Looking for the best portable band saw? You’ve come to the right place.
In this article, we’ll guide you through our top picks and provide you with valuable tips for choosing and using a portable band saw.
Whether you’re a professional woodworker or a DIY enthusiast, we’ve got you covered.
Our Top Picks
You’ll find our top picks for the most reliable and efficient options in portable band saws.
When it comes to choosing the best portable bandsaws, these are the ones that stand out:
Best Overall – Dewalt (DCS374B) 20V Max
Best Bang for the Buck – Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+
Also Consider – Makita XBP02Z
These top portable band saws combine reliability, efficiency, and durability, making them excellent choices for both professionals and DIY enthusiasts.
Whether you need a portable band saw for woodworking, metalworking, or general cutting tasks, our top picks ensure that you’ll have a reliable tool that gets the job done.
Things to Consider when Choosing the Best Portable Band Saw
When choosing a portable band saw, there are several factors you should consider.
First, think about the power source that works best for your needs.
Then, consider the cutting capacity and speed, as well as the type of blade that will be most effective for your projects.
Lastly, think about the size and portability of the band saw, as well as any additional features such as bumpers, cases, lighting, or the option for bare tools.
You can save money by buying a corded model instead of a cordless option. Not only will you save up to 50 percent over a comparable cordless band saw, but you also won’t have to worry about recharging batteries.
Here are some important points to consider about the power source options for portable band saws:
- Corded portable band saws:
- Cost-efficient alternative to cordless models
- No need for spare batteries or recharging
- Convenient for job sites with a power supply or home users with nearby outlets
- Cordless portable band saws:
- Provides portability and freedom of movement
- Ideal for remote locations or areas without power outlets
- Requires spare batteries for extended use
The cutting capacity of different models may vary, so it’s important to check the width and depth dimensions to ensure they meet your specific needs.
The width of cut refers to the length of the band saw blade available for cutting, while the depth of cut is the distance from the blade to the back of the frame.
Take the time to evaluate your specific requirements to ensure you choose the right portable band saw for your projects.
Speed and Blade Type
If you need to cut metal, it’s important to consider the speed and blade type of the portable saw. The speed of the saw is measured in surface feet per minute (SFPM) or simply FPM.
Portable band saws typically run from 0 to 550 FPM, allowing for versatile cutting of various materials. Some machines even offer variable speed options, which can be adjusted using a thumb wheel for better control.
Pay attention to the blade type as well. The general-purpose blade that comes with the machine usually has 14 to 18 teeth per inch (TPI) and is suitable for cutting metals. However, if you need to cut wood, consider getting an 8 to 10 TPI wood-cutting blade. Remember to invest in quality blades for longer-lasting performance.
Factors to consider when choosing:
- Speed range options (variable speed or fixed speed)
- Surface feet per minute (SFPM) capability
- Ease of speed adjustment (trigger operated or thumb wheel)
Blade types to consider for different materials:
- General-purpose blades with 14 to 18 teeth per inch (TPI) for metals
- Wood-cutting blades with 8 to 10 TPI for wood
Size and Portability
Now let’s talk about size and portability when it comes to choosing the right one for you.
You want to find a saw that’s lightweight and easy to handle. Brands like Milwaukee and Dewalt offer options that are designed with this in mind.
Consider the cut capacity of the portable band saws you’re looking at. This refers to the maximum size of material that the saw can handle. If you often work with larger pieces, you’ll want a saw with a larger cut capacity.
Additionally, think about the overall dimensions of the saw. If you frequently work in tight spaces, a compact or subcompact model that can be operated with one hand may be more suitable for you.
On the other hand, larger models with an auxiliary handle can provide better control and adjustability when working at different angles.
Bumpers, Cases, Lighting, and Bare Tools
Portable band saws often come with rubber bumpers that provide protection against day-to-day impacts, ensuring that your tool stays in good condition for longer.
Additionally, having a storage case can be highly beneficial for keeping your band saw organized and protected when not in use.
Some models may even offer the convenience of built-in lighting, allowing you to work in dimly lit spaces with ease.
Lastly, it’s important to note that cordless portable band saws are often sold as ‘bare tools,’ meaning the battery and charger aren’t included.
Review of Our Top Portable Band Saw Picks
DEWALT (DCS374B) 20V MAX Portable Band Saw
Star Rating: 4.9 out of 5
- This is a metal saw with efficient 5-inch cutting capabilities.
- You can hang this saw safely with its integrated hook.
- Comes with a tool-less lever to change the blade tension.
