Best Bow Saws Buyer’s Guide

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Best Bow Saws Buyer’s Guide

What is the one thing that a keen gardener and a DIY enthusiast have in common? Well it would have to be a bow saw of course. Whether you have branches that need cutting back in your garden, or are working with pipes and other plastic or metal materials in your home then you are going to need a bow saw! These handy tools have been around longer than we can remember, and are still as popular and versatile today as they were then, due to the many many jobs that they will be able to help in.

If you are a traditionalist that likes the feeling of good manual labour, or you are looking for a small, portable saw that is affordable and effective to use, a bow saw is going to be what you need. But, before you can reap the benefits of this tool, you need to find the right one to buy! Keep reading to learn about some of the best bow saws available at the moment, and discover our buyers guide, filled with all the things you need to look for when you are buying!

Best Pick – Bahco 10-21-51 Bowsaw 21In

Sale
Bahco 10-21-51 Bowsaw 21In
2,465 Reviews
Bahco 10-21-51 Bowsaw 21In
  • Length: 21 inch
  • Designed to cut through dry wood and lumber
  • Designed for demanding applications and tough environments of construction sites

Last update on 2021-01-18 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Only Got 5 Minutes?

In a hurry to buy your bow saw, then this is the part of the article you need to be reading. Most importantly, we have given you our opinion on the best bow saw available at the moment to save you any fuss or bother. But, we have also provided a start to our buyer’s guide to help you make your purchase. So whether you are cutting back branches and shrubs in your garden, or completing woodwork or pipework jobs around the home, this is the part of the article you need to read!

The Best Bow Saw Features

Here are some of the key features that you need to look for when you are purchasing a bow saw. In theory they are relatively simple tools, but this doesn’t mean that you can make an ill-informed purchase and not live to regret it. So here is all you need to know…

Size

Bow saws come in many shapes and sizes, so you will always be able to find one that is right for what you are looking for. The size of your bow saw is going to impact on the size of jobs that you are able to complete with ease, as a longer blade will be able to work through bigger pieces of material.

Bow saws are designed to be more compact and portable than other powered models, so you know that the design you are going to get will be as sleek and compact as possible. That said, we found that blades range from as small as 12 inches, all the way up 34 inches so you will be able to find a size that is going to be compatible with the jobs that you are completing.

TOP TIP: It is always worth opting for a bow saw with a length slightly bigger than what you are going to need – this way you will be prepared for any jobs that come your way. However, it isn’t necessarily best to just opt for the biggest that you can find as this can cause movement and bend in the blade when working with smaller pieces of material!

Blades

There are various different blades that you will find with bow saws and different ones are going to be better suited to different tasks so it is important to check exactly what you are getting. Admittedly, for most models the blade can always be changed if it is not up to the task, but this just means extra cost and extra effort for you before you can get using your saw!

Look out for models that are made of high quality steel as this will stop them from buckling or bending under the pressure. Equally, steel that is treated to protect against corrosion from dust and debris is essential. However, it is still important to make sure to clean your blade after every use so that you are giving it the best chance of staying sharp and strong.

Some teeth designs will allow you to cut through the material on both pushing and pulling strokes. This not only makes your life much easier when you are working, but will allow the saw (and you!) to work much more efficiently, so you can get the job done in half the time. We would recommend looking out for “peg tooth” designs if you are going to be cutting through dry wood, and more rake like teeth if you are more likely to cut through green wood. But, there are many generic blades that you can find if you need a saw that is going to be able to work with everything!

It is also worth checking how many teeth there are along the blade – the more teeth, the more cut that you are going to get for each exertion of effort that you put into the pushing and pulling motion!

TOP TIP: To get the straightest and most precise cuts from your bow saw it is going to need tensioning regularly, even with the best blades – this helps to keep the blade nice and taut even after the toughest of jobs! Look out for easy tensioning methods that will hold in place whilst you are working.

