Essential Power Tools – The Circular Saw

Welcome to the second installment of our Tool Tuesdays.  Last week we revealed the top power tool in our books – the corded hand drill.  This week we follow it up with a tool that is nearly as indispensable and similarly as reasonably priced – the hand held circular saw.

There are loads of wood working projects around most homes – once you start to get comfortable with developing your own capacity to do and recognize that most of what you want done is within your grasp.  A good circular saw will address most of your wood working needs – at least as you are starting out.  It can cut dimensional lumber to length as well as rip sheet goods like plywood and chipboard.  Add a chalk line to your tool kit and you’ll be able to mark out cut lines on sheet goods with

The Circular Saw

The Circular Saw

ease.

It is also eminently portable.  Heading out to do some woodwork somewhere and this is your compact do it all tool.  Now, certainly I’m not knocking the chopsaw.  If you are laying hardwood flooring or putting up a good sized building a chopsaw is well worth the investment.  Likewise I love my jobsite craftsman tablesaw (count on it featuring in this list in a bit) but while both of them are “portable” they aren’t what I am going to grab for a quick project in the back yard or a job at the camp or a buddy’s.  That role, especially if I’m not completely sure what is going to be involved goes to the circular saw.  It’s easy to tote along, can do pretty much everything that the table saw or chop saw can do and if you are careful (read take your time) you can achieve results that are for most purposes close enough.

If you are wondering why my number two tool wasn’t more into the metal working sphere it’s because as much as I love metal working being able to do simple carpentry is going to find a lot more application for most if not all folks.

So if you are in the process of building up a workshop in order to become more self reliant and you don’t already have a circular saw add one to your list to pick up (new or used) and begin to figure out a few projects to exercise your kit and build your skills.