Jigsaw blades: how to choose a blade for specific tasks

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The correct selection of a cutting blade for a jigsaw largely determines the accuracy and productivity of cutting the material. The technical characteristics of the files discussed in the article and the key differences between them will help you choose the right blade for various types of work..

A file for a specific job is chosen in two ways: firstly, they are guided by the inscriptions, and secondly, they look at the size, teeth and layout.

We read the marking

There is no single standard for the alphanumeric marking of jigsaw blades, but most manufacturers adhere to the European classification from Bosch or indicate it in addition to their own designations.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

Decoding of marking

Saws are made from various grades of steel that affect the purpose of the blades and are indicated by logos:

  1. CV (HCS) – elastic alloy for cutting wood, synthetic and wood-composite products.
  2. HSS – tough high speed steel for hard materials.
  3. BM (Bi-Metal) – the connection of the first two grades of steel, withstands significant loads and is suitable for many operations.
  4. HM – carbide for cutting tiles and building blocks.

The purpose of the canvas is also indicated by the marks:

  1. Wood – soft sawn timber, fiber boards.
  2. Hardwood – solid wood, laminated panels.
  3. Inox – stainless steel.
  4. Alu – aluminum.
  5. Metal – sheet metal, profile and pipes.
  6. Plaster, fiber – fiberglass.
  7. Soft-material – rubber, polystyrene, carpets.
  8. Acrylic – plexiglass, polycarbonate.

Sometimes there is an inscription on the file that specifies the type of work:

  • basic – a standard blade for a high-quality cut;
  • speed – a file with set teeth for fast cutting;
  • clean – blade without setting for a clean cut;
  • progressor – a file with different teeth for cutting various materials;
  • flexible – flexible blade for cutting metal;
  • special – for cutting ceramics, plastics and other special jobs.

We cut wood materials

Cutting wood and everything that is made from it is the main purpose of a jigsaw. Therefore, a wider range of saw blades is produced specifically for wood and is divided according to the type of work.

Fast cut

Certain construction work with wood does not require any particular care, such as sawing laths or removing old window frames. More important here is the speed provided by the blades for fast cutting with characteristic features:

  1. Coarse teeth – up to 6 mm.
  2. Fairly divorced – about 1 mm.
  3. Long blade – from 60 mm.
  4. Width – up to 10 mm.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

For thick workpieces, similar canvases with large incisors are used, but without wiring – they move less from the vertical. In principle, the thicker the file, the better it holds perpendicularity..

Council. For cutting along the grain, a blade with an oblique tooth is better, and with a straight tooth, for a cross cut.

Clean cut

An operation such as trimming a furniture board or parquet board requires a smooth and precise cut. Such tasks are performed with lower productivity, but better quality, using blades for a clean cut, having:

  1. Teeth less than 3 mm.
  2. Minor divorce.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

Most of the saws are cut by retraction, so the material is placed backwards. To mark and cut from the face, you need a reverse tooth blade. It is not very convenient for them to work – in addition to maintaining the cutting direction, they have to overcome the pushing force of the tool.

Council. Cutting the panels laminated on both sides almost without chips allows a specialized saw with two rows of teeth.

Figured cut

It is problematic to cut small radii with a wide blade. Cutting saws have a beveled back side, which facilitates turning, without chipping, they pass roundings and differ in appearance:

  1. Small (up to 2 mm) tooth.
  2. Narrow working part – up to 4 mm.
  3. Small length – up to 40 mm.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

We cut polymer materials

PVC pipes and window sills are sawn with saw blades for wood or metal with a large tooth. Fine-toothed files are also suitable, but you will have to cut at the minimum speed, otherwise the sawdust will soften and clog the blade – it will no longer be sawing, but a cut with heated metal.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

For thin plastics and plexiglass, a metal file with small teeth is suitable. For a thick one, you can take a canvas on a tree, turn off the pendulum mechanism and cut at low speeds. Figured sawing of polymer sheets is carried out with a narrow saw in wood.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

We work with metal

For cutting galvanized profiles and sheet metal products, wave files are used, similar in profile to hacksaw blades. They differ in small (up to 1 mm) teeth, deflected not through one, but in groups of 3-5 pieces.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

During constant work, three canvases are taken: for steel, aluminum and for non-ferrous alloys. If you don’t have to cut metal often, then one file is enough for steel, which is also suitable for ebonite and PCB.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

In general, a jigsaw is not very suitable for cutting metal: the tool is heavily loaded, and the process is slow. Rather, it is an extreme method, justified only occasionally, for example, when cutting sandwich panels with bimetallic files with small incisors at the edges and large ones in the middle..

Canvases for specific tasks

Drywall and cement-containing materials will quickly plant any file, except for specially designed carbide-tipped blades, which also cut thermal insulation well.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

A hole in the tile is cut with a file on ceramic without teeth with carbide coating. Also suitable for glass fiber reinforced polymers.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

The cutting part of blades for cardboard, rubber and other soft materials is not made with teeth, but with polished waves or just looks like a knife.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

Special saws are designed for sawing combined materials, one half of the blade of which is equipped with small teeth, and the other with large.

Council. The length of the file is chosen based on the thickness of the material. To prevent the blade from pulling out and breaking, its end must go out of the cut line in any position of the jigsaw pendulum.

Jigsaw blades: choosing a blade for specific tasks

A set of 5-10 files for various purposes is enough for household needs. Just starting to use a jigsaw, they acquire an inexpensive set, master the subtleties of working with different types of canvases and, based on their own experience, select the necessary files. Still, there are no strict recommendations, often one canvas copes well with tasks that are atypical for it. Here you can experiment, but think first.

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