5 Best Jigsaws Under $100 ( Buyer’s Guide )
The best Jigsaws Under $100 are becoming the essential tools in the store of any home craftsman. They work on the wood of various densities, including chipboard, OSB, MDF, and classic plywood. Also, they cut through plastic, steel, and non-ferrous metals. These tools make a curved cut along the intended line, which allows you to perform openwork carving and other complex types of work. This makes them a necessary and must-have device for hobbyists and professionals alike.
“Jigsaws are either designed for straight cutting or cannot perform slotted work. The scroll and metal blades of these tools are strong and light, which increases the speed of the machine and ensures smooth cutting. Compactness, lightweight, and ease of use make them highly appreciated by users. There is the compact handle that offer easy maneuverability together with a built-in dust blower and rubber that offer good grip.”
The case of the jigsaws under $100 is made of high-quality and durable material, which makes them last longer. Thanks to a stable sole and a comfortable handle that allows you to work without tension and fatigue. The engine accelerates smoothly and gives a long-cutting service. Thanks to an LED backlight, jigsaws can be used in poorly lit places. The file is replaced by a quick-fix mechanism, making it easy and fast. Likewise, the blade can be fixed with teeth forward or backward, so you can cut backward, which increases the convenience of working with these power tools. They are convenient for comfortably fit in hand, have minimal vibration, and the pendulum stroke modes where you will not want to use another jigsaw after working.
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Factors to consider when buying the best Jigsaws Under $100
- Sole Angle
The sole angle is an important factor to consider when buying the jigsaws under $100. The file is strictly at right angles to the supporting sole in the standard position. The cut is also made at a right angle. If necessary, you can cut at any angle. The design of the jigsaws provides for adjusting the angle of inclination of the support sole. The clamp screw is released, and the soleplate tilts to the desired angle.
For ease of orientation on the arc of the clamp, as on a protractor is applied. Depending on the model, the sole tilts relative to the file from 0 to 15, 30 or 45 degrees. Since such a tool mainly has to cut thin material, the angle of cut (for example, on 2 mm thick plywood) rarely matters. If the jigsaw is purchased specifically for the tasks of sawing at a certain angle, special attention should be paid to this factor when choosing.
- Blade material
When buying the jigsaw, the buyer will receive one or more saw blades made of different materials for sawing wood, MDF, fiberboard, chipboard, soft metals, etc. They are made of hardened carbide steels of various grades. But the modern market offers owners of the jigsaws about a hundred varieties of files for different purposes. For example, the saw blades are made of high speed steel alloyed with cobalt, tungsten, vanadium, or molybdenum for sawing metal. Also, they have a small, heat-treated (hardened) tooth.
They offer a strong steel blade with a relatively large tooth for wood and other soft materials. Also, for carving ceramics along curved (shaped) lines, saw blades made of durable steel with diamond or tungsten coating are used. The pins also differ in material. They have different thickness, length, and tooth pitch with a standard shank. A long file will increase the maximum depth of cut, even beyond the values indicated in the specifications, and this will require quality material.
- The method of attaching the file
When buying the jigsaws for under $100, you need to consider the method of attaching the file. With the modern jigsaws, they have two methods of fixing the file in the groove of the rod used. They have the threaded clamp with one or two screws, a hex head, and the automatic lever clamp. The first method fixes the file more reliably, without play, regardless of its thickness. This method is suitable although tightening the bolt with a wrench is more difficult than instant clamping with a lever. Moreover, caution is required; the thread can be torn off with excessive force.
The second way is more convenient. The lever is pressed, the old file is pulled out, a new one is inserted, and the lever is pressed. This method of using jigsaw is fast and convenient, and no key is required. Sometimes such fixation allows the file to play or a file with a thick blade does not fit into the groove of the automatic clamp, where a thin one may hang out. Different models use different mechanisms but often, on household models, they are short-lived. On professional jigsaws, threaded clamps or reliable automatic ones are used. The auto-clamp is justified when you need to cut several different materials in a short time, and you have to change the blades frequently. This improves performance.
- The shape of the jigsaw shank
Most jigsaw shanks have a standard fit and are interchangeable. That is, they are suitable for the electric jigsaws. The standard shank is T-shaped. When removed, the file resembles a knife, where the shank looks like a handle with a limiter. The exceptions are the U-shaped shanks (American standard), T-shank with an additional stop bar for old models of Bosch electric jigsaws, and files with a unique shank shape for old Makita jigsaws. There are few such tools left today, and it isn’t easy to find particular files for them on sale.
- Stroke length
This is the distance the blade moves up/down when sawing. The feature is not always indicated in the characteristics of online stores but almost always in paper operating Instructions. For example, a jigsaw with a cutting depth of 70 mm has a saw stroke of 20 mm. This is an average and good indicator.
