Categories
Reciprocating Saw Saws

Best Reciprocating Saw under $100: Buying Guide

Reciprocating saws, a.k.a. recip saws or sawzalls aren’t the most accurate type of power saw in the world, which is what makes it perfect for demolition, renovation, landscaping, and prepping lumber. What it lacks in precision and finesse, it makes up for in portability, maneuverability, and power.

Best Reciprocating Saw under $100

Reciprocating Saw under $100 Buying Guide

Getting your hands on a versatile tool doesn’t require you to talk to the bank and set up a payment plan. Some reciprocating saws sell for less than a C-note, albeit with slightly worse specs than their costlier counterparts. However, budget-friendly doesn’t mean cheap, poor-quality tools in this sense. You can get most demolition, renovation, and landscaping projects are done with a budget-friendly sawzall. All you need is a little bit of knowledge of what constitutes a high-quality, budget-friendly reciprocating saw. This guide will tell you all about it.



Corded vs. Cordless

Budget-friendly reciprocating saws can come as either a corded or cordless model. We can get into the whole “uninterrupted power” vs. “maximum portability” spiel, but it ultimately comes down to personal preference. Just note that corded models typically pack beefier motors that produce better cutting abilities, and cordless models can be powered by batteries of between 9 and 20 volts. Each charge can provide roughly 30 minutes of work at maximum speed (more on speed later).

What is The Best Reciprocating Saw Under 100 Bucks?

Mini-Reciprocating Saw

If you need something that’s super inexpensive, can fit into cramped spaces, and can easily be operated in a single hand, then consider mini-reciprocating saws. These tools can navigate through pipes and in corners easily. They’re usually cordless for extra convenience. However, if power for thicker schedule pipes or boards is what you need, then forget about these mini saws.

Weight

Perhaps you’re not in the market for a mini-reciprocating saw but instead are looking for a lightweight, full-sized model. Don’t you fret; they have those, too. Reciprocating saws can anywhere from a couple pounds all the way up to 15 pounds or so. Typically, heavier models deliver more power, but they’re also considerably more expensive. The good thing about reciprocating saws is that even the budget ones are lightweight and can be operated using one hand. It’s just the shape of the tool that can get in the way and block your vision.

The Best Reciprocating Saws

Strokes per Minute

The speed of the blade is measured in SPMs or how many times the blade moves forward and backward every minute. Higher SPM ratings mean chopping through lumber, pipes, and conduits quicker. The good thing is that most models, even budget-friendly ones, can reach up to 3,000 SPM. Many $100-or-less recip saws only reach about 2,500 SPM, so we recommend avoiding these and opting for a faster model.

Stroke Length

Apart from the speed of the blade, another thing to consider is how far the blade travels forward and backward. Longer strokes can cut through any material much quicker, especially when they can reach up to and beyond 3,000 SPM. We’d suggest finding a Sawzall that travels at least 1 inch, but if time isn’t a factor, then a 7/8-inch stroke will suffice.

Best Reciprocating Saw

Blade Changing System

While we’re on the point of time, one thing you may want to consider is how the recip saw changes blades. Most modern reciprocating saws have a tool-less blade changing system which can be done using a single hand if necessary. However, most high-quality budget models require using a key or other apparatus to detach and re-attach blades and other attachments. Once again, if downtime is a big concern, then get a reciprocating saw that requires no keys or tools to swap out blades.

Batteries and/or Blades included?

Many of the budget-friendly reciprocating saws are a tool-only kit, meaning that it doesn’t come with a blade or battery for cordless models. If you’re replacing an old recip saw and have blades and spare batteries lying around then a bare-tool kit would probably be the better option, assuming that the battery is compatible with your new reciprocating saw, however, if you’re a first-time buyer or want to get straight to work after spending $100 or so, the try and find a model that includes at least one sawing blade and a battery pack.

Best Reciprocating Saw under 100

Attachment Compatibility

Reciprocating saws are extremely versatile tools in the sense that not only can it cut wood, plastic, metal, and even concrete, but it can do a wide range of different jobs. For instance, you can use it to sand the wood if you purchase a sanding pad attachment. You can use chipping and scraping tools on a recip saw to get rid of dried cement and paint. You just need to be aware of what sort of attachments are compatible with your saw.

Vibration Control

Sawzalls are not known for being dainty cutting tools. No, they deliver full power and create earthquakes that send shocks up your arms and shoulders. However, more recent models don’t vibrate nearly as much as their ancestors, but it’s still a good idea to be on the lookout for vibration-control features. A rubber grip would be a good place to start, but things like a separation of the body and handle can also help keep vibrations in check.

Reciprocating Saw under 100

Adjustable Shoe

The shoe is the metal piece found on the nose of the saw. It’s used to give stability to the workpiece when hacking and sawing through it, so it doesn’t wobble around. In some projects, you may find that the piece you’re working with is fixed at an angle, and unless you can maneuver the tool, your arm, and your body at an awkward angle, you’ll want an adjustable shoe. You can reposition the angle of the shoe based on the angle of your work piece.

Final Remarks

Reciprocating saws are versatile tools that can cut through practically any material. It doesn’t provide the accuracy of table saws or circular saws, but when tearing down drywall or sawing bushes and hedges, does it matterThere are budget-friendly reciprocating saws available if you don’t feel like spending more than a Benjamin. They’re powerful enough to do a lot of what a more expensive model can do, despite their weaker motors. Our guide provides you with information regarding certain specs and features to consider when shopping for a reciprocating saw under $100.

