Pros: Quality Jigsaw with scrolling feature. Variable speeds, and tilting base.
Cons: Need to remove guard to replace blade.
It seems like many of my tools were purchased for one purpose: making gingerbread for our front porch. I owned an older Montgomery Ward Jigsaw, but it was very heavy and clumsy. Upon starting this project, I watched the Craftsman's Club sale paper, and saw this Jigsaw on sale. I wasn't sure about the auto-scroll feature, but decided to buy it anyway.
Features and Specs
The saw is very powerful with its 3.5 AMP electric motor, and will even cut thin sheet metal. There is a variable speed adjustment right on the trigger itself, that let's you adjust to speed from 0-3000 stokes per minute. There is a lock on button that keeps the saw running without pushing the trigger. Also the length of the movement of the blade is 3/4 inches. The weight is 4 pounds, which isn't to bad for those long cuts. The base is large enough to keep the saw stable, and tilts 45 degrees in either direction. This is great for beveled cuts. There are double blade slots, the front one which is use for normal cutting, and the rear one which is used for scroll cutting. Yes it does seem to make a difference which slot you use, and the design works great. The Auto-scroll knob on top of the saw allows you to do scroll cuts without turning the saw. You can also lock this scroll button if you are doing straight cuts, or just like cutting the normal way. In the back of the saw there is a blade storage area, where you can keep your extra blades. The saw also comes with a handy dust nozzle that lets you hook your dust collection system, or vacuum up to the saw. I almost forgot this all comes in a durable plastic case.
Scroll cutting 101
As I mentioned before I used this saw for making Gingerbread for my porch among other things. This saw was a the most important tool that I bought to do this work. Although I have a benchtop scroll saw, I used this for most of my inside cuts. Most times drilling a hole in the bracket, and placing the saw blade through the hole to start cutting. This saw performed so well, I decided to do extra brackets for my shed. The auto-scroll feature works pretty well, but most time with the kind of cutting that I was doing, I found the scroll lock on. I used very thin blades, and the cuts were perfect, and need very little sanding. The speed adjustment is also very important for good cuts. If the blade moves too fast or too slow, you get vibration making jagged cuts. I didn't use the tilt feature for this job, but have used it since. The base is perfect size for a good stable cut. I attached my Shop-Vac to the dust nozzle, and dust was very minimal.
The only bad news
The only bad thing that I could find about the saw was the blade guard. I find it hard to believe that Craftsman couldn't find a way to allow you to change the blade while the guard is in place. And even worse they use two different kind of screw heads. The guard put on with a Phillips head, and the blade is secured with a slotted. Keep two types of screwdrivers handy.
Well worth the money
As I said before I watched the Craftsman's Club sales papers, and I got the saw at a great price. I paid $59.99 for the saw on sale, and got an extra 10% off for using my Club card. This made the total price around $54. I'm very please with this saw, and have found it very durable. The features on the saw make it a great deal, and even if you don't care about the Auto-scroll feature, its still worth the money. Great cuts, and value for your money makes this saw an easy choice.