What is a saber saw? A saber saw is one of the most versatile, functional, and handy tools that you can utilize for a variety of projects. They are easy to wield in a lot of situations that would otherwise be too difficult for a traditional circular saw.
But make no mistake, you still need to learn how to use it properly and use the right amount of pressure to handle it correctly. It is also called a reciprocating saw and it just makes a lot of challenging jobs that involve cutting a lot easier than usual.
Want to know more about this awesome tool? Read on!
The saber saw, things you need to know!
A saber saw utilizes a reciprocating motor (thus the moniker) to then move up and down a relatively small saw blade to cut the object that you are working on.
What’s great about a saber saw is that it can be utilized to cut a lot of materials as it can be fitted with a blade that can do so. The said blades for the saber saw will have a different set of teeth determining which material they are meant for.
The common knowledge is that the finer the teeth of the blade are, the tougher the material that it is utilized for. This could be because the finer the teeth the rougher or faster the cut will be. For example, the blade utilized for metal does have the finest teeth in this regard.
You may purchase the blades by set or by individual and don’t worry as they are always labeled so you won’t use the wrong one for the wrong material.
A saber saw can be used to cut wood, plastic, and metal. But also, they can be utilized for cutting materials like leather and linoleum. See how versatile it is? Also, the rule of thumb is that the smaller the saw the more versatile it can be for it will then be easier to wield.
Speaking of which, a saber saw as they come in all shapes and sizes. This is also true with the blades. They may come with as few as 6 or 7 teeth per inch and can be 3 to 6 inches in length.
Also, aside from the size, you need to consider the horsepower of the saber saw as well as its inch stroke. Inch stroke refers to how much longer it can move back and forth with its reciprocating motion.
For example, it is widely known that a saw blade with ¼ horsepower and about ¾ inch stroke length can do a multitude of tasks. Also, some saber saw will come with variable speed controls. This will come in handy for other materials and the cuts that you intend to perform.
More on the blades
Usually, blades with 6 to 7 teeth per inch are meant for quick cuts on wood. Eight teeth per inch can be utilized for wallboard or plaster and those with even more teeth per inch are meant for metal.
Carbide and tungsten-tipped blades are actually quite ideal for a variety of materials and are known to last longer.
A saber saw is simple to operate. You just have a trigger switch right in its handle to then start its reciprocating motion and get going on your project.
Types of saber saw
Aside from size, you can also determine a saber saw through its power source. You have the battery-operated saber saw and then the electric corded device.
As with any cordless device, a cordless saber saw is pretty versatile, convenient, and easier to utilize especially if you mean to make some cuts on challenging situations.
But, if you’re looking for power, then you need to go with the corded saber saw. It’s meant for heavy-duty usage and will come with more powerful specs.
Saber saw versus the jigsaw
Is there any clear distinction between a saber saw and a jigsaw? And yes, it can get pretty confusing but let’s try to discuss it to shed some light on this topic.
Basically, both are variations of the scroll saw and we don’t mean to make things more confusing here. A scroll was the traditional tabletop saw back then and even up to this day. It uses a reciprocating blade that is then secured on both ends that also moves up and down.
The jigsaw came to be as the variation of the scroll saw that has blades fixed on one side only. Eventually, the tool evolved into something portable and of course, handheld. There’s an explanation that as the jigsaw evolved manufacturers started to add a knob to it so they can be utilized for more intricate cuts.
The variety that does not have a knob is then known as the saber saw. But also, both of these tools differ in terms of preferred usage. Jigsaws are known for their accuracy while the saber saw is known for power.
But what about others that are claiming that a reciprocating saw is different than a saber saw?
Good question as we also used them interchangeable above. But just for debate purposes, we can say that the two terms arise from their usage as well. Saber saws are oftentimes referred to as the tool to make vertical cuts while the reciprocating saw is utilized for horizontal cuts.
Best use for a saber saw
As mentioned, the saber saw just makes a lot of cuts in a lot of situations really easy for us. That’s why we think that a saber saw is best to be used when remodeling your house. Whether you are going for a more DIY approach or if you’re a hired contractor, the saber saw should be your best bet.
Why? This is since a saber saw can cut through any material. They can cut through metal, wood, and even nails. Having said that, it will have no problem at all cutting through railings, sidings, doors, and window jams.
It’s the ultimate demolition saw or tool for you. It’s also quite awesome for plunge cuts. But take note, that if you intend to cut through a wall that you know where your plumbing and electrical connections are so you won’t damage them as the saber saw will cut through them.
Saber saws are also easy to utilize if you’re about to make some overhead cuts or if you’re on top of a ladder where a circular saw is just not the practical option.
As always, we need to observe proper safety precautions when operating a power tool, and wielding a saber saw is no exception. Here are a few tips.
- Always make sure to unplug the saber saw and that its trigger is in the off position when you go ahead and change the blades.
- Don’t wear any jewelry nor loose clothes when operating it.
- Always wear eye protection, a dust mask, and earplugs for saber saws can get loud.
- Also, make sure to control the saber saw with both hands. This is also true that as you finish the cut, it won’t fall into any parts of your body.
- Set the material that you’re about to cut on clamps so you won’t have to hold it and have both hands available for holding the saber saw.
- Also, if you put the saber saw down, put it on its side so you won’t damage the blade.
- Lastly, make sure that the blade is not loose or is fitted properly before you use it. A lot of accidents can happen with an unsecured blade.
There you have it, some tips and tricks and all things you need to know about a saber saw. We always advise everyone to act with caution when handling power tools. Now go work on that project!