Expertise: Tool Feature Jigsaw Tips
Ensure your next project makes the cut, with this simple jigsaw guide (1 Minute Read)
While most workshops are so diverse that their tool requirements vary greatly, there are very few workshops that can afford to go without the versatility of a Jigsaw. When looking at the various cutting tools available for workshops, such as table saws and band saws, the options start to stack more in favour of a good reliable Jigsaw instead.
JIGSAW TOOL BENEFITS
CURVE CONTROL –A Jigsaw is the perfect tool for executing tight corner and curved cuts
SPACE SAVER – A Jigsaw takes up much less space than a band saw and, in some instances, even come in cordless models
COST- CUTTING – Jigsaws are generally a much more affordable option for the average woodworker
FAMILY SAFE – Under strict supervision & guidance, Jigsaws can even be handled by children
THE LOW-DOWN ON JIGSAW BLADES
BLADE Shank: Blades come in 2 types of shanks.
U-Shank: Although some prefer them, these shanks need a special hex wrench to install the blades.
T-Shank: These are more common in modern tools, and do not require a special tool.
Blades are available in a variety of types, each best suited for different materials and cutting techniques.
|HCS (High Carbon Steel)||Better for softer materials, such as soft wood, soft plastics & wood fibreboards|
|HSS (High-Speed Steel)||Better for harder materials, such as metal, copper, aluminium, perspex & non-ferrous metals|
|BIM (Bi-Metal)||Hard blades which are more expensive but also last a lot longer|
|Carbide||Better used on materials such as plasterboard, cement-bonded fibreboards, fibreglass & stainless steel|
How a blade’s teeth are shaped will result in a wide variation of cutting results. Here are all the different types of blade teeth shapes.
MILLED TEETH: Teeth are less finely sharpened, jutting out jaggedly along the side, and will result in a faster but rougher type of cut.
MILLED SET TEETH: Teeth are jagged jutting, but within the line of the blade, resulting in a faster but rougher type of cut.
MILLED WAVY TEETH: Teeth are set in a wavy line within the line of the blade, resulting in a fine straight type of cut.
GROUND TEETH: Teeth have been filed to create a softer edge, resulting in a better, cleaner cut for softer materials.
GROUND SIDE SET TEETH: Teeth are filed but jut jaggedly to the side, resulting in faster cuts through wood, also available in a ‘Precision’ option for more accurate cuts.
GROUND REVERSE SET TEETH: Teeth are set facing upward, resulting in a smooth outline cut on the top surface.
JIGSAW SAFETY TIPS
Here are a few general safety tips to keep in mind when working with a Jigsaw:
- Always wear personal protective equipment [PPE] (i.e. Safety goggles, gloves, safety boots, dust mask etc.) while cutting
- Don’t touch the blade after a long cut, as the blade gets very hot
- Only operate the jigsaw in a dry, covered environment to prevent electric shock
- When not using a cordless Jigsaw, be careful not to trip over the extension cord while moving around
HINTS & TIPS TO HELP YOU MAKE THE CUT
- When shopping for blades, ensure that the blade is at least 2-3cm longer than the thickness of the material you need to cut.
- Holding the blade up against the starting point on the wood, before turning on to start cutting. This way you will have a more stable, neat cut.
- While cutting, remember to keep the base of the saw pressed against the surface to keep the cut’s edges square.
- While cutting, slow down the feed rate in order to manoeuvre tighter curves.
- If you need to make a cut in plywood that runs across the grain, first score a path out with a utility blade. This will lessen the splinters in the cut.
Still unsure about which blade will make the cut for your project? Luckily, with BUCO, it’s easy to be a cut above the rest. Simply visit your nearest branch today and ask our friendly experts about what cutting tool and which blade is best for you. BUCO - Let’s build together.
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