A hallmark of a handyman or a homeowner who specializes in do-it-yourself tasks around the house is a power saw, one of the most popular power tools on the market. Power saws are used to build, reshape, or break down materials to help you revamp, retool, and improve your home or office. Before purchasing a power saw from an online retailer, it's important to identify what kind of saw you need. Here are some of the most common types of power saws.
This is one of the most common types of power saws used because of its portable nature. Usually ranging between 4 to 8 kgs in weight, chainsaws are commonly used for outdoor improvement projects such as trimming branches, cutting firewood, pruning hedges, removing small trees and bushes, and even cutting and sculpting ice with its metal teeth on a rapidly rotating chain. Chainsaws come in electric and gas-powered versions and are available in cordless and plug-in models.
Also known as a pole chainsaw, pole saws are exactly what they sound like -- a long pole with a mini-chainsaw featuring a rotating band of small teeth located at the end of it. Pole chainsaws are best used for cutting down higher tree branches on a ladder or for gardening tasks such as trimming hedges, bushes, or lawn areas that are in hard-to-reach places. These saws are very light, a few kilograms at the most, and typically come with attachments that allow multiple distinct uses.
This is another common saw for work around the house. It's a portable saw that has a circular blade that cuts in a rotary motion with the intent of making specialised rip cuts--cuts of wood that go with the wood's grain. While a circular saw is portable like a chainsaw, it delivers a more precise cut and is best used when the wood or other materials that need to be cut, such as masonry and plastic, are held down in a vise. Circular saws are usually electric and are available in cordless and plug-in models.
Table saws have a circular rotating blade like a circular saw, but they also come with a table to hold and feed the material into the rotating blade. Table saws are advised for the mass cutting of materials such as wood, masonry, metal, and PVC pipe. The table element allows for stacking and feeding materials into the saw in a rapidly efficient fashion. Table saws allow you to easily adjust the height and angle of the blade, making it easier to execute different types of cuts with little to no hassle.
The power jigsaw is a handheld saw designed specifically for skilled cuts. Unlike the straight cutting that comes from saws with circular blades, the jigsaw has a reciprocating saw blade that can be angled and bent a bit, allowing the user to make circular or angled cuts. Jigsaws are best used for more artistic cutting of non-straight-edged shapes such as circles and ovals, as the nature of the blade makes it difficult for a jigsaw to do straighter cuts.
A relative of the jigsaw, sabre saws are extremely light, hand-held portable saws used for specialized cutting of elements such as wood in hard-to-manoeuvre places. Sabre saws have a reciprocating blade similar to power jigsaws, making them useful for curved and angle cuts, but their portable nature allows them to skillfully cut materials without having to gather and hold them down, as with the bigger portable saws.
A band saw is similar to a table saw in that it has a table to rest and feed wood and other materials into the saw blade. Unlike a table saw, a band saw has a blade with continuous metal teeth on one side, allowing it to make uniform cuts. But the straight, flexible nature of the band saw blade allows for more specialised, curved cuts as well. Bandsaws are best used for heavy amounts of work, whether it's producing lumber, metal, or even cutting large portions of meat.
Also known as a demolition saw, this saw is specifically used for cutting hard materials such as asphalt, stone, brick, or tile. It does this with a diamond saw blade that is able to make straight cuts into these hard materials. Concrete saws come in several types, from handheld saws that are best used to cut tile to walk-behind types that are advised for breaking heavier rock and asphalt.