Scroll Saw vs Jigsaw: Know your saws!

A bad worker blames their tools, but using the wrong tool for the job can produce sloppy work. The best way to get the most out of your projects is to make sure you’re using the right tools.

If you’re looking for a new cutting tool, then you might have already considered picking up either a scroll saw or a jigsaw. Many beginners get roadblocked by the options available. While these tools can work for similar tasks, they’re not the same. Understanding the difference is important for getting what you want.

Figuring out which type of saw might be the best option for your requirements can be a daunting task. What’s the difference between a scroll saw and a jigsaw anyway? Is one better than the other? This page will explain what each tool is capable of and which scenarios they’re best suited for.

DEWALT Jig Saw, Top Handle, 5.5-Amp (DW317K)
WEN 3921 16-inch Two-Direction Variable Speed Scroll Saw

Scroll Saw vs Jigsaw Compared

What is a Scroll Saw?

The first thing to mention here is that scroll saws are the less portable option. You’ll need to make space at your work table, or use a model with a stand of its own. Scroll saws consist of a work surface positioned underneath a thin, reciprocating saw that is capable of making very delicate, detailed cuts for ornate projects.

The blade can be removed and slotted through a pre-drilled hole in your cutting material. This makes it possible to make interior cut outs without using an entry slot. The lighter touch of a scroll saw comes with some distinct advantages.

They run very quietly and produce a lot less dust than other options. If noise or debris is a concern, a scroll saw is an excellent option.

There are some tasks that can only really be achieved using a scroll saw. These are tasks like pierce cuts and marquetry that are only possible with a high-finesse tool.

There are a variety of scroll saw sizes available. The distance from the blade to the rear frame of the saw is called the throat. The throat size is what determines the size of your saw. The bigger the throat, the bigger the cutting capacity. Smaller saws are typically around 12 inches, while the largest commercial models are almost 30 inches.

Think about the type of materials you’re likely to be working with and pick a saw that’s a suitable size.

When Should You Use a Scroll Saw?

If your work involves a large number of intricate, detailed cuts, then a scroll saw is what you need. In some contexts, the cuts are so delicate that you won’t even need to sand any edges!

A project that’s a perfect example of where a scroll saw shines is making a jigsaw puzzle. Cutting out such a high number of delicate curves and shapes would drive you insane if you were using the wrong tool. The delicate precision of a scroll saw makes this kind of work much easier.

The level of control possible with a scroll saw makes them a popular tool for decorating projects and builds with a lot of detail. Work that demands interior cuts can be completed much more efficiently with a scroll saw.

When Shouldn’t You Use a Scroll Saw?

Larger cutting materials are the downfall of most scroll saws. It’s possible to buy tougher blades that can improve things a little, but the motors on most models can’t tackle thicker cutting pieces.

The maximum width and length you’ll be able to cut is also limited when working with this type of saw. For bigger materials, a jigsaw is probably the better option.

As scroll saws are purpose built to make delicate, smooth cuts, they’re not the best tool for straight cutting lines. The flexibility of the blade is not appropriate for making lots of straight cuts.

Pros of Scroll Saws:

They run very quietly. These are not noisy machines. Their motors and blades are a great option for people who want to work quietly.

They produce less dust. At best, dust is a nuisance and it can cause serious problems if left unchecked. Scroll saws kick up significantly less dust and debris than other options.

They’re perfect for detailed work. Projects that need intricate, smooth lines are made easy with a good scroll saw.

Interior cuts can be made without an entry slot. For certain contexts, this can save you a lot of time and make for a slicker end result.

Cons of Scroll Saws:

They’re not great for larger cutting pieces. Scroll saws aren’t designed to cut through thick, wide or long pieces. A jigsaw is the better option in this context.

They take up a lot of space. You’ll need to make plenty of room for a scroll saw in your workshop. If your work moves you around from A to B, you might want to consider a jigsaw.

Our Scroll Saw Top Pick

There is a fantastic amount of choice when it comes to picking a new scroll saw and there’s plenty of good options available. Notable brands worth considering include WEN and DEWALT.

