Which Jigsaw Blade To Use For The Job [2024]

Which Jigsaw Blade to use for the job

If you are in a trade that requires you to carry out any amount of cutting, you will more than likely have a jigsaw in your tool kit.

A jigsaw is a very versatile power tool, which allows you to accurately make straight or shaped cuts in a variety of materials such as wood, plastic, and metal. Selecting the correct jigsaw blade for specific jobs is of paramount importance, but with so many to choose from, it can be very easy to pick it incorrectly.

The purpose of this blog is to give a little insight into how to choose the correct blade for your specific application, therefore, we will address:

So, what do you need to consider when selecting a blade type?

Material –  Hardwood, Softwood, Board Material, Laminated Material, Aluminium, Steel, Stainless Steel, Plastic, Fibreglass, or Ceramic?

Finish – Will the cut material be visible or hidden? This will dictate whether you need a finer tooth blade for a clean smooth finish or a coarser rough-cut blade, which enables faster cutting.

The majority of jigsaw blades produced are cut on the up-stroke. The up-cut blade actually aids with the user’s control and stability of the machine, by pulling the base of the saw into the material being cut. The different options for blades generally come from the tooth pattern and TPI (teeth per inch). The general rule of thumb; the higher the TPI the cleaner the cut… but be careful! If the blade is too fine, this can lead to clogging and subsequently heat build-up, burning, and premature end-of-life for the blade. It’s also important that you let the blade do the cutting, rather than forcing the jigsaw and blade to cut faster than it is capable of; another cause of heat build-up and reduced blade life. Harder and thicker materials require a coarser tooth pitch and need to be cut slower. This ensures a cleaner cut, and prolonged machine life, and helps to keep blade wear to a minimum.

For laminated materials, such as kitchen worktops, down-cut blades are available, cutting on the down stroke to minimise splintering to the topside of the laminated surface. Completely opposite to up-cut blades, down-cut blades will push the jigsaw base away from the surface, meaning the user will now have to take extra care in holding the machine firmly down on the surface and take greater care in controlling the jigsaw. If you are more comfortable using an up-cut jigsaw blade, another option is to flip the worktop over and cut from the bottom side.

Now we’ve covered the various teeth types; what about the most common cutting applications? There are four main types of jigsaw blades available; for cutting wood, metal, wood & metal, or tiles & ceramics.

If you are predominantly cutting wood, including board materials, there is a much wider choice of blades available, capable of cutting anywhere from 2mm up to 100mm thick material with a variety of finishes – from semi-clean cut to very smooth finish for the more precise applications.

When cutting metal, including sheet, pipe, angle, or box sections, there is the option of a metal-only cutting blade. I would definitely recommend bi-metal teeth for their much longer life and added versatility – capable of cutting most metals including stainless steel. Material thickness between 1mm and 6mm covers most metal cutting applications, giving a precise and clean cut.

‘Multi Blades’ are becoming more popular; ideal if you want a ‘does all’ blade or cutting substrates that contain different materials – for example, sandwich board or computer flooring. These blades work by having a different tooth pitch on the same blade, ensuring a precise and clean finish in a multitude of materials. Although incredibly useful, a dedicated blade specifically designed for wood or metal will always perform better than a multi-blade.

Maxitek jigsaw blades

Protrade stocks the Maxitek brand of jigsaw blades; the range contains the most popular types of blades for most applications. They are manufactured in Germany from European steel, perfectly shaped using patented laser technology, produced to the highest standards, and designed for professional users. We also offer the Lenox brand; another premium brand for the demanding requirements of industrial requirements. The Lenox range includes a carbide blade – GT300S; designed for cutting ceramics, tiles, fiberglass, brick, cast iron, and hard plaster.

The table below gives a general overview of the Maxitek range of jigsaw blades, to help with the selection process for the most common cutting applications:

Code Bosch Equiv. Ideal for Finish Also cuts
46852 T144D Wood and board materials up to 60mm Semi-clean Soft plastics up to 30mm
46853 T101D Wood and board materials up to 60mm Clean cut Soft plastics up to 30mm
46850 T101B Wood and board materials up to 40mm Very clean-up cut Soft plastics up to 30mm
46851 T101BR Wood and board materials up to 40mm Very clean down cut Soft plastics up to 30mm
46861 T234X Wood and board materials up to 80mm Very clean cut N/A
46859 T101AO Wood and board materials up to 20mm Very fine clean cut Fibreboard and soft plastics
46858 T111HF Wood and nail-embedded wood up to 30mm Precise and clean cut Plastic, non-ferrous metal, steel, and stainless up to 12mm
46856 N/A Wood and nail-embedded wood up to 100mm Precise and clean cut Plastic, non-ferrous metal, steel, and stainless up to 15mm
46854 T118AF Metal and stainless steel up to 3mm Precise and clean cut Non-ferrous metals and acrylic glass
46862 T118BF Metal and stainless steel 3mm to 6mm Precise and clean cut Non-ferrous metal and acrylic

To view the Maxitek range of Jigsaw Blades – click here.

Author: Des Duddy Joint Managing Director Protrade

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