The Best Scroll Saws

Rebecca Watkins
15 min readApr 19, 2024
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Welcome to our comprehensive guide on Scroll Saws, designed to help you make the perfect choice for your woodworking projects! From hobbyist to professional carpenters, we’ve rounded up the top choices in the market, bringing you the best, most efficient, and versatile scroll saws to suit your specific needs.

The Top 10 Best Scroll Saws

  1. Delta 40–694 Scroll Saw: Variable Speed, Cast Iron Table, Tool-Free Blade Change — The Delta 40–694 20 inch Variable Speed Scroll Saw boasts tool-free blade changes, adjustable blade tensioning for increased blade life and accuracy, a cast-iron table for material support, and a convenient layout for easy control.
  2. DeWalt DW788 20 in. Adjustable-Speed Scroll Saw — DeWalt DW788 — A powerful, quiet, and precise 20-inch scroll saw with vibration-reducing features for accurate cuts and effortless blade changes.
  3. 232 lb. Powerful, Lightweight 16" Scroll Saw for Precise Woodworking Cuts — Experience versatile and precise woodworking with the Rockwell RK7315 16 in. Scroll Saw, featuring 0–45° bevel capabilities, two durable tungsten carbide blades, and a convenient 15-amp motor.
  4. Excalibur 21-inch Tilting Head Scroll Saw with Foot Switch — The Excalibur EX-21CRB Tilting Head Scroll Saw offers unparalleled control and stability for precise, safe, and seamless blade changes on a spacious table surface.
  5. Excalibur Tilting Head Scroll Saw with Foot Switch and Large Work Surface — Streamline your scroll saw experience with the General International Excalibur EX-21CRB, featuring a tilting head, adjustable blade mounting, and seamless blade changes, all while providing a spacious work surface for enhanced precision and control.
  6. 1.6 Amp Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Adjustable LED Light and Dust Blower — Efficient, precise, and versatile — the Porter-Cable PCB375SS 1.6 Amp 18 in. Variable Speed Scroll Saw is a must-have for detailed cuts in various materials.
  7. Tc-Ss 405 E: Compact 120W Adjustable Scroll Saw with Customizable Blade Length — The Tc-Ss 405 E Scroll Saw offers a stable base, quick-release clamp, adjustable workpiece hold-down, dust extraction connection, and an additional spare saw blade, ensuring smooth operation, safety, and tidiness in your workshop.
  8. Var-Speed Shop Fox 16in Scroll Saw with Large Cutting Capacity — Experience precise scrolling with the Shop Fox 16in Variable-Speed Scroll Saw, featuring an extra-large cutting capacity, versatile blade control, and durable cast-iron construction, making it the perfect choice for any woodworking project.
  9. Genesis Scroll Saw for Decorative Woodworking: GSS160 16-Inch — Experience smooth, precise wood cutting with the Genesis GSS160 16 in. scroll saw, featuring a 1.2-Amp induction motor, quick-change blade system, variable speed, and a flexible dust blower for a clean work surface.
  10. Baltic Birch Scroll Saw Pack for Versatile Scroll Saw Projects — Experience top-quality scroll sawing with the 9-piece Woodcraft Baltic Birch Scroll Saw Pack, featuring various thicknesses to suit any project.

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Reviews

Delta 40–694 Scroll Saw: Variable Speed, Cast Iron Table, Tool-Free Blade Change

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The Delta 20-in Variable Speed Scroll Saw is a user-friendly tool designed for hassle-free and stress-free woodworking projects. Its tool-free blade clamp allows for swift blade changes in mere seconds, while its single lever, tool-free blade tensioning ensures your blade stays at the perfect tension, extending its life and enhancing accuracy. The large cast-iron table provides exceptional material support and boasts a wide bevel range of 0° to 45°, both left and right.

A lock-out power switch ensures safety and peace of mind while working. Although the stand and light are sold separately, the scroll saw offers convenient access to essential controls like the on/off switch, electronic speed dial, and blade tensioning lever. With two blades included and a CSA Listing to back up its quality and safety, this powerful scroll saw is definitely worth considering for your next woodworking endeavor.

DeWalt DW788 20 in. Adjustable-Speed Scroll Saw

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The DeWalt DW788 20 in. Variable Speed Scroll Saw boasts a double parallel link arm design that reduces vibration and noise for increased accuracy during cuts. The tool-free blade clamp simplifies blade changes, while the on-off switch, electronic variable speed, and conveniently placed dust blower allow for easy adjustments.

