If you’re a novice wood worker looking for a trusted brand, look no further. The craftsman 16″ scroll saw is a good introduction saw to have to “test the waters” and make some very creative artwork. This saw does allow for cutting wood that is 2″ inches thick, something the other less expensive saws can […]
Find The Best Scroll Saw Reviews & Ratings
|Model: DW788||Model: 40-694||Model: MS20-01||Model: 37090||Model: RK7315|
|1 Year Warranty||1 Year||2 Years||2 Year||2 year|
|20″ Throat Depth||20″ Throat Depth||10″ Throat Depth||16″ Throat Depth||16″ Throat Depth|
|Variable speeds 400-1,750 cutting strokes per minute||Variable speeds 400-1,750 SPM
||Variable Speeds||Variable speed control dial (200-1400 spm)||Variable speed control dial (500 – 1700 spm)|
|Ratings: 3.9||(Great Value)
|Ratings: 3.3||Ratings: 3.8|
HOW TO KNOW WHICH SCROLL SAW IS RIGHT FOR YOU?
Will you be a “weekend warrior,” that will fiddle with a small project here and there without finishing it up, or will you be the 9-5 DIY’er? Often times people decide they want to venture out and try a new hobby and shell out tons of money only to find themselves bored of it after a few days–money wasted.
If you’re unsure, then a beginner saw is perfect for you. The price is low and the performance may be limited but it will allow you to test the waters before going for the big boy machines. I don’t say this to devalue any beginner, but you like your money, right? Use it wisely.
Take into consideration on what types of jobs you’re wanting to get from this machine. A small wooden figurine that only use thin soft materials or a large project that requires at least 2″ inches of hard material.
TO MOVE OR NOT TO MOVE?
Think about your future projects before you shop. Are you wanting to be stationary and confined to your workshop or are you wanting to be a free spirit and have a machine as portable as your creative mind is.
TOP SCROLL SAW BRANDS
We’ve compiled a list of the top saw brands out there in today’s market and gave them their own individual review. Read our: Scroll saw reviews
BEFORE YOU READ OUR REVIEWS
At the end of the day, it’s your choice on what will benefit your needs. Don’t let us persuade you but let us just help you. You’re the only one that knows your personal skill level, and you’re the only one that understands your budget. Know what you’re expecting from your machine and what accessories your project will need and how much space you have and most importantly, have fun with your crafts.
Scroll saws are normally used for making intricate cuts and curves on wood as well as on other materials. While curving intricate patterns and designs, there are often angles and locations that cannot be worked with a circular saw, jigsaw or a normal drill. This is where scroll saw comes in. The machine is commonly used for making scrolls by woodworkers or marquetry professionals.
As to how to find the best scroll saw, that depends on a range of factors. The first thing to take into account is the kind of projects that would be performed with the saw. The requirements of a recreational scroll worker (making small toys, jigsaw puzzles, etc.) or of a beginner would certainly be different from the requirements of those who deploy the machine for a variety of different projects. However, this best scroll saw reviews guide is designed keeping in mind the beginner to intermediate level scroll enthusiasts. Though varying in price, they are all quality machines and you must choose the one that best fits all your different requirements.
1. DEWALT DW788 Scroll Saw
This Dewalt model, targeted primarily at professionals and semi-professionals as well as hobbyists who aspire to upgrade to the professional level soon, is perhaps the most popular scroll saw model currently in circulation. At $500, it may seem somewhat of an expensive upfront investment, but taken into account the amazing performance of the machine plus the fact that you can work many hours every day on this Dewalt model without fear of wearing it out fast, you actually get full value for each and every penny spent on acquiring this model.
1. What is the speed range of the saw?
2. Does the saw receive round blades?
Yes, you can use all kinds of standard blades with this saw—both pin end and plain end.
3. Does it come with a foot pedal?
Yes, another of the best features of the model.
2. Delta Power Tools 40-694 Scroll Saw
This model shares many points of similarity with the above Dewalt model. It comes with the same parallel arm design which helps in noise reduction and less vibration. The speed range is the same, too, and so is the tool-free blade clamp operation. Also, it is one of the few semi-professional models that come with an electronic variable speed control.
