Scroll saws are remarkable tools that can be used to perform some truly remarkable curves in wood, and it’s a tool that’s truly indispensable to anyone who works with wood. Although it’s often compared to a power jigsaw, it’s capable of performing more intricate cuts than a jigsaw every could perform. And all the operator needs to get the most out of it is to buy the best one available and learn how to use it properly.
Finding a model that suits your needs isn’t always easy, however. There are a couple of things that need to be considered first and not all of the models available are made with the same quality level. Which is why we’ve chosen what we feel are the top ten best scroll saws available. Anyone of the following models would be a welcome addition to any workshop.
Best Scroll Saws – Top List
10Porter Cable 18-Inch Saw With Stand
This Porter Cable scroll saw features a variable speed between 500 and 1500 SFM and is easily controlled via its control knob. This model also features a tool-less blade holder and a built-in LED work lamp that allows for proper illumination of the work area. The best thing about this tool, however, is probably its large work table which allows it to perform well for all kinds of different jobs. This die-cast aluminum table allows for bevel cuts from 45-degrees to the right and 15-degrees to the left. And its table top has a top bevel scale that allows for accurate bevel readings quickly.
9Craftsman 16-Inch Variable Speed
This 1.6-Amp saw is an adequate tool for accomplishing a number of exciting projects. Whether the operator wants to use it to cut through soft or hardwoods or wants to use it for something a little more challenging such as plastic or soft metals, then this scroll saw is ready to deliver exceptional results. It has a variable speed that goes from 400 strokes-per-minute on the low end, all the way up to 1,600 SPM on the high-end. This allows the operator to cut through a variety of materials and to perform a number of different cuts. And since it accepts standard 5-inch pin blades, it can be equipped with the suitable blade for the job.
8Shop Series RK7315 16-Inch
Anyone looking for a lightweight saw that can pack a bit of a punch may want to investigate this easy-to-use 16-inch scroll saw from Shop Series. It’s a lightweight tool that delivers 1.2-Amps of power and can perform a number of woodworking projects. Some of the features which can be found on this tool include a die-cast aluminum table that has bevels from 0 to 45-degrees, a cutting depth of 2.5-inches and a throat depth of 16-inches. It’s also equipped with variable speed control and has a 4/5-inch stroke that ensures that the operator gets the most accurate cuts possible.
7Dremel MS20-01 Moto-Saw
Dremel has long been known for their collection of rotary saws, but not everyone realizes that they actually make a number of other tools, including this scroll saw. And like their rotary saws, this one is pretty easy to use and produces great results. It has a variable speed control that allows it to be used to cut through a variety of different materials and it has a base that can clamp easily to just about any work surface including benches or tables. This tool is also equipped with a dust-port adapter that keeps the line-of-sight clean by keeping the work area cleaned up.
6Delta Power Tools 20-Inch
This tool provides the prospective woodworker the features they need for a job well done. It features an electronic variable speed control that can be easily adjusted from 400 strokes-per-minute all the way up to 1,750 strokes-per-minute. This allows the device to be used for all kinds of different materials. It also features a dual parallel-link arm that helps to reduce arrant vibration and helps to control the project’s accuracy. Some of the other mentionable features found on this saw include a dust hose that clears the work surface, on-tool blade storage and a tool-free blade clamp that allows for super easy blade changes.
5Shop Fox W1713 16-Inch
When people are shopping for scroll saws, they are looking for several different features. They generally want a model that offers variable speed control, has a decent cutting capacity and is easy to use. Fortunately, this saw fits the bill on all points. It has a 1/8 HP motor that can provide a no-load speed from 500 all the way up to 1,700 strokes-per-minute, has a 16-inch cutting capacity, and has a gooseneck work light. But there’s more to this tool than those basic features. It also provides a dust port for a clear line of sight, can cut angles from 0 to 45-degrees, and can use pin or plain-blades easily.
4Jet 727200K With Stand
Everything a woodworker needs to get started on one of their next projects is found in this kit which includes a scroll saw and a stand. And the two components work together quite well. The stand raises the work surface high enough for the operator to perform their work, but it still has a compact design that allows it to be used almost anywhere. The tool features a 22-inch throat capacity and has a removable lower blade holder that can be snapped easily into place. Other features found on this tool include a removable dust port, built-in onboard blade storage, and a top lift spring loaded arm.
3WEN 3920 16-Inch Variable Speed
With a unique design that incorporates several exciting features, this WEN scroll saw is ready to perform any number of different jobs. It has a 16-inch by 11-inch table that bevels up to 45-degrees to the left and this allows it to deliver some fairly impressive angled cuts for just about any project. It also has a 16-inch throat depth and is capable of cutting through wood up to two inches thick. Additional features which can be found on this saw include a cast iron base, onboard tool storage, LED worm work light, hold-down foot clamp, and a variable speed range from 400 to 1,600 S.P.M.
