Best Bow Saw

December 8, 2020

DIY gardening projects can be a convenient and cheaper alternative to hiring help, but can be difficult if you don’t have the right tool on hand.

Have you ever wanted to prune or cut down your own trees for firewood, but do not want to go out and spend a fortune on a  power tool? A good bow saw can be a good solution to your gardening needs and is a must-have for any DIYer’s toolbox. 

A bow saw is an excellent portable saw that is comfortable, affordable, and a practical alternative to a chainsaw for smaller DIY projects.

But with an array of bow saws on the market, how can you be sure you are choosing the right saw for the job? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

We’ve compiled a list of the top 5 bow saws to save you the hassle of researching endless saws yourself. To go with this, we’ve made a useful buyer’s guide of points to think about before you commit to buying a bow saw.

Say goodbye to your DIY nightmares and hello to a cozy night with firewood cut with your brand new bow saw!

Check out our top pick below.

OUR TOP PICK

AGAWA - BOREAL21 - 21 Inch Folding Bow Saw - Black Frame, Green Handle, 21' All Purpose Blade

Agawa Canyon - BOREAL21 Folding Bow Saw

EDITORS CHOICE

Bahco 10-21-51 21-Inch Ergo Bow Saw , Gray

Bahco 10-21-51 21-Inch Ergo Bow Saw

BEST VALUE

BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw

BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw

OUR TOP PICK

Agawa Canyon - BOREAL21 Folding Bow Saw

AGAWA - BOREAL21 - 21 Inch Folding Bow Saw - Black Frame, Green Handle, 21' All Purpose Blade

The Agawa Canyon - BOREAL21 Folding Bow Saw is designed for versatility! Take the compact BOREAL21 folding bow saw wherever you go - camping, backpacking, canoeing, off-trail, hunting, trail clearing, or for gardening around the home.

The BOREAL21 opens in seconds and is fuss-free - just unfold, snap into position & start sawing for your convenience!

Automatic blade tensioning with no loose parts - No need to touch the blade while opening & closing, ensuring you a safer experience with your new bow saw.

This saw is effective and ergonomic. It has a high clearance frame for large diameter cuts and optimized geometry for the most efficient saw stoke, meaning you get an accurate cut every time!

Pros

  • This saw is a great option for saving storage space as it folds away safely and conveniently!
  • As a compact, lightweight, and packable saw, the BOREAL21 is an ideal option for travelling.
  • Anodized 6063 aluminum frame, fiberglass reinforced nylon handle, all stainless steel hardware, hardened and coated saw blades for a durable saw perfect for your toolbox.

Cons

  • One customer had difficulty packing this particular saw away.

EDITORS CHOICE

Bahco 10-21-51 21-Inch Ergo Bow Saw

Bahco 10-21-51 21-Inch Ergo Bow Saw , Gray

Bahco is a Swedish premium tool brand that creates saw blades from high-grade tool steel.

The Bahco 10-21-51 21-Inch Ergo Bow Saw is designed for demanding applications and tough environments of construction sites.

The tensioning mechanism on the bowsaw is easy to use and makes the blade useful for different types of dry wood, meaning this saw is versatile to your DIY needs!

Bright color stands out in a dull environment so you can always easily spot this bow saw outside. 

Pros

  • Designed to cut through dry wood and lumber efficiently and smoothly.
  • Comes with a robust knuckle guard that is designed for safe sawing without you having to worry about slipping off the handle and causing injury.
  • Lightweight frame is designed for making even the trickiest of cuts more accurate.

Cons

  • A few customers found that the tension nut came loose after a few uses.

BEST VALUE

BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw

BAHCO 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw

The Bahco 332-21-51 21 Inch Pointed Nose Bow Saw is designed for convenience, ideal for pruning and roofing work at work or at home.

This particular bow saw has a pointed nose that makes it ideal for use in tight spaces.

The plastic safety guard provides good handling and will protect your knuckles as you work.

Proven to be more suitable for smaller projects than a chainsaw by multiple customer’s feedback. 

Pros

  • This saw comes with a handy Bahco knuckle guard for safety, meaning you can relax knowing that your hands are safe as you work.
  • Effective and quick for pruning branches and sawing unruly shrubs.
  • This saw comes with a blade adjustment to quickly tighten up the tension on the blade as it wears, and to ensure you get optimum use out of your bow saw.