1. Is the larger worktable a good idea?
Yes, since it allows you to position the scroll saw in a square format in relation to the saw blade.
2. Does it accept both pin and non-pin blades?
No, this is an exclusively pinless blade version.
3. Does it work well with materials other than wood?
Yes, this scroll saw is particularly good for working with plastic and fiberglass materials, besides wood.
3. Shop Fox W1713 Scroll Saw
Shop Fox W1713 is a variable speed control scroll saw with a throat depth of 16 inches. Priced at about $200 (right now, Amazon is selling it for under $150!), this machine gives you great value for your money. In fact, it will be difficult for you to find another scroll saw in this price range which is still this good. The saw offers easy blade changes, comes with built in accessories such as dust blower, a gooseneck work and more.
1. What kind/brand of scroll saw blades are best to use on this machine?
This scroll saw is compatible with both pin and plain end blades and will also accept different varieties of blades (twist and round blades and so on) with different TPIs. The brand does not matter as long as you’re using good quality blades.
2. Does the saw include a blade pack?
No, it doesn’t. But surely that matters little when you take into account the quality of the material as well as the features that you get at the price you get with this saw?
3. May I use a pedal for this saw?
4. WEN 3920 scroll saw
If you are looking for a budget option, this 16 inch variable speed control scroll saw might be your best choice. The saw comes loaded with a pack of features and is very useful for making intricate and artful cuts and curves in your work piece. The standout feature for us is its unique blade holder. The blade holder allows both pinned and pinless blades. However, with pinned blades, you can swap the pin holder and turn the blade to 90 degrees which means that in place of the standard 16-inch throat capacity of the saw, now you get a virtually infinite cutting capacity and this comes extremely handy when you are working with larger workpieces.
1. Is this scroll saw good enough to cut up hardwood with the thickness of up to ¾”?
The specs mention the depth capacity as being 1.9 inches. However, to a good degree, it depends on the material involved. If you are working with oak or maple hardwood, ¾-1 inch deep cuts shouldn’t pose a problem as long as you are using the right blades for the cut and moving slowly enough.
2. How much vibration do you get with the saw?
Vibration isn’t a problem as long as you are not trying to cut too fast. Also make sure to hold the clamp down fast and properly tighten the arm tension handle.
3. Don’t notice any change when using the variable speed control. Is this a defective machine?
Yes. Report it to the customer service and they will replace the defective saw with a new one.
5. Proxxon 37090 DSH/E scroll saw
This is a professional grade scroll saw especially reputed for its versatility and its super-silent operation. You can complete a range of different tasks with this scroll saw—antique restoration, creating architectural designs and models, tool and die making as well as puzzle sawing, toy building/repairs, etc. The model also allows you to work with a variety of materials such rubber, fiberglass, acrylic, cork and leather, polystyrene foams, wood, plastics and non ferrous metals. It comes with a throat depth of 16 inches and a standard depth capacity of 1.5 inches.
1. Does the 1.5 inch depth capacity apply for all the materials such as fiberglass, plastics, etc.?
No. the mentioned depth capacity of 1 ½ inch is for wood only since scroll saws are most commonly used for working with wood. With this model, you get a cutting capacity of 25/64 inch for non ferrous metals and 1 3/16 inch for plastic and fiberglass materials.
2. The maximum speed mentioned is 140 SPM. Does the machine work silently at such a high speed, too?
At full throttle, it is not completely silent, but it makes very little noise—almost negligible especially when compared to the noise produced by models of similar caliber.
What’s our Take:
The Best Scroll Saw Buyer’s Guide
There are a number of considerations that are necessary when buying a saw. To get the best scroll saw for your money, there are certain key features you should look for in order to satisfy the specific needs of the projects you plan to work on. Careful attention should be paid to the blades, size, drives and speed of the various models. This will help you to find the most ideal saw to help with cutting stunning curves in your projects. The information below is from a variety of scroll saw reviews designed to assist in making the process a bit easier.
The Motor: What Size is Best?