To provide a greater stroke, it is required to increase the details of the reciprocating mechanism structurally. This leads to an increase in the dimensions and weight of the tool and reduces the cut’s accuracy. A smaller stroke reduces the sawing speed at the same frequency. So consider this factor when buying the best jigsaw for $100.
- Stroke frequency
This is the number of ticks (up/down) per minute. This figure is from 500 to 3500 cycles /min for different models with adjustable frequency. The optimal speed for each material is set by means of adjustment by trials in actual sawing. For some materials, a lower frequency is better, and for others, a maximum frequency is better. For example, plastic at high speed can melt, heating up from friction with a file. When sawing different metals, an individual speed selection is also required. For example, cutting plywood or plastic at too low a speed will not work as the teeth cling and get stuck.
- Pendulum move
When buying the best jigsaw, you need to consider the pendulum move. This is when the jigsaw blade moves up and down and back and forth. The pendulum stroke significantly increases the speed of work and the productivity of the jigsaw. Although at the expense of reducing the quality of the cut.
The maximum pendulum pitch is used when sawing soft materials. The harder the workpiece, the smaller the swing step should be. When dissolving metal and ceramics and with a curvilinear cut, the pendulum stroke is turned off altogether. This means you need to consider this feature.
- Power type
The power type is a very important factor to consider. The battery version is convenient for working at height, at a distance from the mains when sawing large-area sheet material. The jigsaw has to be moved, for example, along a sheet of plywood 2.5 m long. At the same time, the wire that clings to the back can get tangled, or its length may not be enough. All this creates inconvenience, and in such cases, the wireless option is better.
For other work on a workbench, a table, a cordless jigsaw has no advantages. The network version is always ready to work. This is because it is more convenient. After all, you do not need to charge the batteries or store the charger. In addition, battery options are more expensive than network options.
- Engine power
When buying the best jigsaws under $100, you need to consider the engine power. How the jigsaw will cope with the loads directly depends on the power. A jigsaw with any engine must cut the workpiece of the thickness specified by the manufacturer. For example, in the characteristics of 500 and 800 jigsaws, a maximum cutting thickness of 60 mm can be indicated. But this only means that the file comes out of the support platform to such depth.
At the same time, it will be difficult to cut a low-power version, a tangible load, or even an overload. On the other hand, a powerful jigsaw will work faster without feeling stressed and will last longer. If you do not plan to cut large-sized workpieces, most buyers for everyday life choose models of low and medium power of up to 500-600 watts.
5 Best Jigsaws under $100
1. BOSCH JS260 Top-Handle 120-Volt Jigsaw
The BOSCH model is among the best jigsaws under $100, which offers a sturdy footplate to ensure an accurate cut. For one thing, it comes with a 6.0 Amp motor that delivers about 3,100 strokes in every minute with a variable-speed control. A variable-speed dial control offers maximum speed with the accelerator trigger that regulates the operating speed. The always-on dust blower is available, which keeps a cut line free of dust and visible.
This jigsaw comes with a low-vibration plunging design to ensure smooth operation and accurate cutting. Thanks to the toolless blade-change system, it provides fast removal and insertion of blades. It has the four orbital-action settings in the same case, which offer various blade strokes for aggressive and smooth cuts. The multidirectional blade clamp is unique because it delivers a superior grip of the T-shank blades. What is more, it has a heavy-gauge steel footplate to provide sturdiness.
- It offers variable-speed control
- It has a sturdy motor
- Smooth operation and cutting accuracy
- Quick blade removal and insertion
- It has a heavy-gauge steel footplate
- It offers user comfort
- Powerful and quiet
- It is well balanced
- The design of the anti-splinter is poor
2. Makita Ergonomicall Top Handle 4329K JigSaw
This jigsaws under $100 from Makita is fantastic because it combines power with ease-of-use and compact design features for various cutting applications. Notably, it comes with a variable speed control dial that enables the user to match the application speed for ideal cutting performance in different materials. In all honesty, it has an ergonomically designed rubberized grip, which increases control and comfort.
Similarly, this model has a sliding dust cover used during the vertical cutting to help prevent the chips from flying. The through-the-body dust port is available for it offers optimal dust management easily to clear dust vacuum and cover. On the other hand, it comes with a counterweight balancing system that helps to improve comfort and reduce vibration.
Besides, it has a large trigger switch, which ensures an easy lock-on button and operation for extended use. It applies leading-edge innovation to the energy-efficient and compact design yet delivers industrial-strength results and power. Also, it is ideal for specialized residential construction workers, cabinetry makers, and professional woodworkers who need a superior jigsaw in the compact size.
- Rubberized grip increase control and comfort
- It has reduced vibration
- Easy to operate
- It is lightweight
- Easy to use
- It comes with a warranty
- Hard to get an accurate angle
3. PORTER-CABLE MAX* 20V JigSaw
Going for this jigsaw model, you are sure of getting the right tool. It features three orbital settings to offer you control. Equally important, it quickly changes the cut aggressiveness across different applications. There is an integrated dust blower that helps to clear debris for better visibility. In the same case, it comes with a tool-free blade release, which allows for easy and quick blade changes of a jigsaw tool.
