Best Cordless Reciprocating Saw

Best Cordless Reciprocating Saw

A reciprocating saw is also commonly known as a sawzall which is branded name of the Milwaukee reciprocating saw.  The reciprocating saw gets its name from the reciprocating/push-pull motion that the blade makes. This motion is similar to the one that a jigsaw makes. However, reciprocating saws typically have larger blades and a more powerful motor than a jigsaw will. Reciprocating saws are best used in the demolition process and aren’t necessarily designed for making precise or straight cuts. Reciprocating saw blades can be found for most applications including wood, metal, drywall, PVC and much more.

When comparing reciprocating saws there are some features you want to compare to find the best reciprocating saw for your application. Since we are looking at cordless reciprocating saws one of the big things you will want to consider is the battery

For the battery there are two things that you want to consider. The thing that you will most often notice marketed is the battery voltage (V). This is telling you how powerful the battery is or how much work the battery can do. The voltage is going to be similar to comparing the amps of the motors on the corded reciprocating saws.

The second thing that you would want to know is the ampere-hour (Ah).  The easy way to look at this is head to head a 3Ah battery is going to go longer than a 2Ah battery before needing to be charged. Batteries are also going to be one of the larger cost drivers of your saw, more volts or ampere-hours is going to cost more money. 

So if you have a heavy duty application for your cordless reciprocating saw you may want a 20V saw. However, if you are doing some small applications around the house the best saw for you may be an 18V saw.

Strokes per minute or SPM is how fast the saw can move the blade across the cutting material. The higher the SPM the faster the saw is going to get your project done/

The next important feature is going to be the stroke length. The longer the stroke length, the greater the cutting ability of the saw. The longest stroke lengths on the market are 1 ¼ inches.

PORTER-CABLE PCC670B

The Good

This powerful 20V saw is capable of 3000 SPM. Combine that with a 1 inch stroke length and this saw is going to be a powerful saw.

The Bad

There is really not much to critique about this saw. This saw is a bare tool, but at a fair price point. Comparatively, it isn’t as nice a product as some of the other saws on the list

The Bottom Line

This saw is packed with a powerful motor and variable speed trigger. Also a tool free blade release and pivoting shoe making this an easy saw to use. Bottom line this saw would be a good addition to your workshop, especially if you are budget conscious.

Milwaukee 2720-21

The Good

This saw comes is an 18V saw with a brushless motor. It also includes Milwaukee’s Redlink technology to prevent overloading, overheating or over discharging.

The Bad

Batteries will typically only last about an hour with steady cutting. So if you have a large project ensure you have an extra battery which Milwaukee brand batteries are going to cost you. Or spring for some aftermarket batteries with more Ah.

The Bottom Line

MIlwaukee is the brand that branded the term sawzall and are renowned for making quality products. This saw is no exception. Milwaukee also included a keyless adjustable shoe. An integrated led light will be useful in low light situations increasing visibility for better cuts. An interesting innovation that would be useful is a hook to conveniently hang your saw when not in use. Of course Milwuakee included their Quik-Lok tool-less blade change technology. Bottom line Milwaukee continues to set the standard with their sawzalls. 

Makita XRJ05Z

The Good

With one of the longest strokes in its class at 1 ¼ inches this saw is made for cutting. Makita paired that to a 2 speed motor. Makita most definitely made a running for the best cordless reciprocating saw.

The Bad

Being one of the top contenders on the list I would expect Makita to develop a 20V platform to keep up with the advancements in Lithium Ion batteries and provide that power to the customers. Instead Makita is one of the few brands that is still mainly marketing their 18V platform.

The Bottom Line

Makita’s XRJ05Z is capable 3,000 SPM, when paired with the 1 ¼ inch stroke this saw will be able to handle any material thrown its way. On top of that there are two speed settings one with a speed of 2,300 SPM and the other one 3,000 SPM. The saw also includes a tool-less blade change, and a built in LED light. Bottom line Makita has the largest line up of 18V power tools and this reciprocating saw is a great addition to the family. Weekend warriors and professionals would benefit from this saw being in their line up.

SKIL RS582902

The Good

If you are looking for a budget saw SKIL has made it and, this is it. At one of the cheapest price points on this list of reciprocating saws and on a 20V platform. For the occasional user what is not to love?

The Bad

This saw is packaged with a 2.0Ah battery. Relative to the larger batteries on the market this battery is will not be able to run for as long between chargers as some of the saws with more ampere-hours available.

The Bottom Line

Skil has made a great value proposition with its 20V platform capable of 3,000 SPM. This saw does not have the longest stroke on the market coming in at 1 inch, but it will still be capable of handling most DIYer’s needs. Bottom line this is a no frill saw and only has 2.0Ah battery so if you need a cordless drill for long stints I would look at a different saw, but if you just need to tackle some small projects around the house put this saw on your short list.

Dewalt DCS380B

The Good

The Dewalt DCS380B comes with a 4 position blade lock. This makes cutting in space confined areas and flush cuts much easier than they would be with the competitors saws.

The Bad

The battery life is short on this model. Lasting about 10 minutes of continuous use on a 3.0Ah battery. Also, Dewalt did not invest in vibration reduction technology into this saw, so be prepared for vibrations and lots of it if using this saw at high speeds

The Bottom Line

Dewalt has become a cornerstone for many weekend warriors and professionals alike. Dewalt makes good products and they made a good cordless recirculating saw with the DCS380B. It is a 20V system capable of 3,000 SPM. Combined with 1 ⅛ inch stroke this saw will be well suited for most projects. Now since it is battery operated if you have a lot of material that needs cutting you will need multiple batteries. Bottom line Dewalt makes a quality product and would be a worthy addition to your workbench.

Final Thoughts

Cordless reciprocating saws can be a nice addition to have when you don’t want to be constrained by the length of your extension cord one of these saws will be a great choice. Rather than recommend any particular saw. In this case I recommend choosing a saw that matches the brand you are using for your other cordless tools. This may seem like a cop out but the largest investment is going to be in your batteries and chargers, not the cordless saw itself. So save yourself some scratch (money) and get the saw that is compatible with what you already own. If there is still money in your budget invest in batteries with higher Ah

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