Different Types of Saws and Their Uses

Almost every project, whether it be a home project or projects you regularly need to present at the university, or even in office, involve cutting to some extent.

And if you are a professional who deals with cutting on a regular basis, you know how it is important to have a right cutting tool.

If you are concerned about cutting, it would be a good idea to have a suitable saw from your job. Then you will be able to do your job efficiently and quickly.

In this article, I will talk about different kind of saws and their work field. If you are looking for an appropriate saw for your work, hopefully you will find the saw from our list of various types of saws.

Types of Saws

There are several types of saws that you can find. But, based on operating type, saws are categorized into two types — handsaw and power saw. Their names give you the idea about how they work.

Handsaws are operated by human hands, and power saws are powered by motors.

I have made the lists below of both handsaws and power saws focusing on their popularity and usefulness.  

1. Basic Handsaw

It is the traditional handsaw that is the most reliable of all other handsaws that we see most often. Most other handsaws have developed based on this iconic handsaw. It is used for cutting wood and requires to put a lot of effort.

2. Hacksaw

Hacksaws have a C-shaped frame and a fine-toothed blade attached to it. The saw was designed for cutting metals. But you can also cut plastic and wood as well.

When it comes to cut aluminum, it takes very special care by gumming up while cutting softer metals.

3. Coping Saw

This saw is very similar to the hacksaw. Coping saw also comes with a C-shaped frame having a thin blade which is interchangeable. It works great at removing the blade and threading through a drill cut hole for further inside profiles cutting.

You can use it for cutting tight radiuses as well. This saw is very popular among woodworkers and artists.

4. Japanese Saw

Japanese saw it is one of the pull saws that has a thin blade with crosscutting teeth on one side and ripping teeth on the opposite side. It easily cuts dense wood by creating a path with its crosscutting edge and finishes the cut using its rid teeth edge.

5. Backsaw


Backsaw features a reinforced edge on the other side of cutting edge. It provides better control while cutting. The size of backsaw is relatively shorter than a handsaw.

Because of its stiff end, it provides more precious, straight and consistently fine cut. These saws stand best for cutting with a miter box.

There are three different variants of backsaw; miter saw, tenon saw, and the sash saw. Miter saw it is quite large and on the other hand a tenon saw is relatively short. Sash saw offers thinner and flexible blade.  

6. Bow Saw

Bow saws have U or J-shaped frame. This crosscutting saw works best for cutting firewood or tree branches. If you do not care about the finish of cutting and are okay with rough cutting in short time, this saw will come handy for you.

7. Keyhole Saw

It is a narrow handheld saw with a long cutting edge. Due to its narrow cutting edge, it is quite a popular choice for cutting areas that are hard to reach. It comes with either a retractable or fixed blade.

If you are looking for a saw for cutting drywall, this will be the best option to consider.

8. Pruning Saw

Pruning Saw

Pruning saw spots a curved blade of 10 to 15 inches protruding a pistol grip handle. The blade of this saw is wide and has coarse teeth which can cut both the directions and makes it easier to remove from materials.

It is a popular choice for landscapers, tree surgeons, and lawn workers as it is expert at clearing branches away, bush pruning.

9. Crosscut Saw

This saw is specially designed for cutting wood roughly. It has a thick blade with large beveled teeth. Crosscut saw is very useful for cutting lumber and tree branches, trimming limbs. It would be the most useful cutting tool you can bring for camping.

There is another type of this saw that requires two people to operate, the felling saw. Both its ends have a handle that lets two people cut timbers efficiently. 

10. Veneer Saw

This is specially designed saw that cuts veneer, you can tell by its name. It spots a short and double-sided blade of 3-5 inches. The offset handle allows you to cut flush surfaces.

As the veneer cutting requires precision as well as a specialized tool, you can trust this cutting tool in this regard.

Power Saws

Let's move to the section of the power saw. With the advancement of modern mechanism, power generated saws cut more efficiently and preciously than the traditional saws. Let’s have a look on some of the most used power saws worldwide.

1. Jigsaw


I cannot even think of any other saw putting on top of the list. A jigsaw is a quite powerful handheld power operated saw which can cut a wide range of materials. It uses up to 45-degree angles to make cutting more precious.

It has a reciprocating blade with a thin structure which is able to cut harder materials like carpet, concrete, countertops, tiles, and even metals.

