I was tempted to use "Wimpy, wimpy, wimpy" as the title for this review, but I haven't tried any other battery-powered jigsaws for comparison. My old Black & Decker AC jigsaw (which I paid $15 for) is far superior in every way---except that it requires an AC outlet, and changing blades is a hassle. Changing blades on the Handisaw is quick and easy, requiring no tools---A+.
I wanted the Handisaw largely as a tree prunner---however, even with a pruning blade, it really cannot handle branches greater than 3/4"---and is painfully slow cutting even a 3/8" branch---wimpy, wimpy, wimpy. A switch-blade type manual pruning saw is faster and easier. I tried cutting a 1/2" length of galvanized electrical conduit (using the metal blade), and the saw repeatedly stalled---wimpy, wimpy, wimpy. My old AC jigsaw has never stalled.
Then too I find the basic design to be very annoying: There is an extra switch you have to depress with your thumb before the trigger will work (which fortunately is easily defeated with a chip of wood and 2" of masking tape). There is no "lock on" switch---so you can't take your hand off of the switch for a more secure grip (fortunately this can be defeated with a 1/2"x 1 1/2 rubber band from a bunch of broccoli). The trigger is 8 1/2" from whatever you are cutting, making it difficult to hold the blade where you want to cut (I normally hold jig-saws "by the business end" (near the blade) for precise control---but that is impossible with this saw (unless you defeat the trigger as described).
My cheapy AC jigsaw is variable speed---the Handisaw is not. So the Handisaw is hard to start at a precise point, almost always splinters wood, and almost always stalls in thin metal. Finally, as related by another reviewer---you can't see where you are cutting (although that too is fixible by cutting away a portion of the unnecessary plastic sheild around the blade. In summary, I use this tool only when I'm too lazy to string an extention cord for my AC jigsaw or saber-saw. But then---I'm embarassed to admit, that's most of the time.
Still, I wish it was more powerful. I wish that it did not have the stupid lock-out switch. I wish that it had a lock-on switch. I wish that it was variable speed. I wish that I could see the material I am cutting.
> Click on “Stoney” just below the product title to see my other reviews, or leave a comment to ask a question.