Style

Don’t panic – we aren’t talking about how stylish your bow saw is! But simply the style and design that has been considered when manufacturing the bow saw. Bow saws have a very recognisable shape that doesn’t differ massively, however some manufacturers have really considered the design of their bow saws so that you can get the most out of this tool when you are working.

An example of this is where the front of the bow saw narrows right down to a point at the tip of the blade. This allows the saw to get into more hard to reach places that larger models might struggle with – so perfect for when you are working with those unruly bushes in the garden! There are also models that come with a deeper frame which will be better for deeper cutting in thicker materials!

Weight

The idea of a bow saw is that it is smaller and lighter than other saw options that you might have available to you! That said, you want to be opting for a light bow saw that is going to be easy to move between jobs and also easy to hold whilst you are working. The lighter the model that you can opt for, the longer you will be able to work before feeling fatigued! Although, we have seen people who prefer thicker, heavier models as they feel that this offers more durability and strength against harder materials that they may be working with, so it is worth considering what materials you are going to be working with the most!

We found that models tended to range in weight from around 400g up to around 1kg – so they are always going to be on the light side!

Best Budget – Spear and Jackson 24 Inch Bowsaw

Spear and Jackson - Razorsharp 24 Inch Bowsaw
281 Reviews
Spear and Jackson - Razorsharp 24 Inch Bowsaw
  • Bow Saw 610 cm (24) with hard point blade which stays sharp up to five times longer than untreated blades
  • Teeth designed for fast and free cutting on forward and backward strokes
  • Lever tension device for simple blade changing
  • Three ppi
  • Grow your own British growing 2018 award winners

Last update on 2021-01-18 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Extra Bow Saw Features

Now that you know the main features to look for when you are buying a bow saw, here are some of those extra little details that we like in our favourite bow saws.

  • Knuckle guard – A knuckle guard is there to complete two different tasks, protect your hand from any unnecessary strain or injuries whilst you are working and also offer extra grip to help you get the most force and pressure out of each stroke!
  • Colour – Now we know that you are unlikely to be bothered about colour coordinating your bow saws, but there is something to be said for purchasing a bright coloured bow saw. If you know that you are going to be working in a garden or in thick foliage then a brightly coloured saw will stand out against the green, making sure it is not only easy to find but also visible enough to avoid any accidents.
  • Interchangeable blades – As we mentioned above, different blades are going to be better suited to working with different materials. This won’t cause you a problem if you are just working with green wood, or pipework, but if you are a jack of all trades and know that you are going to need your bow saw to be the same then it may be worth considering opting for one with interchangeable blades. The best models will allow you to quickly and easily click out one blade and change it with another.
  • Lefties and Righties – Most bow saws that we found are much better suited to those of you that are right handed instead of left handed, which can make it a real problem for those lefties when it comes to buying a bow saw. However, there are some ambidextrous designs that will work for both, so worth looking out for if you are left handed!
  • Foldable bow saw – These are few and far between on the market but can be found. A foldable bow saw will “concatener” away on itself (similar to how some multi-tools work), so that they can be transported between jobs and stored safely and easily. They then simply fold out and click into place when they are ready to be used!
  • Multiple blades – Some bow saws will come with more than one blade, which not only saves you time in having to purchase others but also money! The best options are ones that come with a hacksaw and bow saw blade, so that you and your bow saw are ready to complete almost any job straight away!

Tips For Using a Bow Saw Safely

If this is your first bow saw then here are some tips on how to use them safely!

  • Keep your hands away from the blade when cutting – this is where a knuckle guard comes in handy! It is also worth considering wearing gloves if possible, which will also make it easier to work in any overgrown foliage or bushes!
  • Hold the material a safe distance away from the blade, and consider where the material is going to fall when you are working with branches and trees.
  • Remember that the blade could be hot when you finish cutting as you will have generated a lot of friction, so give it time to cool down before you touch it!
  • Once you have cleaned and oiled your bow saw after use, always make sure to put it within its protective sheath and hand it high up in your shed or workshop!

