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Best Manual and Power Saws

Different Types of Saws

Table Saws


Cutting wood with high precision is pretty important if you’re a devoted DIY-er, and especially if you’re a professional. You cannot commence a serious project without having the right tools for it. In order to cut wood quickly and with high precision, you need a high-quality table saw.

Many people don’t take it seriously, but purchasing a new heavy-duty tool shouldn’t be a trivial thing for you. There is plenty of stuff you need to think about before opting to buy a particular model. Also, there are hundreds of available models on the market, but only a few of those are worth checking out.

Every good unit should feature the three most important elements – affordability, precision, and high level of safety. Affordability is a pretty self-explanatory element. However, that doesn’t mean you should look for cheap units. Instead, look for the ones that offer the same amount of features as other more expensive ones do.

image of a man using a table saw

Precision is something that can make or break a particular model. It doesn’t matter how innovative, modern, or expensive a table saw is, if it isn’t accurate – it’s not worth the hassle. DIY projects don’t depend just on your sheer experience, the tools you’re using have to fulfill certain requirements and parameters.

When talking about safety, one of the things you should remember is not to spare money on it. Regardless of how big your budget is, you should always be willing to sacrifice some finances for better safety features. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

These tools are highly useful if one knows how to use them properly. They save a lot of time, money, and hassle. If you’re a hobbyist in need for a new heavy-duty tool, a high-end table saw is the best solution.

Table Saws by Type

portable
contractor
hybrid
cabinet

Miter Saws


If you’re looking to make precise angled cuts, a miter saw is a must-have tool. When it comes to power tools, all of them have a specific purpose, and miter saws are the best solution for crown molding, cutting frames, and handling any project that requires accurate angles. There are plenty of types to choose from such as basic, sliding, cordless, and compound miter saws.

Standard miter saws are used for straight cross cuts, usually the 45 degrees ones. Unlike a chopping saw that cuts only at a 90 degrees angle, these offer a variety of different angles. You can usually fine-tune the unit without any tools by using the positive bevel stops that are already defined by the manufacturer. This type is mainly used for projects like framing pictures, or anything that doesn’t require a peculiar angle.

image of a miter saw

The compound units are similar to the standard ones, but with a few notable differences. The most obvious one is the ability to rotate the blade at a vast range of angles. This ability adds to the complexity of these machines meaning they are slightly harder to master than the standard ones. However, these units are able to cope with much more complex projects due to their versatility.

Sliding units let you move the saw head back and forth thus increasing the overall size of the work surface. It means that you have much more control over a wooden piece because you can push and pull the head arbitrarily.

The most important things to look for in these machines are accuracy, ease of use, and cost-efficiency. If you manage to find a model with these three elements, that should be the one to go with. If you don’t know which one to choose, take a moment and check our reviews out, we’ve covered quite a lot of useful and investment-worthy models.

Miter Saws by Type

portable
contractor
hybrid

Circular Saws


A vast majority of DIY enthusiasts, as well as professionals, love having a circular saw by their side. It’s a helpful power tool that is designed to eliminate extensive labor and significantly cut downtime. On top of that, it is a relatively affordable tool meaning anyone can own one and get rid of fatigue and other unpleasant side-effects of manual saws.

These units operate on a pretty simple principle. They use toothed disks that are driven by a powerful motor located inside the casing. Modern circular saws feature a 15-amp motor which is able to deliver up to 5000 RPM. As you can tell, it has more than enough power to cut through anything as long as you’re using a proper blade. The handheld type is usually the most conventional one that people use. Apart from handheld, there are also miter saws that are capable of cutting different angles, and table saws that are designed for large pieces of wood and demanding projects.

Image of a circular saw

The main advantage of these machines is their ease of use. Anyone can learn how to use a circular saw thanks to its simple working principles. However, one must take great care about their safety because these things can be fatal if not handled properly. Therefore, it’s usually recommended that you read the user manual before turning the unit on. It’s a good way of making sure everything is as it should be.

Before you decide to invest in one of these machines, there are some things you should think about. The first rule is that the price doesn’t indicate quality. In other words, if something is expensive it doesn’t mean it’s worth investing in. The key is in finding the one that suits your needs and meets your expectations.

Circular Saws by Type

sidewinder
worm drive
hypoid
Table vs circular

Chainsaws


Chainsaws are great power tools to have for many reasons. The biggest advantages of these machines are their power, versatility, and efficiency. If you’re looking to purchase one for yourself, there are a few categories you can choose from, depending on your expectations and requirements.

The most popular type among homeowners is corded chainsaws. They are great for people who aren’t as experienced and don’t want to hassle too much with regular maintenance. On the other hand, there are some downsides such as lack of power and portability. In simpler words, if you’re planning on cutting trees in the woods, corded saws might not be the best idea due to certain limitations (e.g. lack of power source).

If you’re looking for high power output and torque, we recommend getting a gas-powered unit. While they do require more maintenance and attention in comparison to electric ones, they also offer better performance and portability. As far as the user’s previous experience goes, you’ll need some basic knowledge, but it’s not as complicated and hard as one might expect.

Chainsaw

Battery-powered units should be used for light tasks such as pruning, trimming, and cleanups. As the name suggests, they use batteries as a power source. They do have quite a bit of limitation but are also the simplest and easiest ones to use. The biggest advantage of these machines is their ease of use whereas the most significant drawbacks are battery-related issues such as long recharging cycles, limited cutting power, and etcetera.

Pole saws are usually miniature versions of everything we mentioned above. They have a specific purpose which makes their use quite limited. In other words, most people use pole saws to cut branches or shape their living fence. Most models can be detached and used as a mini version of regular chainsaws.

Manual models are best for hikers, survivalists, and even hunters. They are the cheapest type but are also the most limited one. While manual chainsaws aren’t power tools per se, everyone should own at least one for emergency cases and various occasions.

Chainsaws by Type

Gas powered
Corded electric
Battery powered
Pocket
Pole

Bandsaws


If you’re looking for high precision and consistency in a tool that’s capable of coping with a wide array of applications, a high-quality bandsaw might be an optimal solution. These saws are well-known for their accuracy, and more importantly – their ability to cut peculiar and irregular shapes.

Most bandsaws work on the same principle of driving a continuous band of serrated metal that is mounted on two (or more) wheels. The quality of these driving wheels is of utmost importance because they are one of the most essential components. For example, aluminum wheels tend to struggle with stability while the ones made of iron have more balance but are significantly heavier.

When it comes to materials it’s able to cut, it all comes down to the type of blade you’re using. A quality bandsaw can cut through wood, metal, and even meat. Also, depending on the distance between the worktable and the upper mechanism, some saws can cut large pieces of lumber without breaking a sweat.

Most models that are available on the market are suitable both for professionals and DIYers, even though the enthusiasts tend to skip on investing in these as most units come at a hefty price.

Bandsaw

Bandsaws are definitely not the easiest tool to master. In fact, it’s strongly recommended that you get familiar with the concepts of these machines before using one. The first reason behind this is safety, while the other reason is the fact that you won’t be able to get satisfactory results if you aren’t experienced.

These tools usually yield great results, but only in the right hands. The only thing that’s averting people from investing is the price. These things are not cheap and as such require a thorough analysis. In other words, make sure you know what you’re investing in before spending a couple of hundred dollars.

Bandsaws by Type

portable band saw
horizontal bandsaw
vertical band saw
benchtop band saw