This offering from WEN can accept blades in two directions, allowing for an infinite cutting capacity. Most scroll saws come with an excellent level of control, but the Wen 3921’s variable speed control settings stand out. They’re remarkably easy to use and greatly improve the versatility of this tool.

Blade changes are a breeze thanks to the tool-less switching system. Other features that caught our eye include the convenient air pump, handy onboard storage and durable design.

What’s a Jigsaw?

These are a far more practical option for many use cases; jigsaws trade finesse for versatility. There are many tasks that are made much easier with these tools. It’s worth keeping in mind that these saws don’t have anywhere near the level of precision and detail when compared to scroll saws.

Depending on where you’re from, you might also know these tools as saber saws. Just to make things more confusing, some people also refer to jigsaws as scroll saws! There is a big difference though, and it’s more accurate to describe these machines as jigsaws.

These are portable, handheld tools that run on either direct power through a cord or electricity from a lithium-ion battery. As a general rule, corded options come with a boost to power, but can be cumbersome to maneuver and tie you to an outlet. Battery powered saws are the most convenient option if portability matters to you.

Jigsaws use a reciprocating blade that’s guided by a large foot for improved accuracy when cutting. With the right blade installed, you’ll be able to cut through a wide variety of materials. These include wood, metal, PVC, and drywall.

The number of different blade types available means you shouldn’t have any trouble tackling most sizes and types of cutting material. The handheld nature of a jigsaw means you’re not tied to a specific throat size. This frees up your work considerably.

Jigsaws are able to make plunge cuts quite effectively. Once you’ve drilled an initial hole into the centre of your material, plunge and interior cuts are simple to execute. Many people prefer this method compared to scroll saws, as it doesn’t require you to remove and then reinsert the saw’s blade.

When Should You Use a Jigsaw?

The flexibility of these saws means there’s a countless number of tasks that they can power through with ease. With the right blade and power, a good jigsaw can feel limitless. There are far fewer limitations here in terms of cutting capacity. Name a cutting task and a jigsaw can probably handle it.

Of course, there are plenty of contexts where another machine might be a more perfect fit, but few tools can handle as many different jobs as a jigsaw.

Scroll saws are gentle and precise. Jigsaws are powerful and versatile. If you’re an average DIY professional or hobbyist, a jigsaw is likely the better option for you.

When Shouldn’t You Use a Jigsaw?

If your work requires a high level of fine detail and precision, a jigsaw will probably be too heavy-handed for you.

The handheld nature of these tools means there’s a much larger margin for error when working. Without a clamp or table to secure your cut, there’s much more that can go wrong. The blades on these saws aren’t flexible or delicate enough to achieve the level of precision that more ornate projects deserve.

Jigsaw Pros

  • They’re ultra-versatile. A good jigsaw is a jack of all trades. You might be surprised how many jobs are made easier by a jigsaw.
  • They’re portable. These tools are much smaller and lighter than scroll saws and are very easy to carry around. If portability matters to you, then you’ll appreciate a jigsaw.
  • There are far fewer limitations when it comes to cutting capacity. Because jigsaws are handheld devices and aren’t limited by throat size, they can handle much larger cutting pieces than scroll saws.

Jigsaw Cons

  • They don’t have the finesse of a scroll saw. Highly detailed projects may be butchered by a jigsaw.
  • They can leave behind very rough edges. You’ll be doing a lot of sanding after making cuts with these tools.

Our Jigsaw Top Pick

This 6.2 lbs machine from DEWALT is worth a mention. It’s simple to use and is a great option for both professionals and hobbyists. The modern, heavy-duty design comes with a price tag that’s hard to ignore and the three-year warranty adds peace of mind to an already compelling package.

The 5.5-amp motor can handle the toughest materials, and the adjustable speed settings let you cut anywhere between 0 and 3100 strokes a minute. This jigsaw comes with a keyless blade, meaning you can change the edge quickly without having to touch it.

This tool comes with a durable metal gear case and can make bevel cuts between 0 and 45 degrees. This machine’s orbital action with 4 possible positions allows for faster, more determined cuts through a variety of materials.

