Best Jigsaws of 2017 –  Reviews & Buying Guide

durable jigsawsIf you are a professional or even just casually into DIY, there are certain tools that you need around your house, and you need them to be quality. The first one you probably think of is a power drill, but a saw will go a long way as well. Most people will recommend that the first saw you invest in be a jigsaw.

Out of all the saws on the market, though, why a jigsaw specifically? Well, when it comes down to it, a jigsaw is one of the most versatile tools that you can own. These types of saws can cut curves, bevels, and are easy to use. In addition, jigsaws can even cut plastic or metal in addition to wood with no problem. This is a tool that can be utilized for a variety of projects around the house, making it an essential piece of equipment for home renovations.

However, as with any power tool, you will not want just any jigsaw. Finding the perfect jigsaw for you can be confusing and time-consuming. This does not mean you should give up hope and you do not have to work to find the best jigsaw alone! In this guide, we are going to walk you through our top picks out there as well as give you all the information you need in our buying guide!


Our Top 5 Jigsaw Picks

MODELPRODUCT DIMENSIONS
ITEM WEIGHT
USER RATINGPRICE
Bosch JS470E
Bosch JS470E
15.7 x 14.3 x 4.6 inches
10.2 pounds
4.7/5
$$$$$
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Makita 4350FCT
Makita 4350FCT
9.3 x 2.9 x 8.2 inches
5.7 pounds
4.6/5
$$$$
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BLACK+DECKER BDEJS600C
BLACK+DECKER BDEJS600C
11.8 x 4.4 x 9.2 inches
5.2 pounds

4.6/5

$
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Makita 4329K
Makita 4329K
8.5 x 3 x 7.8 inches
4.2 pounds
4.6/5
$$$
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PORTER-CABLE PC600JS
PORTER-CABLE PC600JS
13 x 10 x 4 inches
6 pounds
4.5/5
$$
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Before anything else, let’s take a look at some of the best jigsaws on the market. To help you find and understand what the “best jigsaw” means, we have created a list of jigsaw reviews to help you narrow down your options. Below these reviews, we have laid out some of the best tips and advice that we have on finding the jigsaw that is right for you.

#1 Bosch JS470E – Our Top Pick

Bosch JS470EComing in at the top of our list is the Bosch JS470E. Our clear top pick, this jigsaw is the most well-rounded on the market. Whether you are an experienced carpenter or a hobbyist looking to make some home improvements, this tool can get the job done right.

The Bosch JS470E has too many great features to list in their entirety, but let’s run through the ones that impressed me the most. First, this saw boasts a powerful 7.0 Amp motor that can push through any tough job. Not only is the motor built to last, but the rest of the saw is also. This tool features die-cast aluminum and steel construction, meaning that it is not going to break on you when you need it most. Also, this tool features variable speed control, allowing you to choose the cutting speed that works best for your project. When you find yourself needing to change a blade for any reason, this product has a blade-ejection lever, so you will not need to risk a burn. This is an excellent safety feature.

It also comes with a myriad of accessories including a blade, an anti-splinter insert, a plastic overshoe, a bevel wrench, and a carrying case. However, it does not come with are clamps which would be nice, especially when this is an expensive product.

Overall, this tool has everything you could ask for in a jigsaw. If you are willing to incur the cost of such a high-end product, you should consider purchasing the Bosch JS470E. It is a reliable tool that will last for many years and many projects to come.

Pros:

  • 7.0 Amp motor
  • Die-cast aluminum and steel construction
  • Variable speed control
  • Built-in dust blower
  • Blade-ejection lever

Cons:

  • No clamps
  • Out of the budget for many


#2 Makita 4350FCT – The Runner-up

Makita 4350FCTNumber 2 on our list is the Makita 4350FCT. This is a real quality product and is comfortably professional grade. Like our top pick, it comes fully loaded with impressive features.

It is a little less powerful than the Bosch with a 6.3 Amp motor, but that is more than adequate for virtually any job. This tool also offers similar features to our top pick including variable speed control, allowing you to set the speed of the blade depending on the task at hand. It has tool-less blade change which is nice but probably not as handy as the blade ejection feature above. This allows the user to change blades in seconds, without the hassle of having to use a tool. It is a real time saver. One feature, I really like is the built-in LED light for increased visibility and accuracy. Now you will never have to struggle to see the line of cut, keeping your handiwork neat and tidy.

There is one thing that is a bit of downer for this product, especially if you are left handed. The lock button is on the left and in a position that is tough to reach for lefties. I am not left handed, but this is pretty thoughtless.

