Last Updated on April 12, 2023 by Barry Gray
If you’re planning on building anything DIY, the first woodworking tool you will need is the jigsaw. This tool is perfect for woodworkers of any experience and can help create anything from a DIY table to a DIY stool.
It has a plethora of use cases such as cutting both metal and wood. It’s an excellent starting point for anyone interested in woodworking. Jigsaws can cut way faster than a hacksaw or a sand-saw, saving you a ton of time and effort.
It’s a perfect stand in for tools such as the band-saw or the hack saw. Especially when cutting through plywood. Additionally, a cordless jigsaw offers more flexibility around the workplace.
What are the Benefits of Using a Jigsaw for Your DIY Projects?
1. Safe and Comfortable
The jigsaw is safe to use regardless of your skill level. Thanks to its simple design, it’s pleasant and easy to operate. It’s a great introductory tool for beginners as well.
It has safeguards that prevent your fingers from coming into contact with the blade. Additionally, it rests on the material surface of whatever it is you are cutting. Thus, you won’t need to exert a lot of pressure to keep it steady.
Replacing the blade is also an easy task. All you have to do is:
- Depending on the model, you’ll want to either unplug the jigsaw from the socket or remove the battery
- Find the dial that connects the module to the jigsaw.
- Turn this dial counter-clockwise to release the blade.
- Remove the loose blade and insert a new one in its place.
- Pull the level to ensure that the blade stays in position
2. Can Cut Through Many Materials
The jigsaw can cut through a variety of woods of different thickness and density. In case you are not aware, the jigsaw can also cut through a plethora of materials.
Once you fit and position the blade properly, you can cut through anything. This goes for steel, fiberglass, and even drywall with great ease. This feature makes it a versatile tool that will come in handy in your home workshop.
3. Efficient Cutting
The jigsaw is perfect for creating curved lines, intricate designs, and curved lines. If your project requires any of the above, the jigsaw will work fine. It can slant up to an angle of 45 degrees, making it a perfect instrument for creating elaborate wood items.
As a beginner woodworker, you don’t need to invest in an expensive adjustable table saw yet. You angle your tool and voila! You get the perfect cut.
Today, there exists the option of getting a cordless jigsaw. A battery-powered jigsaw gives you freedom of movement over your workspace. You can cut complicated curves through boards without worrying about damaging the cord.
The only downside to a portable cordless jigsaw is charging. You’ll have to ensure that you conduct timely charging to be able to use it. Even so, a charged jigsaw will run for several hours before needing a recharge.
5. Easy to Use
The jigsaw is a straightforward tool to use. You don’t need to do much. Plug it into the power supply or insert the battery and start cutting. Additionally, since the tool is super straightforward, it won’t take you a lot of time to master it.
It’s also gentle on your arm as you won’t need to exert a lot of pressure on it. The blade works vertically. Thus, gravity will take care of it. All you have to do is hold it in the right place.
To Keep In Mind When Using a Jigsaw for your DIY Projects
The jigsaw is a safe tool to use. Modern models come with safety mechanisms that help reduce the risk of injury. Even so, it still has a motorized, reciprocating blade and thus, there’s risk of injury.
With that said, you should definitely use a lot of precaution while using the tool. Some of the dangers of using a Jigsaw include:
The jigsaw is an electrical device. And like every other electrical device, there is risk of electrical shock. With that said, you should never use the jigsaw in a wet environment. There is a risk of electrical shock if the tool comes into contact with water or moisture.
Risk of Fire
Modern jigsaws work with a RCB circuit breaker. The work of a RCB circuit breaker is to cut off power supply in case of a power surge.
If you are using a non-RCB circuit, there is a great chance that excessive power flow may result in shock or fire. Always use an RCB circuit breaker for added safety.
Risk of Lacerations
Jigsaws do come with in-built safety mechanisms. Even so, if your hand comes too close to the blade, there is a chance that it will slice into your skin. Skin lacerations are some of the most common injuries associated with jigsaws.
We recommend that you always wear Kevlar-fitted gloves to protect against injury. Additionally, ensure that you always operate with a sharpened blade. A dull blade is prone to kickbacks. Trust me, you do not want to see what happens when the blade kicks back.
Tips to Follow When Operating Your Jigsaw
Read the User Manual
I know it sounds weird. No one ever reads user manuals anymore. But in this case, we recommend that you take some time to actually read it. It’ll let you know about other hazards not mentioned here.
In case you don’t have access to a manual (because you tossed it out), contact your manufacturer and request a copy.
Wear Appropriate PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
Sometimes wood chips do jump out during cutting, especially when cutting melamine boards. You’ll need protection around your eyes to prevent eye damage. Safety glasses should come in handy.
Additionally, jigsaws are excessively noisy and produce a lot of fine dust. You will need an FFP certified code mask and hearing protection. FFP1, FFP2, or FFP3 masks are all perfect for filtering out dust.
Finally, ensure that you protect your appendages using Kevlar-fitted gloves and steel-toed boots. You don’t want to risk amputation or injury to your arms and legs.
Other safety tips include:
- Don’t force the jigsaw through hard, dense material.
- Keep your blade and surrounding components well-oiled
- Warn anyone to stay away while you are using the jigsaw
- Mind the cord while moving around your workspace. You don’t want to trip with the jigsaw in your hand.
- Make slow cuts when you are working with tile.
As you can see, a jigsaw is a pretty handy tool to have in your workshop. Not only is it easy to use, but it doesn’t take up too much space in your storage. Not to mention, it offers you more freedom and control over your workspace.
If you are starting out with woodworking, you don’t need to invest in an expensive table saw. A jigsaw is pretty affordable and will help as much as a table-saw will.
If you are looking to buy a jigsaw, check out our practical guide to choosing a jigsaw.