What is a Circular Saw?
A circular saw is an electric powered saw that uses a rapidly spinning circular shaped blade to cut into different materials. These circular shaped blades are designed with teeth or some other type of abrasive edged blade that helps is quickly and accurately cut through even the toughest and hardest materials including wood, concrete, ceramic, plastic, metal, and more.
What is a Circular Saw Used For?
A circular saw is used to cut into wood and select other hard materials. Circular saws help you quickly and easily cut the width (cross cut) or cut the length (rip cut) of a piece of material. Circular saws tend to be a popular choice for cutting and ripped lumber and other materials because they are pack a lot of power and potential into a compact, handheld design. This means they are easy to use, pack, and transport from one jobsite to another.
Choosing a Circular Saw
There are a few different types of circular saws: sidewinder circular saw, worm drive circular saw, and a hypoid circular saw. Each of these saws has different features and is designed to give serve a unique purpose. Before you buy a circular saw, it’s best to know what type of circular saw will be best for you application. Also, knowing how much power you’ll need to complete your application is important. This can help you further narrow down your circular saw selection. Something else to consider is whether you need or want a corded or cordless circular saw. These options to consider should help you choose the best circular saw.
Types of Circular Saws
Sidewinder Circular Saw
It’s the most common type, especially in the eastern part of the United States. The sidewinder’s motor is mounted on the side of the saw, making it compact. And, since the motor is typically mounted on the right side, the motor rests on the solid workpiece, rather than the cutoff portion. The sidewinder typically weighs less than the other types of circular saws, making it ideal for overhead cutting. And, because the motor is in line with the blade, it can create more speed, around 6,000 RPM. Other plusses include the option of going cordless and not having to add oil (like with the worm drive as explained below).
Worm Drive Circular Saw
A worm drive saw’s motor is mounted toward the back of the tool, making it significantly longer, yet narrower, than a sidewinder. The power is transferred to the blade by two gears situated at a 90-degree angle of each other. While this gear configuration reduces the blade speed (to about 4,500 RPM), it does provide more torque. The length of the saw comes in handy when cutting wider boards. And, its shape also makes plunge-cutting easier. This saw does require a bit more maintenance, as oil should be added occasionally.
Hypoid Circular Saw
A hypoid circular saw. Often miss-categorized, these saws are sometimes classified as worm drive saws because they look similar. Yes, the hypoid saw also has its motor behind the blade. However, the hypoid saw has a completely different transmission and gearbox. This saw employs a hypoid gear, a type of spiral bevel gear whose axis is not in-line with the axis of a meshing gear. The hypoid design improves blade contact, boosting power and efficiency while reducing motor size and noise. Also, unlike worm drive saws, hypoid saws have a sealed motor system, not requiring oil to be added. There are some similarities between hypoids and worm drives: both yield higher torque than the sidewinders (good for cutting dense or wet wood), both usually have their blade on the left side of the motor (good for sighting the cut line), and both are heavier than sidewinders.
Why Buy a Circular Saw?
Circular saws are an ideal saw for contractors of all types because they are a versatile, compact, and portable, so they are easy to take from one job to another. Most importantly, circular saws are precise and high powered so they can help you cut and rip through a variety of materials with ease.
Shop circular saws at Acme Tools.