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In this report

Jigsaws: Ratings of Sources

Total of 26 Sources
1. Taunton's 2008 Tool Guide
Sept. 2007
Tool Test: Jigsaws
by Andy Engel and Taunton Press Editors
Our AssessmentEditors' jigsaw ratings and recommendations in this review are based on tests done for Fine Homebuilding in 2006 (see below). However, this review adds jigsaw ratings from more than 9,000 readers of both Fine Homebuilding and Fine Woodworking magazines. These owners rate two more expensive jigsaws higher than the editors' top-ranked model. Only two relatively inexpensive jigsaws are ranked here; both owners and editors prefer the Hitachi CJ110MV jigsaw over the Ridgid R3121 (*est. $150). (Jigsaws aren't covered in Taunton's 2009 Tool Guide.)
2. Fine Homebuilding
Aug.-Sept. 2006
A Better Breed of Jigsaws
by Andy Engel
Our AssessmentBased on objective testing, this review compares 12 top-handled corded jigsaws starting at about $100. It provides an excellent overview of important features. Each jigsaw gets separate ratings for cutting performance, overall feel, ease of blade changes and extra features – plus an overall rating. The article also includes plenty of details and picks one jigsaw as best overall plus another as best value. Unfortunately, cutting is tested only on 2X lumber, and the smallest radius isn't specified, which may account for the reviewer's discounting of the Festool Trion – recommended in a 2004 review here, based on tight-radius cuts on 4x4 lumber.
3. Woodworker's Journal
June 2005
Puzzling Out Jigsaws
by Rob Johnstone
Our AssessmentThirteen jigsaws priced from $70 to $275 are run through rigorous tests covering all basic uses. For brands offering jigsaws in both D-handled and barrel versions, both are compared. The specifications chart doesn't include results for each cutting test, but it does rate each jigsaw for vibration, ergonomics and overall value. A brief announcement in the June 2008 issue features the new Bosch JS5. The May 2005 issue of the Woodworker's Journal eZine compares four cordless jigsaws, ranking the Bosch 52318 highest but with two minor criticisms. Later reviews in the journal cover the Milwaukee 6268-21 and the 36-volt lithium-ion DeWalt jigsaw.
4. Tools of the Trade
Apr. 2005
Tool Test: Cordless Jigsaws
by Tom O'Brien
Our AssessmentTom O'Brien compares five cordless jigsaws at job sites and in the workshop, testing them on various types of wood in plunge cuts and tight radius turns, as well as in beveled and perpendicular cuts. The Bosch 52318 is rated best for smooth cuts, an effective blower and the way it ejects blades for changes. A Jan. 2007 review of lithium-ion tools is based on tests but includes only one jigsaw, the 24-volt Ridgid R883, which is judged "very capable" despite a plastic shroud that attracts dust and makes the cutting line hard to see.
5. PopularMechanics.com
Aug. 2005
Comparison Test – 9 Jigsaws
by Thomas Klenck
Our AssessmentThis review compares nine jigsaws, including some newer models not covered in the Woodworker's Journal tests. But the tests aren't documented, and the jigsaws aren't rated or ranked. It is possible to infer some rankings from the descriptions given, with the Bosch 1590EVSK clearly offering the best combination of convenience and performance. The review does give useful details about each jigsaw discussed. Erik Sofge's brief review of the Makita LXT lithium-ion cordless jigsaw, published in Aug. 2007, is accompanied by comments from a reader who praises the light weight and balance of Makita's LXT tools. In the Nov. 2008 issue, the 12-volt Craftsman Nextec Multi-Saw, a hybrid saw that works as both a jigsaw and reciprocating saw, earns an award for its versatility.
6. Amazon.com
As of Dec. 2008
Jigsaws
by Contributors to Amazon.com
Our AssessmentOf all the sites publishing owner-written reviews and ratings of jigsaws, we rank this one the highest. Many models have accumulated a significant number of ratings, and the listing is convenient to browse – showing not only each model's average rating, but also the number of reviews on which it's based.
7. Lowes.com
As of Dec. 2008
Jig Saws and Blades
by Contributors to Lowes.com
Our AssessmentEven though Lowe's publishes only owners' ratings of jigsaw models – without including any comments – we rank these reviews higher than those from most retailer sites because quite a few models have accumulated ratings from many owners.
8. Popular Woodworking
Nov. 2003
Orbital Jigsaws
by David Thiel