Additionally, this tool has a variable speed trigger of 0 to2500 SPM, which offers accurate and clean cut control. Other than that feature, it has the beveling shoe, which offers the ability to cut 0-45° bevel cuts. The contoured over-molded handle is available, which is optimized for added comfort. You will get the variable-speed trigger to control the blade speed for an accurate and clean cut. What is more, the dust blower is clear for better visibility.
- Dust blower has better visibility
- Easy to change the blade
- It offers accurate and clean cuts
- Easy to use
- It has increased comfort
- You can easily adjust the cuts
- It is expensive
4. BLACK+DECKER Jig Saw
If you want to boost because of high-power and precision cutting, go for this tool from BLACK+DECKER. In particular, it comes with four curve settings that offer maximum control over curve cuts. In the same way, it has an adjustable shoe with awire guard to offer a line of site and enhanced stability. The compact handle is available with a built-in dust blower and rubber.
This jigsaw under $100 offers increased precision because of a 3⁄4-inch blade orbital action and 5 amp. Equally important, it comes with a variable-speed motor that generates about 3,000 SPM of the cutting power. Even more, there is the tool-free blade change that quickly swaps out T and U shank blades without extra tools.
- It has increased precision
- Maximum control over curve cuts
- Easy to maneuver
- It has a high power motor
- The shoe is adjustable
- Easy to use
- It is versatile
- Not safe to use
5. SKIL 6 Amp JS314901 Corded JigSaw
Many people go for this jigsaw $100 from SKIL because it delivers precision on different applications. For one thing, it comes with a 4-stage orbital feature that allows a smooth cutting capacity across various applications and materials. It has a 2-finger trigger in the same case, which offers increased control.
Furthermore, this tool has a fast-adjust angled cutting that helps to adjust a shoe bevel for the angled cutting minus any tool. You can get ten times lighter than the standard LED with the bright halo light that reduces shadows and lights up the workspace. Above all, it comes with the on/off dust blowing button, which offers a clear vision of a piece being cut so that you can track a cutting line easily.
- High cutting efficiency
- 2-finger trigger offer increased control
- You can quickly adjust the cutting angle
- Bright halo light reduce a shadow when sawing
- It has a smooth cutting
- Easy blade change
- Clear view precision
- Easy to use
- Easy to maneuver
- It is stable and adjustable
- It has a soft start
- Sturdy and Look professional
- It is a little expensive
Does the pendulum stroke affect the quality of the cut?
It does, and not for the better. Such jigsaws have a higher cutting speed, but the file may strive to leave the line. And curvilinear cuts with the pendulum turned on are generally not recommended.
What is the maximum thickness of wood that can be cut with a jigsaw?
Jigsaw blades are about four inches long and have an efficiency of about three inches. It cannot cut through anything thicker than the length of the blade. You will also find it challenging to cut through the wood the same length as a jigsaw blade. Ideally, you should cut wood that is at least one inch shorter than the length of the saw blade.
Are jigsaw blades universal?
No. If the jigsaw blades were universal, it would mean that it could cut all types of materials except wood. However, this is not the case. Jigsaws require blades of different thicknesses, lengths, and designs to cut different materials. Also, U-shaped or all-purpose blades are not all-purpose blades, as the name suggests. It only describes the part of the blade that is clamped by the clip.
Can multiple jigsaw blades be used to cut thick wood?
Yes. If your jigsaw can hold multiple blades, you can fold the blades in half to create a more stable cutting tool that can penetrate thick parts. Just remember to tighten the blade clamp to avoid rough cuts or injury.
Will I need a special saw blade for specific cuts?
Yes, you will need to change the blade when making specific cuts or cutting different materials. For example, blades with more teeth per inch are better for making smooth cuts. Ideally, the blade packaging will list the materials the blade works best with.
Do jigsaws work well on different materials?
Yes, jigsaws can make a clean cut on various materials; as long as you use a right blade and choose the right speed, you don’t melt the material and make a rough cut on it.
What size extension should one use?
Just make sure it can handle the power of your jigsaw, and you will be fine. Ideally, the cord should be rated for a much higher load than the saw’s motor to provide some spare power.
The jigsaws are the important tools when you want to cut chipboard, OSB, MDF, classic plywood, steel, and non-ferrous metals, among others. They are inexpensive, powerful, and equipped with a special pad that protects the material from being cut from scratches. There is a convenient manual platform adjustment when operating them.
To improve the accuracy of the cut, there is an LED flashlight and a function for blowing dust and sawdust. The inclination of a file is regulated without an additional key. Likewise, a soft pad on the sole protects the material from scratches. You can fully control the sawing process thanks to the electronic speed control. For convenience and time saving, there is a built-in laser. Also, a pendulum stroke makes it easier to cut soft materials such as plastic, rubber, softwood.
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