The Jigsaw is a universal tool, which provides excellent cutting precision. It is a great choice for carving and straight cutting of a wide array of materials such as soft wood and glass. Nevertheless, the jigsaw accessories are not universal. The jigsaw requires a different type of blade for separate tasks. They vary not only according to the length, width and thickness, but also by the size of the teeth, geometry of the blade and the shank type.
When you are choosing a blade for your jigsaw, the first thing you should pay attention to is the type of shank. There are at least 4 types:
The T-shaped shank is most commonly used because it fits most of the modern jigsaws such as Bosch, Makita, Metabo, Hitachi, Skil, AEG, DeWalt, Sparky and others.
The U – shaped shank is the second most popular type. It is a universal shank suited for older models of jigsaws such as: Skil, DeWalt, Wolf, Ryobi, Stayer, Black&Decker and others.
Makita shank. Blades with this shank are only compatible with the older Makita jigsaw models.
Bosch shank. It differs from the T- shank because of the double T-shank blade structure. These blades are only suitable for the older Bosch models.
The blade length varies between 40 to 250mm.
The longer the blade, the thicker material you may cut with it. Smaller blades are better for sawing thinner materials due to the fact that the process will not interfere with the deformation of the long blade, which will ensure a highly clean cut.
The width of the blade depends on the type of operation.
Wider blades are much more suitable for making straight line cuts, due to the fact that they are easier to lead in the given direction. The blade with a narrow back will be more suitable for curve cuts, making it easier to perform various maneuvers as well.
The thicker the blade, the less it deviates for the vertical position, during the work process. Nevertheless, you should always keep in mind that very thick blades do not fit the jigsaws with the quick release mechanism.
Varieties of blades based on the types of processed materials:
Fast cutting blades which are long and have large teeth. The teeth are separated far apart.
Clean cuts – Medium sized teeth, the teeth are insignificantly separated apart.
Curve cutting – this blade is thin, it has small teeth, the length is short and has a beveled back side.
The blades are made from particularly tough steel and they have small teeth. The separation of the teeth represents a wavelike structure.
For Polymeric materials
Blades with large teeth are suitable for cutting PVC pipes and other materials, which are designed for cutting wood and metals. Blades with small teeth are well suited for thin plastic sheets and Plexiglas.
For specific tasks
Blades which are intended for glass and ceramics are made from particularly tough alloys. They have diamond particles on their cutting edge and you may also often find tungsten carbide on their edges. Carbide tipped blades are more suitable for drywall or other materials which contain abrasive particles. Blades which are intended for cutting cardboard, rubber and other soft materials are looking more like a knife. It does not have teeth and its cutting edge represents a polished, wavelike form.
The universal blades which are usually made from fast cutting steel are used for different materials such as wood, plastic and metal. You should not expect high quality cuts while using them.