What Is A Jigsaw Used For And How To Use It

There are possibly no other kinds of saw that can be as versatile and handy as the jigsaw. As a power tool, the jigsaw is considered to be the master in cutting varied shapes in varied materials. You can use it to cut holes, curves, stencils, and bevels on wood, tile, steel, or carpet. This alone makes the jigsaw a valuable tool. However, its size makes it more ideal. Since the jigsaw is small, you can carry it anywhere and use it in a small workspace. What’s more is that its size does not have a negative effect on its performance. In fact, the jigsaw is powerful enough to cut pine boards. Lastly, this saw allows you to start cutting in the middle of the board.

If you have not yet acquainted yourself with it, you can learn what a jigsaw is used for and how to use it in this guide. 

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Different Types of Cut the Jigsaw Can Make

Being the finesse tool that it is, the jigsaw can make simple and decorative cuts. When used correctly, it may be the best power tool you can have in your workspace. Here are the different types of cut you can make using this saw:

Sweeping curves

The jigsaw is primarily known for its ability to cut curves. Since it’s small and light, it’s easy to maneuver so that you can cut through the outlined design. This said, you can cut a perfect circle across a wooden board with or without the use of a cutting guide. Since the blade of the jigsaw is thin, you can easily fit it in tight spaces, making a follow-up curve lines easier to do.

Straight lines

With its short, sewing-machine-like action, the jigsaw can cut into tight corners and make a straight line. However, in order to do this, you might want to use a wider blade and a straightedge as a cutting guide. The jigsaw is powerful enough to make a straight line across or along the wooden grain.

Deep plunges

One of the things that make the jigsaw unique is its ability to make plunge cuts, thus eliminating the need for drills. You only have to tip the saw, rest the jigsaw’s shoe on the edge, and slowly lower the blade into the wood. It’s advisable not to make the plunge in the line of cut though. Instead, make it in the middle or in the waste.

Beveled edges

Since the blade of the jigsaw tend to bend when you make a cut, it tends to leave a beveled edge rather than a square one. This is especially true when you make the cut across a thick board. The jigsaw’s pivoting shoe also allows you to make beveled cuts willingly. You just need to position the shoe at a 45-degree angle.

What a Jigsaw is Used For

Jigsaws can perform the same task as that of the band saw and the circular saw. Depending on the type of the jigsaw and blade, you can even use it like a drill. The best jigsaw blade allows you to cut thin and thick materials in different ways. With the right skills, you can easily maneuver the tool so that you can get the cut you want.

Most of the time, jigsaws are used in accomplishing the following tasks:

1. Cutting countertops

If you’ve bought yourself a new countertop, you know how difficult it could be to make the right cut that will fit the faucet and hose. Since these require you to make small holes, you need something as small as the jigsaw to do the job. However, since countertops tend to be thick and hard, you need to buy a downstroke blade for your jigsaw.

2. Making decorative wooden patterns

Because the jigsaw is an excellent tool for making plunge and curve cuts, you can use it when you want to work on scrollwork and stencils for your furniture. It is easy to operate the jigsaw across different kinds of wood. However, since you are working on minute designs, it’s best that you master how to use the jigsaw before you attempt to make the final decorative pattern.

3. Making pipe holes

Though it puts your jigsaw blade’s sharpness at risk, you can use the tool in making small pipe holes. You just have to make sure that you use the thickest jigsaw blade that you have. The best way to do this job is to cut the metal pipe at low speed. You can also clamp the metal between two sheets of plywood to drill through the material with more ease.

4. Cutting tiles

The jigsaw is not as effective as a tile cutter. However, in its absence, you can use the jigsaw in making curved cuts. The work will be slow and difficult, but the jigsaw will help you accomplish the task. For this task, you need to use a special toothless blade. You also need to frequently lubricate the saw cut.

Tips in Using the Jigsaw Effectively

Before you use the jigsaw, it pays to know how to properly operate the tool. Here are the most important tips that you need to remember every time you handle jigsaws:

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    Always use the correct blade for the job that you intend to do.
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    Before using the jigsaw, check the blade and make sure it is secured. 
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    Put a masking tape or a laminated sheet on the jigsaw’s base to protect the material. 
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    Draw appropriate markings or cutting path on the material to make precise jigsaw cuts. 
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    No matter what shape you intend to make, start cutting by making a hole. 
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    Avoid forcefully pushing the blade if you don’t want to break it. 

Conclusion

When I was new to using the jigsaw, it was difficult to operate it especially when I was making stencils. However, with enough practice, I was able to perfect the designs I wanted to have. Do you think you’re up to the challenge as well? Let us know your own first experience when using the jigsaw and how you have overcome it in the comment section below.

References

Ethan Johnson
 

I’m Ethan Johnson. I’m a mechanical engineer, and I’m passionate about Home Improvement. I hope my skills and experience can help you remodel your home by turning simple, inexpensive, and innovative ideas into easy tasks that you can DIY! So no need to go too far, just read on and you’ll be ready to get the ball rolling.

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