The arm design pivots to the front for easier blade threading, and the unique arm design keeps the blade perpendicular to the work, reducing over or undercutting. The oversized cast iron table provides excellent material support and can bevel 45 degrees left and right.

Overall, this heavy-duty variable-speed scroll saw is a reliable and versatile option for woodworkers and other craftsmen.

232 lb. Powerful, Lightweight 16" Scroll Saw for Precise Woodworking Cuts

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The Rockwell ShopSeries 16-inch scroll saw, with its powerful 15-amp motor, is the ideal solution for a variety of woodworking projects. Designed for versatility, this saw includes a die-cast aluminum table with a bevel range of 0 to 45 degrees left, allowing it to be used for numerous tasks. The saw comes equipped with two durable 5-inch tungsten carbide blades, offering a throat depth of 16 inches and a cutting depth of 2.5 inches.

With variable speed control and a stroke of 4.5 inches, this Rockwell scroll saw ensures clean, accurate cuts. Weighing just 30.8 lbs, this lightweight tool can be conveniently stored and used in various rooms.

Excalibur 21-inch Tilting Head Scroll Saw with Foot Switch

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The Excalibur 21-inch tilting head scroll saw offers an innovative solution to traditional scroll saw workstations. This model features a unique tilting head mechanism that allows you to control the workpiece on a flat table surface, ensuring a safer and more precise cutting experience. The adjustable blade mounting enables you to make precise cuts at the right height, while the seamless blade changes let you switch between blades effortlessly without the need for any additional tools.

With its large table surface, the Excalibur scroll saw is perfect for tackling various materials, providing ample space to work with even the most intricate designs. Despite being a reconditioned unit, most users have reported a positive experience, praising the great customer service and receiving a machine in excellent working condition. However, some users have encountered issues with the motor’s vibration and the quality of certain parts, while a few have faced challenges with the missing screws and parts required for the assembly.

Overall, the Excalibur 21-inch tilting head scroll saw is a competitive option for those in search of an affordable yet high-performing scroll saw. With its innovative tilting head design, it offers an added level of precision and control that sets it apart from other scroll saws on the market. However, some users may find that they need to invest additional time in troubleshooting or parts replacement to achieve optimal performance.

Excalibur Tilting Head Scroll Saw with Foot Switch and Large Work Surface

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I’ve been using the Excalibur scroll saw from General International for a while now, and it has become one of my favorite tools for intricate woodworking projects. The 21-inch tilting head is a standout feature that allows me to tilt it 38° to the left or 45° to the right, keeping my workpiece level and providing enhanced control for precise cuts.

One of the things that really impresses me is the adjustable blade mounting system. It’s incredibly easy to raise or lower the blade position to make the perfect cut, and it doesn’t take much effort. Additionally, the seamless blade changes are a game-changer. Finger-operated blade clamps make switching out blades quick and effortless, without the need for any tools.

The large table surface is another highlight of this scroll saw. The spacious work surface allows me to cut any material I need with ease, making my woodworking tasks much more efficient. Another great feature is the safety features, which include an on/off safety switch and an integrated upper and lower blade guard assembly that helps prevent accidental hand contact with an active blade.

While the Excalibur scroll saw from General International has its pros, it’s not without its cons. The voltage requirement of 120 Volts limits its portability, and the foot switch activation may take some getting used to for those who are accustomed to using traditional switches.

Overall, this renewed Excalibur scroll saw is a great addition to any woodworking enthusiast’s toolkit. Its unique features, enhanced safety features, and large work surface make it a well-rounded and efficient choice for precise cuts and intricate woodworking projects.

1.6 Amp Variable Speed Scroll Saw with Adjustable LED Light and Dust Blower

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The Porter-Cable 18-inch Variable Speed Scroll Saw is a versatile and efficient cutting tool for DIYers and professionals alike. This powerful device boasts a 1.6-amp motor, and variable speed controls ranging from 500 to 1500 SPM, making it ideal for tackling different materials and applications. On top of that, upfront controls ensure faster access to speed, blade tension, and work light adjustments.

The scroll saw features a die-cast aluminum dual-tilt table with the ability to make cuts up to 45 degrees, while the patented tabletop bevel scale ensures precise bevel readings for clean and accurate cuts. In addition, the built-in LED lamp provides optimal illumination of the work area, enabling the creation of detailed and decorative items.