Conclusion

We hope this page has outlined why scroll saws and jigsaws are very different beasts. Scroll saws are all about fine details, smooth edges, and intricate designs. The headline for jigsaws is that they’re one of the most versatile tools you’re likely to add to your kit.

If you know for a fact that a jigsaw won’t be able to handle the level of detail required for your work, then definitely consider picking up a scroll saw. Otherwise, the portability, versatility, and ease of use that comes as standard with a jigsaw make them the best option for most people.

As always, the more you know about what you’re looking to achieve, the easier it will be to pick the perfect tool for the job.

Best Scroll Saws of 2020: Reviews and Buying Guide

If you haven’t updated your toolkit for a while, you might be surprised how out of date your tools have become. If your work or home projects involve precise and intricate cuts, a good scroll saw can make your life much easier.

Scroll saws are a woodworker’s dream, especially when making more intricate cuts in projects like jewelry boxes, birdhouses or elaborate signs. If you’re making something with a gingerbread trim and you’re not using a good scroll saw, then you’re doing something wrong! The variable speed options that come with a scroll saw allow for beautiful work that is efficient and impressive.

We’ve put in hours of research, and analyzed real world user feedback to determine our recommendations for the best scroll saws available.

On this page, we explain what you’ll need to know to find the perfect scroll saw to fit your needs.

IMAGE PRODUCT DETAILS
cfimvtbl-table__imageBest SellerBest SellerWEN 3921 16-inch Two-Direction
  • Variable speed 400 to 1600
  • Cuts wood up to 2 inches thick
  • Unique design accepts blades in two directions
VIEW ON AMAZON →
cfimvtbl-table__imageBest RatedBest RatedRockwell BladeRunner X2 Portable
  • Sets up in seconds
  • Cuts like a full size
  • Safety switch
VIEW ON AMAZON →
cfimvtbl-table__imageProfessionalProfessionalDEWALT Scroll Saw
  • Double parallel link arm design
  • Exclusive tool free blade clamps
  • Oversized, cast-iron table
VIEW ON AMAZON →
cfimvtbl-table__imageBest PriceBest PriceDremel MS20-01 Moto-Saw 
  • Dust port adapter
  • Auto tensioning quick-change mechanism
  • Detachable coping function
CHECK BEST PRICE →
cfimvtbl-table__imageLightweight SawLightweight SawDelta Power Tools 40-694
  • Electronic variable speed 
  • Tool-free blade clamp 
  • Bevels 0° - 45° left and right
CHECK BEST PRICE →

Types of Scroll Saws

The best scroll saw for the job will depend on the level of precision involved, and the material being worked on. Starting from nowhere can be overwhelming, as there are many different types and sizes of saw available. We’ll talk you through the seven most common types of blade available to help you narrow down your search.

Standard Tooth Blades

The teeth on these blades are the same size, and are equidistant from each other. Typically, standard tooth blades are made from either metal or wood. The louder option of the two, metal blades have smaller teeth that are spaced closer together. Wooden blades usually have larger teeth and are spaced much further apart.

Skip-Tooth Blades

On these blades, every other tooth is missing. This leaves a much wider space between each tooth and reduces operational temperature. If you’re a beginner, a skip-tooth blade is an excellent option.

Double-Tooth Blades

Double-tooth blades are similar to skip-tooth blades, but have an even larger space between each tooth. They run quite slowly but produce very smooth cuts.

Reverse Skip-Tooth Blades

These are like a modified version of a skip-tooth blade. The difference is, that reverse skip-tooth blades have small pointed teeth in the space between each larger tooth. This makes them great at preventing tear-out and for working with plywood.

Precision-Ground Blades

Precision-ground blades have teeth that have been ground down to a very small point. This makes them much sharper and capable of producing straight lines that are incredibly smooth. These blades are best suited for more experienced workers, as they can be quite aggressive.

Spiral Blades

Spiral blades are twisted together in a shape that points teeth out in every direction. This makes it possible to create cuts in any direction without moving the wood you’re working on. These blades are not for every project, as they can leave broader cuts that are quite rough. They also have a tendency to stretch out and cannot cut sharp corners. In the right context, however, spiral blades can be a godsend.

