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To help you find the best scroll saw, we looked into 15 products and analyzed their ease of use, blade types, cutting speed, worktable quality, and dust management system. This is one of the best tools that you can invest in to make your work easier.
We picked the Rockwell BladeRunner X2 as our top choice for the best scroll saw because of its tool-free blade change feature, variety of blades, accessories that give better control of the material being cut, built-in dust port, and portability. Keep reading for more details about the Rockwell Scroll Saw and four other highly recommended products.
Award: Top Pick
WHY WE LIKE IT: This portable scroll saw with a tabletop handle is for DIYers who want a kit that’s light enough to carry around and won’t take up that much space. This tool-free product is versatile despite its size with its five blades, miter gauge, steel rip fence, and vacuum port for mess-free cutting.
An upgrade of the original BladeRunner, this lightweight, tabletop Rockwell model features five T-shank blades, each with its specialty: woodcutting for smooth and scroll cuts, ceramics, aluminum, and metal. The assortment of blades allows you to do several jobs from this machine from rip and cross cutting to more intricate miter and scroll cutting.
The machine runs on a single speed of 3,000 strokes per minute (no-load). Even though its work table measures only 15 3/4″ x 17,” BladeRunner X2 is powerful at 5.5 amps. It also comes with a rip fence and hold-down guard so you can control your material even for wider cuts. You can attach a hose into its vacuum port so your work area will be kept free from sawdust. Plus, BladeRunner X2 also comes with a 3-year warranty. Pro tip: The best corded drill will help you make certain cuts the easy way.
Award: Honorable Mention
WHY WE LIKE IT: WEN 3921 comes with a unique two-directional blade and variable speed control. You can easily shift from level to angled sawing with the machine’s foot-lock clamp, beveling table, air pump, and stable cast iron base.
The successor of the popular WEN 3920 scroll saw, the 3921 model has an adjustable 11″ x 16″ table that tilts up to 45 degrees to the left. It’s also equipped with a speed dial found in front of the machine that can be set from 400 to 1,600 strokes per minute and a snake light to help you better view your intricate cuts when necessary. If you need to cut small items then check out the best small chainsaw.
The 1.2-amp machine offers five pinned and pin-less blade options that can cut through hardwood. You can position them in either the standard direction for angled and inside cuts or at a 90-degree position. The latter is for moving and cutting wood across the width of the table, instead of from the front to the back, for larger workpieces. WEN makes other great scroll saws as well, like the WEN 3922 16-Inch Variable Speed Scroll Saw with easy access blade changes, 550-1600 SPM, and a 2-inch cut capacity at 90 degrees with a 16-inch throat depth. It reduces vibration and overall makes your wood scrolling more accurate. It’s one thing that WEN tools are powerful and good quality, but ultimately, you get a great deal for what you pay for. You can clean your wood with a cloth while doing small projects, there’s no need to use the best power scrubber.
Award: Best Quality
WHY WE LIKE IT: Do projects with reduced vibration and noise with this double parallel arm model from Dewalt. The 20” beveling table, liftable saw arm, and conveniently located blade tension knob make this machine the best scroll saw for intarsia.
Hobbyists and contractors will love Dewalt’s scroll saw because of its liftable arm, tool-free blade clamps for easier blade-threading for inside cuts, steady cast-iron surface, and blade tensioning lever positioned in front of the upper arm.
This 1.3-amp machine is considered a commercial grade as its table can tilt up to 45% to the left and right. It comes with two pin-less blades, the cutting speed of which can be adjusted from 400 to 1,750 strokes per minute. The product comes with a 3-year warranty and passes the safety standards of the CSA Group and OSHA. This will make your cuts, while the best disc sander can smooth your wood.
Award: Best Dust Collection
WHY WE LIKE IT: This Woodstock International product is built with your safety in mind as it comes with a clear, hard plastic blade guard and a gooseneck light. Its variable speed controls, tilting table, and dust port ensure high performance whether you’re working on softwood or hardwood.
This 16” scroll saw with an adjustable speed of 550 to 1,650 strokes per minute is the only item in this review with a protective plastic blade guard mounted on top of the hold-down shoe rod.
Although the 1.2-amp machine accepts both pinned and pinless blades, it uses a tooled blade system that requires you to use a tool for changing the two blades it comes with. The saw has blade adapters for pinless blades, but they might be challenging to mount. You can bevel the table up to 45 degrees and get a clear view of your work with its gooseneck work light. These machines make it easy as there is no need to use the best hacksaw for your cuts.
Award: Best Mid-Range Commercial
WHY WE LIKE IT: This tool-free Delta Power product offers plenty of user-friendly features with its liftable arm with lock, beveling table, and forward tension adjustment. Its long cast iron table, superior blade features, and dust blower make it the best scroll saw for model-making.
Its vibration-reducing dual parallel arms, 20” throat length, and table with left-to-right tilts make this scroll saw a close contender to item #3, the Dewalt DW788. Its edge over the DW788 is that its upper arm can be locked in place while raised. Its main drawback is its weight, 60lbs—the heaviest in our review.
The speed dial, which ranges from 400 to 1,750 strokes per minute, and blade tension adjustment of the 1.3-amp scroll saw are also conveniently found at the front of the machine. The scroll saw comes with two blades and a dust blower. It has a 5-year warranty, making it the longest in our list; the other four items offer just two to three-year warranties. Just a note, if you incorporate electric into your wood project, you’ll need the best wire strippers.
See Also: You may also want to get the best screw gun to reduce the time it takes to work.
The shortlisted products in this review can be used by both professionals and newbies, with all five scroll saws equipped with a hold-down guard that keeps your material in place while you cut. We selected products with mainly two throat lengths, 16″ and 20″, to meet your unique space needs.
All items feature metal cutting surfaces. They come with different blades and adjustable speeds except for the Rockwell BladeRunner X2, which makes up for the lack with 5.5 amperes of power output.
The five scroll saws come with a dust collection system so that you can cut continuously with less sawdust getting in the way.
Softwoods such as poplar, cedar, and plywood are good to work with when you're just getting to know your machine because they’ll produce less resistance than hardwood. You can move to hardwoods like maple, ash, walnut, cherry, and hickory when you're more familiar with your scroll saw. You can use hardwood for detailed work, and they won't smoke or chip as long as you cut at the right speed. Oak is a common hardwood in the US but has a very porous grain so it can't withstand tight cuts. Woodworking enthusiasts have also been using polywood, which is man-made lumber developed from high-density polyethylene, thermoplastics, and recycled plastic, since the 1990s.
Blades can fall off due to lubrication applied on them when they're new. They can also slip off when the interior of the upper clamp that holds them becomes smooth through continuous sawing. Try ridding the clamp of oil using alcohol, and then sandpaper the blade to improve the clamp's grip on it.