2Excalibur EX-16 16-Inch
Functionality and versatility come together in this impressive tool that will make any woodworker’s job a whole lot easier. It features a variable speed range that goes from 400 strokes-per-minute on the low end, all the way up to 1,400 strokes-per-minutes on the high end. This allows the tool to be used on a variety of projects easily and allows the operator to assume full control over their project. It also has a tilting head that can move 30-degrees left or 45-degrees to the right for more accurate cuts. And finally, it has a 2-inch max. a cutting depth that makes it easy to use for wood projects.
1Dewalt DW788 20-Inch Variable Speed
Just by looking at the quality and thought put into this scroll saw, it’s easy to see why Dewalt is such a big name in the tool business. This tool is built to exacting standards to produce extremely accurate cuts quickly and efficiently. This 20-inch saw has a depth cut of 2-inches and has a variable speed control so the user can cut with precision. It also features a tool-free blade clamp that can be changed in seconds, arm lifts that allow the blade to be easily threaded and a cast-iron table that provides the operator with the stability they need to finish their work.
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Scroll Saw Guide
The more skilled the carpenter, the more they will lean towards specialist equipment and this often includes a scroll saw. Because it gives you a lot of freedom to make some intricate curves that other saws do not, it is a great tool to have in your workshop.
The problem with such a unique saw is that not everyone knows what to look for. This means a lot of woodworkers miss out on some of the great benefits. To help clear a few things up and make your purchase a good one, we have created the following scroll saw guide.
What To Look For In A Scroll Saw
- Motor Power – You need a scroll saw that makes it easy to cut through thick wood and a lot of this comes down to the power. A motor with around 1 – 1.5 amps is good enough for most at-home uses although professionals might want a little more from their scroll saw.
- Speed – Coupled with speed, this will affect how well your scroll saw can get through certain materials. The SPM (Speed Per Minute) should be something between 500 as a minimum speed and 1,800 as a top speed with variable speeds in between. Professionals will want more options and bigger top speed.
- Weight – With a lot of power tools and saws, being light is an advantage,. However, when working with a scroll saw you might want a bit of weight behind it. This is because it can help to reduce the number of vibrations and keep you accurate. The greater the power, the more a scroll saw should do to reduce vibrations and one way of doing this might be through greater table weight.
- Variable Speed Control – This helps with accuracy and for different types of material. You’ll need to change the blade if you want to tackle certain metals and different woods but a variable speed control will also benefit you when you are creating curves and need to slow things down a little.
- Throat Size – This is the measurement that comes from how far the back of the saw is to the back of the throat. Most common sizes are 16-inches, 20-inches, and 30-inches although there are plenty in between and above. Your decision will be based on the length of wood you wish to cut. The throat size measures at half the length of material the scroll saw can cut so the smaller sizes might have their limitations for a lot of people.
- Dust Collection – Any woodworker will tell you how much easier it is to work with a clear workspace but dust chips and debris are a given when it comes to using a scroll saw. This is why the better products have a dust collection or dust blowing feature that allows you to keep a clean space. It is also much better for your health as sawdust flying around the room can make it difficult to breathe.
- Tilt – The more skilled workers will need a bit more from their scroll saw and one great feature that opens up a lot of possibilities is a tilt. Expect the price to go up and you can get a right or left tilt or a combination. This is the tilt of the table although some models have the blades do the tilting.
- Noise Control – A scroll saw operates with a lot of power so much like other saws, expect a bit of noise and vibration when cutting. However, some models keep this to a minimum and make it easier for you to stay in control as vibrations can make life difficult when you need to keep a steady hand.
- Warranty – Although you can find some great deals on scroll saws, they are still going to be an investment that can be expensive to replace. This is why it is always best to protect such a purchase by finding a product with a warranty. The more years you can get the better as when using power tools, anything can happen.
Should A Scroll Saw Have A Foot Switch?
This can be a useful addition as it means you can stay hands-free and turn the device on and off. It is always best when you can retain a grip after sawing the material, and a footswitch allows you to do so.
Scroll Saw Safety
Almost every accident with a scroll saw is avoidable so the first way to keep yourself safe is by staying alert whenever you are around it. Don’t wear loose-fitting clothes or jewelry and always wear protective goggles.
Only use a scroll saw for its intended purpose, never cut pieces so small you have to hold them too close to the blade and read the users manual before operating it for the first time.