Cutting Tools: Best Saw for Cutting Shapes Out of Wood

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If you are a crafty person and take care of the home projects yourself, you might be used to working with wood. And the best way to use wood is by cutting it in the shapes you need for certain projects. To do so, you will need the best saw for cutting shapes out of wood.

The market offers different saw types to choose from, and you should know what you are looking for before pulling your credit card out.

You might need to cut different shapes out of wood, such as simple circles, squares, triangles, or even more complex shapes like letters or figures and certain patterns.

A quick look

Best Value
WEN 3962 10" Band Saw with Stand
  • Best for complex patterns as well as irregular shapes
  • Best for cuts in thick materials up to 6 inches in depth
  • It is a solid, reasonably priced, smaller version of the bigger version. An excellent fit for DIY-ers and hobbyists.
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Shop Fox W1713 16" Scroll Saw
  • Best for finer and delicate cuts
  • Can be used with 3rd party blades
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The best saw for cutting shapes out of wood

Let’s have a closer look at the best saws for cutting shapes available on the market. And according to the type of project you need to complete, you might have to get a jigsaw, a scroll saw, or a band saw. If you’re not sure which is best for you, check this quick guide at the end of this article for more info.

Keep reading to find out all you need about the best saw you can use for cutting your wood in any form you might want!

Bosch JS260, a great jigsaw at a budget-friendly price

  • 6.0 Amp of power
  • Variable speed 500-3100 SPM
  • Tool-less blade change(T-shank blades only)
  • Orbital settings
  • Low-vibration plunging design
  • Stroke length 3/4 in

Bosch offers a great choice of jigsaws that will help you cut wood for almost any type of project you might have. And this saw model is a high-quality tool while the price remains a pretty budget-friendly one.

It’s got a 6 AMP motor and variable speed that you can control by the trigger and the 4 orbital-action settings for different types of cuts that require a different level of aggressiveness.

The adjustable dust blower will keep the cutting line clear, so you can see it at all times and make the right decisions as you are cutting the wood.

It also comes with a heavy gauge steel footplate and a tool-less blade change, as well as a very secure clamping system. You can be sure you’ll be able to change the blades quickly, and more importantly, they stay in.

Most users declare themselves happy when using this saw for cutting curves and other shapes in wood. The most appreciated features are its capacity to cut smoothly into any type of wood, as well as the budget-friendly price.

It is a fast saw that will be great for all types of cutting tasks even in hardwood. For best results with cutting shapes out of wood pair it with a good quality curve cutting/scrolling blade. Check this quick guide to find out more.

You can read more about this saw or other jigsaws available for every budget in my best jigsaw buying guide.

  • Variable speed with accelerator trigger
  • Tool free blade changes with the blade ejector
  • Low vibrations
  • Dust blower
  • Only accepts T-shank blades
  • Splinter guard is hard to install
  • No dust port

Shop Fox W1713 Scroll Saw

  • Motor: 1.2 Amp
  • Strokes per minute(SPM): 550 – 1650
  • Cutting Capacity: 2″ at 90°
  • Stroke length: 3/4″
  • Throat size: 16″
  • Weight: 31lbs

You can also consider getting a scroll saw to take care of your wood cutting projects, such as this Shop Fox W1713. It comes with a variable speed feature allowing you for more control and finer, more intricate cuts as well as working with more delicate materials.

This saw model is not the cheapest one you can find on the market but it’s relatively cheap for a scroll saw. And considering the features it has, it’s a good starter scroll saw that will let you get your feet wet with scrolling.

It comes with a 1.2-Amps motor that can produce a variable speed varying from 550 to 1650SPM(strokes per minute). The dust blower and dust port are very useful to keep a clean and dust-free workplace. And the fact that it has a gooseneck light attached makes this saw easy to use even in dim conditions.

This saw model works with pinless or pinned blades, even the 3rd party ones, which means you have more flexibility when choosing the right blades for your wood cutting projects.

It also generates a very low level of vibrations, which is very important when cutting delicate, complicated shapes. The saw comes with a cast iron table, which is pretty impressive considering the price and gives you a solid working surface. It tilts 45 deg for the ability to make beveled cuts.

Most users are also very satisfied with the saw speed and smooth performance, making it a pleasure to use for different types of wood cutting projects.

The blades included with this scroll saw are not of great quality and will probably need to be replaced sooner than expected, which might be an inconvenience. But that’s not a deal-breaker. You should invest in good quality blades anyway. Overall, good saw for a reasonable price.

If you want to explore your scroll saws options, check the article I wrote about the best scroll saws available on the market.