If the aim is to mainly cut ¼ -inch pine or similar types of materials, it is not necessary to purchase a power beast. However, if your intent is to work with exotic woods, you will need all the power you can access. When you turn a sharp corner, pay attention to the motor; the extra pressure on the blade and the twisting of the blade will demand additional power. If it sounds like the motor is being bogged down, then it quite possibly is. If the saw is under powered, it will not last very long. Try to shoot for a motor size above 1.2 amps and you should do alright for at least 90% of the projects you may do.
SPM (Strokes per Minute)
The scroll saw operates at speeds that widely vary among the different models. Roughly 400 strokes per minute are delivered by slower saws, while the fastest models can get to speeds beyond 1800 strokes per minute. A number of the newer models have the option of variable speed selection. This boosts the versatility of the scroll saw as different materials call for a variety of speeds. For example, working with metal requires high-speed cutting that could cause overheating of the saw blades. In addition, creating more complex designs typically requires better control, which means cutting more slowly.
The slow range is ideal for materials like veneers, brittle materials, soft plastics and walnut. The medium range is meant for non-ferrous metals and thicker wood. The high range works best for leather, paper, cloth (between plywood or poster board) and most woods.
Throat Length: Which is Ideal?
The throat length is essentially the space between the back of the saw and the saw blade. The minimum is 16 inches; however, there are saws available that have a 30-inch throat. Ninety-five percent of projects require between 16 and 20 inches; therefore, the additional throat length is not required, unless your needs are very unusual. The throat length allows you to cut a piece of wood two times the length of the saw. For example, a 30-inch scroll saw will be able to cut a piece of wood 60 inches long. A 16-inch scroll saw is quite basic and is ideal for beginners. If you are just venturing into woodworking, this is the perfect size for you. More experienced scrollers can opt for a 20-inch or 21-inch saw.
Scroll Saw Blades: Pinned & Pinless Blades, Which Works Well With What
Pinned and Pinless are the two major types of scroll saw blades. The pinned blades have a pin at both ends of the blade, designed to hold the blade in place. Pinless blades are plain and simple and clamps are required to hold the ends in place. For true scrolling, you should not buy a pinned saw or one that takes both. The pinned blades are way too big and are unable to make delicate, sharp, interior cuts. Additionally, pinned blades are very thick and used for thicker cuts of wood; they do not allow for fine, detailed cuts. Pinless blades allow for a wider range of options as it relates to cutting wood. A much wider range of pinless blades is also available, which enables more detailed and tighter cuts.
Scroll Saw Controls
A precision power tool should have the controls readily accessible at all times. Ensure that you choose a scroll saw that has variable speed control and an on/off switch at your fingertips. Some earlier, non-electric models of the scroll saw were operated by pedals. This is an indication that the user always had free hands to control the material underneath the machine. Owners of power saws can improve their equipment with a pedal control that will provide the kind of on-going, hands-free convenience. Foot pedals on scroll saw, similar to presser feet on the sewing machine, plug into an electrical outlet and the saw itself. The pedal is used to stop and start the machine as required.
There are several ways in which scroll saws are adjustable. Some models are mounted on tables and these are designed to tilt upward to 45 degrees to allow for bevel cutting. For individuals whose work requires lots of beveled cuts, an adjustable arm saw is much more convenient as it enables the user to keep the material flat for better precision while beveling. Certain scroll saws are equipped with lifting arms that raise the saw blade to be positioned for interior cuts. This ensures that the user will not have to touch the blade itself. A lifting arm that is locked in the upright position is the most fitting for users doing fine interior scrolling.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Question: What’s the best type of scroll saw?
Answer: The best type of scroll saw is relative and will largely depend on the projects you plan to undertake and the materials you will be using. The saw should have the right amount of power to accomplish the tasks you want to complete.
2. Question: What type of scroll saw blades work best?
Answer: There is a variety of scroll saw blades on the market and as such, knowing the correct blade to use can be daunting. When making that decision, it is important to consider the types of material to be used, the thickness of the material and the types of projects that will be worked on.
