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This summer I tried out a barrel-grip jigsaw, and I liked it. Some TM readers like ’em, too. But I’m always surprised at how many non-pros have never heard of ’em. Here’s the one I tried, which is on the market now: Bosch’s 7-amp model JS470EB.

The Bosch model feels quite powerful — at least as powerful as you want a jigsaw to feel. And it includes all the modern features you’d expect: a toolless blade-change system (which really does work one-handed), dial-set variable speed, and circuitry that adjusts power to keep the blade moving the same speed under load. Add to that a really comfy shape and rubber padding in all the right spots, and you end up with a surprisingly vibration-free jigsaw that just feels very precise.

The barrel grip offers some advantages as well. The way you hold it makes accurate cutting easier, so they’re great for detail work. And I experienced far less fatigue when cutting with the barrel than I have with standard top-grip models. Of course, readers have pointed out to me that top grip models work well in some circumstances, like when you need to cut in tight corners.

Anyway, I spent some quality time with the JS470EB, and I’m a fan. It’s not fancy. It just works. Well. Street pricing starts around $160.

7.0A Barrel-Grip Jigsaw [Bosch]
Street Pricing [Google Products]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]


5 Responses to A Slick Barrel-Grip Jigsaw

  1. fred says:

    All of the corded (non Makita LXT) jigsaws that we regularly use are now barrell grip units. We’ve used Bosch for years – and some have been fitted with a Collins Coping foot – which make them handy for that task. We liked our older top handeled jig saws at the time – but when we switched over from those Porter Cable bayonet blade top handled jig saws to the Bosch we never looked back. It was probably the double whammy of converting to the T-Shank blade (I think exclusive to Bosch and maybe AEG at that time) and the better control of the barrel grip – that we liked. Plus the PC bayonet blades (an improvement over the “U” blades) were getting hard to find in anything other than very mundane tooth patterns

  2. ttamnoswad says:

    Barrel grip should be the only option for these saws. Good design.

  3. Robbie_B says:

    I recently purchased the top-handled Bosch version. I would have got the barrel grip, but the big boxes don’t seem to carry it. I’ve never used a barrel grip, so I can’t compare, but the top-handled Bosch kicks ass.

  4. Julian Tracy says:

    Anybody know why the heck they’ve introduced new saws when the 1590/1591 series is relatively new? What’s the difference? And why the new numbering scheme?


  5. Daniel says:

    What is this saw for exactly? Can anyone enlighten a poor-minded guy here. I’m thinking to buy one for my tool shack.

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