It does come with all the usual accessories including six blades, a cover plate, an anti-splintering device, a wrench, and a tool case.

All in all, this deserves this spot on the list. It is not quite as powerful or feature rich as our top pick, but it has everything you need. Avoid if you are left handed.

Pros:

  • Variable speed control
  • Built-in light for increased visibility
  • Die-cast aluminum construction

Cons:

  • The lock button is in an awkward spot for left handed people.


#3 PORTER-CABLE PC600JS

PORTER-CABLE PC600JSThis item may be third on our list, but that does not mean that it should be discounted. This product has plenty of features that make it attractive to potential buyers, including a more budget friendly price than the products above.

Continuing a trend, the Porter Cable PC600JS clocks in with a slightly less powerful 6.0 Amp motor. While this product has less oomph than the previous two, it still stands up well against the average needs for a jigsaw. For professional projects, you need at least a five amp motor, with DIY projects you usually only need about a three or four amp motor. This product has enough power to tackle any project you could throw at it, making it useful for both hobbyists and professionals.

The Porter-Cable PC600JS stacks up well with our top picks elsewhere with variable speed control, between 7 possible working speeds and tool-free blade change and bevel adjustments. This makes it easy for users to customize the saw for each project.

This product does have one glaring con, however. The release mechanism on the front of the saw’s hold is made of rubberized plastic and is consequently the weak point. This will tend to break more than a rubber or metal piece. This comes with the territory for this sector of the market, however.

For those looking for a great jigsaw that is more likely to fit into a buyer’s budget, the Porter-Cable PC600JS is the obvious choice. Its budget-friendly price and generally good quality make it a purchase that the user will not likely regret.

Pros:

  • Variable speed control
  • Tool-free blade change
  • Tool-free bevel adjustments

Cons:

  • Cheap release mechanism – decreased durability


#4 BLACK+DECKER BDEJS600C – Best For The Money

BLACK+DECKER BDEJS600COur next item is the Black + Decker BDEJS600C, which is our pick for the most budget-friendly jigsaw. This saw features a 5.0 amp motor, hitting the exact power needed for professionals. A key point of good budget picks is that they do enough and no more, saving you money but giving you acceptable performance.

This saw also features an adjustable shoe, variable speed control, and a dust blower. This is more or less everything you need. It also handles well, provides smooth cuts and has a gentle learning curve.

Despite its upsides, there are some flaws with this tool. It is noticeably noisier than other saws on this list. Also, the power cord, which is seven feet long, may not be long enough for all users, so you will possibly need to use an extension cord. Lastly, the shoe can only be adjusted to two angles, 25 degrees and 45 degrees, which can be a problem if you are set on doing a lot of bevel cutting.

Aside from its flaws, this is a good product for the price and should be recommended for those who are working on a budget. This is also a great tool for those who are just getting into a hobby and aren’t sure if they wish to make a large financial commitment to a jigsaw yet.

Pros:

  • 5.0 amp motor
  • Variable speed control
  • Dust blower
  • Adjustable shoe

Cons:

  • Noisy
  • Short power cord


#5 Makita 4329K

Makita 4329KComing in last on our list is the Makita 4329K. This is a great tool for those looking to remodel their home or get into woodworking as a hobby. Because the motor is 3.9 amps, it is not powerful enough for the average construction professional. That being said, this tool has a list of great features for those looking to perform DIY home improvements including variable speed control and a large trigger for easy handling.

Despite its great features, the Makita 4329K does have some flaws. The tool requires a hex wrench in order to change the blade, unlike some of the other saws on this list. Also, not everyone will love the wide grip as it can be uncomfortable, creating a strain on the hand and wrist after long periods of use.

Overall, this is a hobbyist’s tool and a good starter jigsaw. Keep that in mind if you buy it. It is also recommended if you have large hands and enjoy a wide grip.

Pros:

  • Variable speed control
  • 3.9 amp motor

Cons:

  • Not powerful enough for professional use
  • Requires a tool to change the blade
  • Wide handle fails to provide comfort


Factors To Consider When Buying a Jigsaw

In this section, we are going to answer some common questions about jigsaws so you can understand exactly what you are looking at and what you want when you are shopping around. After reading this, we hope you will be able to make a buying decision with confidence.

What are the Pros and Cons of a Corded Jigsaw?

One thing that many users need in a jigsaw is that it can be moved around. This applies to corded or cordless jigsaws, with distinct differences. Each of these options offers distinct advantages and disadvantages to the user so, at the end, which type is better for who?

First, let’s take a look at the corded model. These are usually thought of as the more cumbersome option of the two. After all, a cord only stretches so far, meaning you only have so much room to work with before you are either unplugging and moving it or searching for an extension cord.