- Dimensions – 24.4 x 13 x 8.27 inches, 12.4 pounds
- Power/Motor – 20 Volt brushless motor
- Cutting Power – up top 5 x 4 ¾ – inch rectangular pieces and up to 4 inches round pieces.
- Special Features – speed controls, hanging hook, strong base, FLEXVOLT batteries,
- Accessories – band saw
The DEWALT portable band saw DCS374B is a battery-powered power saw that’s designed to work with metal materials. It has a reliable 5-inch cutting capability and you can fine-tune the saw’s power. It comes with a bright LED lamp that can help you work safely even in dark areas and surfaces. You’ll work more accurately whether you’re at your shop or the worksite.
The DCS374B offers easy tool-less blade changes with a lever that simply loosens and tightens the blade tension. This lever remains tight especially when you’re using the saw so there are no worries when it comes to safe use.
Because of the saw’s variable speed, you can control your cuts and save precious material. The brushless motor is strong, dependable, and built for high-performance tasks. However, your purchase does not come with a battery. You need to purchase a DEWALT lithium-ion battery and a battery charger separately.
- This band saw can cut deeply and smoothly.
- With a portable hanging hook to prevent damage to the base.
- It has an LED work lamp to illuminate your workspace and prevent accidents.
- Offers faster and easy blade changes.
- Has a variable speed, brushless motor that’s very durable and versatile.
- Does not come with a battery and battery charger.
- Can be very heavy and tiring to use.
Makita XBP02Z Portable Band Saw
Star Rating: 4.8 out of 5
- This band saw has improved cutting power, works with a 44 7/8 – inch blade.
- Good portable band saw to cut light metal materials.
- This saw has a trigger switch with a lock-off system to safely power off the band saw.
- Dimensions – 14 x 22.4 x 10.7 inches, 15 pounds
- Power/Motor – 18V lithium-ion battery, high-torque motor with variable speed control 275 to 530 feet per minute
- Special Features – thick rubber bumper, tool hook, fully-adjustable stopper plate, LED, soft-grip, with on-board tool storage
- Accessories – band saw, batteries, and battery charger sold separately
The Makita XBP02Z is a cordless band saw with a versatile cutting capacity making it effective for a variety of metal materials. It comes with a Makita motor to make faster and more accurate cuts thanks to its variable speed features (275 to 530 feet/min.).
This band saw has an over-torque protection feature plus an alert light to warn you in case of a possible overload. Other safety features include a trigger switch with an easy lock-off feature. With this, you need to take two steps to power on your saw.
Meanwhile, it has a variable speed switch that’s conveniently placed near the handle. This will help you match the speed of the saw with the material you’re working on.
- With a larger cutting capacity and can cut different materials made of metal.
- This comes with a Makita variable speed motor for easy and efficient cuts.
- This saw has safety features for enhanced protection and motor durability.
- It does not have a lock-on switch.
- Problems with battery life.
- Complaints about the weird shape.
Milwaukee New 2429-21xc Cordless Portable Band Saw
Star Rating: 4.7 out of 5
- This band saw is very portable, capable of making cuts with one hand.
- It comes with a powerful motor capable of producing up to 150 cuts for every full charge.
- This saw can be used to cut a variety of applications.
- Dimensions – 17.5 x 13 x 7.5 inches, 12.87 pounds
- Power/Motor – 12V motor, XC Battery
- Cutting Power – 1 5/8-inch cutting capability
- Special Features – one-handed operation, XC battery, LED lamp, blade tension adjustment, blade tracking features
- Accessories – band saw blade
The Milwaukee 2429-21xc is a compact band saw that’s lighter compared to other portable saws of the same type. It has a strong motor that’s capable of cutting ¾ – inch in less than 5 seconds. The battery is very efficient and can cut up to 150 cuts in one full charge.
You can use this band saw in different applications. It is also good for one-handed use so you can hold the wood material on the other. The LED lamp can also help you make accurate cuts. And with the blade tracking adjustment system, you can adjust the blade according to your task.
This Milwaukee portable saw is very easy to use with no need to assemble it before use. The only drawback is you need to order the battery and battery charger separately as these are not included in your purchase.
- Can be used with one hand.
- It is lightweight and compact
- Capable of producing 150 cuts with one full charge.
- With easy blade adjustments.
- Complaints that battery power won’t last long.
- Batteries will eventually wear out.
Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 2.5 in. Portable Band Saw
Star Rating: 4.7 out of 5
- This saw has an improved 2 ½-inch cutting capacity and can be cut through wood, plastic, and metal.
- It comes with a handle with an improved design for maximum comfort and visibility.
- It can make quick cuts on different materials.
