Best Scroll Saws for 2020
Here are 8 great scroll saws. Find the one that provides the level of detail you need for your next scrolling project.
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Different from a jigsaw or a bandsaw, many hobbyists and woodworkers turn to a scroll saw for intricate pattern cutting. Scroll saws are great because anyone can use them, from the beginner working from pre-fab hobby patterns to the master craftsperson creating intricate custom intarsia or marquetry. Whether you’re interested in pursuing a new hobby or a serious woodworker looking to up your game, read on to find the scroll saw that best fits your needs.
Best Overall: DeWalt DW788
DeWalt invests a lot of time and research to consistently create some of the best tools available. This saw incorporates pro level features and smart innovative design into a mid-range price package. The unique double parallel arm design limits vibration and noise. With a 20 inch cutting capacity and the large cast iron table that bevels both left and right, you can easily work with larger pieces. The arm lifts for threading blades into your work, and the blade clamp requires no tools. The on-off switch, variable speed control, blade tensioning knob and dust blower are all on the front upper arm for convenient access. With its ease of operation, this saw will give amazing results for the beginner and the experienced wood worker.
Most for the Money: WEN 3921
The WEN 3921 saw gave our best overall pick a run for its money. The ingenious part: You can install the blades in two directions (standard and 90 degrees), giving you a cutting capacity beyond the 16 inch depth at the saw’s throat. Beyond that it has all the features you could ask for: variable speed, dust blower, vacuum port, tilting table and even a flexible LED work light. It also will work with pinned and pin-less blades. Perhaps not quite as heavy-duty as other comparable saws, yet at far less than half the price, this saw will not disappoint.
Best for The Beginner: Dremel Moto Saw
Compact and portable, the Dremel Moto Saw is the perfect saw for the beginner or occasional hobby scroller. You can clamp it to a table top or detach it from its base to use as a motorized coping saw. With its variable speed you can cut through a variety of materials. The blade requires no tools for changing and has an auto tensioning feature to keep things running smoothly. Unfortunately there is no dust blower, but it has a port to attach a vacuum and keep your workpiece dust free. With a storage case and 10 blades included you’ll have everything you need to cut your first scrolling project.
Best for Hobby Projects: Shop Fox W1713
If you’re regularly cutting patterns out of thinner stock or working with lighter woods the Shop Fox W1713 will provide the accuracy and efficiency to produce flawless results. With its solid cast iron construction this saw has a 16 inch cutting capacity and accepts plain and pin end blades. There is an adjustable hold down shoe to hold your work in place while the sawdust blower and gooseneck light allow you to see what your doing. The table tilts to 45 degrees and has a vacuum dust port beneath it. There is a variable speed control will help you get crisp cuts in all materials. If you are meticulous about the quality of your smaller projects, this Shop Fox saw will provide you the results you’re looking for.
Best Large Capacity: Delta 40-694
With its 20 inch cutting capacity and 24 in. x 16 in. table this Delta saw provides a generous work surface for managing larger projects. I like its large knobs for beveling the table left or right and tensioning the blade. The on/off switch and the variable speed control are easy to grab. The dual parallel arm design reduces vibration and also locks for easy tool-less blade changes. Quiet yet hefty, the 1.3 amp motor and three-quarters inch stroke makes for an aggressive and clean cut. This is a great saw if you’re regularly working with thicker hardwoods. Delta has provided the best tools for the professional woodworker for nearly 90 years. This saw is testimony to that legacy.
Best for General Purpose/DIY: Porter Cable 18
For a saw that covers all of what a scroll saw can do, this Porter Cable 18 inch is a great choice. The solid aluminum table has an integral bevel scale view-finder so you don’t have to bend over to see your settings. Both the variable speed control and on/off switch are within easy reach, as are the dust blower and LED light which conveniently adjust to your workpiece. This saw has the capability and feel of a pro saw at a significantly lower price point.
Best for The Avid Woodworker: Jet JWSS-22
The design features on this saw combined with its large work surface and three-quarters inch cutting stroke make it a great home shop saw. Jet’s blade change mechanism allows you to clamp and tension the blade in one step without any tools. The upper spring-loaded arm moves up out of the way for blade changes and ease of situating your work. All the features you’d expect are part of this saw, from dust blower to LED work light to handy blade storage. Though loaded with big saw features, the footprint of this saw is small and won’t eat up space in your shop. And Jet backs up its tools with a five-year warranty.
Best for the Pro: Hegner 18-V
The Hegner 18-V is a professional grade scroll saw with a powerful yet quiet motor capable of scrolling smoothly through any material. Even with the variable speed topped out at 1700 rpm there is no detectable vibration in the blade. This is testimony to the quality build of this machine that includes a unique dust management system with three options to eliminate most of the dust produced during operation. Hegner also designed a quick-lock tension system with a quick release for ease in changing blades.
Every feature one could ask for is smartly and solidly built into this saw. There is little left for desire here except for a lower price. But if you’re running a woodworking business and want a reliable tool that gives consistent quality results, all day, every day, this saw is worth every penny.