The majority of manufacturers have a number system that ranges between 3/0 and 12. Jewelry and metal blades could start as low as 10/0; the finer the blade, the lower the number would be. For thinner, softer wood, a low feed rate and the lower numbers. For thicker, harder wood, higher blade numbers should be used.
3. Question: How to make sure the tension is set right?
Answer: The tension of the blade will dictate how the material is cut. The bigger the saw, the more tautness it can endure without breaking. High tension could cause snapping of the blade when the saw is powered on. Low tension could result in the blade producing inaccurate cuts, which could ruin the project. The tension blade must be properly adjusted to ensure it is neither too low nor too high before any project is attempted.
The manual of your scroll saw will provide instructions on everything needed to adjust the tension of the blade. If your saw was purchased used and you do not have your manual, it might be possible to find an online PDF version via the make and model of the saw.
4. Question: How to stop the blade clamp from slipping?
Answer: There are a number of reasons your blade clamps could be slipping. The most likely and first cause is oil. The manufacturing process causes most blades to have a smidgen of oil on them. The oil assists in keeping the blades from becoming rusty before use. Some saw blades are oily and the quantity differs from one manufacturer to the next and even within the different batches. You could be cutting for months before this problem exists or perhaps the first blade was quite oily and the problem started from the get-go.
There are easy solutions to this problem; this includes cleaning the blade tips before using them. There are a number of products that can be utilized to clean the grease. Mineral spirits, paint thinner and other items around the house works well for this purpose.
5. Question: How do you cut corners?
Answer: When the scroll saw is initially turned on, practice cutting a city skyline or stair steps on a piece of scrap wood. This will get you warmed up and prepared to make sharp, crisp corners. Cutting sharp corners is impossible if the blade and saw table are not perfectly square. To cut corners, make a superficial cut in the thickest block of wood that fits on your saw. Back out the blade from the cut and turn the block to align the cut with the back of the saw blade. If the blade is not lined up with the cut, adjust the table tilt by half of the difference of the angle between the cut and the blade. Test the angle until the cut and blade are perfectly lined up.
6. Question: How to stack cut with scroll saws?
Answer: Cutting numerous patterns at the same time (stack cutting) can make users more profitable and more efficient as well. Simultaneously cutting 4 pieces can reduce your production time by roughly 75 percent. In addition, the stack pieces provide additional support when detailed patterns are being cut in fragile areas.
To successfully achieve stack cutting, the pieces of wood should be stacked with their “good” sides facing in the same direction. There are many ways in which the pieces of wood can be held together. These include placing double-sided tape between the different layers and wrapping tape around the outer layers. Additionally, small nails and toothpicks can be inserted in the waste area and the layers can be glued together. To ensure the pieces do not move, some scrollers use a mix of these and other approaches.
7. Question: Can you cut plexiglass with scroll saws?
Answer: Scroll saws can be used to cut closed holes and sharp radii in thin pieces of plexiglass. However, they are less suitable to cut multiple sheets or thick sections. Due to the short stroke, the blades are unable to clear the chips and typically gum up. If this happens, the material will soften and it become welded around the blade. The saw must be utilized with a light feed and should not be forced. It should also be cleared regularly. As soon as the blade is no longer cutting cleanly, back it out of the material, remove the chip and allow the sheet to cool.
You can alleviate the plastic being welded behind the blade by mounting two blades side by side. This can also be done by removing chips with an air blast and cooling the plexiglass. In addition, a coolant can be used. When cutting plexiglass, masking material should be left intact for lubrication purposes; this will also protect the sheet. The saw blades must be sharp with between 10 and 14 teeth to an inch. To prevent vibration, hold-downs are necessary.
This review will be for the professional woodworkers out there. Do you live, breathe scrolling? I believe I have found a saw just for you! Check out the review on the Excalibur 16″ Scroll Saw down below… EXCALIBUR 16″ SCROLL SAW There are plenty of great things about this saw, but I’m not here to […]
Scroll saws are one of the safest power tools out there and if you’re a beginner, then you’ve come to the right place because this saw is great for beginners who are not that savvy with power tools. Just because this is economically appealing to your wallet doesn’t make it any less valuable in it’s […]