However, a corded jigsaw does not need a battery, so it is usually lighter than a cordless version. You obviously don’t have to charge a battery either.

What are the Pros and Cons of a Cordless Jigsaw?

The obvious answer is that you have more freedom of movement. You are not restricted to within a few feet of an electrical outlet.

On the other hand, though, these are usually powered by batteries in the place of cords. This means that these jigsaws are not only heavier but need their batteries recharged regularly as well, and possibly replaced down the line.

What Types of Jigsaws are There?

There are two main types of jigsaws:

  • An orbital jigsaw
  • A straight reciprocating jigsaw

What is a Straight Reciprocating Jigsaw?

A straight reciprocating jigsaw is what most people would consider as the “basic” or “standard” jigsaw. The name of this saw just means that the blade moves back and forth as you use it. This gives the saw a distinct advantage since this movement helps to power through challenging material before the saw even fully gets there.

More than just helping with how easy it is to complete your projects, it is also very precise, allowing for detail work. These models are also usually a little cheaper than orbital jigsaws.

What is an Orbital Jigsaw?

An orbital jigsaw does keep the up and down motion of a straight reciprocating jigsaw but saws forwards and backward also. This creates a far more aggressive cut, allowing for additional power. That makes orbital saws ideal for harder or more difficult material.

This type of saw also helps you by clearing any debris (such as sawdust) as you cut, which allows you to cut faster than you would without an orbital jigsaw.

What Other Features Should You Look For?

While it is good to know what type of jigsaw you want or need and if a cord is right for you or not, there is more than just this to digest when you look at a jigsaw. There are also a lot of different features that you should consider before you make your purchase. Below we will look at some of the most common features you will need to consider:

  • Blade Type. There are two main types of blades that you will have to choose from as you select your jigsaw; U-shanks and T-shanks. T-shanks are the most common choice because they allow for quick changes while U-shanks require a second, outside tool to remove or replace.
  • Motor Size / Power. There are two different measurements of power for these saws; amps for corded models while cordless models are measured in volts. The average strength for jigsaws is 4-7 amps or 18-20 volts. Most users will be fine with a 5 amp or 18-volt model.
  • Stroke Length. This term is for how far the blade moves when it makes a stroke. This varies but the longer it is, the bigger a cut you can make. ⅝ inches is enough for the average user, however.
  • Speed. The speed on your jigsaw will vary, but ideally, you should be able to control it. This feature will be described as “variable speed” if the user can control it. I would consider this an essential feature to have.
  • Bevel Adjustments. A bevel adjustment will let you change the slant of the cut quickly and without a problem. This specifically allows you to make curved and special cuts.
  • Vibration. A high vibration jigsaw will affect the accuracy and precision of your cuts. You should specifically look for comfortable grips and features to lower the vibration of your saw.
  • Versatility. Ideally, your jigsaw should be able to make curved and straight cuts equally well. However, if you purchase a cheap or poorly made saw, you will not be able to make accurate or clean curved cuts.
  • Lithium Battery. Many times, your jigsaw may come as what is called a “bare model.” This means that they do not come with a battery. If they do come with a battery, though, lithium ion batteries last much longer than the standard batteries.
  • Headlights / Guide Lights. This feature is fantastic for seeing exactly what you are doing which will help you to keep your cuts precise and in line with your pencil marks.
  • Dust Port / Dust Collector. One thing that will make seeing where your cutting much more difficult is the presence of sawdust. With the addition of a dust port or dust collector, you can rest easy knowing that the mess you are making isn’t only off your project, but it is not all over your floor either.
  • The material of the Foot. This feature is more of a durability issue. While many jigsaws do use a stamped sheet metal foot, it is recommended that you get a metal cast foot on your jigsaw if at all possible.

Conclusion

The bottom line is that the jigsaw market is vast and includes a wide range of prices and models. There are models made of various materials, with features that cater to different audiences. Some saws are more tailored for professional use, while others are better suited for hobbyists. We have narrowed it down to the five models that we believe to be the top on the market, with the Bosch JS470E coming in at first place. With its great features and powerful motor, this product is, by a distance, the top jigsaw on the market. Conversely, we rate the Black + Decker BDEJS600C highly as well. This saw is ideally suited for hobbyists as it delivers the power of a professional saw while also being budget friendly and easy to use. We hope that these reviews of Jigsaws will help you on your way to finding the perfect tool to suit your needs.

If one of the reviewed models does not fit, use the buying guide to help you make an informed decision. Good luck with your search!