If you are looking for a detail cutter with the ability to cut hard reaching areas, you can consider buying a jigsaw.

2. Miter Saw

Miter saw spots a circular type blade that cuts material by pulling down onto it. Its blade has two sizes, 10 and 12 inches. The blade is made of carbon steel which is quite durable. The saw has the option to swap a table saw for further flexibility.

It has the ability to cut precisely for mitered joints that require certain angle to fit properly. All you need to do is, preciously dial the miter saw to that degree of cutting and simply pull down the blade onto the material surface you want to cut through.

Miter saws are ideal for cutting molding or trim, metal that requires precious cutting with certain angle.

3. Chainsaw

This is the kind of saw you usually see in horror movies that are used to cut zombies into pieces.

If your work requires some big cutting, a chainsaw will make things easy for you. Although chainsaws are motor powered, you will need to carry it to cut things. Besides, some chainsaws are powered by an engine option that requires gasoline.

If you do not need precise cuttings and looking for a power saw that slices materials with less effort, a chainsaw would be a good option to go with.

Also, if you still play GTA vice city these days, this is the must-have cutting tools on that game. Also, if you are thinking to stay in a haunted house for a night, you should have one to cut zombies as well.

4. Chop Saw

Chop Saw

Chop saw it has an abrasive blade of 14 to 16 inches of size. For cutting, you will need to move the saw through manually. It is a heavy duty saw that works great at cutting hard surfaces.

This type of saws are mainly used for making joint cuts of extremely hard surfaces. You can use this saw for other common metal cutting purposes as well.

5. Circular Saw

A circular saw is a movable saw which is quite lightweight and easy to pull through material surfaces. A circular saw has a round blade that rotates while cutting. The teeth of its blade chips away wood for preventing any kind of sticking and binding to its blade.

Circular saws are widely used for wooden homebuilding and construction purposes.

6. Stationary Power Saws

They do a serious level of working. If you only need saws for stationary purposes, you might not need one of these. Only go for a stationary power saw if you need more precious and accurate cuts through multitude surfaces.

These saws are not only best for accuracy but also they are very time efficient. They are big and highly efficient to make tons of cutting continuously.

7. Band Saw

The band saw comes with a long and thin blade. You can get accurate cuttings for both straight and curve shaped cuts with this saw. It is machine adjustable from its benchtop size to 6 feet tall.

They are mostly used in metalworking, woodworking for accurate curved shapes.

8. Table Saw

A table saw comes with a circular saw forming as a large and powerful machine that requires a table to set. The height of the blade is adjustable that ensures the depth of cuttings.

These saws are used for cutting very long and large pieces of wood.

9. Reciprocating Saw

Reciprocating Saw

It is a handheld power saw with a reciprocating blade which cuts through a wide variety of materials. Although it does not provide accurate cut, it can cut the surface of materials very quickly. Its blade and curved tip easy digs into surfaces with sufficient force.

These saws are mostly used for emergency rescue operations, demolition projects, and building projects as well.

10. Scroll Saw

Scroll saws are flexible enough to cut complicated detail and design work. It comes with either an electrically operated or pedal-driven form that allows you to cut wood in various dimensions. The throat size varies from 12 to 30 inches allowing you to customize the machine to meet your cutting needs.

The saw has a reciprocating blade which is removable, and you can place it inside the cutout hole to perform more detailed works.

If you need accurate and detailed woodwork, it will be a wise option to go with.

Tips While Using Saws

Likewise, other cutting machines, saws are sharp and have the high potential for injuries. Follow the tips below when using saws.

  • 1
    Before starting, make sure you use protective gears such as goggles, dust mask, gloves and headphone for hearing protection.
  • 2
    Keep the blade of your saw clean and sharp to avoid damages.
  • 3
    For power saws, when you change the blade, make sure the power cord is disconnected.
  • 4
    Use a large saw with both your hands. Read manufacturer instructions for safety guidelines.
  • 5
    Stand in a good position and then start cutting process to prevent any imbalance.
  • 6
    Make sure the material you are about to cut stays firmly and does not move from its place.

Final Words

After reading this article, hopefully, you have gotten idea about different types of saws. Based on this, now you can select which saw would be appropriate for your job.

Be careful when you are using a saw and make sure you take enough precautions to avoid any injuries.

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