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DIY Helpful tips: What saw do I need?

DIY Helpful tips: What saw do I need?

Any do it yourself will eventually have to cut something in their workshop, and to do that; they are going to need a saw.


Saws come in two basic models: hand saws and power saws.  Power saws and hand saws are available in many different types, depending on what kind of job that needs to be done. 


Types of hand saws include:

Crosscut saws, which is what most people picture when they think of a saw. Crosscut saws are used to cut wood across the grain.

Rip saws, similar to crosscut saws but which are used to cut wood with the grain.

Coping saws, which are used to cut circles or irregular shapes in wood.

Back saws or miter saws, used to make precise cuts. They are often used with a miter box, which guides the saw to make angled cuts.

Hack saws, used for cutting materials like PVC pipes or metal.

Bow saws, used for pruning or cutting branches.

Keyhole saws, used for cutting small curves or holes in wood. They are often used to cut holes in drywall for electrical boxes.


Types of power saws include:

Circular saws, which can be fitted with several types of round blades.

Jig saws, used for making irregular cuts in wood.

Reciprocating saws, similar to jig saws but more powerful

Scroll saws, used for work such as shelf or cabinet decorations

Table saws, used for cutting straight lines and angled cuts.

Miter saws, used to cut crown molding or complex picture frames

Band saws used to rip boards or cut angles or resaw wood.

Chain saws, used for cutting down trees, cutting large branches, and cutting firewood.

Why use a hand saw as opposed to an electric saw?  While electric saws can probably be more efficient than their hand counterparts, and get more work done faster and with less wear and tear on the body, hand saws do have some advantages.

Hand saws are portable and are easier to take to jobs. They can be used anywhere and anytime, and you don't need to worry about whether or not you have power.

Hand saws are also much safer. Power saws move with much more speed than hand saws, and can cut through skin (or even cut off a finger) before you realize it. 

Hand saws also provide more control than a power saw, which is necessary when you're trying to make an exact, detailed cut.


On the other hand, power saws will save you a lot of time and a lot of energy. If you need to cut a lot of wood, or cut a lot of trees or branches, a power saw will get the job done much faster than a hand saw.


So, when you need a saw, ask yourself what you need to cut. Then pick the tool you need, whether it be a power saw or a hand saw, and start cutting!

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