Reciprocating Saw Guide




Categories
Reciprocating Saw Saws

Best Reciprocating Saw Reviews

Table saws, circular saws, and miter saws are all great tools to have in the workshop. The only problem is that they require a ton of set up; not just for the tool but also for the workpieces. Of course, you need to go through a ton of steps in order to produce clean, accurate cuts. But what if a certain job doesn’t ask for exact cutsWhat if you’re looking to demolish rather than constructWell, there’s a saw that can do those things – the reciprocating saw.

Best Reciprocating Saw Reviews

A reciprocating saw, a.k.a. a recip saw or a Sawzall, is a type of handheld saw with a protruding forward-facing blade. The blade moves in a back and forth motion to cut through any material, including wood, plastic, metal, and even concrete. With the right attachments, you can turn this cutting tool into scraping and sanding tool. Versatility is something that a reciprocating saw is most known for.



Reciprocating Saw Buying Guide

Like with any power tool, before purchasing a reciprocating saw, it’s always a good idea to do a bit of research to ensure that you’re getting the best model for your buck. In this section, we’ll go over the various factors that you need to consider when shopping for a reciprocating saw.

Electric vs Pneumatic Reciprocating Saw
There are both electric and air-powered reciprocating saws available. Both have their own pros and cons which we’ll discuss very briefly.

Which reciprocating saw is best?

Electric Reciprocating Saw

Reciprocating saws that are fueled by electricity can fall into two categories – corded-electric and cordless.
Corded-electric reciprocating saws draw power from a power outlet, so you have a source of uninterrupted power. You don’t have to wait for batteries to charge; simply plug the tool into an outlet and let ‘er rip. Of course, portability is an issue since you’re dealing with a power cord. Corded models tie you down to the nearest power outlet, but you can extend your range of motion with a reliable extension cord.

Cordless reciprocating saws solve the problem of portability by bringing the storing electricity within a rechargeable battery. Sawing on top of ladders or outdoors is no problem since you don’t need to worry about cables and cords limiting your movement. Even though cordless reciprocating saws need a battery to function, they hardly weigh a thing so you can navigate freely through cramped spaces or work at awkward angles without struggling.

What is the best battery powered Sawzall?

Pneumatic Reciprocating Saw

Air-powered tools are known for their awesome power, whether it’s a pneumatic impact wrench or impact driver, and a pneumatic reciprocating saw is no different. The power of compressed air produces long strokes for quicker cuts through hard materials. The only downside is that you need to hook it up to an air compressor in order for the tool to work. The good thing is that since compressed air is cold, the tool can’t overheat so you can work all day and night without rest. Another good thing is that pneumatic reciprocating saws can work with the PSI and CFM capacities provided by basic portable air compressors.

Cutting Speed and Variable Speed

The speed of the blade determines how long it’ll take to cut through your workpiece. Many electric reciprocating saws are capped at a speed of 3,000 SPM (strokes per minute), but many pneumatic models can go beyond that. In our opinion, for most cutting and sanding jobs, 3,000 SPM is more than enough without overkill.

However, when cutting through metal, you don’t want to push the tool to go at its maximum speed since it’ll dull the blade quicker. Instead, keep an eye out for a reciprocating saw with a variable speed feature, whether it’s a dial, a button to change gears, or a touch-sensitive trigger. This feature will let you cut through any material safely.

Stroke Length

The reciprocating speed of a blade can only do so much to quicken the cutting speed. In order to make the most out of 3,000 SPM, you need to take a look at the stroke length or the distance at which the blade travels back and forth. In all honesty, many cutting jobs won’t be finished quicker with a 1-1/2-inch stroke compared to a ½-inch stroke, but when working with large-diameter or wide pipes and boards, a longer stroke will help you finish quicker without needing to rotate or move the workpiece as much.

How many amps do I need in a reciprocating saw?

Weight

Since reciprocating saws are handheld tools, you don’t want the tool weighing you down as you work in high places or cramped spaces. The good thing is that most reciprocating saws weigh less than 10 pounds, and there are even cordless models that weigh less than 5 pounds, even with the battery attached. Most reciprocating saws are lightweight, but since “lightweight” is relative, make sure that you feel comfortable holding and operating the tool in one or both hands.

Anti-Vibration

There’s no denying that a recip saw is a rugged tool, but with ruggedness comes vibrations that can send tremors up the arm and shoulders, making using a recip saw an unenjoyable experience. There are ways to reduce how wildly the tool vibrates in your hands such as pressing the shoe – the metal apparatus that juts forward past the nose of the tool – against your material. This’ll also help in preventing the piece from jumping all over the place.

Something to keep an eye out for is a separation of the handle and the tool. This significantly reduces the ferocity of vibrations felt in the hand despite the tool itself producing localized earthquakes. Other things to look for are a rubber grip, an adjustable shoe, and proprietary anti-vibration technology.

Is a reciprocating saw the same as a Sawzall?

Final Remarks

Reciprocating saws are awesome, versatile tools for removing pieces of material quickly, albeit a bit dirtily. You can always go over the newly cut edge with a sheet of sandpaper to smooth out any roughness, or better yet, mount a sanding attachment to the tool’s nose and sand away. Looking for the right recip saw for the job requires understanding the benefits and drawbacks of the various reciprocating saw types (corded, cordless, and pneumatic).

You should also pay attention to the speed of the cut, the length of each stroke, and the weight of the tool. Comfort should be a high priority since reciprocating saws aren’t known for being delicate, quite tools. Anti-vibration features like adjustable shoes and a separated handle will also help in keeping vibrations down to a minimum and increasing the overall precision of the cut.