Best Scroll Saws of 2018 – Top Picks & Reviews

scroll sawMaking a perfect cut with a scroll saw can already be difficult enough, shopping for one shouldn’t also be hard. This article is going to look at the best scroll saws available today. It is meant to give the consumer an honest review which will help you choose the best option for any person that is looking to make detailed cuts.

There are a lot of different things to consider before you purchase a scroll saw, and this article is meant to help you pick out the key features that meet your individual needs and help you find the right match. Once you find the perfect scroll saw, you will be able to cut beautiful curves in all of your projects. Finding the right saw shouldn’t be difficult, and below you can find my scroll saw reviews that help make this process a little easier.

5 Best Scroll Saws 2018

ModelPriceThroat depthEditor Rating
DEWALT DW788
DEWALT DW788 Scroll Saw
(Top Pick)

Check Price
20″4.9/5
Shop Fox W1713
Shop Fox W1713

Check Price
16″4.6/5
WEN 3920
WEN 3920 Scroll Saw
(Best for the Money)

Check Price
16″4.5/5
Delta 40-694
DELTA Power Tools 40-694 Scroll Saw

Check Price
20″4.2/5
PORTER-CABLE PCB375SS
PORTER-CABLE PCB375SS

Check Price
18″4.0/5

#1 DEWALT DW788 – Top Pick

DEWALT DW788Dewalt is a name that you can trust. Dewalt products are made to last, and this scroll saw is no exception to the rule. The Dewalt DW788 is the best scroll saw for beginners. The many different features on this saw allow even the most novice handymen cut out detailed and intricate pieces on any project.

This scroll has a number of exceptional features, to include a double parallel-link arm. The parallel link arm helps to dramatically reduce the vibration that naturally occurs when using any scroll saw. This helps the user make more precise cuts without worrying about the effects of vibration. Another great feature is the flexible dust blower, as this allows the user the ability to blow dust away, so it does not fill up the workspace while cutting and provides the user with more clarity to see where he or she is cutting.

This saw also has a specially designed saw that pivots from front to back to cut down on overall movement. This helps to produce smoother results, and it is also quieter than most saws. The Dewalt DW788 keeps the saw blade perpendicular which will cut down on over cutting and miscutting. It also comes with variable speed controls ranging from 400 to 1750 strokes per minute. Whenever you have the ability to slow down or speed up, it gives you an increased range of options on how you cut for each project.

This saw has the heavy duty feel that you want in a workshop without all the weight. Coming in at 56 pounds it is relatively light and compact and easy to move from one place to the other. It also doesn’t require tools to change the blade and comes with a Dewalt warranty package that includes a three-year limited warranty.

Pros

  • Double Parallel link arm to reduce vibration
  • Flexible dust blower to keep work area clean
  • Variable speed control to adjust to each specific job

Cons

  • Price


#2 Shop Fox W1713 – The Runner-up

Shop Fox W1713While the shop fox is good, it doesn’t match the performance and cutting abilities of the Dewalt DW 788. It does not have the parallel arm link that reduces vibration, but it does have a number of features that make it a great saw as well. The W1713 uses all major brands of plain or pin end saw blades, and removing the blades is easy with the tools that shop fox provides.

A feature that I really like about this scroll saw is the gooseneck work light. A lot of work is done in garages and basements, and they may not provide the adequate light that is necessary, or your body may block any light from getting to your project. A scroll saw is meant to make intricate cuts, and this light helps you see exactly where you are cutting no matter where you are working. It also has a fixed dust blower as well as dust port which helps to keep dust to a minimum. Also, this saw comes with variable speeds to allow you to adjust to the project you are working on.

Some other great features with the Shop Fox W1713 is that it comes with a variable tilt table. The table itself can tilt 45 degrees so you have a wide variety of angles that you can cut with it. It also comes with a dust extraction port, so you can hook a shop vac up to it and suck any dust out to keep your scroll saw running over a longer period of time.

It also is built from cast iron, and while it feels durable, it is light enough and compact enough to move around from your workplace or on a job site with relative ease. It also comes with a two-year warranty that will help keep you cutting longer.

Pros

  • Gooseneck work light
  • Can tilt 45 degrees
  • Built from cast iron, but still lightweight

Cons

  • Requires tools to change blades
  • Does not have an adjustable dust blower
  • Only a two-year warranty


#3 WEN 3920 – Best Scroll Saw for the Money

WEN 3920When it comes to being a handyman on a budget, you want to look no further than the WEN 3920. It offers many of the things that the more expensive brands have at almost half the price. The WEN 3920 has dual direction cutting capability. So you can cut both forwards and backward which will save you a great deal of time and help speed up your projects so you can get back to doing things that you love on your weekend instead of working.

