In today’s review we will be taking an in-depth look into some of the best electric jigsaws in the UK by the top three brands in the industry: Bosch, Makita and DeWalt. I was sure to include both corded and cordless options varying in degree from home use to professional applications.
What exactly is a Jigsaw?
It is a relatively portable power tool comprised of an electric motor that bobs aka “jigs up and down” a saw blade. It can go by multiple names including Scroll saw, Bayonet saw and or Sabre saw.
The Jigsaw was initially created by an engineer by the name of Albert Kaufman in Switzerland in 1946. He observed the bobbing motion of his wife’s sewing machine and was curious if he attached a saw to the same mechanism if it would be useful for cutting. During its initial production, it was manufactured by the Scintilla AG Company of Solothurn, Switzerland.
Originally it was called the Lesto jigsaw until Scintilla was bought out by Bosch in 1964 when they aptly replaced Lesto with the Bosch name. Bosch further went onto improving the design by adding both a pendulum action to the blade movement as well as a tool-less blade replacement function making it even easier to replace the blades.
Almost all the Jigsaws below have this slide in blade mechanism but older units were notoriously a pain to replace the blades as they were often screwed in. Due to the fact that the blade is rather thin and long with no bottom support, one has to be careful in what applications they use it for. It is sometimes tough to manoeuvre so there is a slight learning curve to turning cuts as rather than forcing the blade one must let it be steered by the reciprocating motion.
Most people reading this review probably already have a dedicated battery system with their brand of choice and will probably stick with the same system but other brands offer some excellent competition. Batteries have come a very long way over the years with new lithium-ion batteries having absolutely no memory or self-discharge. NiCD or Nickel Cadmium batteries of the past were notorious for draining and losing their hold potential quickly.
Corded or Cordless Jigsaw?
I suppose the two biggest factors to take into account when deciding between corded or cordless jigsaws is application and budget. Both corded and cordless will handle similarly power wise but if you finding yourself moving around between cuts often, cordless is the way to go.
If you are only doing occasional cuts on a workbench at home then a corded jigsaw might be best for you. Secondly, there is a price difference between both as cordless kits sometimes do not come with batteries and need to be bought separately. This begs into the question of brand loyalty as most new lithium ions are going to be universal amongst their brand. This allows you the freedom of buying one or two batteries that will last years and is interchangeable
Secondly, there is a price difference between both as cordless kits sometimes do not come with batteries and need to be bought separately. This begs into the question of brand loyalty as most new lithium-ions are going to be universal amongst their brand. This allows you the freedom of buying one or two batteries that will last years and is interchangeable between all your tools.
So what is the Best Jigsaw in the UK?
With that said, below are the jigsaw reviews with the key points of interest as well as links to where you can purchase them in the UK.
Bosch PST 18v Lithium Ion Cordless Jigsaw
I’ll start off with saying that this jigsaw does look beautiful! I’m normally more of a function orientated guy but Bosch has really stepped up their game in the visual department. First off, this is an extremely capable jig aw for all your DIY needs and even medium professional usage. If you don’t have any Bosch tools, it is a great introduction and even comes with an 18 V Lithium-ion Battery that feeds through the incredible Syneon Chip. Long story short the new chip technology is ensuring the perfect load at the right time. It is constantly adjusting the motor and gears throughout various applications. This not only conserves battery life but also ensures the long viability of the electric motor components.
To battle the sometimes hard manoeuvrability of jigsaw blades, Bosch implemented the CutControl system to help keep all cuts on track. Also, the Bosch SDS system allows for easy blade changes in seconds without any tools. Like all Bosch tools, this Jigsaw comes with a free 2 year warranty which can easily be upgraded to 3 years by registering your product on their website. So if it’s cutting planks or even sheet metal, this is a perfect all around saw.
Bosch Professional GST 150 BCE Corded 110V Jigsaw
If you are a professional and partial to the Bosch line, you cannot go wrong with this economically priced Corded Jigsaw Powerhouse. The 780 watt overload capable motor will cut deeply through anything you throw at it with ease. This includes hardwood, aluminium, steel and other metals. The soft grip bow handle is beyond comfortable after a long day’s work and coupled with Bosch’s new saw blade clamping system, you will be making extremely precise cuts in no time.
Just because the blades are held on rock-solid doesn’t mean it isn’t a breeze to replace the blades with the effortless SDS system. With controllable power at your fingertips, the variable speed trigger will range from 500 to 3100 strokes per minute allowing you to alternate between clean or rough cuts. You will find yourself making extremely deep cuts up to 150mm in wood and just as impressive in metals. As mentioned above, all Bosch tools come with a free 2 year warranty and rest assured – this tool will last you way longer than that!
Makita DJV182Z 18V Cordless Brushless Jigsaw
As mentioned in other articles, Makita has always been my personal go-to for years even though all brands here are stellar products. Unfortunately, this Cordless Jigsaw will set you back quite a few more pounds than the Bosch above. The price reflected above does not include a battery or charger. Now that we have that out of the way time to talk about what makes this an amazing Cordless Jigsaw. First off in design it differs in the fact that it produces a very large amount of torque which gives longer battery life and less motor friction.