Crown-Tooth Blades

The unique crown shape created by the teeth on these blades make them a reliable option for cutting plastic and similar materials. Crown-tooth blades can be fitted in any orientation and are a newer, more modern kind of blade.

Best Scroll Saw: 6 top picks

1. WEN 3921 Scroll Saw

WEN 3921 16-inch Two-Direction Variable Speed Scroll Saw

Overview:

This scroll saw comes with a unique design that is more durable and cost-effective than its competitors. We think it’s a brilliant addition to most toolkits.

The 16-inch depth of the WEN 3921 makes it spacious enough to handle larger workpieces and allows it to bevel to the left up to 45 degrees. This machine can cut wood at a thickness of almost 2 inches and is surprisingly easy to use.

If you’re looking for a saw that can handle both pinned and unpinned blades, then this is an excellent option. The WEN 3921 does both, and it does them well. This saw’s speed can be adjusted between 550 and 1600 strokes a minute, making it an efficient tool for either professional or home use. The included worklight makes it even easier to focus on the smaller details of your projects.

Pros

  • Highly cost-effective
  • Reduces noise level
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Parts of the body crack easily.

2. DEWALT Scroll Saw

DEWALT Scroll Saw, Variable-Speed, 1.3 Amp, 20-Inch (DW788)

Overview:

The versatile design and incredibly accurate cuts that come with this scroll saw make it one of the most reliable saws we’ve found during our testing.

The DEWALT Scroll Saw is designed with detailed, delicate work in mind. What’s more, it’s one of the most durable saws available on the market.

The easy-to-control speed settings on this machine make it a joy to use. Another huge plus in terms of convenience is the double parallel-link arm design, which dramatically reduces vibration and allows you to work with your arms in a more natural position, ensuring accuracy and reliability across a broad range of tasks.

The 1.3-amp motor on this scroll saw allows the blade to be changed within seconds. The adjustable speed on the DEWALT Scroll Saw ranges from 400 to 1750 strokes per minute.

Pros

  • Dramatically reduces noise
  • Reliable for beginners
  • Incredibly convenient to use

Cons

  • The arm doesn’t lock in place

3. Delta Power Scroll Saw

Delta Power Tools 40-694 20 In. Variable Speed Scroll Saw

Overview:

If you’re looking for a tool without compromises, then you’ve come to the right place. The versatile design of the Delta Power Scroll Saw delivers fantastic performance at a very competitive price point.

This machine was designed with efficiency, accuracy and ease of use in mind. The corded power source guarantees efficiency when working, and the dual parallel-link arm design reduces vibration and eliminates over cutting.

The upper arm can be locked into a position that works for you, making it easy to adjust your blade quickly and make precise cuts. These cuts can be made at an adjustable speed of anywhere from 400 to 1750 strokes per minute.

The blade tension lever and dust blower on the Delta Power Scroll Saw make it easier than ever to work effectively while keeping mess to a minimum.

Pros

  • Accurate and precise
  • Cost-effective
  • Easy to assemble

Cons

  • The on / off switch is not particularly durable

4. Dremel MS20-01 Scroll Saw Kit

Dremel MS20-01 Moto-Saw Variable Speed Compact Scroll Saw Kit

Overview:

Weighing in at just 5.29 lbs, this scroll saw is remarkably easy to maneuver. Don’t let the ultra-lightweight construction fool you, this is still a durable tool that packs a punch.

The ten cutting blades and two additional attachments that are included with this machine make it a fantastic option for both professionals and complete beginners. The compact and comfortable design makes it easy to create detailed, nuanced cuts in materials like plastic, wood, laminates and even metal. Your visibility will not be compromised, thanks to the effective dust port that comes as standard.

Making adjustments and changing blades can be time consuming when working with scroll saws. The automatic quick-change mechanism included with the Dremel MS20-01 maintains an optimal level of blade tension and reduces the headache of making adjustments.

