11 Innovative Reciprocating Saw Uses you Didn’t Know (Done Properly)

reciprocating saw uses

Reciprocating saw uses can be more than what meets our eyes. Sanding rough edges to emergency rescue services, anything is possible with this handy power tool. Your creativity is the only limitation.

Nothing beats having a tool that proves to be useful in every project you embark on as a craftsperson. It is useful for saving space and cost. The reciprocating saw is that one tool that always comes in handy one way or another.

This power tool’s ability to cut various materials and support a couple of accessories is what has made it one of my favorite tools. That said, stick with me as I give you 11 solid reasons why the reciprocating saw is worth the hype.

  • Plumbing
  • Demolition
  • Home Renovation
  • Pruning
  • Emergency Rescue Services
  • Salvaging Materials
  • Sanding
  • Scraping off old Surfaces
  • Wall Indentation
  • Scrubbing Rust and Flaking Old Paint
  • Thieving Shingles

Let’s unleash the beast and show you how things are done:

A reciprocating saw is one of the plumber’s favorite tools. Most times, plumbing structures are situated in tight and enclosed spaces, making them hard to reach. A reciprocating saw always comes in handy, as its protruding blade gives it access to the limited space associated with pipe works.

Pretty much any reciprocating saw can aid in cutting PVC and HVAC when you need to work on your plumbing system. Still, the mini reciprocating saw works best – the smaller, the better. Its slim structure gives you more access to tight spaces.

Using a wood-cutting blade with 10 Teeth Per Inch (TPI) to saw PVC pipes is the fastest and most efficient way to cut through. You could also use a metal cutting blade with 10/14 teeth per inch or a combination of both.

To successfully cut through PVC and HVACV, all you have to do is mark and measure the part that needs to be cut, firmly place the blade on the marked area, and squeeze the trigger.

  • Always keep the pipe firm to reduce pipe movement and to cut as accurately as possible.
  • Ensure that you’re fully geared up for the job, most especially when you have to saw right above your head.

The best reciprocal saw for your plumbing project is the DEWALT DCS380B. It has a durable battery and ergonomic handle that keeps you working for hours, comfortably too. The variable speed trigger ranges from 0-3000 SPM for fast and efficient PVC and HVACV cutting.

Not only does using crowbars to demolish parts of a structure tend to be tedious, but they can get unbearably loud too. Reciprocating saws help remove drywalls and studs carefully, especially when the other side of the wall has been fully constructed.

When embarking on a demolition project, using a cordless reciprocating saw is your best bet yet. Most demolition workspaces have no electricity. It would be best if you also reached spots without being limited by the length of a cord. A cordless reciprocal saw gives you the freedom you need to cut and remove.

You’ll be needing a variety of blades for different materials being demolished:

  • Carbide tip for bricks and masonry.
  • Carbide grit for tile and clay.
  • Bi-metal demolition blade for wood with nails.

Make sure whatever blade you choose to use is at least 12-inches long, with a range of 6 to 18 TPI.

Attach the right blade for the material and saw right through until it is damaged, and pull out the pieces with your hands or a mallet if you want to get it done the right way.

  • Always use the right blade for the right material.
  • Use blades that are thicker than the material being used.

For demolition projects, the BLACK+DECKER BDCR20B is durable, with a tool-free blade change feature that makes it easier to switch blades for demolishing different materials.

In cases where your doors or windows don’t fit properly into their prepared frame, you can trim them down with a reciprocating saw instead of completely tearing them down. It is also perfect for making straight cuts when constructing the framework.

A cordless reciprocating job is best for projects like this: you might need to reach out to high up windows to trim their frames properly.

Bi-metal blades are suitable for fitting and frameworks because there are nails embedded in the frame. Use a blade that has a 6 -10 TPI range.

To trim your framework, all you need to do is aim at the frame and pull the trigger as you use your hands to guide the saw through the right measurement.

  • Mark the frame with a pencil to get the measurements right.
  • Rock your hands as you saw through the frame.

The compact and lightweight design of the DEWALT 20V MAX DCS367B makes it the perfect tool for framing because it is easy to maneuver. It also has LED lights for better visibility.

The compact size and hog-nose structure of a reciprocating saw make it suitable for trimming overgrown branches in your yard. You can keep your garden in good shape too.

The cordless reciprocating saw is the appropriate pruning tool, as we barely have any wall outlets in our yards or gardens. This saw works without being connected to a direct power source.

The bidirectional-tooth pruning blade with a 2-24 ranged TPI and 9-12 inches in length is perfect for pruning.

To trim trees with your reciprocating saw, firmly place your blade on the overgrown branch and squeeze the trigger till you cut the stem off.

  • Using a blade with low TPI makes cuts more rugged and swift. Use for pruning.
  • When branches aren’t firm enough, use your free hand to hold in place to avoid accidents and aid precision.

The Milwaukee 2720-20 M18 SAWZALL is a cordless and durable sawzall for pruning with powerful batteries that keeps you working for long hours before replacing them. You can also bring along with you extra batteries if you’d be spending a long time working.

Road crashes cause approximately 1.35 million deaths yearly, with inadequate post-crash care being one of the leading risk factors. Reciprocating saws help cut through jammed vehicles quickly to gain access to the victims when an accident hasten the post-crash care process. It also comes in handy where there has been a natural disaster with survivors stuck within a crashed apartment.

The pneumatic reciprocating saw is just about the right tool to use for emergency rescue. It is lightweight and easy to maneuver as it doesn’t contain a motor for function. The compressed air also makes it cut through metal sheets quickly.

A 9-inch long metal cutting blade ranging from 10-18 TPI should be used for this purpose. To cut through the vehicle without having to cause extra damage to the victim within.

Gently and firmly aim the blade at the jammed door or obstruction, squeeze the trigger, and glide through it as the reciprocating blade slices it open.

  • In cases where the victim is unconscious or too close to the obstruction to be cut, use shorter blades.
  • Hold the saw firmly while the blade does the cutting.

Powerful enough to cut through a 16 gauge sheet metal, the Central Pneumatic 91753 is the perfect fit for emergency rescue services. With a 9000 SPM, you can effortlessly slice through a jammed vehicle door.

Salvaging materials with a reciprocating saw is possible. With this power tool’s help, you can dismantle a structure and still keep it in a condition that is good enough to be reused. A reciprocating saw also helps in removing bits of a stud without damaging it ultimately.

A mini reciprocating saw will aid the salvaging process, as it is gentle enough to keep the whole structure together. At the same time, you take out the needed parts.

Using a bi-metal reciprocating blade that is 6/12-inch long (depending on the material’s thickness) with an 18 TPI is long enough to delicately cut through the materials.

When using the reciprocal saw for this purpose, aim at the material to be salvaged and squeeze the trigger.

  • To aid precision, make necessary measurements and markings with a pencil.
  • Use a foot to press against the stud for support.

The Milwaukee M12 2420-20 is a compact reciprocal saw that is light enough to cut in tight spaces without causing extra damages. Its 1/2 inch stroke length allows it to saw through wood effortlessly.

You can sand the inside of a hole with a reciprocating saw when making an aesthetic piece. The protruding blade of the reciprocal saw makes the spot accessible.

The mini reciprocating saw is the ideal tool for this job because you’ll be working on a hole, and you need to be able to maneuver your way through.

Depending on the hole’s depth, you can use a recipe saw blade that ranges from 6 to 12-inches. You can also use any type of blade as you’ll be coating with sanding paper anyway.

Fix the sander attachment to your reciprocating saw, or wrap your preferred blade with sanding paper and use tape to hold it in place. Squeeze the trigger and sand the hole or other corners with limited access.

  • Always secure the sanding paper with tape to prevent it from falling off.
  • Use a sanding attachment for larger holes.

With the BLACK+DECKER BDCR20C, you can easily change the tool blade, attach a Spyder Corner Sanding Pad, or any blade you can tape sanding paper. Its durable Lithium-ion battery also gives you longer sanding hours, making it the best reciprocating saw for sanding projects.