  • Attractive price
  • Work light
  • Dust blower
  • Dust port
  • Reduced vibrations
  • Heavy and sturdy
  • Cast iron table
  • Takes pinned and pinless blades
  • Light not too bright
  • Table tilts only one way
  • Working with blade adapters can be challenging

WEN 3962 10″ Band Saw

  • Motor power: 3.5 Amp
  • Feet per minute(FPM): 1520 and 2620
  • Cutting Capacity: 6″ at 90°
  • Table size: 142 x 122 
  • Blade Size: 72″ long
    1/8 -1/2 ” wide
  • Troat size: 9-3/4″
  • Weight: 73 lbs

The WEN 3962 saw can be purchased in 3 different sizes 9-inch, 10-inch, and 14-inch. The price will also vary according to each size, but the 10-inch seems to be the most popular one. The 14 inch, however, seems to be the sturdiest one. This saw it’s easy to use and budget-friendly, making it a great option for DIY-ers and even some professional woodworkers.

Thanks to its 3.5 Amp engine, you will be able to create different woodcuts that go up to 6 inches in depth and 9-3/4 inches throat capacity. To use this band saw, you need 72-inch long blades 1/8 to 1/2 inch wide.

This WEN 3962 saw works at two different speeds, 1520 or 2620 FPM, and it comes with the stand and 14-1/8 x 12-1/2 inch work table. The table’s size will allow you to work with bigger pieces of wood, which will definitely speed up your working process and improve the cuts’ accuracy. It also tilts 45 deg to the right allowing you for bevel cuts.

The LED lamp comes in handy and will help you see the cutting line, especially in dim conditions.

Another useful feature is a dust extracting system and dust blower so you can hook up your shop vac and don’t worry about all the mess created by sawdust. The 3-in-1 dust port allows for fitting a variety of dust extractor hoses (1-3/4, 2-3/4, 4 inches).

A couple of drawbacks to mention here. Some users claim that the fence is not well tied and it can create problems while using it. This, however, can be replaced by contacting the customer service of the company. Keep in mind that things like fences for bandsaws in this price range are usually not very good quality and you shouldn’t stress about it.

Another complaint reported by the users was about the lack of WEN’s quality control, and the main component that tends to break is a tension knob. It’s not a deal-breaker but definitely something you should consider. The warranty actually covers this so that you can get the replacement sent by WEN.

Nevertheless, If you need to perform some professional woodcutting jobs, this saw is definitely a great option. You will be able to cut complex patterns and irregular shapes even out of very thick wood. Overall, this WEN bandsaw is a solid, reasonably priced saw for cutting shapes in wood.

  • Comes in 3 different sizes
  • Good size table allowing to work with bigger pieces
  • Two speed operation for allows for flexibility
  • Budget-friendly
  • Dust extracting system with variety of dust port sizes
  • The fence might not be well tied
  • Tension knob tends to break

What kind of saw do I need to cut shapes out of wood?

As mentioned above, three main saw types that can be used for cutting a variety of shapes in wood. Each one of them comes with its pros, cons, and different abilities to get the job done.

Jigsaw

You can use a regular jigsaw to cut different materials, including wood. The secret of this type of jigsaw stays in the blades. You will most likely see that you can use different saw blades depending on the different materials and types of cuts you want to make. For best shapes cutting results, invest in good quality scrolling blades.

The best saw models have a precision roller guide, which makes the accurate cut even easier, and the results a lot smoother.

The jigsaws are also the most budget-friendly ones on the market and the easiest ones to use even for beginners. You can use one for cutting circles, letters, and other curvy shapes in general.

While jigsaws are probably the most popular and one of the cheapest saws for freehand shapes cutting, they’ll get you so far. For more detailed, delicate work, you might have to consider a scroll saw or a band saw.

Scroll Saw

A level up when it comes to power tools for cutting shapes out of wood is a scroll saw. Scroll saws are used to cut curves and other irregular shapes in your wood like jigsaws, for example.

With a scroll saw, you get more delicate, more detailed cuts than you would have by using a jigsaw, for example, and they are easier to make. Unlike jigsaw, you are also able to make interior cuts that are a lot tighter.

These saws are perfect for complex designs and will let you make very precise cuts with extreme accuracy. The cuts are so clean that you’d rarely have to sand afterward. The drawback here is that the thickness of the stock you’re cutting is limited to a few inches.

Band Saw

Band saws are also very popular when it comes to woodworking, even if they might be more expensive than the previous two saw types. You can use this type of saw for woodcutting, lumbering, or even metalworking, and it cuts clean curves and irregular shapes.

They also the biggest ones. A band saw allows you to resaw wide lumber and make curved cuts, and because it’s adjustable vertically, it can handle much thicker materials.

Speed and accuracy are the two main features that you will love your band saw for. They’ll let you make a lot of cuts at odd angles or patterns.

Conclusion


The best saw for cutting shapes out of wood is really up to your needs and preferences. As you’ve read above, there are different types of saws for different needs and projects. While the scroll saw and a band saw can be quite an investment, jigsaws tend to be most popular as they come in a variety of prices, suiting different budgets.

The bottom line is to pick one of these saws that is best for your needs and help you get the job done. And you will not waste your time and energy while you’re trying to struggle to finish your project.

I hope this article has helped you to find the perfect saw for your cutting projects. If you have any questions, leave a comment in the box below, and I’ll be happy to help as much as I can. No time to read now? Pin it for later to your Power Tools board. Thank you!

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