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Jigsaw grief!

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mahking51

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If there is one power tool I can't seem to get to grips with it is the jigsaw!
I have a medium price Bosch and can use it just fine for 'hack' jobs but when I need a bit of accuracy the bloody thing will not cut a perpendicular kerf.
I've tried setting the blade to a square first, going slow on the feed rate, and all combinations I can think of but never seekm to get it right.
I end up cutting way clear of the line and using a trim bit or other method which wastes a lot of time.
Anyone have any thoughts as to where I am going wrong?
Any good articles/books?
Any advice on blades, upcut, downcut etc, when to use the oscilation etc?
I am currently using it on 20mm MDF and some small sections of my greenheart.
regards
martin
 

Newbie_Neil

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Hi Martin

I would recommend that you get some decent blades.

If you can get hold of them, try Lennox blades which are absolutely brilliant. They are the only ones recommended by Festool.

Hope this helps.

Cheers
Neil
 

Philly

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Martin
I can never get good cuts in deep material-the band saw was my saviour!
New (decent) blades make a difference but at the end of the day the jigsaw is only supported at one end-the blade will follow the grain/or ther easiest path when the going gets tough. :roll:
regards
Philly :D
 

Frank D.

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Hi Martin,
you can also try not to guide the cut with the heel of the blade. You get more control by leaning (pushing) the back of the blade against the cut line and steering the teeth just where you want them to go (like cutting freehand on a bandsaw) but this has the effect of bending the blade. it's hard not to do but doing it less will help you get straighter cuts. Upcut blades give you more control and less vibration because they pull the saw against the wood. Downcut blades are good when you don't want tearout or spelching near the cut line. Use less oscillation for crosscuts, more for rip cuts. You should adjust the oscillation to the wood, less oscillation when you want a clean line (it's good to start on a piece of scrap of the same wood or in an inconspicuous place).
HTH,
Frank (who has sworn many times at his jigsaw...)
 

Taffy Turner

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I hate jigsaws!

It takes me ages just to find all the corner and edge pieces.... :cry:

Sorry - couldn't resist that one - it is late on a Friday afternoon after all. :oops:
I'll get me coat......

Gary
 

desmoengine

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hi there
my experience over the years with various jigsaws is that it mostly comes down to the blade, first being sharp (abit obvious perhaps) but a blade that has lost its edge on only part of its cutting length through your work piece will always via off to one side or the other through the depth of its cut.
the tooth cutting profile also makes a big difference to clean cutting which helps to keep cutting perpemdicular . the blades i use solely these days are of the FLEAM or FAST CLEAN tooth profile.
the last feature that helps maintaining a straight and perpemdicular cut is to use a jig saw with some form of pendulum action on the up cuuting stroke.
i hasten to add that this is my opinion based on use of many differing jig saws and blade types over the past 25 years starting an addon attachment for a black &decker power drill to my current weopen of choice an 18v cordless ELU machine (now 2years of age ,being considered for replacement as it quill bushing is wearing now)
dave w
 

Shady

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Have to say I agree: I've come to regard the jigsaw as a very crude tool...

My major use is for roughing out internal holes in sheet goods: drill a big enough hole for the blade, insert the blade and make the rough cut. Mine always wanders/bends in any material, and I hate them...
 

Newbie_Neil

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Shady":rw3b60cx said:
Have to say I agree: I've come to regard the jigsaw as a very crude tool...
I think it very much depends on what you are using. I have a Festool and alllied with Lennox blades it is just amazing compared to my old Bosch.

Cheers
Neil
 
A

Anonymous

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I have used 6 different jigsaws made by three different manufacturers (alll well below £100) over the last 20 years and all of them became precision machines when fitted with very good quality blades - just like the bandsaw, the blade (and practice) makes all the difference

However, jigsaws are not really suited to deep cuts and I would hesitate to expect absolute accuracy in anything over 20mm thick
 

mahking51

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Thanks guys for all that, a lot of useful info. Will be ordering some Lennox blades and give them a go.
Any info on blade type and application would be helpful as the silly person diagrams are very crude.
What do you lot use for different applications please? Upcut/downcut; with/without pendulum etc etc.
many thanks
Martin
 
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Anonymous

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Only ever used upcut (suspect down cut could be dangerous) and the pendulum action is for faster cutting and not suited to precision work, more for roughing out.

Over the years I have mostly used my jigsaws for cutting metal and rarely use more than the first pendulum setting on steel. Aluminium and jigsaws don't get on at all as the ali clogs the blades

For wood the pendulum is not usually needed if the blade is sharpe and the wood not too thick

I often run my jigsaw along a guide clamped to the workpiece.
 

Chris Knight

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I may just have missed it but a couple of new jigsaws (Festool and the new Bosch) have extra guides a little like bandsaw blade guides to keep the blade straight.

Anyone have experience with these?
 

Noel

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With the correct blade and suitable speed ali is not a problem.

Noel
 

Newbie_Neil

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Hi Chris

waterhead37":23o7ln8n said:
I may just have missed it but a couple of new jigsaws (Festool and the new Bosch) have extra guides a little like bandsaw blade guides to keep the blade straight. Anyone have experience with these?
Yes, I have the Festool. The quality of cut is exceptional.

Cheers
Neil
 
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