cheap jigsaws

At the risk of getting loads of conflicting answers, does anyone have any recommendations for a cheap jigsaw. I had to admit last week that my old B&D jigsaw is only fit for the bin, everything is so loose now that I couldn't cut a straight line if I tried. Had it quite a few years so can't really complain.
Thing is, I don't really use it very much anyway these days, but there are times when it's definitely useful. Most common use would be when I need to cut a hole in some sheet material, e.g. plasterboard, plywood, chipboard, worktop etc. Usually drill a pilot hole and then get jigsaw to cut out the shape I need.
Because I don't use it much, I don't really want to spend a lot of money. On the other hand I don't want it to fall apart the frist time I try and use it. Also need to consider availability and cost of replacement blades. Is there a minimum power rating I should be looking for?
I note that screwfix have a 420W one at 12.87 while Argos start at 9.99 but would I be better spending a little more money or does it no make much difference anyway?
Thanks
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In article

I'd say it depends on how accurate you want it to be. The more you pay, the better this seems to get. Not so much a problem on very thin stuff, though. Although the better ones cut a straight line more easily. Other thing I like with my Bosch is tool less blade changing.
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Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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I can tell you from personal experience that the Argos ones are total crap. Bought a 10 and 20 one in an emergency and both of them had to go back. The basic one was just crap out of the box - couldn't be set straight no matter what you did. The "better" 20 Challenge Extreme one was dead within ten minutes of use cutting some hardboard.
I ended up getting a pro one from Wickes. But if I were looking for a cheapie, the Lidl 710W body grip one at 25 looks like a decent enough bit of kit. I think someone on here said they'd tried one last year and it was good.
The manual can be downloaded here:
http://kompernass.de/pages/index.php?page=1,3,1,1&brand=parkside
Think it's due in again around June/July. I think you'd get more joy out of it than a 13 cheapie.
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I can tell you from personal experience that the Argos ones are total crap. Bought a 10 and 20 one in an emergency and both of them had to go back. The basic one was just crap out of the box - couldn't be set straight no matter what you did. The "better" 20 Challenge Extreme one was dead within ten minutes of use cutting some hardboard.
I bought a 25 (reduced to 17) Tesco branded one, which looked very similar to a JCB one I had seen in Focus, and it wandered sharply to the left. When I looked closely at the fixed slotted blade holder, this was twisted at the same angle as the saw was wandering, so this saw could never have cut in a straight line, and I suspect it is the same problem with a lot of other cheap saws. I returned it and explained what was wrong with it, and I received a full refund. Some people are probably luckier with these cheap ones and get a straight blade holder, others probably think it is something they are doing wrong, but getting a good one seems to be the luck of the draw.
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In article < snipped-for-privacy@s16g2000vbp.googlegroup

Why not just spend a bit more and get something decent that you can use again and again with predictable results?..
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Tony Sayer



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I've got a few Lidl power tools and they're all fine - and IMHO far better value than anything else in the budget ranges. Don't have their jigsaw though.
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*Women like silent men; they think they're listening.

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Things I've got from Lidl have been fine too, and marvellous value.
My current main jigsaw was remaindered in Aldi sometime last year and has laser guide and variable speed, and cuts in a straight line. It was very cheap and I nearly bought another as a spare the next day, but I haven't needed to sort anything out. Some other cheapies bought in the past have been awful. The cheap battery one from B&Q was also good, though.
Maybe I was lucky. I've used the Aldi one to cut thick ply, thin ply, thick perspex type material and so on.
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Bill

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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Yes. Don't waste money on them, they don't work.
<SNIP>

Not at that level. Go for something like a green Bosch, Argos have the Bosch PST650 on offer for 30 at the moment. Won't be in the same league as a blue Bosch or a Makita, but at least it should work reasonably well.
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Dave - The Medway Handyman
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Yup, don't buy one.
With jigsaws perhaps more than most power tools:
http://www.diyfaq.org.uk/powertools/jigsaw.htm

Many of the new cheap ones will be much the same alas.

To get something that really works, you are looking at 90+ for a blue Bosch, Makita etc. In the middle of the range are the green bosch and some of the B&Ds - they will work, but don't expect much in the way of finesse.
Of the cheapies I have seen, the only one that I thought might be worth a second look was a Parkside one. (one of the aldi/lidl own brands - I forget which). The reason I say that is it appeared to have a cast rather than stamped sole plate - normally an indication of a better jigsaw. However don't that that as a recommendation - the mechanism may be as smooth as a jack hammer for all I know, since I have only seen the pictures.
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Cheers,

John.

