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Sawzall's: what's best?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by anteek, Mar 9, 2012.

  1. Algon
    Joined: Mar 12, 2007
    Posts: 1,214


    I may have missed this but I did not see anyone point out that many cheap modern knock off saws and heavy duty "car scrapping-tree chopping" Sawzalls LOL have full on-off or limited speed manipulation triggers which make them much less useful for sheemetal. A good saw will have a wide range feathering trigger at the least and older Sears models also have a variable speed switch which allows you to match your cutting speed to your material.

    This, the proper fine tooth blade, angle of cut for the given task and growing a feel for the tool will allow you to not only make kink free straight cuts even on sheets of stainless but you might find yourself deburring less blued sheet metal.
    Joined: Oct 8, 2006
    Posts: 300


    My Porter Cable is holding up after 15 years of abuse.
  3. Engine man
    Joined: Jan 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,476

    Engine man
    from Wisconsin

    I work at a scrap yard and we use reciprocating saws to cut catalytic converters off. Milwaukee corded models worked fairly well and would usually live through about 1,000 cuts before the gearing failed. Like all Milwaukee tools these days, you have to replace the switches every couple of months.

    We tried the cordless models. Ni-Cads would make about 6 cuts before re-charging. LI-ion usually couldn't make 3 cuts. If it's cold out, the LI-ion won't even run. Neither cordless lasted past 200 cuts.

    I have a Porter Cable Tigersaw that I bought because they were the first with tool-less blade change. That had to be over 20 years ago.

    Most of the old stuff was good. Today the companies have been bought out for the name or accountants are running the companies and they build the cheapest POS possible.
    Joined: Mar 15, 2011
    Posts: 87


    Ive had my craftsman sawzall for 10+ years and it still works like new! Granted it looks bad with scratch's, cord has been burnt, frayed and fixed a few times, gaurd is not much of a gaurd anymore and had to add a set screw to hold the blade in lol. I have relentlessley abused the crap out of this thing and it still keeps going and going!
    Worth it in the long run to spend more $$ to get a tool that will hold up for a long time!
    Joined: Jul 22, 2009
    Posts: 432

    from KS
    1. The Gas House Gang

    MILWUAKEE use it everyday on the job, milwuakee blades for thick metal, lennox blades for sheet metal. dont know why they just work better. I have looked at blade angle but being old its really hard to tell any differance. If it starts to tear at cut slow down and change the blade.
  6. Fordman75
    Joined: Dec 1, 2002
    Posts: 368


    I've bought a couple cheap no name reciprocating saws and they didn't last thru the first cut before the gears were toast!! Whichever engineer that thought it's a good idea to put plastic gears in a reciprocating saw needs to pull his head out of his a$$!

    My Super sawzall has a speed adjustment switch and a variable trigger. I use it for cutting up scrap metal mostly. For my sheet metal work I usually use a handheld jig saw or I've also got a Rockwell blade runner which is basically a bench top type jigsaw. They give me more control and cleaner cuts. I get by with those until I can afford to get a nice electric shear.

    I've never had a switch fail on any of my Milwaukee's. I guess I must be one of the lucky ones.:D

    I've had some horrible Milwaukee blades. The worse blade I've ever used was a Milwaukee "ICE" blade. They were suppose to be these great blades with hardened teeth. Well the damn teeth would break right off the blades!!

    I've had good luck with the Milwaukee "Torch" blades, Lennox blades, Dewalt demolition blades. And I found some cheap blades that I have had good luck with. They are a "Blu-Mol" brand. They seem to hold up surprisingly well. And they will bend before they break. So I can usually straighten them back out and keep cutting.
  7. Algon
    Joined: Mar 12, 2007
    Posts: 1,214


    My Super sawzall has a speed adjustment switch and a variable trigger. I use it for cutting up scrap metal mostly. For my sheet metal work I usually use a handheld jig saw or I've also got a Rockwell blade runner which is basically a bench top type jigsaw. They give me more control and cleaner cuts. I get by with those until I can afford to get a nice electric shear.

    I'd suggest an air powered autobody saw for on the car sheetmetal work or even an oscilating saw but the man asked about buying a good Sawzall.

