18V cordless circular saw good enough?

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Hi, I am thinking of buying one of these cordless circular saw, but wonder if they are any good. Has anyone tried using these saws? what is your experience with them? How thick a piece of wood can they handle? Could they cut a 2x4?
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It looks like the one I got from Harbor Freight, except mine is orange. They are handy, but underpowered. You can cut a few green 2x4's, 8' of 1/2" plywood/OSB, or maybe one old (hard) 1x8. Then, the battery is dead. The reciprocating saw is much more efficient and cuts way more wood per charge.
-- Mark Kent, WA
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I would stick to some of the better (more expensive) brands. The cheap Harbor Freight units use 1 amp hour nicads in their battery packs and dont last very long. Dewalt on the other hand use 2.4 amp hour nicads. I find my Dewalt to be one of the more handy tools around the house. It can cut many 2x4s and sheets of ply without recharging.
dickm
On Tue, 06 Jan 2004 17:20:08 GMT, "Mark or Sue"

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I have to agree about the DeWalt 18 volt saw. When I was going to replace a sliding door with 2 double hung windows, a friend came over to help. He laughed at the saw. I told him that when we are through with the job, the saw would still have enough charge to cut more. And it did, and he was impressed.
dicko wrote:

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I have had no trouble with my DeWalt 18V. I made about 100 4" cuts with a single battery. And when using the fence, the angular cuts make the saw even more worth the money.

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Obviously you don't want to use them for construction, but to make half a dozen 2x4 cuts, my Ryobi is great. I wouldn't touch an unbranded saw. It might be okay, but is probably real crap. Do you feel lucky?
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Well, won myself $10 last week at the lottery booth :o)
I am not using these for construction. Just that sometimes I need to make a straight cut for some stuffs around the house and my jigsaw nor rotozip just doesn't do a very good job. Hence don't want to go and buy a $300 Dewalt. My take is as long as this works for the occasional job of up to 2x4 then that's enough.
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a
It
a
doesn't
Then go for it. I am a bit sour because I bought a really cheap reciprocating saw on Saturday, and it broke on my first cut! But then, I never won a lottery...
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snipped-for-privacy@rogersNOSPAM.com said...

If you've got the money, go get the new Ryobi 18V kit for $269 at Home Depot. The thing's got a friggin' chainsaw. I have a DeWalt 18V kit, but I want that chainsaw. If I had been at the store before Christmas I would've bought it during that 20% off all tools sale they were having and I would have thrown the rest of the tools on the shelf.
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Yeh, I want the chain saw myself. I have their weed wacker and hedge trimmer and they are pretty good. They didn't have it before Christmas, or I would have bought it.
They go on eBay for about $90 and I will likely get one before Spring.
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Check out Harbor Freight;18V saw for about $60 USD,but IIRC,you have to buy the carbide blade separate.
--
Jim Yanik
jyanik-at-kua.net
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This depends on how you are going to use it.
An 18 volt saw should be able to cut a number of 2x4 pieces of common pine, but are likely to run out of power if you want to do so very often. If you want to do any serious construction, a corded saw is almost necessary. Also, the 5 3/8" blade is significantly smaller than normal. This will limit the ability to make bevel cuts in 2x stock. You might also have difficult finding replacement blades.
Even then, and cordless saw can be handy for a few cuts when power is not easily available. I have a small ( 4 1/2 in blade, 9.6V) saw that I use for occasional trim cuts in situation where a full sized saw would be awkward or where pull an extension cord would be difficult.
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Bob Haar wrote:

I'm going to agree with Bob. If this is your only saw then I'd get a corded saw.
Look at this way. When I bought my house I borrowed my dad's 20 year old Makita reciprocating saw (corded). If you buy that cordless tool, will it be any good at all in 20 years, 10, 2 even?
Unless I have a corded backup, cordless tools are not my first choice. I'm not saying I don't want or couldn't use a cordless skill saw but I also know I'll still have my ~$200 corded saw in 20 years.
I do use my cordless drills a lot and consider them expendable, battery replacements are far to expensive. Cheaper just to buy a new drill with two new batteries and twice the voltage.
My $.02
RS
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My advice would be to check around. I have a 14.4v Firestorm that I paid about $75 for a couple years back and it does a good job with 2x4's. I don't know an exact number, but it will make several cuts without any problem on one charge. It also came with an extra battery. If you aren't careful, you could spend enough on that saw with shipping and a extra battery to justify buying a better quality one locally. Good luck with your decision.
Bobby
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I've got some 12 volt Drill Master (Harbor Fright) drills which feel less powerful than my 7.2 Black and Decker.
Neither of them will do anywehre near what my 14.4 Makita will do. Get what you pay for.....
--

Christopher A. Young
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OTOH,I bought a HF jig saw that's a copy of a Bosch 1581,and it's been a great saw,cost me only $60 USD. Got to do your homework,that's all.
--
Jim Yanik
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