Can you cut metal with a jigsaw?

Can you cut metal with a jigsaw? - Fix It Cape Town

Jigsaws are versatile and practical tools that can make your woodworking projects a breeze. Whether you are a DIY enthusiast or a professional carpenter, having a jigsaw in your toolbox is essential. These power tools are particularly useful when it comes to cutting curves, making them a go-to option for a wide range of projects.

In this article, we will explore the benefits of using jigsaws for cutting curves, their features and functions, and provide tips and tricks to enhance your cutting capabilities. So, let’s dive in!

Why Choose a Jigsaw for Cutting Curves?

  1. Versatility: Jigsaws are designed specifically for cutting curves, making them ideal for applications such as scrollwork, circle cutting, and intricate designs. Unlike other tools, such as circular saws or band saws, jigsaws offer unmatched maneuverability around tight corners and irregular shapes.

  2. Ease of Use: Jigsaws are relatively easy to use, even for beginners. With their lightweight design and ergonomic handles, they provide excellent control and precision during cutting. Their variable speed settings allow you to adapt to different materials and cutting requirements.

  3. Curved Cut Accuracy: The narrow blade of a jigsaw and its up-and-down cutting motion allow for precise curved cuts. The ability to change the blade’s angle on many jigsaw models further enhances cutting accuracy, allowing you to create intricate designs effortlessly.

  4. Material Versatility: Jigsaws are not restricted to cutting wood only. They can also cut through a wide range of materials, including plastic, metal, and even ceramic tiles. This versatility makes jigsaws indispensable tools for various projects, from woodworking to home improvement.

Jigsaw Features and Functions

Before diving into cutting curves with a jigsaw, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the key features and functions of this versatile power tool:

1. Power Source

Jigsaws come in both corded and cordless variations. While corded jigsaws provide consistent power, cordless models offer greater freedom of movement. The choice between the two depends on your cutting needs and personal preferences.

2. Orbital Action

Orbital action refers to the jigsaw’s blade movement. This feature allows the blade to move back and forth at an angle while the jigsaw is in operation. Orbital action increases cutting speed and makes it easier to cut through thicker materials.

3. Cutting Speed Control

Variable speed control is a crucial feature in a jigsaw. It allows you to adjust the cutting speed according to the material being cut. Slower speeds are ideal for harder materials like metal, while faster speeds work well for softer materials like wood.

4. Blade Change Mechanism

Jigsaws typically have a quick-release mechanism for changing blades. This feature allows you to switch blades easily and quickly, saving you time and effort. Make sure to choose the appropriate blade for the material and the type of cutting you intend to do.

5. Base Plate Adjustment

The base plate, also known as the shoe, is the metal or plastic part of the jigsaw that rests on the material being cut. Adjustable base plates allow you to tilt the jigsaw to make angled cuts, enhancing the tool’s versatility.

Tips and Tricks for Cutting Curves with a Jigsaw

Now that you understand the benefits of using a jigsaw for cutting curves and are familiar with its features, here are some useful tips and tricks to enhance your cutting capabilities:

  1. Choose the Right Blade: Different materials require different blades. Use a blade specifically designed for cutting curves to achieve clean and precise cuts. Blades with more teeth per inch (TPI) are suitable for finer cuts.

  2. Mark Your Cut Line: Before starting, mark the curve you wish to cut on the material. Double-check your measurements and ensure it is clearly visible. This step will help guide your cutting path and ensure accuracy.

  3. Clamp the Material: To minimize vibrations and prevent the material from moving, secure it firmly using clamps. This will improve cutting accuracy, reduce the risk of a jagged finish, and increase your overall control.

  4. Start with a Pilot Hole: For interior cuts or small curves, start by drilling a pilot hole near the edge of the material. Insert the jigsaw blade into the pilot hole and start cutting your desired curve.

  5. Follow the Line and Take Your Time: Slow and steady wins the race when cutting with a jigsaw. Be patient, follow the marked line, and avoid rushing the process. It’s better to make multiple shallow passes than to force the jigsaw and risk damaging the material or getting an uneven cut.

  6. Practice Proper Blade Angle: As you cut curves, adjust the blade angle to maintain a perpendicular position to the material. Tilting the blade too much can result in a beveled cut, affecting the accuracy of your curves.

  7. Use Support or a Guide: When working with larger materials or longer curves, consider using additional support or a guide. This will provide stability and help you maintain a straight cutting line.


Q1. Can I use a jigsaw to cut straight lines?

Absolutely! While jigsaws excel at cutting curves, they are also great for making straight cuts. Use a straight edge or guide along the marked line to ensure accuracy.

Q2. What safety precautions should I take when using a jigsaw?

When using a jigsaw, always wear appropriate safety gear, including safety glasses and ear protection. Keep your fingers away from the blade and power cord and be cautious of kickback. Additionally, it’s wise to secure the material properly to prevent any accidents.

Q3. How can I increase the lifespan of my jigsaw blades?

To increase the lifespan of your jigsaw blades, choose the right blade for the material being cut, avoid excessive heat buildup by using appropriate speed settings, and take breaks to allow the blade to cool down if necessary.


Jigsaws are excellent tools for cutting curves, providing versatility, ease of use, and precise cutting capabilities. Whether you’re a woodworking enthusiast or a professional carpenter, having a jigsaw in your toolbox is essential.

Understanding the features and functions of a jigsaw, using the right blade, and implementing proper cutting techniques will help you achieve clean and accurate curves in your woodworking projects. So, embrace the power of a jigsaw and take your cutting skills to the next level!

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