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Aussie in Norway
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242 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been mulling over the idea of buying a new jigsaw for nearling a year now and was not sure what to get. To date I have been using a beige Black and Decker jigsaw that is about 35 years old however I have run out of blades and nobody here in Norway stocks the old style blades anymore.

In my initial list was Bosch, Makita, Hitachi and Metabo. I have equipment from all these manufacturers and consider them good quality. It simply came to usable features and cost.

The Bosch was very nifty with it's tooless features and base tilt, but honetly, I was not going to pay £50 more for a feature I was rarely going to use (tooless base tilt). It does not have a light either so I kept looking.

The Metabo is very well constructed but again, slightly more expensive and seeing that I carry several Makita saws I was more inclined to reach for a Makita. It also lacked a light.

I then compared the stats for the Makita. Like the other 2 saws, it was 720 Watt, had a quick blade change system however it lacked a tooless tilt like the Bosch. It had orbital sawing like the other 2 as well and it was made in the UK. For me that means something as my old B&D jigsaw was made in the UK and it chugged along for 35+ years. The clincher for me was the LED light though. In Australia, I would never need it, but, since moving to Norway and having to work through long, dark Winters, it has become a VERY useful feature on powertools.

The saw shipped in a sturdy plastic case with 22 quality blades, a vacuum attachment, antisplinter guard, a hex wrench and a base cover.

The fit and finish of the saw is great. Everything meets together neatly and there is no slop in any of the joints, pivot points or switches. The speed dial is located on the back of the saw and is a rotating dial, allowing fine adjustment. It has 5 settings, 5 being the fastest.

The quick balde change system uses a plastic arm to catch the metal blade lock. This means at no time will your fingers make contact with hot metal bits during the release. The only issue here is that the blade may get snagged inside the lock and a shake will be needed to edject the blade. Not a big deal but a little inconvenient still. Once a blade is locked in place, it is held TIGHT. While running, there is no play and the cut is narrow and tight around curves. Very nice to use indeed!!

The Orbital sawing has 3 settings, each setting increasing the aggressiveness of the orbital action. You also have the oprtion for just staright up and down sawing.The lever for this is located on the left of the saw.

The trigger is comfortable however the hold button is located on the left of the handle which will be a pain for lefties. If this is going to be a problem a barrel jigsaw with a rocker switch may suit you better. That said, the body of this saw is slim enough that you can easily hold it by the body and use it that way if you are in a tight spot. I chose the handled model because it gave me the option and I have become accustomed to a jigsaw with a handle.

The Hex wrench to adjust the base nestles snuggly into the base itself, being held in place by clips. A great idea as I know that I would probably lose it if it wasn't on the actual saw.

Gripes... ok, so it's not perfect. Some things could be a little better. I feel the lead is too short. Considering that jigsaws get used in tight spaces, I don't understand why they ship them with short leads. That means while your cutting holes for pipes in some awekward position in Mr's Smith's kitchen cupboard, you either have a powerboard or a plug from an extension lead jammed in your arse. Just a bit of extra hassle considering that an extension lead will be needed if you work further than 12 foot away from a power point. Next is the light. I love the light, it's great. What I don't love is the fact the saw has to be going before it turns on. In a perfect world you should be able to half depress the trigger and turn the light on without the saw running full tilt, or at all for that matter. This would help while working in the cupboard, trying to line up the saw blade with the pilot hole. Of course a tooless base tilt would also be good.

To conclude, this saw is quiet, powerful and well made. It is not the most expensive but it will definately get the job done. At 720 Watts and orbital, there is not much this saw will not be able to do. I am just hoping that I get another 15 years out of this saw like I did the last. I hope this review helped as I have not been able to find one anywhere on this saw.

samthedog.
 

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Very nice review, good details, pros and cons, and nice pictures.


I have used the same jigsaw and I'm surprised more people don't try it over the Bosch. I really like that it has very low vibrations compared to other jigsaws.
 

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Aussie in Norway
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242 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Very nice review, good details, pros and cons, and nice pictures.


I have used the same jigsaw and I'm surprised more people don't try it over the Bosch. I really like that it has very low vibrations compared to other jigsaws.
Thanks. I completely agree. I can't see why the Bosch costs so much more (at least here) especially when I consider this saw in the same class. This thing is smooth and very nice to use. The light really is a great feature too. I am hoping with this review some more people will give it a go. I tend to try the tools everyone is scared of to see if they are good. If they are I post reviews because generally that is what people wait for.

I had the chance to cut some ventilation holes to run tubing through walls today. It was the first time I used it on a Job rather than just testing it and it did very well as espected. Never bogged down and was sooooo much better than my old black and decker!! :thumbup:

samthedog.
 

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I have the barrel grip version of the Makita (4351?) and love it. Opted for it over the Bosch since EVERYONE on my crew at the time had the Bosch and I hate confusion.

Some days I think the Bosch cuts better, others I'm convinced the Makita does. Ultimately, probably a wash, with the blade condition (of course)being the deciding factor.

It (Makita) also accepts the Collins Coping Foot -- which the new Bosch does not. For that reason alone I'm glad I went with the Makita.

I think the Makita was slightly more $ at the time... maybe $10, or so. I do love coping with it.
 

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Aussie in Norway
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242 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the review... I'm in the market for a new one myself, I've been using the cheap Dewalt model and it's crap. The price was hard to pass up, but now I wish I'd sprung for better... that Makita would be much nicer.
It is a good saw, and, as earlier mentioned by OKMrazor, it takes the Collins coping foot while the new Bosch does not. I don't use the coping foot but it's a nice addition for anyone who does that sort of work. It is so low on vibration that I used it to cut holes that were surrounded by tiles. It did so without chipping a single tile. Pretty awesome considering the tiles were 3mm thick porcelain and fragile.

samthedog.
 

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Finish Carpenter
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4,999 Posts
....Not sure but everyone seems to keep skipping over the fact that the Bosch 1590 has the little blade pincheres that help keep the blade from deflecting......It really does work and I am glad I have it...



If needed the collins coping foot, I woul have bought a Bosch 1587 used and thrown that on there, but I use the ol grinder method.
 

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Aussie in Norway
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242 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The makita has a better system where it uses a roller bearing lower down which makes cutting a lot smoother and controlled. :thumbsup:
Yup!! Fourth picture down shows it :thumbsup: Very tight control, even when cutting tight curces through thick material.

Paul.
 
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