An adjustable dust blower keeps your cut line visible, and the included steel stand is sturdy and durable, saving you space on a table or other work surface. This scroll saw comes equipped with a keyless chuck, die-cast aluminum blade, and dust chute, making it a valuable addition to any woodworking tool arsenal. With a 3.4-star rating and 193 reviews, this scroll saw has gained a solid reputation among users and is worth considering for its versatility, precision, and durability.

Tc-Ss 405 E: Compact 120W Adjustable Scroll Saw with Customizable Blade Length

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The Einhell TC-SS 405 E scroll saw is an impressive addition to the woodworking tool arsenal. With a powerful 120W motor and a working diameter of 77mm, this saw is great for precision cuts and intricate designs. The scroll saw’s base is sturdy and stable, ensuring that it stays put even during the most intense cutting sessions.

Equipped with a quick-release clamp, changing the saw blade has never been easier. The work piece hold-down clamp offers accurate cuts and ensures that the piece is secure for added safety. And with a connection for a dust extractor, your workshop stays tidy during operation.

Although the instructions could be more detailed, the TC-SS 405 E scroll saw is easy to operate and versatile. The package comes with one additional spare saw blade, adding value to your purchase. Overall, the Einhell TC-SS 405 E scroll saw is a solid choice for anyone in need of a reliable and sturdy scroll saw.

Var-Speed Shop Fox 16in Scroll Saw with Large Cutting Capacity

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Recently, I had the chance to put my hands on the Shop Fox 16in Scroll Saw. The first thing I noticed was its sleek design and lightweight construction, weighing only 40 lb. I was excited to dive into the world of variable-speed blade control and try out the extra-large cutting capacity.

As I started using the saw, the precision and control it offered were impressive. Whether cutting through plain or pin-end saw blades, the extra-large cutting capacity allowed me to tackle big and small projects with ease. I particularly enjoyed the cast-iron construction, which assured me of durability and reliability.

My only criticism was that the Scroll Saw’s manual didn’t provide enough instructions for beginners. However, once I got the hang of it, the product truly shined. Overall, I would highly recommend the Shop Fox 16in Variable-Speed Scroll Saw to anyone who wants a reliable and powerful addition to their workshop.

Genesis Scroll Saw for Decorative Woodworking: GSS160 16-Inch

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Get ready to make precise, smooth cuts with the Genesis GSS160 scroll saw. This 16-inch tool features a quiet 1.2-amp induction motor that delivers seamless performance.

Its variable speed, ranging from 400 to 1600 SPM, ensures versatility for different materials and designs. The flexible dust blower keeps your work surface clean, while the quick-change blade system allows you to switch between 2 included high-speed steel blades effortlessly.

With a cutting depth of 2 inches and a tilting table up to 45 degrees, this scroll saw is perfect for woodworkers or marquetry enthusiasts.

Baltic Birch Scroll Saw Pack for Versatile Scroll Saw Projects

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The Woodcraft Baltic Birch Scroll Saw Pack features a collection of nine 11.75-inch by 11.75-inch sheets, perfect for scroll saw projects. With different thickness options, this plywood set includes four 1/8-inch thick, two 1/4-inch thick, and two 3/8-inch thick sheets, as well as one 1/2-inch thick sheet.

The Baltic birch, known for its durability and excellent performance in scroll sawing, offers a functional and high-quality choice for crafters and hobbyists.

Buyer’s Guide

Scroll saws are versatile tools that allow you to create intricate designs and cuts in wood, plastic, and other materials. Choosing the right scroll saw for your needs can be overwhelming due to the variety of options available in the market. In this buyer’s guide, we will provide you with essential features to consider, important factors to take into account, and general advice to help you make an informed decision when selecting a scroll saw.

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Type of Scroll Saw

There are three primary types of scroll saws: benchtop, floor-standing, and handheld. Benchtop scroll saws are the most common and are designed for users with limited space. Floor-standing scroll saws offer greater power and stability but require more space. Handheld scroll saws are portable and ideal for woodworking on-the-go, but they tend to be less powerful than their benchtop and floor-standing counterparts.

Motor Power

The power of the motor is a crucial factor in determining the scroll saw’s cutting capacity. Motors with higher power ratings will produce more cutting force, allowing for deeper and faster cuts in thicker materials. For most home woodworking projects, a motor with a rating between 12–20 amps should suffice. However, if you plan on working with thicker materials, consider purchasing a scroll saw with a more powerful motor.

