Wandering Jigsaw

Just got myself a new jigsaw(70). When starting a cut the blade wanders to the left about 8mm and stays there, happens everytime, no matter what direction. Even when using a guide.....
See pics here http://www.imagehosting.com/show.php/1168352_jigsaw.jpg.html . This cut was made using a guide, I've just moved it back so youi can see the poor cut.
What's to blame? jigsaw? blade? me?
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I've had the same problem with several jigsaws. Invariably I end up lifting the safety flap and watching where the blade actually goes rather than where the guide indicates it is supposed to be going. I don't know the cause either. -- David in Normandy. (The free MicroPlanet Gravity newsreader is great for eliminating the cross-posted rubbish)
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to
http://www.imagehosting.com/show.php/1168352_jigsaw.jpg.html .
the
Take it back and exchange it for a circular saw,if there's one power tool that I don't have its a jigsaw basically because they're useless for cutting long lenghts of wood straight.
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snipped-for-privacy@blueyonder.co.uk says...

Must agree. My jigsaw wanders to the left so have to steer it to the right. It can also wander with the depth of the cut too depending on what I'm cutting. Doing the cut out hole in worktops for a kitchen sink being a prime example. The cut is not at 90 degrees to the surface. -- David in Normandy. (The free MicroPlanet Gravity newsreader is great for eliminating the cross-posted rubbish)
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cutting
Must agree. My jigsaw wanders to the left so have to steer it to the right. It can also wander with the depth of the cut too depending on what I'm cutting. Doing the cut out hole in worktops for a kitchen sink being a prime example. The cut is not at 90 degrees to the surface. -- David in Normandy. (The free MicroPlanet Gravity newsreader is great for eliminating the cross-posted rubbish)
You have probably done the hole for the sink now? but if and when I happen to get a job of that ilk I prefer to use a router which can give you a precise cut with inner straight edges,although its quicker to cut out the hole first with a jigsaw and then route the hole to required lines I still prefer to use the router for each and every cutout.
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snipped-for-privacy@blueyonder.co.uk says...

Yes, sounds like a better way of doing it. The last sink I did, the angle turned out so far off 90 degrees that there wasn't much left for the fixing clips to hang on to.
--
David in Normandy.
(The free MicroPlanet Gravity newsreader is great for eliminating the
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David in Normandy wrote:

For what it's worth, having tried cutting the sink (and later, the hob) from a 40mm worktop with a jigsaw, and giving up, going to the effort of making a jig out of 12mm mdf for the sink (and hob)) and using the router, I would not now entertain the idea of using anything other than the router. A brilliant power tool, if you excuse the amount of mess that it makes, and the potential for losing the family jewels.
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8< stuff about routers

You need a bigger vac.
> and the potential for losing the family jewels.
You must use it for odd things. 8-O
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Must agree. My jigsaw wanders to the left so have to steer it to the right. It can also wander with the depth of the cut too depending on what I'm cutting. Doing the cut out hole in worktops for a kitchen sink being a prime example. The cut is not at 90 degrees to the surface.
--
David in Normandy.

Fraid this is a "me too" post. I end up holding the jigsaw at a 15-20 degree
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Dave Gordon wrote:

I thought that after years of buggering about with cheap jigsaws. Then I bought a Makita 4341 for about 120. Different machine alltogether - it's a jigsaw Jim, but not as we know it.
It laughs at 38mm worktop & cuts almost perfectly square if you take time & care. Curve cuts in 150 x 50 softwood again almost perfectly square.
Worth the extra if you can justify the cost.
--
Dave
The Medway Handyman
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George wrote:

But circular saws ain't too good at cutting complicated curves, are they? Horses for courses and all that.
David (who has both circular and jigsaws)

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mark wrote:

Probably not you.
Cutting against a guide is one of the harder jobs to do with a jigsaw since the machine is restrained from moving side to side. Hence any bend in the blade can't be compensated for and it tends to snowball. You could try cutting freehand along a line instead.
There are also jigsaws and jigsaws. If you are prepared to pay top money for one (100+) then the results you will get are in a totally different league to that which you can obtain with the lower end models. The usual recommendations from those that have used them are either one of the bosh blue barrel bodied style (GST range) or the Makita 4340 range. These are a class above pretty much anything else.
Poor blades can also make this worse. Some are stamped from sheet metal and have a burr on one side - these always want to cut crooked! A good quality sharp blade will help.
--
Cheers,

John.

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John Rumm wrote:

A coarse cut blade helps. A bigger kerf allows the blade to clear itself more easily. Wrong tool though
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On Sat, 22 Sep 2007 14:56:13 +0100, John Rumm

Where do green barrel Bosch jigsaws weigh in? That's what I have;)
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Generally thought to be the best of the branded "DIY" grade products - i.e. if you ignore the generic 10 stuff.
However, you would notice a considerable difference with the Bosch blue or Makita products.
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nospam wrote:

Me too; mine must be 20 years old - I'm sure it isn't as good as the others mentioned, but I certainly don't have a problem with it wandering offline.
David
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On Sat, 22 Sep 2007 13:27:47 +0100

Non-professional under about £200 are never going to cut straight. I don't know why, the mechanisms seem the same, but they just never do. You can constrain the base all you want, but the blade will wander off on it's own sweet way and the cut is always out of true to the face too. Use a circular saw, even very cheap ones will cut straight.
R.
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I remember working with my brother some 18 yeas ago and being introduced to a Festo jigsaw for cross-cutting big slabs of hard wood prior to making piece parts for furniture.
It was a fantastic machine that cut a straight line without any assistance - you just kept the power switch on and gently kept it on line. They were expensive machines then and still are, but it reinforces my opinion that where jig saws are concerned in particular, the price does have an impact on performance.
But personally I can't afford or justify that sort of money for the little use I make of a jig saw so I battle on with a cheap one, knowing it's limitations and wishing for better.
Rob
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mark wrote:

First of all a jigsaw isnt the tool for the job. Jigsaws cut curves, circular saws cut straight lines. I doubt that anybody could achieve a straight line square cut with a jigsaw.
As John Rumm says, decent jigsaw like the Makita 4341 with a quality blade (Makita/Bosch) will do an entirely different job.
I'd almost given up on jigsaws until I bought the Makita after advice from members of this group. Made on a different planet. http://www.dm-tools.co.uk/product.php/section//sn/MAK4351FCT
What jigsaw have you got?
--
Dave
The Medway Handyman
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Sparky FSPE 85 Pro
After some further testing with higher quality blades the problem seems to be the blade holder and the blade roller aren't correctly aligned, the result being the blade and base aren't at 90 degree angles. It's off, and I can see just be looking down the base at the blade from underneath. The roller has some play on each side, but when the blade is locked into the holder, it pushes the roller right over to one side, meaning all the play is on the other side. I assume then, this is why the cut starts out further right and gets pulled left.
I'll be returning it. Build quality overall for great, except for this issue of course. I'll look into a Makita instead
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