Cons

  • A few customers noted that they had to replace the blade sooner than they had anticipated.

RUNNER UP

Truper 30255 Steel Handle Bow Saw, 21-Inch Blade

Truper 30255 Steel Handle Bow Saw, 21-Inch Blade

The Truper 30255 Steel Handle Bow Saw is a must-have for any DIYers or gardeners shed or garage.

Cam-lever tension system keeps the blade perfectly tight while you're out working in the field, so rest assured you’ll get a full day’s work in without your blade losing adequate tension.

A durable bow saw that is designed to cut through hardwood with ease.

Cleaning and oiling the saw after each use ensures for years of trouble free use, meaning its a tool you can rely on!

Premium quality and heavy duty steel arch built to last.

Pros

  • Inexpensive and durable saw compared to competitors, meaning you can relax knowing that you are getting a good value saw.
  • Quality blade for convenient for cutting hardwood.
  • Lightweight yet sturdy design to aid sawing through wood efficiently. 

Cons

  • A few customers noted that this particular saw does not fold for storage purposes.

RUNNER UP

GreatNeck BB21 21" Bow Saw

GreatNeck BB21 21 Inch Bow Saw, Bow Saw Blades 21 Inch, Bow Saws For Camping, Hand Saw Wood Cutting, Bow Saw Blade 21 Inch

The GreatNeck BB21 21” Bow Saw is made from a tubular steel frame for strength and durability.

GreatNeck has been creating quality hand tools for over a century, so rest assured you can rely on their products.

Designed with action blade tightener release for easy and convenient blade changes.

Great for cutting logs for firewood, green wood, and treated wood with ease.  

Pros

  • Handle features a rubber grip coating to ensure steady sawing and minimizing the risk of any accidents occurring.
  • Excellent for trimming trees and mantaining a neat home, yard and garden.
  • Designed to cut through hardwood quickly for your convenience. 

Cons

  • A few customers found that the blade became dull after a few uses.

Best Bow Saw Buying Guide

There are some points to consider before buying a bow saw, but it mainly comes down to what you intend to use the saw for and how efficiently it can cut through wood!

Don’t be tempted to buy the first bow saw that you come across. You want a bow saw with a strong blade that can save you time and a lot of effort by cutting wood efficiently.

We’ve produced a list of things that you should think about before purchasing a bow saw.

Take a look below before adding to your shopping cart!

Intended Use

As we touched on in our last point something to consider is the intended use for your brand new bow saw. Although you can use a bow saw for any light sawing DIY projects, there are some design features you should consider before clicking ‘buy’. 

Bow saws that are designed for dry wood have a peg tooth blade that spreads the work, reducing clogging and ensuring an accurate cut. On the other hand, green wood bow saws have rake-like teeth to clear out fresh waste.

As different bow saws target different types of wood, it is significant to consider which wood you intend to use your bow saw for.

Protective Sheath

When looking for the right bow saw, it is important to note whether the saw marketed comes with a protective sheath. Like many tools, bow saws are incredibly sharp and can be dangerous if not stored properly. A protective sheath covers the blade to avoid minor cuts and injuries to you or your equipment.

The bow saw’s protective needs to sit firmly over the full length of the blade, keeping the sharp teeth of the saw out of harm’s way, particularly if you have children.

Tension Adjustment

The right bow saw should be lightweight and easy to use, but something to consider is the tension adjuster. When looking for a bow saw, they should always feature a tension adjuster. 

Over time, the tension of the blade can change the older it gets, due to the temperature, and the humidity outside. If you find that you are having problems with your blade cutting through wood, it is likely that your saw is not adjusted properly. 

You should always make sure that you set your tension properly to ensure the most efficient use out of your saw. If this is not in its proper place it could either be too loose or too tight, and will lead to problems and could even damage your brand new saw.   

Length

It is likely that if you’re looking for a bow saw, you already have an idea of what you’ll be using it for. Another factor to consider when looking for a bow saw is its length. 

Bow saws come in many lengths and sizes. Smaller bow saws range from 14-18 inches for light pruning and gardening, with medium saws around 21 inches and larger saws ranging all the way up to 30 inches for more intensive projects like logging and felling trees.

