M18 FUEL Jig Saw
Jigsaws are a powerful tool to have in your workshop or your tool bag on the job site. Especially when the jigsaw is cordless and you have the freedom to do what you wish and not be tied down with a cord. They are a flexible tool that allows for quick cuts to break down material, coping cuts, circular, convex, and concave cuts, and much more! With a variety of brands, styles, and battery platforms, picking the right jigsaw can be a tricky decision.
Milwaukee Tool is making that decision easier with the release of two new FUEL Jig Saws. Our interest in the Milwaukee M18 FUEL Jigsaw 2 kit started because this new tool has a wider range of strokes per minute than some of the others (0-3,500 spm). Not only does it have a dust blower, but it has a switch to turn it off and port to allow for dust collection through a vacuum. The 4-position orbital action lever a huge plus when working with different types of materials and different cut qualities needed. Speed is one of the benefits of the orbital action and couple that with the torque of the new FUEL Jig Saw and one can cut some large material pretty fast. The bevel adjustment is tool free and the blade attachment has a spring release to help shoot hot blades out of the Jig Saw.
There are many styles of jig saws designed for different uses. Milwaukee is catering to both types of uses for a Jig Saw by making a D-handle and a Barrel-Grip model. With the wide range of strokes per minute, the variable speed trigger on this unit gives it a lot of control and the ability to cut up to 3,500 spm with a 1″ stroke. After some longer cuts, the blade ejector keeps your hands safe from hot blades and allows for a smooth transition to a new material. The ability to change how much air blows around the blade to keep chips and sawdust away from the cut line is a huge plus. In the past, that wind was supplied by my lungs. This unit allows you to choose from very little to a good amount of air to keep the cut line clean. The ability to adjust this is a great convenience depending on the location you are working in. Since you can use this tool in so many places, it seems fitting to be able to control this. When cutting on a vertical surface, there is no need to blow the dust chips all over, so it might as well be turned off to limit the mess to a smaller area. Adding dust collection via a vacuum allows for clean and safe indoor use.
The 4-position orbital mode also helped cutting in other materials go a bit faster while also allowing me to dial it back for a bit cleaner cuts in thin wood. It’s nice that this tool can be adjusted to work with the materials you are using. Many of the jigsaws of today allow you to adjust to different orbital actions, some less than others, but it is still a nice feature.
It seems that many of the 18-volt jig saws are designed more as a general use jig saws while the smaller ones have a barrel style grip with their use designed to be more for fine woodworking and intricate cuts. In our use, blade deflection was very minimal in thicker wood with the thick blades provided. Blade deflection increases with thinner blades as expected. If you are in the market for a new jigsaw, we think you will find this tool to be comfortable and familiar.