Our AssessmentIn this older jigsaw review, Popular Woodworking tool editor David Thiel compares 12 orbital jigsaws. Although he tests them for power and cutting quality, he finds that the main feature separating the best choices is the blade-changing mechanism. Based on several months of shop use, a recent review by Robert W. Lang in the Nov. 2008 issue recommends the new Bosch T308B jigsaw blades for clean cuts with less effort and more control.
Toolbox: Cordless Jigsaws
by Ross Welsh
Our AssessmentCarpentry crew leader Ross Welsh tests five 18-volt cordless jigsaws by using them at job sites for more than four months. Comparative tests are also performed in the workshop. The Bosch 52318 earns top ranking. Mark Shapiro's Apr. 2005 review at this site compares the 18-volt cordless Ridgid R843 (since updated as the 24-volt R883) with the 5-amp corded Bosch 1581. Other jigsaw reviews at this site include detailed tests of the newer 6.4-amp Bosch 1590 EVS and, separately, of the Festool Trion. The latter shows no blade deflection, even on cuts with a 1-inch radius, and provides exceptional dust collection.
10. Woodcraft Magazine
Mar. 2006
Product Review: Hitachi CJ110MV Jigsaw
by Dave Eames-Harlan
Our AssessmentWoodworker Dave Eames-Harlan reviews and tests the less expensive of the two current Hitachi jigsaws, the CJ110MV. He finds that it cuts 2-inch hard maple well, and that when the orbital action is turned off, it can cut plywood without tearout. (The splinter guard doesn't seem to make any difference.) All the extra features work well, but the 90-degree stop on the baseplate adjustment is about 3 degrees off, a major flaw. Still, Eames-Harlan says it's a good buy for the price.
11. The Power Tool Geek
Dec. 23, 2005
Makita LXT Lithium Ion Cordless Tools
by Brian Mark
Our AssessmentThough this review was written before Makita added a jigsaw to its lithium-ion-powered cordless tool line, "tool geek" Brian Mark does an excellent job of explaining the technological differences between Makita's lithium-ion tools and those made by other brands. Another article reports results of an informal poll of women, who judge Makita's LXT tools to be the most comfortable and well balanced. A separate 2006 review here praises the Festool jigsaw and dust extractor as ideal for anyone who uses it often enough to justify the price.
12. Bill Esposito
Nov. 2003
Trion PS/PSB 300 EQ Jigsaws by Festool
by Bill Esposito
Our AssessmentProfessional woodworker Bill Esposito evaluates both the barrel-handled and top-handled versions of the 6-amp Festool Trion jigsaw. Speed is controlled by a dial rather than with a variable-speed trigger. The motor adjusts electronically to the load, which keeps the selected speed constant. Esposito is amazed at the power, saying "Using one of [Festool's] exclusive FSG blades, which are thicker than the normal blade, and the pendulum [orbital] action, … you can cut through 4" posts like they were butter."
13. Benchmark
Not Dated
Festool Trion PSB300 eq Jigsaw Review
by Phil Bumbalough
Our AssessmentBumbalough reviews the D-handled version of the 6-amp Festool Trion, saying blade changes are "a dream compared to any other tool I own," and concluding that "the Trion has transformed my opinion of the jigsaw as useable only for rough work." He praises the tool's constant cutting speed and lack of vibration, as well as its ability to make a plunge cut without a starter hole. Dust collection is remarkably good, even when the front dust collection shield is removed to improve visibility.
14. Saws n Dust Online
Not Dated
Review: Festool PS-300 EQ Barrel Grip Jigsaw
by Jim Becker
Our AssessmentJim Becker reviews the barrel-grip version of the Festool based on use in his own workshop. He reports that when using it to execute a scrolling cut with tight diameters on wood 3 inches thick, the Festool saw made perfectly perpendicular cuts, with no blade deflection at all. He notes that the blade guides are similar to those on a bandsaw. When the jigsaw is attached to the Festool dust extractor (a portable shop vac), nearly all the dust is collected. Like most Festool reviews, this one is very enthusiastic, with no drawbacks mentioned.
15. OnlineTool Reviews.com
Not Dated
Ryobi One+ Power Tool System
by Dean Bielanowski
Our AssessmentThis review of Ryobi 18-volt cordless power tools – including the Ryobi P520 jigsaw (now P522) – supersedes an earlier review of the 18-volt cordless Ryobi Model OJ1802K. Woodworker Dean Bielanowski finds the newer Ryobi jigsaw essentially the same, with a comfortable handle and good control with the variable-speed trigger. The main drawback is that the "one-hour charger" takes closer to two hours to recharge a battery.
16. About.com
2008
Bosch JS5 Orbital Jigsaw Review
by Chris Baylor
Our AssessmentThe Bosch JS5 jigsaw gets an enthusiastic hands-on review here, with price being the only drawback noted. Only one other jigsaw is reviewed here, and the testing methods aren't documented. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)