    Unless they have shrunk them down and reduced the stroke length the Super Sawzall is not quite the tool I'd suggest for sheetmetal either. To be fair the last one I used did not have the features yours does. Is it a current model?

    My standard duty Dewalt has lasted nine years and counting, it has a nifty quick release and can hold the blade in any direction. It's chopped up more than it's a fair share of parts cars, chassis tubing, and tree limbs on a semi daily basis but it's not as good as another tool might be in these areas. Now chopping off the 95-1/2" long quarters of a 62 Galaxie along a tape line with a blade width loss of 1/16" faster than grinding through it without any heat damage, flash or distortion it's a champ.

    There is a wide range of similar tools we are shooting the bull over here that are not intended or really useful for the same purpose. I'll agree you can spread butter with a 6" serrated buck knife but there might be a better choice to hand a kid to attack a dinner roll with.:D

    I'll also second Milwaukee switch failure is/was a common thing a few years back. Some of which I'm sure was fanned by guys with well used yard sale tools with worn contacts but brand new tools were being sold for a time with junk triggers because some damn bean counter screwed up something great over a few pennies.
  8. spiffy1937
    Joined: Apr 9, 2006
    Posts: 728

    from U.S.A.

    I've had my Porter Cable since '97. I now have carpel tunnel and ulnar nerve problems but the saw is still working great!:)
  9. Frige
    Joined: Jul 2, 2006
    Posts: 34


    I love my Milwaukee. Stay away from the cheap brands
  10. 39 Ford
    Joined: Jan 22, 2006
    Posts: 1,558

    39 Ford

    I have a Mikita that has been going for over 25 years now. Not used every day but it has earned it's keep over and over. I expect it will outlast me.
  11. We've gone through just the DeWalt, and it was horribly abused and lived in the dust under grinding shavings unlike that Makita that's lived in a case. ;)
  12. If you are just cutting a few things, then any reciprocating saw will most likely do. But let me tell you, in commercial construction where demo is a big part, makita's die fast, Porter cables are heavy and vibrate alot . The deWalt is OK but nothing beats the Milwaukee Super Sawsall with anti vibration, variable speed and orbital cutting. Its smooth lasts for ever and doesn't fatigue you from the vibration. I have an old Porter Cable Tiger that is either on or off and it vibrates like a V twin Harley.
  13. I will throw this out, the chuck can become loose on the De Walt ( I'm a huge dewalt fan) just not for sawzall. when the chuck gets loose you have a hell of a time getting it to fully disengage and release the blade. I would recommend the twist type.
  14. 29cabby
    Joined: Dec 6, 2009
    Posts: 41


    Hilti baby if your looking for corded HD go for the wsr 1250 or 1400.

    Cordless best just to go for the 36V on the market.
  15. Zandoz
    Joined: Jan 23, 2012
    Posts: 307


    My Ryobe is still going strong after 32 years of hell. But I doubt they are made as well as theyused to be....few things are.
  16. jack orchard
    Joined: Aug 20, 2011
    Posts: 238

    jack orchard

    for light duty and intermittent use, the 18V Ryobi works well when portability is important.
  17. smittythejunkman
    Joined: Nov 14, 2008
    Posts: 86


    we run a junkyard, a Milwaukee cord style is best under severe duty and a single or dual speed unit is more dependable than a variable speed model.
    Bosh makes good saws and the variable speed switch seems to hold up good I will buy bosh again
    dewalts die quick in a junkyard i wont buy anymore.
    ryobi saws are cheap and hold up better than most more expensive saws
    Buy a Milwaukee you will like it !!
  18. dbird
    Joined: Apr 11, 2011
    Posts: 7


    Got my Milwaukee very used thirty plus years ago. Still slicing and dicing and I wouldn't trade it for anything newer.

  19. A Rodder
    Joined: Jul 13, 2008
    Posts: 2,477

    A Rodder

    Read the whole first and fourth page,
    Very surprised no one mentioned


    I have been beating on it for about 10 years at work regularly, I don't believe it can be beat.
  20. scottybaccus
    Joined: Mar 13, 2006
    Posts: 4,106


    I have used them all. I use a Rigid now. Great saw for the money.

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