Depending on what you intend to use the saw for, a 21 inch bow saw is a good all rounder that covers multiple uses.

Some bow saws have pointed noses designed to work in tight spaces.

In terms of choosing the right length of bow saw, it is important to know what kind of projects you’ll be undertaking before you purchase the saw, as its length will largely depend on what you intend to use it for.

Handle & Hand Guard

When buying a bow saw arguably one of the most important factors to consider is the handle and hand guard, as the last thing you will want is an accident occurring at home during one of your projects.

Many bow saws often have rubber handles to ensure you can grip the saw safely whilst you work. This is particularly important as it decreases the likelihood of you cutting yourself.

As with any sharp tool, something you should always consider is how sharp the bow saw is, and note whether it comes with a hand guard for your protection as you work.

A hand guard is designed to cover your knuckles while you saw. If you happen to slip despite having a rubber handle, the guard provides reassurance that keeps your hand in the right position, preventing an mishaps or accidents!

Blades

There’s nothing worse than being halfway through a DIY project when a blade breaks.

When it comes to buying a bow saw, something to consider is the strength of the blade and whether the saw is sold with spares. To get your money’s worth - you want to ensure that you buy a saw that you can replace the blade of. Spare blades can be bought separately easily enough, but it is definitely a bonus if a saw comes with an extra blade.

The quality of the blade itself is also important to consider, as a high-quality blade is much more likely to do the job more efficiently than one of a poorer quality. However, it is important to note that blades do not last forever, especially if they are not cleaned or maintained properly.

If in doubt, check the reviews for customer’s views on the blade of a saw and look up how much oil to care for them with if you’re unsure. 

If cared for and maintained properly with oil, saws can last for a number of years. However, although the blades of a bow saw should be strong they are not indestructible. 

Color

When you’re out working in thick foliage and undergrowth, you don’t want to be searching for your bow saw, or worse yet leave it somewhere on the ground that is in danger of being picked up by a child. An important point to consider when buying a bow saw is its color.

Brightly colored bow saws can be extremely helpful when you’re working outside, as there is less danger it will blend in with the dull environment or tree branches meaning you can locate it more easily.

Choosing a bright color for your saw will help it stand out, meaning you don’t have to worry about searching for it when you place it down to do something else. Save yourself time by buying a bright colored bow saw!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a bow saw good for?

A bow saw has multiple uses but is namely a rough tool that can be used for cross-cutting firewood or greenwood such as tree branches and shrubs.

They usually leave a rough finish, which makes them less suitable for fine cuts in wood where precision is needed. However, a larger bow saw is an excellent tool for felling trees and is perfect for rougher cuts of wood.

The bow saw is perfect for those simple DIY projects at home that don’t warrant you paying someone else to do. Save the time and hassle you’ll spend and spend an afternoon cutting those branches yourself!

What is the difference between bow saw and hack saw?

Hack saws and bow saws are arguably the most interchangeable or easily confused. Although bow saws and hack saws look incredibly similar and used for similar uses, there are a few fundamental differences. 

The main difference between a bow saw and a hack saw is that a bow saw is primarily used for cutting wood, whereas the hacksaw is best served for cutting steel, metal, and plastic materials.

In terms of overall design, the hack saw and bow saw look very simila and are both versatile tools to have in your garage. 

However, their blades are different as they’re built to perform different tasks. Whether you need to cut wood or hack metal, could significantly impact which saw is right for you.

Though both saws have their purposes, it entirely depends on what you intend to use the saw for which will help you decide which saw is right for you and better suited to your needs.

What is the best bow saw?

The best bow saw largely comes down to personal preference and what you intend to be using the saw for, as different bow saws are different sizes and are designed for different purposes and types of wood.

For instance, depending on their blade, some bow saws are better designed to cut through green wood and others dry wood.

The best bow saw is likely to change from subject to subject. As many bow saws have different strengths for different uses, it can be hard to pin down one specific saw without knowing your individual requirements.

In order to figure out which best saw is for you, consider what kind of projects you would like to be tackling with your new bow saw and go from there. 

If in doubt when choosing a bow saw, a good tip is to check the product reviews, as they will give you an overall idea of the characteristics you will be searching for once you know what your specific task is.

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