It can power through wood that is up to two inches thick, and it also has a spacious 16 inches by 11-inch cutting platform, that can take on some of the larger projects. It also comes with a hold down clamp so you can lock in your projects to prevent it from sliding or moving while the blade is running. This lockdown clamp will help ensure that your cuts are accurate every time.

The WEN 3920 also comes equipped with a flexible light as well as an adjustable air pump; this helps you clean off dust and make sure that you can properly see your project and know where you are cutting. It also comes with two blade cutting positions, either you can use the standard to allow you to cut front and back or you can switch the blade to the pinned position. This allows you to cut the width of the table instead of front to back.

Like most other scroll saws this saw also comes with the ability to control how fast the blade is moving, and it can be adjusted from 550 to 1600 strokes per minute. Last but not least this scroll saw comes with a two-year warranty, and access to skilled technicians on a hotline to help answer questions.

Pros

  • The best price for a scroll saw
  • Two different blade positions
  • Controlled variable speed for precise cutting

Cons

  • Not as well built
  • Difficult to switch blades


#4 Delta Power Tools 40-694

Delta Power Tools 40-694Delta power tools 40-694 offer a number of features that make it a good scroll saw. First, it has an electronic variable speed that can be adjusted from 1750 to 400 SPM. This allows for a wide variety of cutting to be performed. The Delta 40-694 comes equipped with dual parallel link arms which work to effectively reduce the amount of vibration that is felt while cutting.

There are some other notable features with the Delta 40-694, the saw has a tilt table that allows the user to tilt the saw to make sure that each cut is done at the perfect angle. It also has one of the easiest blade changes because it requires no tools so changing a blade only takes a few seconds.

It also comes with a storage unit that you can fit two blades into; this helps to keep the blades from getting lost and will help them retain their sharpness. Along with the storage also comes an adjustable dust hose that helps to you blow dust from your work area, allowing you to cut without having to worry about a dirty shop when you are done. This product comes with a number of upgraded options that will make it more expensive but will help improve its overall performance. The standard unit does come with an adjustable light as well as an adjustable blower to help maximize clarity while cutting.

It is a heavier unit coming in at 60 pounds, but it is made to last. The cutting table is 16 in x 24 inches which is a larger than most cutting table, so larger projects will be easier to do on this table. It can cut through 2 1/8 inch wood blocks and comes with a five-year limited warranty.

Pros

  • Dual Parallel link arms
  • Electronic variable speeds
  • Tool-free clamp so you can change blades without tools

Cons

  • Weight
  • Have to pay more for a light
  • Does not come with a stand


#5 PORTER-CABLE PCB375SS

PORTER-CABLE PCB375SSThe Porter-Cable PCB 375SS rounds out the bottom of our list. This saw is not the best option for serious woodworkers. If you are looking for a saw that will make regular precision cuts, it is better to look at the saws which rank higher on our list. It comes equipped with an aluminum frame, which is not the most stable cutting platform.

It does come with a dual tilting table that allows you to make 15-degree bevel cuts to the right and 45 degrees to the left. It also comes equipped with a large cutting table, but most of these positive features are negated by the unstable platform and the overall poor craftsmanship.

It does come with a few other features that come standard on most saws. It has tool-free blade removal along with an LED light and an adjustable dust blower that will help keep your workstation clean and free of debris. It comes with a bevel scale as well as a control knob that is centrally located so adjusting cutting speeds are right in front of the user.

Overall this saw comes in the last place on our list due to its lack of performance in both power as well as cutting ability. The die-cast aluminum frame is not the sturdiest piece of equipment, and this can lead to poor results when trying to complete intricate projects.

Pros

  • Vibrates a lot less than your average scroll saw
  • Comes with a 3-year warranty

Cons

  • Very expensive for what you get
  • Light is there but could be brighter
  • Isn’t always smooth at slow speeds
  • A lot of users experienced that it breaks rather fast
  • Requires a lot of time to get used to
  • Poor instruction manual


Buyer’s Guide

I hear a lot of people tell me that they don’t need a scroll saw because it’s more of a woodworkers tool. They don’t deem it necessary because they have a band saw in their shop, and that is sufficient enough to make intricate cuts. One major difference between the two is that a scroll saw is not a continuous blade. A band saw can make decent cuts, but it does not compare to having a scroll saw. A scroll saw is meant to make fine minute and detailed cuts, and it will produce far superior products than what you can do on your shop’s band saw. Investing in one will change your life, and once you get one, you will wonder how you lived without it.

It is important to discuss what to look for when you are purchasing a scroll saw, as there are many different types available and choosing the best scroll saw can be difficult without a little help.