If your workload includes tasks that need a stationary saw, then this machine is a great option. The clamp base on this model can be attached to a variety of surfaces, making it a flexible tool in many contexts.

Pros

  • Incredibly compact and portable
  • Reliable for beginners
  • Ultra-lightweight construction

Cons

5. Shop Fox W1713 16-Inch Scroll Saw

Shop Fox W1713 16-Inch Variable Speed Scroll Saw

Overview:

This is another excellent option for those working on a budget. The affordable price of this saw doesn’t mean you have to compromise on quality or performance. The Shop Fox W1713 delivers precise cuts that are smooth and even.

The 1.2-amp motor and 16-inch cutting capacity of this scroll saw allows it to cut through pieces that are almost 2 inches thick. The table tilt mechanism on this machine is excellent and makes for very accurate cuts. The included knob for locking to a table makes it very easy to cut material horizontally.

The Shop Fox W1713 earned its place on this list by being remarkably convenient to use. The speed-control options are very easy to operate, and the included dust port keeps things nice and clear while you’re working. It’s possible to tilt the table of this machine up to 45 degrees, which makes it a breeze to switch blades on the fly.

This impressive feature set comes with the backing of a two year warranty, adding peace of mind to an already compelling package.

Pros

  • Incredibly affordable
  • Works very well
  • Reliable table tilt mechanism

Cons

  • Exchanging blades is a difficult task

6. Rockwell BladeRunner X2 Portable Tabletop Saw

Rockwell BladeRunner X2 Portable Tabletop Saw with Steel Rip Fence, Miter Gauge, and 7 Accessories – RK7323

Overview:

The Rockwell Blade Runner X2 is designed for use in professional construction sites. The built-in carrying handle is very comfortable, and makes a big difference when moving the tool around. Setting up this scroll saw is refreshingly quick and easy, making it a great option for demanding workplaces with tight turnarounds.

The durable blade system on this machine makes it easy to create scroll, cross and miter cuts to a high standard. The five included blades can cut through aluminum, metal and ceramic, and the hold-down guard makes deeper, more substantial cuts possible. The gauge on this scroll saw is incredibly adjustable, meaning accuracy is never an issue. Changing blades on this machine is very simple, and takes as little as three seconds.

When extra blades and your rip fence are not in use, they can be conveniently placed away using the storage space in the base of the unit. Your work is kept tidier still by the effective dust port that can be attached to a vacuum cleaner.

Pros

  • Ergonomic and comfortable
  • Versatile design
  • Multifunctional

Cons

  • Average build quality

Related

Best Scroll Saw: Buying Guide

There are an overwhelming number of options available when looking for a suitable scroll saw. Having plenty of options to choose from is fantastic, but it can be difficult to know where to start.

The more you know about what you want to achieve with your saw, the easier it will be to find what you’re looking for. The following section of this page will outline the various aspects of a scroll saw that make it a worthwhile tool, in the hopes that this will help you narrow down your search.

Blade Types

Without the right blade, your work will never be where you want it to be. Different objectives and materials require a variety of different blade options to get the job done.

Pinned Blades

These blades are held into the saw using a pin mechanism. This makes it easy to change your blades when necessary. While pinned blades use a more traditional design, most modern scroll saws can accommodate either a pinned or unpinned blade.

Unpinned Blades

The advantage of unpinned blades is that they are easy to replace. They are threaded carefully through the scroll saw, and fed into slots located above and below the cutting table. When using unpinned saws, make sure you tighten them well at both ends, or they won’t work properly.

Speed Settings

If you’re working with more than one material, or even with one material that varies in thickness, it’s imperative that you buy a scroll saw with an adjustable speed setting.

Operating speed is usually controlled using a dial, and often comes with a lock that maintains the right speed once you’ve made an adjustment.

Table

Many scroll saws come with an adjustable table that can bevel to the right or left up to 45 degrees.

Positioning the table around your mid torso is your best option, as it gives you a clear view of your work which is crucial for keeping cuts accurate. Make sure the blade you are using is in line with the table.

