CIRCULAR SAW VS. JIGSAW…Which One Should You Own?! (FULL COMPARISON—New DIYers Should Watch!!)

CIRCULAR SAW VS. JIGSAW…Which One Should You Own?! (FULL COMPARISON—New DIYers Should Watch!!)

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DUNGEONWORLD is a funny, fast-paced fantasy series for kids ages 7 and up! All five books are available in both paperback and ebook.

Check out my Amazon author page for trailers for each book! (I’ve published Dungeonworld under the pen name E. DANIEL JAMES.)

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JIGSAW VS. CIRCULAR SAW…Which One Should You Own?! (FULL COMPARISON—New DIYers Should Watch!!)

New DIYers always want to know which saw they should own…CIRCULAR SAW or JIGSAW? This a surprisingly complex question. This video from The Honest Carpenter will explain the pertinent details for newcomers!

CIRCULAR SAWS utilize a backward spinning circular blade to make linear cuts.

JIGSAWS use a plunging skinny blade to make cuts in more freeform patterns.

Circular saws are a really indispensable tool for carpenters and those cutting wood in the construction industry because it cuts thick lumber much faster and is better at holding a straight line while doing so.

Jigsaws are more helpful to woodworkers and people making craft-type projects because they can cut curves and irregular profiles in a variety of materials.

Both circular saws and jigsaws can cut through metal, plastic, wood, composites and cement-fiber materials, so long as they’re using the right blade.

Jigsaws actually have more cut depth, because they can utilize blades over 4″ long. Whereas circular saws tend to have a max cut depth of 2-1/2″.

Both tools are pretty comparably priced, even though there are more jigsaws below $90 overall.

While circular saws are stronger and sometimes more intimidating for newcomers to operate–jigsaws are surprisingly dangerous as well because they don’t have blade guards!

If you’re using saws infrequently, or making curved profile cuts a lot, then a jigsaw is your best bet.

However, if you’re doing a lot straight-line cutting through thicker materials on construction-type projects, then a circular saw is the saw you need. But always be careful and practice all safety precautions!!

Thanks for watching!
The Honest Carpenter

50 Comments

  1. StevesVids on August 18, 2022 at 12:22 am

    I have a great suggestion for another great video. Extension cords! Firstly, do you have a favorite way to store them. I’ve tried many different ways and they’re all a pain in the but. Do those auto retractable doohickies work for a dedicated shop one. Second, is there a favorite cord of yours that doesn’t twist and is easier to roll up and put away. I have the cheap orange ones that have a memory making it difficult to wind up for storage. And lastly is there a minimum gage that you recommend. Great channel!



  2. Keith Rayeski on August 18, 2022 at 12:22 am

    Yea, rational and reasonable comparison. Personally, I’d be lost, without both…and even a couple of both at that!😁



  3. DK Dempcey Knight DK on August 18, 2022 at 12:22 am

    Glad to know I’m not the only one nervous of the circular saw! Oh a plunge cut! Please please looking forward to that video! Congratz on the books!



  4. iPick 4Fun on August 18, 2022 at 12:22 am

    TBH, If price is a factor get the less expansive models and buy both. It well worth the money considering it will make the project easier. Right tool for the job is much less likely to get yourself injured. Inside corner cut, jig saw is a must have. Everything else, I use circular saw where I can. You probably don’t need this, but, will be helpful for most DIYers to make a simple circular saw track. It will really speed up the process for cutting plywood.



  5. Rose on August 18, 2022 at 12:25 am

    I wish all videos were this well laid out and easy to understand. Thank you for breaking it all down like this!



  6. Laura Chapin on August 18, 2022 at 12:25 am

    "Circular saws are scary." Indeed. I knew a man who was using a circular saw that kicked back. It hit him in the groin and cost him a testicle. You could say that an accident can happen to anyone. But several years later, he lost the other one to a circular saw kick-back. Clearly, he didn’t take steps to understand the power of the tool and the necessary safety measures. Don’t lose body parts. Take this stuff seriously.



