|Review by glen||posted 04-09-2012 03:15 AM||5157 views||1 time favorited||7 comments|
Well, i’ve had this handy little guy lying around for a couple months now and I think I’ve put it through its paces for wood. I bought it because sometimes my circular saw is a little overkilll. Also, I have a few jobs I need to do that would require me to hold a circular saw over my head (eg. trimming some lengths of already installed fence boards), something that i’m not totally comfortable with.
For those that don’t know, this is a mini-circular saw, set up for plunge cuts, to a maximum depth of just over 1 inch. It’s light and can be operated with 1 hand easily.
Out of the box, everything is ready to go. I checked the lazer and it was spot on for the cut. The baseplate has a removable non-marring shoe that helps for some finer work, and while you can’t see the blade when you cut, the guide on the base is a good solid reference.
The saw has a spring loaded plunge mechanism that worked silky smooth until it saw sawdust. Now, the plunge motion has become a bit sticky, which can make starting a cut awkward, especially if you’re doing a rip and not a plunge. Basically, you have to balance the saw more on the front of the machine to get the plunge to go down, and then level it out. Combine with that the somewhat klunky safety switch, and it takes a bit of getting used to. Maybe I’m just not 100% used to where the blade is exactly in respect to the baseplate – I’ll write an update if starting cuts gets easier with time… and cleaning.
Once going though, this baby cuts like butter. I’ve used it for trimming up some maple hardwood flooring, shaving a bit off the end of some doors that were the wrong size, cutting a bunch of ply and MDF, and it just goes with ease. I haven’t tried the steel or diamond blades yet, but I’ve got some tile cutting coming up and I’m pretty sure I’m going to like this thin. With what I’ve been cutting, i’ve had no problems with it wanting to bind or the motor slowing down.
There’s a simple straight edge attachment that comes with it and it works well once set up. The only thing to watch for is that it secures itself using a screw that has a tendency to push the guide as you tighten it.
Adjusting the depth is quite easy with the lock on the side. Unfortunately, there’s no bevel on this saw. The carrying case is a soft-sided canvas case that fits the saw, blades, keys and guide easily.
Overall, at the $120 that I paid for it, I’m happy. I feel a lot better about holding this guy over my head for some small jobs rather than my heavier circular saw. It’s a quick tool to whip out and just get some things done. I certainly wouldn’t use it for very precise woodworking, but for the run-of-the-mill quick cuts, especially in awkward spaces, this guy is really great.