Choosing a circular (circular) saw for a home workshop

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Most users of construction tools are familiar with a circular (circular) saw, one might say, from a young age. Many saw these tools from their parents, and even in the Soviet era, it was not uncommon to find this tool in construction stores, which was necessarily part of the home craftsman’s arsenal. Particularly appreciated were those circular saw models that could be mounted on a table and used as a stationary circular saw.

History gives the “palm” in the creation of a circular saw to the founders of the world-famous SKIL company Sillivan and Mitchell, who in the middle of the 20s of the last century put this tool, called Skilsaw, on stream. Since then, the appearance of the circular saw has changed beyond recognition. Despite the fact that many different tools have appeared on the market that, to one degree or another, can replace a circular saw (for example, a jigsaw), all leading manufacturers continue to work on the modernization and improvement of circular saws, hand-held electric tools, which continue to be in great demand..

Circular saw design features

First of all, it is worth remembering that the circular saw is designed for longitudinal and transverse cutting of wood (wood materials), plastic, non-ferrous metals. High productivity, accurate and fast straight-line cuts make the circular saw indispensable for a wide variety of woodworking operations – roofing, flooring, furniture manufacturing, etc. With special saw blades, the saw can easily cope with sawing non-ferrous metal profiles, which are often used in the manufacture of modern furniture. It is very easy to work with this tool, however, it is extremely important to observe safety measures. Carelessness in work, violation of operating rules can cost too much. Over the years, the design of the circular saw has changed little. Naturally, the ergonomics of the tool have improved, the engine power has increased, the weight has changed, but the biggest changes have been made to the saw blade. In recent years, a huge number of saw blades have appeared for a wide variety of materials – wood, laminated materials, aluminum, etc..

The saw blade design is very simple and consists of:

  • electric motor;
  • gear case;
  • protective casing;
  • platforms with a guide fence.

The body of a circular saw is most often made of wear-resistant, heat-resistant plastic. Sometimes there are models with metal cases, but this is an exception to the rule. Given the fact that a circular saw very often has to work in dusty conditions, many manufacturers pay special attention not only to cooling and ventilation systems for the engine of the tool, but also to remove chips from the working area..

This has a beneficial effect primarily on the health of the consumer, since the lungs suffer less from dust. All modern saws can be connected to a forced dust extraction system or to industrial vacuum cleaners using special adapters. Some manufacturers, such as MAKITA (Makita), equip their products with a stationary system for removing chips and dust. So the circular saw MAKITA 5017RKB, power 1400 W, saw blade diameter 190 mm, is equipped with a special container for collecting the sawdust generated during operation. This system allows you to remove more than 90% of the sawdust that forms during operation. Agree, this is a very high rate.

MAKITA 5017RKB

Some manufacturers use rather non-standard solutions in order not only to facilitate the work with the tool, but also to somehow distinguish their products from the general mass. For example, WORX has equipped its Worx WT431KE circular saw (power 1500 W, circle diameter 185 mm) with the so-called “revolving handle”.

Worx WT431KE

The handle with the start button has the ability to change the angle of inclination up to 60 degrees. This is a rather interesting and quite useful solution, since the operator can adapt the instrument to his anatomical features. It should be noted that this design solution is used only on the products of WORX.

All circular saws are equipped with a collector motor with a power of approximately 500 W to 2.5 kW. Naturally, such a basic saw parameter as the cutting depth will depend on the engine power. Also, the speed will largely depend on the engine power. Recently, the number of revolutions of the saw blade on circular saws has almost doubled..

MAKITA 5143R

Some 10 years ago, circular saws had revolutions in the region of 2.5 – 3.5 thousand rpm, as, for example, a circular saw MAKITA 5143R with an engine power of 2.2 kW, a disk diameter of 355 mm, 2700 rpm. This saw has been produced by MAKITA for more than 10 years and it is for this reason that we have cited it as an example..

Modern saws, such as, for example, the BOSCH GKS 85 circular saw with an engine power of 2.2 kW, a saw blade diameter of 235 mm, already has 5000 rpm.

BOSCH GKS 85

We should also remember that cordless circular saws have appeared on the tool market. So, for example, the BOSCH company has developed a whole line of cordless tools, which includes several types of circular saws with batteries of different power and capacity. Most recently, the BOSCH GKS 36 V-LI Professional circular saw was presented, which is equipped with the most advanced 36 V lithium – ion batteries with a 4 times longer service life. The saw is equipped with a disc with a diameter of 165 mm, the speed of the disc is 4000 per minute. Tool weight only 4.8 kg. There are not only professional battery-powered tools, but a variety of household tools as well. Unlike many other tools, such as angle grinders, drills, rotary hammers. circular saws do not have a special latch to hold the trigger in the on position. This is due to safety requirements.

BOSCH GKS 36 V-LI Professional

Another interesting option for circular saws is a laser pointer that shows the direction of cutting the material. If earlier sawdust in the course of working with a circular saw could fill the marked cutting line, now with a laser pointer this will no longer be an obstacle, especially since the dust removal system effectively removes all sawdust from the working area. When choosing a saw, special attention should be paid to its platform. To reduce the cost of the product, many manufacturers use a stamped platform for a circular saw, but for professional use it is best to purchase a saw with a die-cast aluminum platform. Only in this case can work be done with maximum precision. Such a platform is less prone to all kinds of deformations. Many manufacturers place special marks on the platform that allow you to control the process of cutting the material. This is a kind of sight with which you can accurately perform work on cutting materials..