Platform

The first thing that I like to look at is the work table. I want to have a large enough work table so I can accommodate my larger projects. Also, you want to make sure you have a sturdy platform, as the blade is running, vibration is going to happen which can throw off your cut. If you have a stable platform to cut on it will help to reduce the vibration and help you make finer cuts.

The scroll saw arm

Another piece that helps reduce vibration is the holding down arm or link arm. Different models come with different kinds of arms to hold your product in place. From my experience, the double parallel-link arm is the far superior choice. It is better at holding your work in place while cutting and this helps to reduce the overall vibration that occurs as the saw is cutting. Another thing to consider is if the link arm is adjustable, as this can help determine the thickness of the wood you can cut. It’s best to decide on the type of projects that you will be doing and then pick a saw that can accommodate your style of projects.

Throat size

It is also smart to look at the throat size, as this will help determine how large of a project you can complete using your scroll saw. The throat size is the distance from the front of the blade to the back and it usually shown on the box by the words 22-inch scroll saw or 16-inch scroll saw. This is a very important thing, and it is good to know that you can cut double the size of your scroll saws throat. So before you buy one you want to consider how large of a project you might take on and pick a scroll saw that would work for you.

Blades

It is also important to consider the type of blades that your saw can accommodate. Scroll saw blades come in two basic blades either pinned or unpinned. Pinned blades are meant for larger less intricate pieces of wood. An unpinned blade allows you to make the fine detailed cuts. It is important to check and see what type of blades your saw can accommodate so that you get the right saw and blade for your needs.

While talking about blades, it is also important to consider whether you can change the blade with or without tools. Most of the newer saws come with easy blade transitions. This is a vital piece for me when it comes to deciding on a saw. It is a real pain to have to break out tools every time you have to change a blade, and due to the cutting process you have to change the blades more often when using a scroll saw than a regular saw, so make sure you pick something with a quick and easy blade change. Last but not least you want to pick a saw that has convenient blade storage. My shop can get messy at times, and the last thing I want to do is be in the middle of a project and try to switch my blade and misplace one. Picking a saw that comes with a convenient storage box will make finding and replacing an easier task.

scroll saw in action

Variable control speed

Another important thing to also consider is the variable control speed. To adjust to different cuts and to perfect your craft it is important to be able to slow the saw down so you can make the right cuts without rushing a project. It is good to buy a saw that lets you adjust the speed to each individual project, whether it is electronic or a simple knob, picking a saw with variable control speed is a must. With speed, you also want to look at the power. Picking a saw with a lot of power and the ability to control the speed will give you more options later down the road. The more powerful ones will be able to cut through thicker pieces of wood and being able to slow the blade down will allow you to cut into delicate pieces as well.

Other features

Some other added features that are good to have on your saw are things like a light an adjustable dust blower or a dust port. Most of the time work can be done in some dark garages or maybe on a job site that doesn’t have the lights working yet. It is difficult to use a flashlight and make accurate cuts at the same time. Some saws come with LED lights that can be adjusted so that you can see exactly where you are cutting no matter the conditions you are in. With all of that cutting, it is going to create a lot of dust. You can either have a fixed dust blower or an adjustable one that is flexible, and you can move it to where you want. The fixed dust blowers usually just blow the dust directly in your lap, while the adjustable ones you can aim them away from you, so you aren’t covered in dust. It is also good to have a dust port so that you can collect some of the dust, so your workspace isn’t covered by the end of a project.

Conclusion

Hopefully, this article has helped you determine what I believe to be the best scroll saw; also I hope you have gotten a few tips and tricks that will help you pick out what you want in terms of power, performance and cutting ability.

To conclude this article, I want to look back at the reviews of scroll saws and touch on what saw I found to be the best overall and a few others that should be considered as well. The best saw on the market, in my opinion, is the DEWALT DW788. It features make it user-friendly and will have you making excellent cuts on all of your projects. It comes with variable speed as well as the double parallel-link arm which greatly reduces the vibration and allows even the novice to make quality cuts. It also comes equipped with an adjustable dust blower to keep your workspace clean.

The saw that was the best price was the WEN 3920. Its lower price makes it perfect saw for the budget-wise consumer. It also comes with parallel link arms, and it comes equipped with an LED light so you can better see the project that you are working on. No matter what you are looking for in a scroll saw, if you pick one of the ones on this list you will not be disappointed.

We hope that you enjoyed our guide. We’re also happy to inform you that we also have a band saw buying guide, and a pole saw buying guide. Feel free to check them out!

Best Scroll Saws of 2018 – Top Picks & Reviews
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