  7. Brent Fowler on August 18, 2022 at 12:28 am

    Hey Daniel, the books look awesome, congrats.. I’ll be picking your books up ASAP. Also, the saw conversation, to saw or not to saw? Lol. Anyhow I have a Milwaukee M18 6-1/2" circular saw. And I more recently picked up the rear handle or worm drive Milwaukee M18 fuel 7-1/4" circular saw. I also have the Milwaukee M18 fuel D-handle jigsaw. However I use my circular saws a lot more than my jigsaw. My opinion, if you are a diy-er or a carpenter, or a woodworker. I would recommend following his advice in this video. But I would also recommend once you purchase your first saw. Whichever, will help you out more so with the projects your doing. I’d still plan on picking up the other saw. Because they are both very useful in their own ways. As he explains in the video..



  8. smittyone66 on August 18, 2022 at 12:30 am

    Congratulations on the books



  9. Anthony Audain on August 18, 2022 at 12:30 am

    Interesting



  10. Bill C on August 18, 2022 at 12:30 am

    I mostly use a jigsaw because I live in condo that is very noise sensitive. Also, I have a local hardware store that can make rip cuts when I buy lumber.



  11. Chris in Indiana on August 18, 2022 at 12:33 am

    When I first started assembling my workshop a circular saw was at the top of the list mainly for breaking down plywood and making basic rip cuts of stud lumber. I bought a Ryobi starter set at big orange during a sale a few years ago.



  12. אומן לא ידוע on August 18, 2022 at 12:33 am

    A sword saw.



  13. Aqua Ast on August 18, 2022 at 12:33 am

    Are you a dungeons and dragons player too?



  14. John Thomas on August 18, 2022 at 12:33 am

    This was great info. I have a jigsaw and was going to buy a circular but all I am going to be doing is building closet shelfing. I think the jigsaw will actually work cutting through 1" boards, and short cuts. Great info ! ! !



  15. Steve Huffman on August 18, 2022 at 12:34 am

    I used a jig saw a LOT more than I did a circle saw. I had both. For 90% of what I did a circle saw was the wrong tool.
    Given a choice of either or, I’d take the jig saw, tho to be hones, I don’t need either one since I’m retired now.



  16. Veganpotter Thevegan on August 18, 2022 at 12:36 am

    I can’t imagine cutting a 4×4 or thicker with a jigsaw. A 2×4 is pretty terrible with my junk jigsaw😅



  17. cg2000cg1 on August 18, 2022 at 12:36 am

    You are going to buy both.You are likely to pay more for a good circular saw ($200) and then you can get a cheaper jig ($100). Buy the circular saw first and work out some way to make straight cuts (Buzzard Wing, 2×4 fence and clamp, DIY track, etc.) Your circular saw is your first table saw on the move up from handsaws. You can always wait on buying a jig saw because you just need a cheap coping saw and a power drill. Jig saws are nice but its often faster and easier to just to pull out a coping saw anyway. The problem with jigs and coping saws is that they leave jagged and uneven cuts. Which is why a Circular saw, coping saw and a small trim router might make more sense. If you are starting out woodworking and you don’t have a jointer, parallel planer and table saw – you need just one damn thing in your arsenal to help you to make a decent straight cut. Handsaws are difficult to master. A circular saw or a router with fence guides can both get you there. Plus a router can help you fix mistakes, like ragged edges and wonky cuts. Lots of bad cuts and fixing mistakes starting out.



  18. Seymour Wrasse on August 18, 2022 at 12:37 am

    I started with a jig saw as a kid, circular saws scared me to death, fast forward 50 years, I now have circular saws with the blades on the right hand side and worm drives in both corded and battery, and I would have to tear my shop apart to even find my jig saw



  19. Chef Spenser on August 18, 2022 at 12:39 am

    Well done Ethan…Cheers!



  20. Noreast Whips on August 18, 2022 at 12:40 am

    Great video! For the averege diyer, I suggest that someone get both. You can get two good tools for under $150. Keep up the good vids.
    Steve.



  21. Rich Williams on August 18, 2022 at 12:40 am

    I’ve had a circular saw forever and recently purchased a jig saw as I was building leaf-shaped coffee tables and needed to cut a lot of curves.



  22. Mira Frenkel on August 18, 2022 at 12:40 am

    I do remodels and home repairs for a living (so small to medium size projects) and I use my 6-1/2” cordless circular saw for 95% of lumber cuts. It’s awesome!! Sometimes you need a jigsaw, and very occasionally I need a full-size circular saw (but rare, as I don’t do much framing and my small one can handle a few cuts here and there in 2x materials, and if I have more to do I use a miter saw). Anyway just wanted to mention those are an option and way more maneuverable. I’d say for a DIYer it’s perfect!

