordless Reciprocating Saw. This compactness will prevent your work from getting hindered just because you can’t reach a tight spot you want to cut.
You need to assess if you are going to be using your blade occasionally or frequently. If your use is frequent, vibration dampening mechanism that is generally a counterweight is necessary for preventing excessive vibrations from getting transferred to your hand and shoulder causing user fatigue.
The reciprocating saws we found with good vibration dampening features are Milwaukee 6538-21 Super Sawzall (Corded), Milwaukee 2719-20 M18 FUEL Hackzall (Cordless)and Skil 9206-02 Corded Reciprocating Saw.
When it comes to warranty, you must read the warranty terms clearly before making the purchase. You must go for at least 2 years warranty because that is easily available with majority manufacturers of reciprocating saws.
Yes. They are universal in the sense that you are not bound to buy blade from the same manufacturer you purchased the reciprocating saw from. Sometimes it happens that one blade might fit better in one reciprocating saw than another in terms of firmness of the fit, however, it is rare that a blade fitting inside one reciprocating saw doesn’t fit inside another of different brand and model.
This is not to be confused with the fact that there are different types of reciprocating saw blades for different applications such as metals, wood and demolition etc. The thickness, TPI (Teeth Per Inch) and cutting tip composition (such as a carbide tip for cutting heavy metals) differ in different types of blades based on the application they are designed for.
Reciprocating saw blade types are based on their application such as,
Different brands bring creativity to the game by making specialized blades for more and more specialized applications thereby increasing the types of blades to choose from. You must make the choice on the basis of your requirement i.e. the type of material you are cutting.
If you are interested in learning what are the parameters on the basis of which a blade is said to be best suited for a certain application, there are a limited number of factors,
If above factors are taken into consideration before buying a reciprocating saw or its blades, we are confident you will make the right choice. We have also written a dedicated article on best reciprocating saws for light to medium duty jobs to get you jump started on your shortlisting.
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