Arm Types

Your saw arm will keep your blade in place and allow you to maintain consistency when cutting. It’s important to consider the type of arm you’ll need when working with a scroll saw.

Different arm types deliver different results, they are explained below.

C Arms

C arms have one pivot point, meaning they can move up and down with a slight arc.

This type of arm is the fastest option when making cuts. A substantial level of experience is required when using a c-arm saw and for this reason, they’re mostly found in professional settings.

Parallel Arms

This design uses two arms that intersect in the middle, each with their own pivot point. This allows both arms to move simultaneously. The lower arm is connected to the saw’s motor and table. The upper arm contains space to mount a blade that can move in a reciprocating motion.

Parallel-Linked Arms

This is a newer arm design and is quite a game changer. The arms are shorter than other designs, and move from front to back very reliably. Parallel-linked arms dramatically reduce the amount of vibration caused when making cuts, which greatly improves safety and accuracy.

The blade fits into the space between both arms and operates with reciprocating motion when cutting.

Additional Features

There are a number of additional features to look out for when purchasing a scroll saw. We outline the best of the bunch below.

Variable Speed Option

If you’re working with more than one material, or even with one material that varies in thickness, it’s imperative that you buy a scroll saw with an adjustable speed setting.

Operating speed is usually controlled using a dial, and often comes with a lock that maintains the right speed once you’ve made an adjustment.

Blade Tension Knob

Blade tension refers to how tightly or loosely the blade has been fitted in a machine. On some scroll saws, adjusting blade tension can be a cumbersome and time consuming task. A blade tension knob can make this task much easier, and usually comes in the form of a dial or plastic knob.

Adjustable Lighting

Scroll saws are often used for very intricate and complex projects. For this reason, many models come equipped with LED torches that improve visibility.

Look for torches that are adjustable and durable.

Air Blowers

Dust and other debris that is generated when cutting materials can be very dangerous. Anything that reduces visibility should be avoided when using a scroll saw. What’s more, inhaling certain particulates can be very bad for your health. For these reasons, an air blower attachment is a worthy option to consider when shopping.

Now that we’ve introduced the fundamental characteristics of modern scroll saws, we’ll explore some key questions that are worth asking on your search.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q) How do I choose a scroll saw?

There’s no denying that finding the right scroll saw can seem like a daunting task. As a general rule of thumb, we recommend finding a saw that runs quietly, smoothly and with minimal vibration. A saw with a variable speed setting is also a good place to start.

The perfect scroll saw is the one that meets your requirements. Consider the type of work you’ll be doing, and use these requirements to narrow down your search.

Q) Which is better, a scroll saw or a band saw?

There’s no clear winner here, it all comes down to the type of work you’re doing.

If you’re making precise and intricate cuts, then a scroll saw is probably what you need. If you want to make clean, straight cuts quickly and effectively, a band saw might be the way to go.

Q) How much does a scroll saw cost?

This of course depends on the features you need and the level of quality you’re able to afford.

As a general rule, mid-range saws cost around $500. More premium options can cost as much as $1500.

Q) Is a scroll saw worth it?

Of course! Scroll saws can produce elegant and intricate projects that are absolutely beautiful.

The shorter, thinner blades with adjustable speed settings allow for efficient work that is accurate and stunning. In the right context, a scroll saw can take your work to the next level.

Conclusion

Finding the right tool for the job can take a long time and prove quite exhausting. We hope that the information on this page has helped you begin to narrow down your search. The clearer you are about what you want to achieve, the easier it will be to find the right scroll saw.

If you’re looking for a shortcut, our top pick is the DEWALT Scroll Saw featured in the list above. In our opinion, its versatile design and innovative features make it hard to beat!

Either way, we wish you luck on your search!

Scroll Saw vs Band Saw: Which One Do You Need For Your Project?

Band saws and scroll saws may look pretty similar, but they are not the same. When space or budget restraints allow you to choose between two saws, the decision can be tricky. The band saw and scroll saw are both remarkable saws to have in your workshop.

Before making a final decision, you want to know everything about both of them. All the strengths and weaknesses should be considered before finding the best one for your workplace.

