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Dewalt 20V MAX DCS331M1 Jig Saw Review

Battery Operated Jig Saw

Dewalt_DCS331Jig saws serve many uses to many different people from woodworking, home improvement, construction, metal fabrication, automotive and marine use.  I am sure I am missing a few hundred different uses that this tool has.  My experience with these tools has always been in the corded version and I have cut more fiberglass with them than wood.  My interest in the Dewalt DCS331M1 20V MAX jigsaw kit started because it came with a 4.0 Ah battery and had a wider range of strokes per minute than some of the others (0-3,000 spm).  I have come to really enjoy the adjustable dust blower because there are some cases where you do not want the dust created from cutting blown all over and some where you want the chips cleared away from the blade area so you can see the line of cut.  I also find the 4-position orbital action lever a huge plus when working with different types of materials and different cut qualities needed.

Kit includes: (1) DCB204: 20V MAX XR Premium Li-Ion Battery (4.0 Ah), Fast Charger, Jig saw blade and Kit box.

Features

  • All-metal lever-action keyless blade change
  • All-metal keyless shoe bevel with detents at 0°, 15°, 30° and 45°
  • 4-position orbital action
  • Adjustable dust blower
  • Variable speed 0-3,000 spm
  • Anti-slip comfort grip
  • Accepts T-shank jig saw blades

Multi-Application Tool

Dewalt_DCS331_CompareGrowing up my grandfather always had his jig saw sitting on the workbench ready to go.  My projects were pretty small at that age and I always found I could use the larger bandsaw to complete the tasks I needed with a bit better cut.  I was simply doing projects that fit into the bandsaw, so my use of the jig saw was limited.  As I got older and could drive, I was cutting out the small speaker areas in the car doors and trunk to fit a bit larger speaker in my cars and also building speaker boxes for my friend’s cars and boats.  The jig saw was a tool that was my main go to tool for cutting any sort of line that was not straight.  If it was our age or just the fad of the times, all of us seemed to upgrade the speakers in anything we purchased and the same jig saw that was on my grandfather’s bench found itself now being the main tool for cutting out fiberglass and thin metal.  It was not until recently that I thought a cordless model would give me a bit more control since I would not have the cord to work around.

Dewalt_DCS331_Blade_LockThere are many styles of jig saws designed for different uses.  This 20 volt is very close in style to the older model that I had and I find it to be pretty comfortable in my hand.  I am not using this for supper tight cuts in wood and there are probably different models that would do a better job than this one.  The variable speed trigger on this unit give it a lot of control and the ability to cut up to 3,000 spm is a big increase in cutting speed for me.  I do find this unit to be a bit louder than what I am used to and compared to other battery operated units we had available.   It is quite a bit louder, but nowhere near the threshold for hearing protection.

I really wish this tool had a blade ejector.  I seem to have a little trouble getting the blade in and out of this unit.  If the blade is lined up perfectly, it will slide right in and come out with no issue, but for the inexperienced guy, I was fiddling with it a bit more than I liked.  When using these to cut for long periods, it would be nice for the blade to pop out rather than have to pull it out.  Prolonged cutting with any jigsaw blade will cause the blade to get very hot.   In many cases I had to walk away to find leather gloves to remove the blade.

Dewalt_DCS331_BlowerOne thing that I have never had before is the ability to change how much air blows around the blade to keep chips and saw dust away from the cut line.  In the past, that wind was supplied by my lungs.  This unit allows you to choose from very little to a good amount of air to keep the cut line clean.  The ability to adjust this is a great convenience depending on the location you are working in.  Since you can use this tool in so many places, it seems fitting to be able to control this.  When cutting on a vertical surface, there is no need to blow the dust chips all over, so it might as well be turned off to limit the mess to a smaller area.

Dewalt_DCS331_OrbitalThe 4 position orbital mode also helped my cutting in other materials go a bit faster while also allowing me to dial it back for a bit cleaner cuts in thin wood.  It’s nice that this tool can be adjusted to work with the materials you are using.  Many of the jig saws of today allow you to adjust to different orbital actions, some less than others, but it is still a nice feature.

 

Overall

It seems that many of the 18 and 20 volt jig saws are designed more as a general use jig saws while the smaller ones have a barrel style grip with their use designed to be more for fine woodworking and intricate cuts.  In our use, blade deflection was very minimal in thicker wood with the thick blades provided.  Blade deflection increases with thinner blades as expected.  I enjoy the features that this saw provides.  If you are in the market for a new one or upgrading from the Dewalt 18 volt line, I think you will find this tool to be comfortable and familiar.  The extra noise of this unit is not a big deal as I enjoy the extra speed and power more.

Buy HereHome Depot: DEWALT DCS331M1 20V Max Jigsaw Kit

Amazon: DEWALT DCS331M1 20V Max Jigsaw Kit

Specifications

Voltage  20
Strokes/Min  0-3,000spm
Stroke Length  1″
Warranty  3 Year Limited
Dust Blower  Variable
Tool Weight  6.8lbs

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One Response to “Dewalt 20V MAX DCS331M1 Jig Saw Review”

  1. donnymcarter #

    Nice saw! Thanks for the review!

    September 13, 2015 at 9:43 am Reply

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