The New GO-TO Pro Pistol Grip Circular Saw? DeWalt Wormdrive Style Brushless Cordless Circular Saw – THDProspective Season 1
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Worm drive saws are a staple in a framing carpenters or roofers tool bag, and none more so than the classic SKIL Worm Drive saw, so much so that “Skilsaw” has become synonymous with circular saw like “Kleenex” is to a tissue. But with cordless circular saws starting to make their way into more and more tradesman’s tool arsenals, how does DeWalt’s new Flexvolt Wormdrive Style Cordless Brushless Circular saw stack up?
The Dewalt wormdrive style circular saw is a professional grade tool and the package I am reviewing comes with not only the saw but also a 9ah/3ah 20v/60v Flexvolt battery and charger. The tool has the familiar pistol grip of a traditional wormdrive saw along with a hardy metal joist hanger (a requisite for a professional grade pistol grip saw.) It weighs in at 10.87 pounds without the batter but closer to 13lbs with the battery and blade, which is a little more than the lightest SKIL wormdrive saw at 12.45 pounds, but I would happily carry an extra half a pound around if I didn’t have to be tethered to an extension cord. I used this saw with the Diablo 24 tooth framing blade and with the 40 tooth finish blade to test the power and the finish the saw left behind.
They call this a “Wormdrive Style” saw because it doesn’t actually use the patented wormdrive technology but it is by no means lacking any power. This saw zipped through an engineered 3” joist at the Home Depot Prospective event where I was first exposed to the saw and in my own tests the saw flew through a cross cut in an 8/4 piece of walnut even with the Diablo 24 tooth rip blade in it. Even with the 40 tooth finish blade It barely even noticed the resistance of 8/4 hardwood with little tear-out. This is the most powerful cordless saw I have ever had my hands on. This saw actually spins faster than most corded circular saws at 6800 RPM, and you can feel it. This doesn’t take into account torque, but I still haven’t been able to bog down the blade. Even a fine finish blade doesn’t slow it down at the maximum capacity of the saw.
One of the things that really sets the DeWalt apart from other pistol grip style circular saws like the Makita 36v, or even the classic SKIL saw, is the dust blower that keeps the cutline clean ahead of the cut. This is great for making precision cuts with consistent results. This is also one of the few full sized cordless circular saws with a left side blade (others include the Makita 36v and Ryobi’s One+ Saw), which have always been popular with roofers and framers for ripping materials in place at a jobsite. The left side blade allows for better visibility of the blade and the cut line for right handers. I also really appreciate the brake on this saw, it takes the saw from the full 6800 RPM to a stop almost immediately. A good brake is now common place on brushless saws but it is still appreciated..
The big thing that really sets this saw apart in the ergonomics department is the battery placement. The inset battery moves the center of mass of the saw closer to the blade, making the motion of cutting in a straight line a lot more natural and ergonomic. It feels far more balanced than any other cordless circular saws I have used, but I would love to compare it to the Makita 36V pistol grip saw designed with these same ergonomic considerations in mind. TheToolPig (Instagram @toolpig)has handled both and told me the ergonomics of these two saws are close, so I would love to get the opportunity to compare them.
The DeWalt Wormdrive style saw, the DCS577X1, is a true performer and is more than adequate for anyone from a framing carpenter to a furniture maker so long as you use the right blades (Diablo Fine Finish Blade). I think DeWalt has made the case that the corded circular saw is a thing of the past. My favorite features have to be the left side blade for clear visibility, the dust blower that keeps your cut line clean, and the inset battery bringing the center of mass closer to the blade for a more natural cutting motion. The only knock against this saw is the magnesium base plate. Although this is both a pro and a con. Professional tools tend to be thrown around and magnesium does not bend, it just cracks or shatters, this would likely be the first thing to go on this saw. The choice of magnesium though does make sense as it reduces the overall weight of the saw significantly.
The DeWalt DCS577X1 can purchased at the Home Depot and at the time of the publication of this review it was on sale for $349.99 including a 9ah flexvolt battery and charger and you can buy this through my affiliate link…HERE
Thanks for reading, and remember to keep your tools sharp, and your mind sharper.
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