- Dimensions – 15.47 x 10.47 x 8.23 inches, 9.3 pounds
- Power/Motor – 18-volt motor, ONE+ batteries
- Cutting Power – 2.5 inches cutting capacity, can clear out 560 feet per minute surface
- Special Features – portable, lightweight, adjustable blade tracking, hanging hook, onboard tool storage
- Accessories – none
The Ryobi P590 is a cordless and portable band saw with a wider capacity so you can use this in many applications. It is a saw that can accurately cut materials like wood, plastics, and metal. Instead of a traditional band saw handle, it is built with a pommel handle that makes it more comfortable to use. You’ll also have a better view of your work with this type of handle.
Because of its very durable motor, you’ll get 560 SFPM for easy and quick cuts on different materials. And just like most of the cordless band saws in this list, the Ryobi P590 does not come with a battery and charger. You must purchase these separately.
- This cordless saw can be used for many applications.
- It can cut different materials from wood to metal.
- It has a unique handle design to allow you to cut comfortably and safely.
- With a very durable motor to cut smoothly and quickly.
- This saw is light and easy to use.
- Does not come with a battery or a charger.
- Complaints that it has a limited cutting area.
How We Choose Our Top Picks
When selecting the top models, we considered power, durability, reliability, and brand reputation. We wanted to ensure that the portable band saws we tested would be able to handle a variety of cutting tasks and withstand the demands of everyday use.
We also took into account the reputation of the brands, as we wanted to recommend reliable and trustworthy options.
We conducted hands-on testing and evaluated their performance based on criteria such as cutting speed, smoothness of the cut, overall ergonomics, cutting capacity, and speed.
Safety Tips for Using a Portable Band Saw
To ensure your safety while using a portable band saw, always wear eye protection.
They can be convenient and efficient tools, but they also come with their own set of safety considerations. When using a portable band saw, it’s important to follow some safety tips to avoid accidents or injuries.
First, make sure to familiarize yourself with the tool by practicing on scrap material before starting any real projects. Additionally, always wear gloves when changing the blade to protect your fingers from potential cuts.
Remember to check the blade tension regularly to ensure it’s properly secured. Finally, be mindful of where the cut pieces of material will fall and use gloves to handle them, as they can be hot.
The Advantages of Owning a Portable Band Saw
Owning a top-quality portable band saw brings numerous advantages, such as precise cutting and the ability to work with a variety of materials. You can enjoy the convenience of being able to make accurate cuts with ease.
Whether you’re working with metal, wood, plastic, or composites, a portable band saw can handle it all. The versatility of this tool allows you to tackle a wide range of projects, making it a valuable addition to your workshop.
With its one- or two-handed design, you’ve the flexibility to use it comfortably in any situation. So, take advantage of the benefits of owning a portable band saw and experience the precision and versatility it offers.
Frequently Asked Questions
The following are the most frequently asked questions and answers about purchasing and using portable band saws:
How Do I Properly Clean and Maintain a Portable Band Saw?
To properly clean and maintain your portable band saw, start by unplugging it and removing the blade. Wipe down the body with a damp cloth, clean the blade with a brush, and lubricate any moving parts. Regularly check for wear and tear.
Can a Portable Band Saw Cut Through Different Types of Materials?
Yes, a portable band saw can cut through different types of materials. It is versatile and designed for various applications. With the right blade, it can easily cut through wood, metal, plastics, and more.
Is It Possible to Use a Portable Band Saw for Detailed and Intricate Cuts?
Yes, it’s possible to use a portable band saw for detailed and intricate cuts. With its precise blade and maneuverability, you can easily navigate around curves and corners, making it a versatile tool.
Are There Any Accessories or Attachments Available for Portable Band Saws?
Yes, there are accessories and attachments available for portable band saws. They can enhance the versatility and functionality of your saw, allowing you to tackle different tasks with ease.
Can a Portable Band Saw Be Used for Both Professional and DIY Projects?
Yes, a portable band saw can be used for both professional and DIY projects. It offers versatility and convenience for cutting various materials. It’s a handy tool to have in your toolbox.
What are cordless band saws for?
Cordless band saws offer the best cutting power, accuracy, and overall convenience. You can take a cordless saw to the worksite without worrying about being away from a power outlet. This type of saw is very flexible and can cut tougher materials including different types of metals and alloys.
Is it possible to use a cordless band saw on wood?
You can use a cordless band saw to cut wood especially when making scarf and tenon-type joints. This saw can cut the tenon tongue and proceed with creating the mortice hole to complete this very common type of woodworking joint.