Whether you’re a DIY enthusiast or love to undertake contracting work in your workshop, it’s important to have the right tools so that you can work efficiently. You want a tool that is going to give you long-lasting durability and you don’t want to risk it breaking down when you need it the most. One of the most important tools to own is a scroll saw thanks to its versatility, but you have to keep in mind that there are many different variables to consider when choosing a scroll saw for your needs.
So in this article, we’re going to talk about five different scroll saws that are perfect for any workshop.
Short on time? Our pick for the Best Scroll Saw is the DEWALT DW788 1.3 Amp 20-Inch Variable-Speed Scroll Saw.
1. DEWALT DW788 1.3 Amp 20-Inch Variable-Speed Scroll Saw
Let’s start with the most expensive scroll saw on this list, the DEWALT DW788. If you’re serious about your craft and need a long-lasting durable machine for your workshop, then the DEWALT DW788 is arguably one of the most well-rounded options available on the market today. Thanks to its plethora of features and the reputable brand name behind it, it’s one of the go-to choices for both hobbyists and contractors that need a reliable professional scroll saw in their workshop.
Setup is simple for the DEWALT DW788 and you’ll find that it’s simple to get to work immediately. You’ll also find that, surprisingly, this is an incredibly quiet scroll saw compared to many of the cheaper alternatives. If sound is a concern, then you’ll want to give the DEWALT DW788 a look. The construction also makes it very easy to clean and to get the dust out after using it, so there’s no issue with the scroll saw slowly degrading over time.
However, even such a well-rounded tool does come with some problems. For instance, the two blades it comes with are very easy to install but will not last a very long time. However, any enthusiast will likely be purchasing several replacement blades to use with their scroll saw, so this might not be a huge problem for a heavy user. However, if you only plan to use it on occasion, then you may want to get some spare blades.
To conclude, the DEWALT DW788 scroll saw is one of the most worthwhile investments for any workshop. Although the asking price might be steep, it’s reflected in the fantastic quality of this saw. You likely won’t need to even consider purchasing a replacement for many years thanks to its durability, the reputable brand and the additional accessories you can purchase.
- Double parallel link arm design dramatically reduces vibration and noise for extremely accurate cuts
- Exclusive tool free blade clamps allow blade changes in seconds. Depth of Cut (inches): 2 inch
- On off switch, electronic variable speed, flexible dust blower, and blade tensioning lever all located on front upper arm
- Arm design pivots from back of the saw to front, shortening the arm movement for smoother, quieter operation
- Arm lifts so blade can be easily threaded through the material for inside cuts
2. Delta Power Tools 40-694 20 In. Variable Speed Scroll Saw
Take a step down in price and you’ll find the Delta Power Tools 40-694 is a fantastic option for the enthusiast audience. With an electric variable speed that can be adjusted from as low as 400 all the way up to 1,750 SPM, it can be used in a variety of different situations. The arm design also helps to stabilize the saw so that vibrations are less of an issue, and it even comes with a couple of free accessories. This can be purchased without an included light and stand, but there’s also a more expensive package that includes a stand and a light.
If you’re upgrading from a smaller handheld saw or an older model, you’ll instantly find that the Delta Power Tools 40-694 offers far more control than a regular scroll saw. Thanks to the wide range of speed adjustments and the reduced vibrations, it’s one of the perfect scroll saws to use for more detailed works. When combined with the reduced noise levels, it’s easy to see why the Delta Power Tools 40-694 is so well-loved.
Unfortunately, the Delta Power Tools 40-694 isn’t absolutely perfect and there are a couple of hitches that prevent it from being the only recommendation on this list. The biggest flaw of this professional scroll saw is in the assembly process. While it’s only the initial setup that can frustrate you, the complexity and poor instruction manual could prevent you from even using the machine a single time.
Despite the frustrations in setting up the machine, it’s easy to recommend the Delta Power Tools 40-694, especially at this price point. Although the stand and light do come at a much higher price when bundled with the scroll saw, it’s certainly a long-lasting and durable machine that will serve your workshop well.
- Electronic variable speed can be adjusted from 400-1,750 SPM for a wide array of cutting applications
- Dual parallel link arm design reduces vibration reducing over and under cutting improving accuracy and quality
- Upper arm lifts and locks in the raised position during blade changes or while adjusting blade position for fret work
- Tool-free blade clamp allows for quick, easy blade changes in seconds. Bevels 0° - 45° left and right. Motor: 1.3 Amp
- On/Off switch, electronic variable speed dial, flexible dust blower and blade-tensioning lever are all conveniently located up front on the arm for easy accessibility
3. WEN 3921 16-inch Two-Direction Variable Speed Scroll Saw
The WEN 3921 takes us further down the price range and puts us comfortably in the “affordable hobbyist choice” category. For a fraction of the price of the Delta Power and DEWALT scroll saws, you’re getting an adjustable 400-1600 SPM with a spacious table, air pump, tool-free blade changes and a workable flex light. These are accessories that you’ll find on much more expensive models, making the WEN 3921 a very enticing option for those on a budget who aren’t planning on using their scroll saw for work purposes.