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Variable Speed Control

Variable speed control is an essential feature in a scroll saw as it allows the user to adjust the speed of the blade according to the material being cut. Workpieces with varying densities require different cutting speeds, and a variable-speed Scroll saw provides greater flexibility and precision. Look for models that offer a wide speed range and straightforward adjustment.

Table Size and Design

The table size and design of a scroll saw play a significant role in determining its functionality. A larger table allows for more stabilization and accuracy during cuts. Additionally, a scroll saw with a tilt table can offer additional versatility, making it easier to create angled cuts. Consider the size and design of the table, along with any additional features like built-in dust collector, when making your purchase.

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FAQ

What is a Scroll Saw?

A scroll saw is a specialized tool designed for precise cutting and detailing of various materials, including wood, metal, and plastics. It is most commonly used for crafting intricate designs and curves in woodworking projects. A scroll saw features a thin, flexible blade that is mounted on two pulleys, allowing it to move in a straight line and make curved cuts.

Scroll saws are popular among woodworkers, craftsmen, and hobbyists, as they provide a high degree of precision and control over their cutting process. They come in different sizes, power capacities, and features to cater to various skill levels and project requirements. Scroll saws are relatively easy to use, making them an accessible choice for beginner woodworkers or those seeking a versatile cutting tool.

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What materials can I use with a Scroll Saw?

Scroll saws can be used to cut a variety of materials, depending on the blade chosen. Some materials that can be cut using a scroll saw include hardwoods, softwoods, plywood, MDF, OSB, aluminum, brass, and some types of plastic. The choice of material and blade will impact the effectiveness and quality of the cut.

A general rule of thumb is to choose a blade designed for the specific material you are working with, ensuring optimal results and reducing the chances of damaging your scroll saw. If you plan to work with different materials, investing in a set of blades with varied tip sizes, materials, and types will give you more flexibility in your projects.

How do I choose the right Scroll Saw for my needs?

When selecting a scroll saw for your needs, consider factors such as blade type, material thickness, cutting depth, and your level of expertise. For beginner woodworkers or those working on smaller projects, a benchtop scroll saw may be a more suitable choice due to its smaller size and lower price point. These models tend to be lightweight, portable, and easy to use.

On the other hand, professional woodworkers or those tackling larger, more complex projects may benefit from a heavier, more robust industrial-grade scroll saw. These models often come with more advanced features such as variable speed settings, adjustable tilt angles, and dual-direction cutting capabilities.

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Can I use a Scroll Saw for engraving or etching?

Yes, you can use a scroll saw to create intricate designs and patterns by etching or engraving. This technique typically involves cutting away the surface of a material to reveal a detailed pattern or image beneath. The quality of the engraving or etching will depend on factors such as the sharpness of the blade, the skill of the operator, and the size and complexity of the design being created.

To etch or engrave more intricate designs or patterns, consider using specialized scroll saw blades specifically designed for this purpose. These blades often have a finer tip and increased sharpness, allowing for more precise cuts and higher detail in your designs. Additionally, the use of a magnifier or adjustable light source while using the scroll saw can help improve visibility and accuracy during the etching or engraving process.

What safety precautions should I take when using a Scroll Saw?

When using a scroll saw, always take proper safety precautions to minimize the risk of accidents. Wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), such as safety goggles, ear protection, and a dust mask to protect against flying debris, noise, and dust. Make sure your work area is well-lit and free of any tripping hazards.

Before starting any project, ensure that the scroll saw is in proper working condition, and maintain it regularly to avoid any potential malfunctions. Always ensure the blade-to-throat clearance is correct, and secure the material being cut to prevent any movement or shifting. When making cuts, use both hands to operate the tool, and never attempt to reach inside the blade’s path while the saw is in operation.

How do I maintain my Scroll Saw?

Regular maintenance of your scroll saw is essential to ensure smooth operation and prolong its lifespan. Follow these simple steps to keep your scroll saw in top condition: clean the area around the blade before and after use, oil the blade-to-throat clearance frequently as recommended by the manufacturer, tighten any loose bolts or screws, and replace worn or damaged components whenever necessary.

Additionally, always unplug your scroll saw when not in use or when performing maintenance. By following these basic maintenance procedures and taking necessary safety precautions, your scroll saw will continue to serve you well, providing you with precise and accurate cutting results for years to come.

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