    Edit: just contributing to this discussion, not saying it’s a replacement for a table saw, etc if you need that.



  23. MissBeans on August 18, 2022 at 12:41 am

    I don’t even have little kids, but I’m excited about Dungeon World. I’ll have grandkids eventually, and they will be here and ready for them. 🙂
    I’d never heard the thong about jigsaws being like sewing machines. That’s interesting. I’ve been really interested in getting a scroll saw because it seem to function very much like a sewing machine, so I think I will pick it up really fast. That being said, I have both a circular saw and jigsaw. I have been doing a bunch of garage organizing (shelves, etc) with the circular saw, and I’m building a dollhouse with the jigsaw. 😁



  24. Mahesh V on August 18, 2022 at 12:41 am

    you are awesome sir! I really like woodworking…. got inspired by a lot of highly talented carpenters, rather artisans…. i was amazed by how precise and incredible was their skills… esp when doing handcraft. those days there were not enough power tools, yet their precision is just amazing… i just bought a jigsaw for some diy. realized that circ saw is better n faster for straight cuts… not sure if i buy one… i like solid woods tham plywood… esp rose or teak.. love the smell of them… thank you so much…



  25. Woodworks by Grampies on August 18, 2022 at 12:43 am

    Hola! 🖐 As always, really good and informative video. BONUS, your an author now too! This is GREAT news!! I have a couple of grandkids and I look forward to adding your books to their library. Take care and have a good one, Adios! 👊



  26. Joel Epley on August 18, 2022 at 12:46 am

    Between work and home, I have multiple corded and cordless circular and jig saws, though my most-used cutting tool is a Milwaukee cordless circular saw.

    Jigsaw blades take up very little storage space, are a lot less expensive than circular saw blades, and are typically easy and fast to change without tools. This allows you to have a wide variety of blades on hand that you can swap out for whatever material you’re working with.

    Another factor worth considering is how the power consumption of a tool affects how well it works to be cordless, especially if you don’t have large capacity tool batteries. The lower power demand of a jigsaw is a better fit for the 2 Ah and smaller batteries that typically come with starter cordless drill or drill/impact driver combo kits. If one could only have two cutting tools, I’d recommend a corded 15A circular saw, and a cordless jigsaw in whatever battery platform you’ve chosen for your fastening tools. That way, you have corded power and endless runtime when you need it, but also have something lightweight and very handy that can also cut curves. An additional benefit of buying a corded circ saw is that they’re readily available and quite inexpensive on the used market.

    Whatever you choose, I’d suggest to keep in mind two things: a saw is only as good as its blade, and the first saw you buy doesn’t have to be your last. To the first point, the longevity and superior performance of quality blades can make them the better value in the long run. There are other good brands, but I’ve rarely been disappointed by Diablo products. To the latter point, when you’re first starting out, you don’t really know what you’ll like best. For circular saws, there are decisions to be made on blade size, blade-left vs. blade-right design, corded or cordless, and sidewinder vs. worm drive. For jigsaws, there are both barrel grip and d-handle designs, as well as U-shank or T-shank blades. Besides the fact that T-shank has a better blade selection, there aren’t any absolute right or wrong answers there. Nothing will educate you as well as getting some experience of your own, so get out there and start building!



  27. Kim Toy on August 18, 2022 at 12:49 am

    Another excellent, informative, and well thought through video! Keep up the great work!



  28. David Fish on August 18, 2022 at 12:50 am

    The dungeon books look neat. I’ll pick some up for my nephew and niece. Looks like some inspiration drawn from D&D. Have you/do you play?



  29. Angelo S. Santiago on August 18, 2022 at 12:52 am

    ❤️❤️❤️❤️. This channel is always on point and so educational,and full of knowledge as well .👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻. Any person that has a doubt on how to use a tool or even buying a tool,by seeing one of your videos,their mind will make up pretty fast. You’re amazing man. God bless!!!



  30. 814 Projects on August 18, 2022 at 12:54 am

    @Ethan James, I really respect your content direction for your channel. I do believe the average home owner without much experience can learn a lot from The Honest Carpenter.



  31. Martin Caruana on August 18, 2022 at 12:56 am

    Great video as usual. I have no young ones to buy your books for but I will definitely pass on a recommendation to people I know that do. I wish you the best of luck on your labor of love.



  32. Josh Walty on August 18, 2022 at 12:57 am

    Dude. This is awesome. I come here for your carpentry content and now my kids can get cool books too! What a cool skill set. Way to go! 🙂



  33. Rick Lauderbaugh on August 18, 2022 at 12:58 am

    Two totally different tools. No comparison.



  34. Kojo Mensah on August 18, 2022 at 12:59 am

    Thanks I believe it is best to get both tools but again it depends where in the world you are in because the majority of homes in the US is made out of wood while else’s where it is concrete blocks bricks and stone



  35. Max Motors on August 18, 2022 at 1:03 am

    I need both and then a few more



  36. The World on August 18, 2022 at 1:03 am

    You still need patreon sir, it’s your right



  37. Ray Riddle on August 18, 2022 at 1:04 am

    Both



  38. Stephane Larochelle on August 18, 2022 at 1:07 am

    Honestly, I can’t see myself without both the circular saw and the jigsaw as they both have domains they excel in. But if I had to only take one, I would probably go for the jigsaw. As it can mostly do what the circular saw does (in a much more cumbersome and not as precise way), while the reverse (taking a circular saw) would make it almost impossible to do some things the jigsaw does … But I am a woodworker, if I was into carpentry or construction the tradeoff might not be worth it and i would go for a circular saw which is basically the bread and butter of those trades.



  39. Glen Carolo on August 18, 2022 at 1:11 am

    Congratulations on your book series! No back scary tools. I agree circular saws are scary, and they should be; however indispensable depending on the task at hand. ANY power tool should is scary and demands respect. For that matter any "tool" demands your focus. Heck, more people are cut with dull kitchen knives than anything else…



  40. Armchair Pilot on August 18, 2022 at 1:12 am

    Battery Circular saw is nice (for those long plywood cuts). But handsaw(regular and coping) will get you very far. Hand tools are far under rated. Add a hammer, a (sharp) chisel, a few differnt shaped files for metal and wood, a screw driver with interchangable bits, pliers, a medium stiffness putty knife, hacksaw, a hand drill (yes manual) and if you can get bracedrill with auger bits for those larger diameter holes and you’ll be really good. Add a belt sander, battery drill with a good drill bit index and box wrench set, a level (which doubles as a straight edge for the saw) and I think most home owners would be good for at least 95% of the projects out there that they would normally tackle plus some.



  41. Bart Cheng on August 18, 2022 at 1:12 am

    I’m a home DIYer who chose the jig saw. it serves me well 90% of the time until I need to cut the baseboard. I need around 46 degree of cut and the bevel of my saw always struggle. Every time I saw the messed up corner cut of my baseboard I want to get a circular one.



  42. Tenacious Trav on August 18, 2022 at 1:13 am

    I really wish makita would come out with a corded left blade saw with a light and a blower I’d through money at it



  43. Hari Unnithan on August 18, 2022 at 1:13 am

    Is there an adapter to make a circular saw work like a table saw?



  44. Patrick Little on August 18, 2022 at 1:14 am

    Got excited thought you wrote books on carpentry would definitely jump on those. Will keep the books in mind though when my kid is born



  45. Curtis Fulton on August 18, 2022 at 1:15 am

    Awesome, I love this channel



  46. Captain Kangaroo on August 18, 2022 at 1:16 am

    You should do a video comparing corded vs cordless jigsaws



  47. tuan vu on August 18, 2022 at 1:18 am

    Jig saw is relatively inexpensive… and often bundle in a buy one get one free deal, why make a mountain out of a molehill?
    But… I do get it… the self-induced drama/delima is to promote your Dungeon World Books ¯_(ツ)_/¯



  48. Captain Kangaroo on August 18, 2022 at 1:19 am

    If your afraid of a circular saw I suggest you take up knitting.



  49. Torus2X on August 18, 2022 at 1:21 am

    Just get both. Your jig saw is probably under $40. We’re not breaking the bank here.



  50. ScottyDrake on August 18, 2022 at 1:21 am

    There’s one characteristic I didn’t see in your video that I believe needed to be addressed: BLADE DEFLECTION. Every time I get too aggressive or fast with my jigsaw, the blade bends, leaving me with a terrible cut. Yes, I admit: that’s operator error, but perhaps you could mention it.