Bandsaw vs. Jig saw
I am new to woodworking. And setting up a workshop (while renovating a house) is draining the dollars fast.
But I do need to cut some curves in 2×4 stock, for pusher handles and cams for jigs for my saw and router tables. So I went looking for a good band saw. Some sticker shock here, but certainly will need to go ultimately for a band saw.
But for now, would I be unwise to get a good jigsaw? I like the look of the Bosch ‘barrel grip’ 1584AVSK jig saw. And as I have lots of casing and jambs to do, this might be worthwhile.
Any commments or advice on this?
I have always had trouble with jig saws keeping the cut perpendicular to the face. On thin wood, like 1/2" thick, they cut fine. But if I tried to cut a curve in a 2 x 4 the blade bends to one side and never gives a perpenducular cut. It certainly can't be a saw setup thing because it's the blade that's bending, not anything an adjustment on the saw can do about it.
So, a jigsaw is useful for thin cuts, or on work too large to maneuver on a bandsaw, but I can't make it operate like a precision tool.
Perhaps someone else out there has a solution.
Some alternatives include, cutting with a bandsaw, then chucking the work in a vice and cleaning it up with rasps and files, or a belt sander. Or cutting it in flat facets and cleaning it up. Or finding a friend with a bandsaw. Yes, a bandsaw is a big investment unless you find you are dedicated to the hobby enough over time to really use it.
Thanks for the input. I found the same trying to do a deep cut with a jigsaw -OK, not the Bosch - and it was lousy.
So I took a deep breath and bought, yesterday, the Rigid 14" band. A beauty, just in the sheer engineering of the thing. Did not think I would start using it so soon, but am doing just fine with it now.
ONce again, thanks for the input.
Well you're in with both feet now.
I'd suggest getting at least two blades. A fairly narrow blade, say 1/8", for cutting tight curves, and a medium blade, say 3/8", for gentle curves and straight cuts. There are zillions of blades for all sorts of specific applications.
You have to make adjustments to tension, tracking, and the upper and lower guide rollers every time you change blades, per the instructions. It's not hard, but it's mandatory for the saw to run well. You'll be good at it in no time.
Both feet and all my fingers, still.....
I am looking at the Lee Valley blades. They are not too expensive, and seem to be a bit better engineered. At least they say so....
My two cents .................the 1584 is a good saw but I think the Milwaukee 6276, Festool Trion, or the new Bosch (top handle) 1590 would be a better choice. imho the blades of these saws are much better supported and are less likely to wander. In addition these saws are more powerful (over 6 amps) and offer much easier blade changes. I currently use the top handle version of the Milwaukee (6266) and think it a much better saw than my previous Bosch 1587 which is the top handle version of the 1584.
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