The reciprocating saw can be attached to a scraper, which helps scrape off drywalls, plasters, tile adhesive, and wallpaper from wall surfaces. The motion of this tool helps unveil a new surface that makes remodeling easier.

Both the cordless and corded reciprocal saw can work for this project, as they have power sources that keep the scraper in motion.

For tight corners and spots, use a 2-inch narrow scraper and the 4-6-inch scrapers to cover a wider surface area at once.

To scrape off old surfaces, attach the scraper to your reciprocating saw and press against the wall as you move your hands back and forth like you’re operating a vacuum cleaner.

  • Ensure that the surface is free from nails and other materials that might damage your scrapper.
  • Use the palm of your dormant hand to check if the wall is even as you scrape it.

A scraper can be attached to the DEWALT DWE305 Corded Reciprocating saw to scrape off old surfaces effectively. Its four-position blade clamp firmly secures the scraper with a varying speed of 0-2900 SPM to aid in scraping old surfaces without damaging the surface beneath.

With the help of a reciprocating saw, you can make an indentation on a wall when you need to place some wires in the wall during remodeling. This versatile power tool helps you saw through without having to damage the other side of the wall.

Using a cordless reciprocal saw will help you make the indentation safely to avoid interference with the power supply during work.

For this job, you’d be needing a carbide tip blade as you cut through a brick wall or masonry or a wood-cutting blade for wooden walls.

Mark the wall with a pencil so you can saw with precision (or a marker, in cases where a pencil might be too faint). Pick a spot and pierce the wall a bit as you squeeze the trigger to start cutting.

  • Always start cutting from the edge of the marked shape, if any.
  • Stop pushing your saw into the wall when you notice it is getting dip, and guide your saw through the lines instead.

The HYCHIKA Cordless Reciprocating Saw facilitates the processes of making wall indentation. It features a base plate adjustment button that helps in piercing thicker walls, and a 3000 SPM for fast cutting, making it suitable for this course.

Here’s how you cut straight using a reciprocal saw: https://www.toolesty.com/how-to-cut-straight-with-a-reciprocating-saw/

This saw’s reciprocating motion can be used to scrub the rust off of metal surfaces and scrape off loose paint when you need a new look for your apartment. It supports the attachment of a brush for this purpose.

A cordless reciprocating saw is the best fit for the nature of this project. So you can reach any spot without being limited by the length of a cord.

You’d be needing a wire brush attachment for this job. Hard bristles for metals and an average bristle for walls to avoid damaging the surface beneath.

Immerse the wire brush’s bristles in soapy water when scrubbing rust and wipe off with a dry towel after scrubbing. Keep the bristles dry for walls and other water-absorbing materials.

  • Do not apply extra pressure when scrubbing wall surfaces to avoid damaging the surface beneath.
  • Use soft bristles if the wall has been scrapped recently.

Using the DEWALT DCS380B to attach a wire brush attachment. A variable speed trigger with 0-3000 SPM allows the brush to scrub vigorously or softly when needed.

When you need to make changes or repair shingles, the reciprocating saw can come to your rescue when a shingle remover is unavailable. Its long flat blade can penetrate from underneath and saw the old shingles out.

It would be preferable to use a cordless reciprocal saw for this course, as shingles are mostly used outdoors, and a wall outlet might be impossible to find.

A 9-12 inch long bi-metal blade will do the trick when removing shingles from your walls or roofs.

The blade of your reciprocating saw is slipped under a shingle and cuts out the nails pinning it to its surface, or used to hook the nail and drive down to get rid of the nail when thieving the shingles.

  • Use a blade that is about 0.05 inches thick. You need a strong blade for this process.
  • Support the blade by holding the reciprocal saw very close to the shoe area.

For thieving shingles, the Milwaukee 2719-20 M18 FUEL Hackzall possesses durability features and a dual gear counter balance mechanism that reduces vibration. This way, you can steal shingles without damaging the underlying surface.

My 2¢

A reciprocating saw is a master tool when putting improvisation into consideration. Still, it isn’t always the best tool for certain actions. Always use a tool that does the job better if available, and not just resort to the reciprocating saw uses.

Remember, using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is mandatory before picking the reciprocal saw to get to work.

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