One of the biggest standouts for the WEN 3921 is the scroll speed adjustment. While it doesn’t reach as high as some other more expensive models, it does offer a relatively low speed which makes it great for small and intricate works, and an SPM of 1600 is nothing to laugh at when cutting larger pieces of wood more frequently. It also gives you all the features you really need from a scroll saw without compromising too much on the quality, and after spending a bit of time with the WEN 3921, you’ll find it hard to stomach paying 3 to 4 times the price for another model.
However, the one complaint we do have is also one of the most problematic; the weight. Despite having a cast iron base, the construction simply doesn’t feel very solid and unless it’s mounted on something specific or bolted down, you can expect it to wobble around a lot. If you can get over this flaw by mounting it securely and aren’t bothered that you’re not getting top-class performance in a scroll saw, then this is arguably one of the go-to choices that is highly recommended at this price point.
- Unique design accepts blades in two directions (standard and 90 degrees) to allow for infinite ripping capacity
- Variable speed goes from 400 to 1600 strokes per minute
- Spacious 16-by-11-inch table bevels up to 45 degrees to the left for angled cuts
- Cuts wood up to 2 inches thick with a 16-inch throat depth in the standard position
- Features a thumb screw blade adapter for tool-free blade changes, a cast iron base, an air pump, a flex light, a dust port, a foot lock clamp, onboard storage, and three blades
4. Rockwell BladeRunner X2 Portable Tabletop Saw
The Rockwell BladeRunner X2 is a fundamentally different design to the others on this list. As a portable tabletop scroll saw, the Rockwell BladeRunner X2 is perfect for cutting a variety of materials no matter where you are. This makes it a great option for anyone that wants a smaller kit that they can carry around or one that doesn’t take up as much space.
This scroll saw is a multi-purpose one, making it fairly versatile for the price. It’s fairly simple to set up and you can make perfectly straight and accurate cuts like any model that is 3 to 5 times the price of this, but there’s just something missing when it comes to serious use. It functions perfectly as a scroll saw and there are no complaints in that regard, but the overall build quality, the questionable blade quality and also the loud noise make this a scroll saw that has many compromises.
If you don’t have the luxury of keeping larger and more expensive models in your workshop then the Rockwell BladeRunner X2 is a fine choice. If you’re only planning on using it for a few small projects then it’s acceptable, but if you’re doing any serious or long-term work then you may want to check out something a little more expensive.
- [SETS UP IN SECONDS] Take this table saw to the job site or move it around the workshop. There’s even a built-in carry handle
- [CUTS LIKE A FULL-SIZE] With the standard guard and riving knife system you can perform rip, cross, scroll, and miter cuts
- [TOOL-LESS BLADE CHANGE] Uses any brand’s standard 4” T-shank blade, but we threw 5 in the box to get you started cutting wood, ceramic tile, plastic, aluminum, and metal
- [0-60° MITER CUTS] With the adjustable gauge you can pull off precise miter cuts for a whole assortment of woodworking projects
- [ON-BOARD ACCESSORY STORAGE] When the miter gauge, rip fence, and extra blades aren’t in use they can be conveniently housed in the base of the saw
5. Dremel MS20-01 Moto-Saw Variable Speed Compact Scroll Saw Kit
And now for something completely different; the Dremel MS20-01 compact scroll saw kit. While it does come with a table like the other scroll saw, it’s detachable and can be used in many different flexible ways. We couldn’t consider this a full replacement for something more expensive, but at this low price, we honestly can’t find too many faults. Yes, the construction is a little weak and the included blades aren’t going to last, but for such a handy little tool at a low price, it’s perfect for intricate cuts and portable use.
We see this more as a hobby saw than something you would use as part of a serious workshop, but we do feel that the handheld mode could win some hearts especially if you’ve ever needed an ultra-portable scroll saw. If you plan to purchase this for light use, then make sure you purchase a couple of extra blades with it so that you’re not disappointed when the included ones start getting dull. It’s perfect for wood, but you may need new blades if you’re planning to cut other stronger materials.
In short, we can’t fault the Dremel MS20-01 for what it is–and inexpensive scroll saw with a handheld feature that is targeted at hobbyists, not professionals. If you’re looking for a serious scroll saw with more features then you’re better off looking at other options, but if you just need something for weekend DIY projects then this is a fantastic option.
- Dust port adapter keeps line-of-sight clear and work space clean
- Auto tensioning quick-change mechanism for easy accessory change and optimal blade tensioning
- Detachable coping function for handheld use to take the tool to the work piece
- Variable-speed control for optimal cutting in a variety of materials
- Fast-clamp base attaches to various tables, benches and surfaces
Why You Need A Scroll Saw
Here is a great YouTube video explaining why you need a scroll saw, and provides some examples of what you can do with it: