Leave the hacksaw on the workbench and forget hauling out the cutting torch; DeWalt just launched a new 20v compact band saw. Team FIN tested the tool on channel iron, a solid ¾-in. rod and 2¼-in. square tubing to observe how it performs, and rated the saw on a scale of 1 to 5.

Team FIN found the band saw made cuts easily and quickly. It did a great job cutting through each of the materials it was put up against. The tool has a pretty generous cutting diameter of  2½ in. when considering its compact size. It weighs 9.4 lbs. with battery and measures 15 in. long. The tool’s compact design also makes it easy to maneuver in tight working conditions. With the battery and motor on opposite ends of the tool, the band saw feels balanced, which helps the operator make straight, accurate cuts.

To change blades tool-free, a lever loosens blade tension. The design makes changing the blade quick and easy. Adjusting the blade alignment was also relatively simple. The tool has an ergonomic, soft-grip handle and an LED work light with a 20-sec. delay, which Team FIN said is very helpful. Another slick feature is the tool’s integrated hang hook, which allows the operator to conveniently attach the band saw to a ladder or workbench.

The push is on

Team FIN pushed the tool harder than what a typical job would call for, and was impressed by the results.

The band saw ate through the dense iron quickly and effortlessly. However, in less than 5 min. of heavy sawing, the original metal-cutting blade wore down and lost some teeth. 

Team FIN recommends using the correct blade for the type of material, and not to push the tool too hard, in order to lengthen the life of the blade. With that in mind, how quickly the teeth dulled during the testing may make blade expense a concern. 

Rated: 4.8 out of 5

The compact band saw (DCS371M1) costs $359 (includes battery and fast charger). For more about DeWalt, contact 800-4-DEWALT, visit dewalt.com.

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