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Getting The Job Done Right

Types of Saws

By: Darion Robinson

Whether you want to make a rustic bench, plumb a new sink, or even install a trim molding, the odds are high that you will have to cut some material. The best part about this is that there is a type of saw that is perfect for your needs. While there are various types of saws out there, the following is a simple list of some of the major brands:

types of saws

How to Choose the Best Type of Saw

It’s all About the Teeth

As you go about purchasing the ideal saw for your needs, you will notice that a significant portion of saw blades have ratings that relate to the number of teeth per inch. Usually, these numbers range in between 2 to 32. That said, some blades that have lower TPI numbers might cut quickly but also produce rougher cuts. Plus, the higher TPI ratings will provide smooth and elegant cuts in wood, as well as various other types of material. 

Consider your Needs

There are various types of saws for as many different applications available on the consumer market. Therefore, before getting a particular saw, ensure that you narrow down your list of needs for the best results. More so, it’s also crucial to know that some saws are dynamic, and can be suitable for various saw use applications.

Types of Saws to Know

Traditional Hand Saw

As a woodworking enthusiast, your shop should be fitted complete with a traditional handsaw, especially with a large blade as well as a sturdy handle. While the saw will be entirely muscle-powered, it works perfectly when a power saw won’t serve.

For instance, the saw will help well when you want to cut through a piece of wood that is too dense for a circular blade. More so, consider a traditional type of saw based on the kind of cut you want to make on the saw. The traditional saw is ideal for:

  • When you want to rip wood, then get a rip saw that has a broad and inclined with an average of 5 TPI
  • A crosscut handsaw is suitable for cutting across the grain, and it might comprise of between 10 and 12 TPI teeth
  • Are you searching for a dynamic compromise in features? Then the dual cut or hybrid handsaw with an average of 6 to 10 TPI can rip wood as well cut across the grain with ease

Suitable for: Cutting hardwood DIY. For an all-around and pocket-friendly handsaw, the WilFiks 16” Pro Hand Saw is perfect for your needs. Featuring an average of 12 TPI, this unit provides smooth and quick cross-cuts to suit your needs.


Featuring thin and interchangeable blades, a hacksaw is usually used to cut hardened materials such as metal pipes. It has a unique range of TPI options, which makes it ideal for other items such as PVC, conduit, sheet metal, and more. Furthermore, a hacksaw also features a tension nut, that makes it easy to stretch the blade taut for ease of sewing. Depending on the specific type of material you want to cut, you can adjust the saw`s tooth pattern for:

  • Small teeth on the raker set positioned in groups of three to provide easy cutting of conventional metal pipe materials
  • A regular set hacksaw that has teeth placed close to each other without spaces, but with teeth that face different directions. Usually, this type of teeth is suitable for cutting soft metal sheets, PVC and more
  • On a wavy set blade, you will come across teeth that sit close to each other. However, the tooth pattern might be slightly angled from either side to the other. Go for this type of blade when you want to cut thin material such as ducting. 

Suitable for: Cutting metal or when you want optimal cutting control. A good example would be the Tekton`s 2 in 1 High tension hacksaw, which is both comfortable and sturdy at the same time. It also features a single 12 inch, 18 TPI blade that is reliable for cutting projects. 

Coping Saw

The U-shaped coping saw has only one goal, which is to make back beveled or coping cuts for trim installation in tight spaces. Even though it has the same appearance as a hacksaw, it has a much more compact frame, and the blade is also short. In most cases, the blade averages at 6 to 7 inches, and consists of between 10 to 36 teeth. 

Usually, the coping blade is installed with the teeth facing the handle of the saw. While a hacksaw has teeth that face away from the handle, the coping saw produces cuts when you pull the saw. Furthermore, these saws usually have detachable blades, and blade rotation is prevented by a steady bar where the blade is attached. 

A coping saw is suitable for cutting through various types of aluminum tubing and metal objects. It has a compact blade that might produce wavy cuts in thick material unless you use the tool with skill. The length of the strength before the frame hits the material top or bottom is the limiting issue in the maximum density of the material. 

Suitable for: Produce high-quality corner joints when you want to install an item conveniently. The saw will provide precise and sharp cuts for your needs. A good example would be the Olson Saw SF63510 Deep Cut Coping saw. This unit has a frame throat that provides optimal room for back cutting on large pieces of wood. Furthermore, the large 32 TPI blade is also easy to rotate 360 degrees for ease of use. 

Jig Saw

A jigsaw is a versatile solution for DIY enthusiasts. It can straight lines just in the same way as a circular saw. However, its real claim to fame relates to its ability to produce curve cuts. Classified as one of the safest saws to use, the jigsaw consists of a base referred to as a “shoe.”

The shoe sits on a flat surface of the material which you want to cut. More so, it also engulfs the blade and provides a degree of user safety. Most jigsaws are available with adjustable shoes that can tilt, thus making it easy to cut at specific angles when required. 