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I would also give a vote for the Parkside one. The only question on my mind is whether any new deliveries are the same design. The one I have is solid, cuts excellently, has a good long mains lead of nice flexible cable and is all round a good tool. Superb value. Rob Rob
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wrote:

I would also give a vote for the Parkside one. The only question on my mind is whether any new deliveries are the same design. The one I have is solid, cuts excellently, has a good long mains lead of nice flexible cable and is all round a good tool. Superb value. Rob
I had considered a Parkside brand when I saw a solitary one in Lidl about a month ago, and after reading the comments above I decided to pop in today and see if it was still there and it was, so I purchased it for 29.35. It is a very nice piece of kit, well thought out, easy blade change, accurate, 730 watts, and has a splinter guard and variable speed. There is also a plastic runner below the base plate to help stop it marking anything it is cutting. The top part of the base plate is cast aluminium, with a steel sole plate below, which is covered by the plastic runner. There is a 3 year guarantee with it, plus 3 good quality Swiss blades, and it seems to be of a far superior quality to the others in its price range that I have viewed. It is a bit weighty, and the only thing I am not too sure about is the unusual handle which looks like a rodeo saddle, but I suppose that is because it is different to what is normally expected.
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Rob G wrote: <>

How do you all get to know that Lidl have no more of the current/old design? How do you know to expect some in June/July?
I certainly hope they are body grip style and just as good - I want to get one when next they are in stock.
(I thought I was relatively well informed on their stock by getting their regular newsletters! Clearly there are other sources.)
--
Rod

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They are pretty regular with their offers, usually annually, and mostly seasonal, so it doesn't usually take much guessing when to expect a certain item to appear if you regularly check the offers. I don't know when they last had them in, but the one I picked up had been lying on its own for at least a month, and probably longer.
I tried out the new purchase properly today, to cut a fire door (no asbestos) in two, and it went through it easily, the body grip worked better than I expected, and the saw blade still looks like new. The one I picked up yesterday is named on the box Parkside, also it says, Orbital Jigsaw, with the descriptions stating, Electronic stroke rate : 600 to 2,900 rpm. Maximum wood cutting depth of 110mm, and also 730 W, for the 730 watts. The model number on the instruction book is PPHSS 730 SE, but you don't see this till you get inside, and the boxes are sealed with those circular clear seals on the edges.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com coughed up some electrons that declared:

Green Bosch has done me well for occasional use. It's stable and as accurate as you can sight a line (or follow alongside a batten).
Wide choice of blades - but that's probably true of all of them.
Cheers
Tim
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

they've got some cheap jigsaws at the pound shop with cute kittens on them.
even more fun if you try to do them upside down.
or try with gloves on, or with an angle grrrrrrrr....
!
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Thanks for all the replies. You've pretty much confirmed what I expected, that's don't touch the really cheap ones with a barge-pole. I don't mind spending a little more but I wanted to be certain that the mid-range ones actually justified the increased cost. I think I'd really like a blue bosch professional one, but can't justify the cost so I might go for the green Bosch one instead. Also note the recommendations on the Parkside one from Lidl, but it's not on the web-site at the moment and I don't have a Lidl nearby so don't really want to start driving around on the off-chance they might have one in. I do have an Aldi though, so if anyone knows if they have them in stock at the moment, let me know.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

I find coarse blades with a wide set make life easier with underpowered jigsaws. Easier to get a 90 deg cut in thicker material. I've got a beefy old AEG and I still use coarse blades by default
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Now that I've decided not to get the cheapest one, I was just browsing and stumbled across this, still dearer than I wanted to pay, but seems remarkable value for money, anyone ever used this web-site before :-
http://www.toolstop.co.uk/bosch-gst75be-jigsaw-240v-p3339
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Good deal, depends on the delivery charge though.
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Dave - The Medway Handyman
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

If paying that much, splash out another note and get this:
<http://www.axminster.co.uk/product.asp?pf_ide6300&name=jigsaw&user_search=1&sfile=1&jumpD
Price until 24/04/09.
Note: This is what I had decided to do until I changed my mind. Unless I change it back again. Maybe I will go for this sometime, maybe a Lidl Parkside.
I used the company once - they were fine. But have ever since had regular emails of offers but never bought anything else.
--
Rod

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