If you are looking out for the best saw to make your experience worthwhile, then we have got you covered. Here, we have a detailed discussion on a scroll saw vs band saw to help you make a better choice.

After hours of research and getting expert advice, we have distilled all of our research into this post for you.

DEWALT Scroll Saw, Variable-Speed, 1.3 Amp, 20-Inch (DW788)

Scroll Saw vs Band Saw: Uses

What is a scroll saw used for?

  • It is mainly used for craftsmen, artisans, and woodworkers
  • A scroll saw’s primary use is cutting intricate patterns, profiles, and joints on plastics and wood

Types of Cuts

Scroll saws can usually make round, straight, and angled cuts. The most remarkable cut that a scroll saw provides is removing the blade and then inserting it in the center to create a circle or other shapes. That is a feature most saws don’t usually offer.

What is a band saw used for?

A band saw is usually used for making woodcuts. A band saw works well with angles and straight cuts, but you can also use it for getting round cuts. The band saw is a bit more powerful and more massive than a scroll saw; thus, the cuts produced are not as fine.

Types of Cuts

Band saws can do straight and angle cuts very well. You can use a band saw for cutting large pieces of wood as it is more powerful than a scroll saw. A band saw doesn’t allow the worker to cut an interior circle inside the wood. If you prefer to work on building furniture, the band saw is a great option.

Scroll Saw Skill Level

A scroll saw enables the worker to make accurate and precise cuts. They are great for crafting and making designs. The best part about a scroll saw is that it easily lets the user make inside cuts and circles through the material.

Band Saw Skill Level

The band saw allows the user to cut large pieces of wood easily and quickly. When you want to make straight cuts swiftly and efficiently, a band saw is a reliable option. It will make cuts with less precision, and they might be with rough edges. 

Portability

When we talk about portability, band saws are usually more challenging to transport, whether from the construction area to the job site or vice versa. Scroll saws are somehow easy to transport compared to a band saw as they weigh less than a band saw.

Scroll Saw Advantages

Great for Crafts

Whether you plan to make carvings or create any elegant jigsaw puzzles and plan to do any crafts for decorating the house, then a scroll saw is the best tool for you. It will be beneficial as it can easily make all these cuts.

Accurate and Precise

The small blade on the scroll saw usually makes exceptionally accurate and precise cuts. It is also great for creating smooth and fine cuts effortlessly. You might not need to sand at all after doing these reliable cuts.

Decent Cuts on the Interior Side of the Material

The things that make a scroll saw unique it’s the ability to make plunge cuts by cutting inside the material.

You have to insert the thin blade over the hole; the saw will enable you to cut intricate designs or a piece of a circle on the interior side of the material without the need to pass it through the outside of the workpiece.

Scroll Saw Disadvantages

Not Suitable for Thick Materials

Although the thin blade present on the scroll saw is beneficial when you make intricate and precise cuts, when you plan to cut thick materials, it can be difficult.

Materials thicker than 3/4 inches are usually hard to cut by using a scroll saw. That is where the band saw is more reliable.

Not Great for Straight Cuts

Scroll saws usually allow the user to make straight cuts, but they are not the ideal saws to use for this purpose. Mostly they wander when creating straight cuts. This usually affects the end quality of the cuts.

Band Saw Advantages

Great for Thick Materials

The band saw is usually better than a scroll saw when you are planning to cut thick materials. That is because a band saw is more powerful and broad. By using the right blade, you can easily cut into various materials.

Cuts Straight Lines

When you use bigger and tougher blades, it is much easier to cut straight lines. The large size of the band saw allows the user to make precise and accurate straight lines cut. That cannot be achieved by using a scroll saw.

Accuracy and Speed

The most reliable advantage of using a band saw is cutting thick materials with accuracy and speed. Whether you plan to make lots of cuts for a few straight cuts, a band saw is a perfect tool.

In a band saw, your hands are usually free for handling the workpiece, thus ensuring a reliable control over the cut and accuracy.

