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Well-Equipped Shop - Revamped Jigsaws


Revamped Jigsaws

Cutting hardwood with a jigsaw is a brutal test of the machine’s quality. Many saws don’t score high marks because their blade defl ects, producing cuts that are out of square. That makes it hard to accurately follow a line. Years ago, Bosch led the way in producing a jigsaw that passed the hardwood test with flying colors. They’ve recently updated their line with two new models.

Inside, the saws are very similar. Both have similar 7-amp variable-speed motors. As with many state-of-theart woodworking machines today, this motor’s feedback circuitry maintains a steady speed as the load increases. In practical terms, that means less bogging down when you push faster.

Both jigsaws have a toolless blade-change system and four orbital-action settings (smooth to very aggressive). They also have an integrated, adjustable dust blower to keep the cutting line clear and a steel insert in the foot to reduce wear.

On the outside, Bosch has made two saws that look and feel very different. One model has a barrel-grip handle, while the other has an enclosed handle. A barrel- grip handle puts your hand closer to your workpiece. That’s best for intricate work, such as cutting small radius curves. With a low center of gravity, there’s less chance of inadvertently putting side pressure on the blade and making a non-perpendicular cut. An enclosed handle, on the other hand, is easier to grip when making vertical cuts.



Bosch Tools,, 877-267-2499, 7-Amp Top-Handle Jigsaw, JS470E, $160; 7-Amp Barrel-Grip Jigsaw, JS470EB, $160.