These types of saws can cut almost all types of woods with blades that have a proper TPI level. The teeth on a standard jigsaw will usually face upwards, such that the jigsaw cuts on the upstroke of the blade. Furthermore, reverse blades are used to cut on the downstroke and are suitable for cutting materials that consist of finished surfaces, such as the mahogany top. Even though these blades are available in different lengths, the width level relates to the quality of the curve. Thus, invest in one that is ¼ inches wide and suitable for the standard curves.

Suitable for: Producing curves in wood. If you are searching for a reliable jigsaw for DIY projects, then consider the DEWALT corded 7.8 Amp Top Handle Kit. It comes with a variable speed dial, which you can easily use to customize the speed of the machine for your needs. The entire set is also available with a convenient cutting bag for storage. 

Circular Saw

A circular saw is a powerful tool that features a rough blade or disc, that you can use to cut various types of materials. These might include materials such as plastic, masonry, wood, metal, and more. Just as the name implies, the circular saw uses a circular motion to activate the cutting motion. More so, a hole and ring saw also utilize a circular motion, but are different in construction from the circular saw.

Usually, the circular saws have dedicated blades for cutting specific types of materials. The circular saws are also commonly powered through the use of electricity. Other brands are sometimes powered by gasoline engines or a hydraulic motor. 

circular saw

It is one of the most popular saws used for framing and can be used as a replacement for a table saw. The saw usually features an encased blade and broad base that sits flat on the material you want to cut. Furthermore, the blades can also be adjusted such that you can customize the depth of the cut to suit your needs. 

The blades will usually be labeled in relation to the material they are designed to cut. For instance, the wood blades are suitable for cutting lumber or plywood, while the masonry blades can cut concrete material. The circular blades are also available in various sizes and can be chosen in relation to the blade used for the process. While the suitable blade diameter for circular saws averages at 7 inches, you can easily find saws that average at 4 inches. These are saws that are suitable for woodworking projects, or as large as 12 inches for cutting heavy materials. 

Suitable for: cutting materials such as framing wood, rafters, joists, and more. Furthermore, the tool is ideal for DIY enthusiasts who like engaging in projects such as building sheds or gardens. An excellent example in this category would say the RYOBI 7-1/4-inch 13 Amp Circular Saw. The powerful saw is reliable and powerful enough to suit various types of outdoor cutting applications. Furthermore, the inclusion of a powerful 13 Amp motor, ensures that you get both silent and reliable cutting performances. 

Miter Saw

The central role of a miter saw is to deliver precision crosscuts for projects such as installing molding and even cutting side strips. The modern-day saws can also be used to develop cuts and angles, in relation to the same functionalities of a miter box. That said, miter saws can also produce much more advanced cuts.

Furthermore, a miter saw often has a durable steel base, which you can mount on a work surface for balance. It also often features a steel track along the rear section, otherwise referred to as the “fence.” The fence has the role of aligning the specific type of material that you want to cut.

Even though miter saws can produce angled cuts, a compound miter saw can tilt at specific angles, which you can use to create slanted cuts. 

Miter Saw

Furthermore, a sliding miter saw features an adjustable arm, thus allowing users to develop broader strips of siding and wider boards. Some of the top miter saws even come with laser functionality, which helps users to establish precise cuts. 

The miter saws are also available in various sizes, which often averages between 10 and 12 inches. The commonly used material type for these saws is carbon steel, which has a unique coating for improving the saw cut. While these units have interchangeable blades sizes, the miter has a blade that is ideal for making small cuts. On the contrary, table saws are suitable for producing massive rip cuts.

Suitable for: Various types of carpentry, especially when you need to produce complex or cuts at an angle. An excellent example would be the Hitachi 15-amp miter saw, which has a 24 TPI blade. The sturdy blade works well for developing angled and bevel cuts. 

Chain Saw

A chainsaw is a tool that is suitable for cutting large trees, branches, and thick brush. Usually, a chainsaw features dozens of sharp teeth that revolve around a component referred to as the guide bar. The guide bars typically have a size that ranges between 14 to 36 inches long. Furthermore, the guide is also an interchangeable component in some brands of chainsaws. For most users, a chain saw that averages at the 18 to 20-inch bar level are ideal. 


Remember that a 16-inch chainsaw bar will cut a tree that is 16 inches in radius by cutting gradually around the circumference of the tree. While the more compact and corded chainsaws are ideal for bushes and small trees, most brands are gas operated and suitable for large cutting projects. 

Safety factor – Chainsaws are extremely powerful machines. Even though most of these machines have unique safety features as the anti-kickback chains, it’s crucial that use them properly. Consider learning about the essential tips to consider when using a chainsaw. This way, you can complete your tree cutting projects safely each time. 