When choosing a saw, it is important to pay attention to how the saw blade changes. Until now, there are circular saws without a spindle lock. In such saws, the disc can be replaced only with two keys, which is not only inconvenient, but also takes a long time. With a circular saw, you can get a smooth and long cut. However, if you want to do this work as accurately as possible, then you should take a closer look at such additional equipment as a guide rail. Each manufacturer of circular saws for their products produces such tires. The only drawback is that the guide rails are only suitable for tools from the same manufacturer. Alas, these are the very methods of competition used by tool manufacturers..

We should also talk about saw blades. Currently, you can find discs for almost any material. There are wood discs with which you can loosen boards very quickly, but the cut quality will be poor. There are laminate discs, after which the surface of the sawn material does not require additional processing. All this is achieved thanks to special carbide taps, the frequency of the teeth on the saw blade, and the geometry of the tooth itself. Modern saw blades will even allow you to do things like sawing a board without removing the nails from it. Believe me, this is not only a very spectacular sight, but also a huge plus, since you have the opportunity to avoid injuries and tool breakages. It should be noted that the cost of repairing a circular saw is very high. Replacing an anchor on a saw will be almost comparable to the cost of a new product. The wear of the splines on the anchor occurs for several reasons:

  • excessive pressure on the tool during the production of work;
  • incorrectly selected saw blade;
  • damaged saw blade (no carbide taps, not sharpened).

Knowing these design features of a circular saw, let’s try to choose a tool for a home workshop. We will choose a saw powered by an electrical network, since cordless saws have a fairly limited range of applications.

Choosing a circular saw for a workshop

Consider several models, among which there will be both household circular saws and relatively inexpensive professional ones..

Circular saw Skil 5866 AF

The Skil 5866 AF circular saw attracts attention, first of all, by its rather strict design and excellent characteristics. The circular saw is very comfortable to work with, you can easily hold it in your hands. Special rubberized saw handles not only allow better grip of the tool, but also reduce vibration during operation. The Skil 5866 AF circular saw has a powerful motor (1500 W), a 190 mm saw blade that allows you to cut to a depth of 66 mm, which is sufficient for working with a wide variety of materials.

Skil 5866 AF

One of the important advantages of this tool is a special double laser pointer, which allows you not only to accurately cut the material, but also shows the thickness of the saw blade that is installed on your tool. Thanks to this, you can see how much of the part will be consumed when cutting the material. The saw is equipped with a universal blade with 24 carbide teeth. However, given that the tool has 55,000 rpm, replacing the disc you can achieve excellent surface finish and the most accurate cut of the material. The saw is equipped with a special plastic case. The circular saw can be connected to an industrial vacuum cleaner using an adapter, or a special bag for collecting chips can be installed on it. The cost of this product is about 7000 rubles.

Circular saw AEG HK 75 A

The AEG HK 75 A circular saw has a powerful 1400 W motor, the saw blade speed is 5600 rpm. The diameter of the circle that is mounted on the saw is 210 mm. The front handle is mounted directly on the stamped support platform, which allows you to securely hold the saw in your hands while working. The undoubted advantages of the saw include a fairly long power cord (4 m) that allows you to use the tool without the use of extension cords.

Circular saw AEG HK 75 A

The start button is equipped with a special emergency blocker, which excludes spontaneous switching on of the tool. The scope of delivery includes a side ruler, which allows you to cut materials as accurately as possible. The circular saw has the ability to connect to an industrial vacuum cleaner. The cost of the saw is about 7,500 rubles.

Circular Saw Black&Decker XTS1660KA

Circular Saw Black&The Decker XTS1660KA has the same eye-catching design as the SKIL saw. The powerful 1600 W motor allows the tool to run at 5000 rpm. The circular saw is equipped with a 190 mm diameter saw blade, which allows you to cut to a depth of 65 mm. There is a special laser pointer that makes it possible to accurately cut the material.

Circular saw Black & Decker XTS1660KA

The saw base is cast in aluminum. The weight of this tool is about 2.2 kg. The manufacturer gives a 2-year warranty for the product. The cost of a circular saw Black&Decker XTS1660KA about 7800 rubles.

All the saws that we talked about above have approximately the same capabilities. The adjusting mechanisms allow not only to change the cutting depth, but also allow cutting of workpieces at an angle of up to 45 degrees. The AEG HK 75 A circular saw belongs to the category of professional saws. But most of all I liked the Skil 5866 AF circular saw. The laser pointer of this saw is more conveniently located and is less prone to damage. The front handle is more comfortable than on the AEG HK 75 A circular saw and much better hand grip than the straight handle on the Black circular saw&Decker XTS1660KA. Also, the laser pointer on the Black saw&Decker XTS1660KA does not provide an opportunity to see directly the place where the material was cut, which is not always convenient during work. The choice of tools is an entirely individual matter, but we liked the Skil 5866 AF circular saw the most..

It is worth recalling that it is necessary to use a circular saw very carefully, be sure to use special protective glasses during work.

We hope that this material was useful and you familiarized yourself in more detail with all the capabilities and features of such a power tool as a hand-held circular saw. Happy choice and safe work.

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