Now that we have that out of the way time to talk about what makes this one of the best cordless jigsaws. First off, in design it differs in the fact that it produces a very large amount of torque which gives longer battery life and less motor friction. With an 18V Lithium Ion XLT battery, you will be putting out a whopping 390W or up to 3500 strokes per minute of output which is impressive to say the least in the cordless genre. Furthermore, you will be able to cut a maximum 135mm into hardwood.
My two favorite features of this saw were the slow start function which limits the power initially until pressure is applied to the blade creating a cleaner cut. Also, the two LED lights coupled with a great front blower kept the work area clean and the line of site optimal to make the most precise. The variable speed control dial made it easy to choose speed depending on the application. Finally, much like the other saws, the blades were easy to replace with no tools. All in all, even though the Bosch cordless jigsaw is very capable and drastically cheaper, if you have money to burn I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase this great Makita Cordless Jigsaw!
Makita 4350FCT 240V 720W Corded Jigsaw
If you don’t mind having a chord and are looking for more power for cheaper, this Makita is probably the best corded jigsaw. You are looking at a 720 watt motor powering a blade at 800-2800 strokes per minute. You will be able to adjust your speed on the fly due to the variable speed control and much like its cordless brother, this saw also has the slow start function. Once you get going you will be able to cut up to 135mm through wood and 10mm through steel.
When the blade runs out changing it is super easy because of the quick release tool-less blade change. Finally, this saw feels great in the hand due to the ergonomic handle which combined with the built-in job light you will be able to manoeuvre cuts like a pro every time! As always, this Makita Corded Jigsaw comes with a 1 year warranty.
DeWalt 18V XR Lithium-Ion Cordless Jigsaw
This saw is a direct competitor to the 18V Cordless Bosch reviewed above. In their own right, they both are amazing power tools and competitively priced with each other.
Much like the Bosch, this DeWalt cordless jigsaw does not come with any batteries or charger. One major difference is the fan cooled motor has replaceable brushes if by chance they did happen to burn out. This is highly unlikely as the intelligent XR lithium system carefully controls the torque and speed depending upon the load. Under full load, you will be able to cut at up to 3000 strokes per minute but also have full control of the speed with the intelligent variable speed trigger.
Much like all Jigsaws on this list, the corded DeWalt has an easy tool-free change system for blades and also accepts T-shank Blades. The dust blower was the best of the units tested and more than adequately cleared the work area of dust and debris while cutting. Finally, the Rubber coated grip was my favourite for extended use as it drastically reduced vibrations in my hand.
DeWalt DW331 Corded Jigsaw
I have to start by saying that this is the most expensive tool of these jigsaw reviews. At the same time, it is also the most powerful and heavy-duty of all the tested units. So if you simply want the best professional jigsaw, this is for you!
As a 240V saw the variable speed 700-watt motor will go up to 3100 strokes per minute in even the most demanding situations. The dust blower beyond cleared the working area and you can also direct it through the included dust extraction adapter. The Jigsaw blades were a breeze to change just like on the other DeWalt Jigsaws. Finally, for ultimate customization of cuts, the 3-position orbital will change the aggressiveness or smoothness of cuts.
Bosch PST 700 E Compact Corded Jigsaw
Less than £50 (price when reviewed) for a compact corded jigsaw, let alone the Bosch name to back it up. Not bad! For everyday use around the house up to medium sized projects this is the perfect Jigsaw.
For everyday use around the house up to medium-sized projects, this is the best budget Jigsaw. Its form factor is smaller than the reviewed Jigsaws above but what it lacks in size it makes up for in features. You are looking at a 500W motor that will easily cut to a depth of 70mm in wood. When your blades do break, the Bosch SDS system ensures a quick and easy blade change. Finally, the ergonomic soft grip ensures low vibration. This coupled with the electronic speed control allows you to exactly adjust the stroke rate from 500 to 3000 strokes per minute. All and all this is a stellar budget jigsaw that even comes with a carrying case!
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Best Corded Jigsaw Power Tool
The highest quality Jigsaw hands down goes to the DeWalt DW331 Jigsaw. As mentioned, for those who need simply the most power that will keep on going even through the toughest jobs, need this saw.
Best Cordless Jigsaw Tool
The highest quality cordless jigsaw that hits all the right notes and balances a convenient price tag would have to go to the Bosch PST 18 LI Cordless Jigsaw with 18 V Lithium-Ion Battery. The Lithium-ion battery coupled with the incredible syneon chip technology just keep this professional cordless jigsaw going no matter what you throw at it. I would have chosen the DeWalt cordless jigsaw if they would have included a battery in their selling price, these two are, by far, the best cordless jigsaws that money can buy.
Best Budget Jigsaw
As mentioned above the Bosch PST 700 E Compact Jigsaw is the little jigsaw that you can’t go wrong with. Beautifully combining power and functionality for a price under £50 makes it a no-brainer purchase for you or as a gift for others!
How do you stop a jigsaw blade from bending?
This is quite frustrating, but sometimes when cutting through thick boards, the blades of jigsaw tend to bend. When this happens, the end result is a bevelled edge instead of a square one. To prevent this from happening, make sure your blade is always sharp and always avoid forcing the saw through the cut.
Hopefully, these jigsaw tool reviews will help you decide which would fit your needs the best. Whether you go for a corded or a cordless version, make sure you always use it in a safe manner.
Now, is there any other product you would like us to add to this list? Have you got any other questions? Please let us know in the comments box below!