Best of the Rest

GARDENA ComFort Bow 530: Light Wood Saw For Working In Confined Spaces, Adjustable Blade Tension, Rust, Blade Length 530 mm (8747-20)
617 Reviews
GARDENA ComFort Bow 530: Light Wood Saw For Working In Confined Spaces, Adjustable Blade Tension, Rust, Blade Length 530 mm (8747-20)
  • Quick set: With the screw the blade tension is fixed in a jiffy
  • Easily replaced: the sheet change takes place quickly and easily, without tools
  • User-friendly handling: The Feinschnittzahnung robust saw ensures comfortable working
  • Ambient Independent use: saw blade and steel bars are corrosion-resistant and thus weatherproof
  • Scope of delivery: 1x GARDENA Comfort Bow 530

Last update on 2021-01-18 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Fiskars 21” Bow Saw SW30, Fixed blade, Length: 62 cm, Plastic blade guard included, High Steel, Black/Orange, 1001621
712 Reviews
Fiskars 21” Bow Saw SW30, Fixed blade, Length: 62 cm, Plastic blade guard included, High Steel, Black/Orange, 1001621
  • Log saw for soft wood, Ideal for logs and large branches, For right- and left-handed users
  • Firm and comfortable grip thanks to ergonomic handle with finger guard
  • Efficient sawing and clean cutting thanks to special teeth, Pull and push cut, Blade guard included for secure storage
  • Long life product thanks to high Steel blade and durable plastic handle, Easy blade replacement (available under reference number 1001706), Finnish design
  • Contents: 1x Fiskars 21” Bow Saw SW30, Plastic blade guard included, Length: 62 cm, Weight: 575 g, Material: High Steel/Plastic, Colour: Black/Orange, 1001621

Last update on 2021-01-18 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Grüntek Marlin Bow and Hacksaw 610 mm Aggressive Cut Comfort Hand Saw Garden
337 Reviews
Grüntek Marlin Bow and Hacksaw 610 mm Aggressive Cut Comfort Hand Saw Garden
  • SAW BLADE: 610 mm Total length: 610 mm WEIGHT: 595 Gr .; The light and sharp hacksaw / garden saw MARLIN from GRÜNTEK is flexible and has: straight saw blade of 610 mm, robust and stable with saw blade protection
  • Impulse-hardened Precision toothing, ensures energy-saving and durable use during efficient sawing of fresh and dry wood; Also suitable for thicker branches
  • Suitable for left and right hands; The hand saw works during PULLING and PUSHING
  • ERGO handgrip with stop and handgrip handle is comfortable and secure in hand; Slightly bent grip and SOFT-TOUCH handles prevent slipping
  • OUTBALANCED construction of the ironing garden saw minimizes stresses with less effort during sawing

Last update on 2021-01-18 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you sharpen a bow saw blade?
Bow saw blades are nice and easy to sharpen. There are plenty of hardware stores that will do this for you if you are wanting a professional job, but providing you have a file you can just as easily do it yourself. Simply secure the blade into a bench vice, and use a flat file to sharpen the teeth, then (if you have one available) use a three sided file to give each tooth a final sharpen and make sure the base of the teeth are straight.

How tight does a bow saw blade need to be?
The blade of your bow saw needs to be tight enough that it is taut and does not move about on the pins, but that there is still enough movement for it to flex SLIGHTLY in the middle of the blade. You can tension your blade using the mechanism at the end of your bow saw.

Do you get a warranty with a bow saw?
Yes! Many of the warranties cover the main part of the bow saw and not the blade, so this is worth checking for, but you should definitely get a warranty with the product. This is usually around 2-5 years, but we have seen some manufacturers offer lifetime warranties on their bow saws – providing it meets the terms of the warranty of course! Blades rarely come with warranties, as their lifespan largely depends on the amount that they are used!

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  • Ergonomics
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