17. Builder News
July 2006
Tool Review: DeWalt's 36-volt Cordless Combo Kit
by Art Waldal
Our AssessmentThis review of the five-piece 36-volt DeWalt DCX6401 kit, based on a contractor's testing, devotes only a paragraph to the jigsaw, praising its adjustable blower, detachable shoe protector (to protect vulnerable surfaces), keyless bevel adjustments and lever for easy blade changes. The only drawback is that it's loud. A 2003 review at this site compares the corded Freud FJ85 jigsaw with the cordless Bosch 52318, finding that the cordless jigsaw cuts 30 feet of 0.75-inch plywood on one battery charge. The review finds both the Bosch dust blower and anti-splinter insert fairly ineffective, but these are the only drawbacks noted.
18. Consumers Digest
Nov.-Dec. 2007
Power Tools
by Editors of Consumers Digest
Our AssessmentThis review recommends corded jigsaws in three price ranges, plus one lithium-ion-powered cordless jigsaw. We rank this review fairly low because it's not clear that recommendations are based on any comparison testing or even actual use. Selection seems to be based on features and price rather than performance and durability.
19. Toolsnob.com
Feb. 25, 2008
Bosch JS5 Jigsaw – Review
by Editors of Tool Snob
Our AssessmentBased on several weeks of informal testing, the new compact Bosch jigsaw gets an enthusiastic review here, with no drawbacks noted.
20. Northerntool.com
As of Dec. 2008
Jigsaws
by Contributors to NorthernTool.com
Our AssessmentOnly a few of the jigsaws sold here have accumulated reviews from enough owners to make the average ratings significant. However, the reviews – often from a mix of professionals and homeowners –are quite helpful.
21. Sears.com
As of Dec. 2008
Jigsaws
by Contributors to Sears.com
Our AssessmentOnly a few of the many jigsaws sold here have accumulated owner-written reviews and ratings. However, this is just about the only place to find user reviews of Craftsman tools. The Craftsman 27245 leads as far as volume of reviews, with about two dozen owner ratings and an above- average score.
22. Toologics.com
May 30, 2007
Makita's New LXT Jigsaw Combines Power with Comfort
by Editors of Toologics.com
Our AssessmentThis brief review of the Makita LXT BJV180 lithium-ion-powered cordless jigsaw does show some evidence of actual testing, noting that the switch is easy to operate even while wearing gloves. However, no drawbacks are cited. The review notes that the Makita LXT lineup now includes almost 40 different tools that use the same lithium-ion batteries.
23. Epinions.com
As of Dec. 2008
Bosch 1587AVSP
by Contributors to Epinions
Our AssessmentEpinions used to feature abundant owner-written reviews, but most have been cleared away. We did find reviews of the older Bosch 1587AVSP, with a perfect five-star rating from 11 out of 13 owners.
24. LumberJocks.com
As of Dec. 2008
Jigsaws
by Contributors to Lumberjocks.com
Our AssessmentThe owner-written reviews posted here often draw quite a few comments from other users, but the reviews and ratings aren't consolidated by model, making navigation a pain.
25. New Woodworker
Not Dated
Jigsaws
by Tom Hintz
Our AssessmentWoodworker Tom Hintz provides separate in-depth reviews of jigsaws without rating or ranking them. The reviews are very detailed and well illustrated, reporting on hands-on usage, and we'd rank them higher if they were more critical.
26. 3Luxe.com
As of Dec. 2008
Jig Saws
by Editors of 3luxe.com
Our AssessmentTwo cordless jigsaws and one corded model are recommended and reviewed here based on research from undocumented sources.

Jigsaws Runners Up:

Bosch 1587AVSP *Est. $100

3 picks by top review sites.

Bosch JS5 *Est. $80

3 picks by top review sites.

Milwaukee 6268-21 *Est. $155

2 picks by top review sites.

Ryobi JS550LK *Est. $70

2 picks by top review sites.

Ridgid R883 *Est. $120 without batteries

2 picks by top review sites.

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Bosch 1587AVSP Progressor Top-Handle Jig Saw Kit
Buy from Amazon.com
from Amazon.com
New: $254.00   
Average Customer Review:  
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Bosch JS5 5.7 Amp Jig Saw
Buy from Amazon.com
from Amazon.com
New: $191.00   
Average Customer Review:  
image
Milwaukee 6268-21 6.5 Amp Top Handle Jig Saw
Buy from Amazon.com
from Amazon.com
New: $296.00 $185.73   
In Stock.
Average Customer Review:  
image
Ryobi ZRJS550LK 5.5 Amp Orbital-Scrolling Jig Saw with Laser Kit
Buy from Amazon.com
from Amazon.com
New: $89.99   
Average Customer Review:  
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