Band Saw Disadvantages

Rough Edge Cuts

It usually depends on the blade you are using to cut the band saw’s material can make some aggressive cuts. Moreover, if the cuts are straight, even then, the edges might be rough. They are not as smooth as what you get when using a scroll saw. Scroll saw usually cuts slowly but with cleaner edges.

Unable to Make Inside Cuts

A band saw does not allow the users to make inside cuts as you can do with the scroll saw. A band saw has a fixed blade that enables the user to cut over the object’s perimeter for getting into the inside.

Scroll Saw Worth Considering

DEWALT Scroll Saw, 20-Inch (DW788)

DEWALT Scroll Saw, Variable-Speed, 1.3 Amp, 20-Inch (DW788)

The DEWALT 20-inch scroll saw is not going to disappoint you. It is one of the best and most recommended scrolls saw available in the market. It can be your best partner at the workplace due to its accurate cuts and versatile design. 

This scroll saw is specially designed to get more delicate and detailed work with ease. The variable speed option and easy control make it one of the most durable and robust scrolls saw available till now. The convenient design and features make it more user-friendly.

It has a double parallel–link arm design that ensures reliability and accuracy, whether trimming pieces or crafting a customized jigsaw puzzle. The remarkable and unique design reduces any chance of over and undercutting.

When we look at the saw’s front side, there is an on and off switch, a speed control knob, and a blade tensioning lever that keeps a smooth workflow, making your work more precise. You can adjust speed ranging from 400 to 1750 strokes per minute. The saw allows the user to change the blade within seconds.

Pros

  • Durable design
  • Reduces noise level
  • Comfortable to use

Cons

  • The arm doesn’t lock in place.

Band Saw Worth Considering

Shop Fox W1706 14″ Band Saw

Shop Fox W1706 14' Bandsaw with Cast Iron Wheels & Deluxe Aluminum Fence

When thinking of getting perfect crosscuts, Shop Fox Band saw is durably built and has compact construction. It ensures precise cuts with its advanced features and quick working technology.

The band saw features cast-iron lower and upper wheels, quick release blade, and a miter gauge for high convenience and reliability. With a powerful 1 HP motor and 1725 RPM, it is durable enough to deliver high speed while producing accurate cuts.

The cast iron table and frame the band saw will last for years. The miter gauge constitutes an easy reading scale enabling you to adjust it along 30 degrees.

The band saw features a 4-inch dust port and a durable dust collection system that keeps your workplace clean while improving your visibility.

With a 12-inch high cutting capacity, it is the most convenient equipment in your workshop. The blade speeds vary at 1500 and 3200 RPM ensuring high performance, and with a two-year warranty, it is a must to buy option.

Pros

  • Incredibly easy setup
  • Solid cast iron design
  • Convenient blade changes

Cons

  • The rip fence doesn’t lock solidly.

Related

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is better a band saw or scroll saw?

There is no single winner between the band saw and scroll saw as both may look similar but have different uses.
There is a battle between a scroll saw vs band saw, making it difficult to tell which is better. When you plan to make precise cuts, then scroll saw is more recommended, but when you want to create straight cuts efficiently and quickly, then a band saw is a more suitable choice.

What is a scroll saw good for?

Scroll saws are usually used for creating joints and intricate curves with great accuracy. You can also use it for cutting dovetail joints and are traditionally a journal for intarsia projects.

Is a scroll saw worth it?

A scroll saw must be good enough for cutting frames; you must look for a scroll saw with a reliable blade clamping system, variable speed option, and reduce vibration. Getting a scroll saw with all these options is a good investment.

Conclusion

When you are getting out for the best saw, the most crucial thing you have to do is keep your purpose in mind. It might be a bit challenging task. With various brands claiming them to be the best overall, you might feel a little confusion in this.

Scroll saw vs band saw on which is the best between the two? What is the best way to make the decision? What you have to do? Well, no need to worry about this anymore! We have made it incredibly easy for you to find which one is the best by explaining all their features and drawbacks.

Our top pick is the DEWALT scroll saw as an ideal saw for having in your workshop with its versatile design and innovative features. The adjustable speed option with a speed control knob makes it highly convenient and user-friendly.