Suitable for: Cutting and chopping various types of plants as well as trees. There are numerous useful tools available in this category, including the Milwaukee Chainsaw. The chainsaw features a powerful motor, and it is also highly power efficient. The Milwaukee Chainsaw brand has also done well to incorporate the chain with high-quality safety features. 

Table Saw

Otherwise referred to as a sawbench, a table saw is a woodworking tool that features a circular blade, which you integrate into an arbor. The saw features a powerful electric motor that works to operate the arbor. A blade that protrudes from the top of the table offers support for the material undergoing the cutting process. In most modern table saws, the type of cut usually varies as the blade moves. 

The length at which the blade protrudes above the table is directly proportional to the cut in the material. In some of the traditional saws, components such as the arbor and blade were fixed.

Thus, users had to move the table to expose the blade accordingly. The common types of saws that you will come across include the benchtop, jobsite, compact, cabinet, and more.

Suitable for: Used to cut large panels, sheets of metals, plywood, and more. The Bosch Power Tools 4100-10 is an excellent example of a reliable table saw for your needs. This unit features a powerful 15-amp circular saw, that can deliver 4.0 max HP and 3,650 RPM. This way, you can use it for rip cutting, cross-cutting, fine and rough carpentry materials. 


A bandsaw is a power tool that features a lengthy and sharp blade. The blade on a bandsaw consists of several sawtooth, which stretch in between several wheels to provide cutting power.

Designed to be suitable for various types of cutting, the bandsaws are ideal for metalworking, woodworking, lumbering, and more. The saws may also be used to cut multiple other kinds of materials. 

The benefit of using the bandsaws is that they provide uniform cutting action based on the evenly distributed teeth on the saw. Furthermore, a large portion of the bandsaws features two wheels that spin at the same time.


Either one of these wheels receives electrical power, while some brands may have as many as three blades for extra cutting power. The blade of a bandsaw is also available in many different sizes, which you can customize to suit your needs.

Suitable for: the best aspect of bandsaws is that they are exceptionally dynamic tools. You can use them to cut curves into delicate material, ripping lumber and small planks. An excellent example would be the SKIL 3386-01 2.5-Amp 9-Inch Band Saw. This unit cuts through various types of wood materials, and it has a 6-TPI blade as well. 

Scroll Saw

A scroll is a relatively compact tool that you can use to develop various types of cuts, on materials. To be specific, a scroll saw is an electric or pedal-operated tool that you use to build the cuts.

This type of saw usually has a finer blade, which makes it more accurate than a power jigsaw. Just as its name suggests, this type of saw is commonly used in developing scrolls work, sculptural items, and more. 

Furthermore, the scroll is a standard tool for various kinds of woodworkers. The dynamic design of this tool makes it ideal for DIY enthusiasts, and might also take up a small footprint in your workspace. Furthermore, a scrollsaw is suitable for creating intricate curves and joints, a process these tools complete much more effectively than their counterparts. More so, the saws are also ideal for developing dovetail joints and are also famous for various other professional projects. 

Suitable for: developing unique designs and patterns on various types of metals. An excellent example of a scroll saw would be the DEWALT DW788. This tool operates quietly and smoothly to provide exceptional accuracy. Furthermore, it also features an oversized cast iron table that offers outstanding material support and can bevel both to the right and left. 

Reciprocating Saw

A reciprocating saw is a type of power tool whereby the cutting action occurs through a unique push and pull motion of the blade. The unique movement of the blade, thus, gives the device the term a reciprocating saw. Usually, the tool is common among construction workers. Otherwise referred to as a reciprocating saw, this unit features a large blade that is similar to that of a jigsaw. 

reciprocating saw

Furthermore, the reciprocating saw consists of an oriented handle, to make it easy to use the saw on various types of surfaces. The typical physical structure of this unit features a foot at the base of the blade, which is similar to a jigsaw. The user has to hold or maintain their hands on the surface being cut. Maintaining optimal balance will help stop issues such as overcutting.

Suitable for: A reciprocating saw can cut various types of materials, including plastic, metal sheets, wood, and more. Furthermore, you can even use the tool to cut through wood also if it’s embedded with thick nails. 

An excellent example of a power saw would be the DeWalt 20V MAX (DCS380B) Saw.  This unit features a four-position blade clamp that provides exceptional cutting performance. More, it also has a sturdy 1-1/8″ stroke length to make it ideal for various cutting applications. 


Any tool user, professional worker or even a DIY enthusiast has to stay savvy when it comes to using and owning mechanical tools. There are various types of saws on the consumer market, and learning about these saws can be highly beneficial. The last thing you want is to invest in a costly DeWalt cordless saw, when you would have been better off with a Makita Reciprocating Saw. 

For this reason, we have identified some of the common types of saws, along with specific models for you to evaluate. This way, you can get a saw that not only provides the best value for money, but functionality as well.

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