How to Choose a Manual Circular Saw

Posted by Aleksey Ryndya

expert categories: "Hand and power tool"

Construction, repair, manufacturing of furniture, joinery. in none of the listed industries is it possible to do without a beloved and popular tool. circulars. The Circular. popular name, used in everyday life.

Technically competent, this device is called a circular saw. For the reason that it does not saw with a chain and not with a tape, but with a sharpened toothed disk. Makes a cut, cut, cuts, gives the desired shape.

Circular saws are so thought out in their design that they essentially do not change it from the moment it occurred (since the beginning of the last century). over, they are incredibly complex and intricate, but, nevertheless, are favorites among the masters of wooden cases.

This article will give you a lot of useful information on how to choose a hand-held circular saw and not make a mistake with its technical characteristics and manufacturer.

The most common types of circular saws

Choosing a circular saw always starts with a precise definition. what material needs to be cut and what tasks are planned to be performed. After all, the design of the saw, its technical characteristics, additional functions, class and appearance. all this is adapted to perform specific work.

The most popular types of circular saws:

    Circular saw for cutting metal. This type is designed to work with metal sheets, parts and structures. In fact, these circulars are universal and can also be used for cutting other materials (plastic, polymers). But you need to know that when buying a saw for metal, it is completed not with a sawing abrasive wheel, but with a toothed disk. It is carbide, designed to quickly saw pipe, sheet, steel sheet, stainless steel. That is, those metals, their alloys and complex structures that can only be cut with a toothed carbide disk. Often, craftsmen practice an angle grinder to cut metal. However, circular saws for metal give a hundred points ahead of the beloved folk angle grinder. They are much safer and more productive, do not make so much noise, cut to a bevel and do not spark during operation;

The most important selection criteria

Estimated scope of work, location and depth of cuts, material for cutting, its shape and thickness. this information answers the question of how to choose a hand-held circular saw. The clearer you formulate future work for yourself, the easier it will be to determine which additional functions are important to you and whether it is worth spending money on various electronic "chips".

Read more:  How To Choose A Circular Saw For Your Home

The main parameters that need to be considered in choosing a circular saw are not so many. The first thing you should pay attention to is:

1. Disc size and cutting depth

The diameter of the cutting circle determines the remaining working indicators. The device class depends on the maximum possible diameter: household, semi-professional, professional. The higher this indicator, the deeper the saw cuts the device. That is, the diameter of the disc and the depth of cut. these characteristics are related in direct proportion. A disk from 130 to 160 mm saws the tree deep into 45 mm, a diameter of 200 mm will give a cutting depth of about 60 mm. A large disc can cut any material to 350 mm, including metal.

The depth of cut determines the classes of circulars in this way:

  • Light (sawed deep 40-50 mm). convenient for cutting sheets;
  • Medium (cut 50-65 mm deep). optimal size, the most popular, both at home and among professional masters;
  • Heavy (cut on 65-140 mm). solid aggregate of the class of the pros.

And yet, remember one detail: the larger the disk, the higher the price of the tool. But you can make a cut in the overall details and massive structures.

2. Power indicators

The power of the installed motor is also in the optimal ratio with the size of the sawing circle. A low-power saw works with small disks (130 mm), medium power. with medium (up to 200 mm), high power. with the largest diameter. The more powerful the saw, the more productive and suitable for working with the hardest materials. Power classification is as follows:

Video: How to Choose a Manual Circular Saw


  • Models for home and domestic work. up to 800 watts;
  • Universal, convenient both for everyday life and for performing more complex tasks. from 0.8 to 1.2 kW;
  • Pros. above 1.2 kW of power, for example, Japanese Makita or Hitachi for 2 kW of power, or the German Metabo circular saw, issuing 2.2 kW of power.
Read more:  Which Punch To Choose For Work

3. Disk rotation speed

How to Choose a Manual Circular Saw

Sometimes there are models with high power, but at the same time the maximum permissible diameter of the disk is average. This means that this saw has a higher rotational speed. What does this parameter affect?

  • If the speed is high, then the device cuts the most dense materials very quickly and efficiently. Propyl clean, accurate;
  • Professional models have high performance due to the high speed of rotation of the disk. The indicator is 5600 and more revolutions per minute.

But remember that high rotation speed. this is a strong heating of the material. At high temperatures, the plastic melts, and the tree begins to smoke and burn.

What else to look for

Having determined the main performance indicators, understand a few more criteria for yourself:

Electronic bells and whistles: why are needed and what affect

A circular saw is already not cheap, but models stuffed with electronics. 2 times more expensive. But electronic functions increase work comfort, its speed and quality several times.

Additional functions for which complex and expensive electronics are involved include:

  • smooth start. no jerk at the start, a positive effect on accuracy;
  • constant rotation support. the constant does not allow the motor to stall in dense material, does not wedge the disk;
  • idle speed adjustment (for different materials);
  • protected against engine overload. increases its resource;
  • electrodynamic brake. increases safety.

Mechanical guarantees of quality performance and safety

Some of these functions are designed to make a powerful cutting tool as safe as possible. Others guarantee that the work will be clean, accurate, quality.

For this, the manufacturer equips its saw models:

  • Slip clutch. It will not work the effect of a “back strike” when the disk is jammed;
  • Start lock button. This is protection against accidental, unplanned switching on. To turn on the saw, you need to pull the trigger release;
  • Spindle lock. It stops when replacing the cutting wheel, eliminating the risk of cuts and providing the ability to quickly replace the nozzle;
  • Keyless Nut. easy change of disks;
  • Mounts & Locks base plate. increase installation stability, do not give backlash and reel saw;
  • Slant Res. It is possible to tilt the disc at an angle of up to 30-45 degrees. The highest quality models are sawed at an angle of up to 65 degrees. Degrees are set on a graduated scale;
  • Depth adjustment is done with thumb screws. Firmly fixed. Depth indicator is set in accordance with the metric scale;
  • Possibility of stationary installation. holes for mounting bolts to the table, bed. Provides stability;
  • Parallel emphasis. for precision straight cut;
  • Guide rail. for the greatest precision of the cut. Often, the manufacturer equips the models with a laser pointer to clearly indicate the cut line;
  • Protective cover on the springs. protecting both the user from injuries and the drive from damage. He frees the disk only at startup, and then hides it completely;
  • Propping knife. a device that makes sure that the circle is not squeezed by the already sawn material and does not brake due to it.
Read more:  How to Mow Grass Properly with a Manual Lawn Mower

Ergonomic features

The ergonomics of the model also affect the choice of a hand-held circular saw. For example, there are models specifically for those who work “under the left hand”. The location of the handles in general greatly affects the ease of use.

It can be different, it is especially important to choose the most comfortable arrangement of the front handle:

  • Direct (perpendicular to disk rotation). With him, the saw is "forward", from itself;
  • Mushroom-shaped. in this case, the saw works differently, to whom it is convenient. It can be driven by “side”, or it can be “forward”, as with a straight handle;
  • Staple-shaped handle. users often like their versatility.

Whatever the shape of the handle, one should always be on the handle. rubber pad. Without it, the hands slip, holding the cutting powerful tool firmly will not work. over, rubber perfectly dampens vibration. If the pad has worn out over time or the manufacturer has attached it poorly, wear rubber gloves when working with a circular saw.

Another important nuance. dust collector. There is a lot of dust during the cutting process, it is the smallest (metal or wood), clogs the lungs. In addition, there are also many sawdust. Therefore, the best saw models have either air blowing, or a nozzle for a vacuum cleaner, or suction in a special dust container.

In general, ergonomics. this is how convenient it is for you to design such a saw, its balance, weight distribution. Therefore, before choosing, hold a saw of a certain model in your hands to determine whether it will be comfortable for you to work with it.