Bow Saw Vs Hand Saw | How Are They Different

When it comes to saws, there are a few different types that you can choose from. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages, depending on the job you need it for. Two of the most common types of saws are the Bow Saw Vs Hand Saw. So, which one is better?

There are a few key differences between bow saws and hand saws. For one, the blade on a bow saw is much longer, making it better suited for cutting larger pieces of wood.

Additionally, the blade on a bow saw is attached to two handles, which allows for more leverage and precision when cutting. Finally, because the blade on a bow saw is so long, it can be difficult to control; as such, they are typically only used by experienced woodworkers or carpenters.

On the other hand, hand saws are much smaller and more maneuverable. This makes them ideal for cutting smaller pieces of wood, such as trim or molding.

If you’re looking for the best bow saw to cut curves, then Bahco’s model would be your choice. However if precision and straightforward cuts are what you need in a hand tool Silky Series can’t disappoint!

Read on to find out more about these two saws with pros and cons.

Bow Saw Vs Hand Saw | Which Is The Right Saw For You?

Here are the main differences between both saws with some pros and cons so you can make your decision easier.

Bow Saw

A bow saw has a blade that is mounted on and parallel to the handle and is held in tension by a frame (similar to stand saws). It can cut anything from hardwood, softwood, and even plastic pipes.

It’s important to check for cracks in the blade before using it. If you see any, it’s probably best to get a new one. I personally recommend this blade for Bow Saw Bahco

Bow Saws are great for cutting wood quickly and easily in the field. They can cut larger logs much easier than hand saws. It is also made out of metal rather than plastic or wood, which gives it greater durability. The major downside to using this saw is that its small size makes it difficult to cut anything but large pieces of wood in half in the field. 

If you’re only making cross-cuts rather than rip cuts, though, then there isn’t really an issue with this saw’s size at all!

  • Is made out of metal rather than plastic or wood, making it sturdier and longer-lasting. 
  • Cuts thicker logs and pieces of wood more effectively than a hand saw. 
  • The smaller size makes cutting smaller pieces of wood difficult. 

Hand Saw

A hand saw consists of a sharp blade attached to one end of a handle. A bow saw has blades mounted parallel to an open frame.

There are two types of hand saws that are the most common to use in home improvement projects or for other general wood cutting needs: crosscut saws and rip saws. Crosscut saws have fine teeth on the blade which makes them very suitable for making clean, straight cuts through wood. This is perfect if you need to cut larger pieces of wood down into symmetrical parts so they fit together well. 

Rip saws have large teeth with blades that are angled towards the handle, rather than away from it, which allows you to make rough cuts through thinner pieces of wood by pulling the blade toward yourself rather than pushing it away from you. Again, this isn’t ideal when making precise cuts but can be useful for other purposes.

As far as size goes, hand saws are very similar to bow saws in this regard. They can cut through smaller logs with ease but you may have issues when cutting down thick, large pieces of wood or if you need to make cuts down the center of a piece of wood (can’t do that easily with a bow saw).

Bow saws and hand saws both have their own distinct advantages and disadvantages; it’s up to you which one will fit your needs the best! If you’re having trouble choosing between these two common types of saws, feel free to contact us at The Home Depot for any help you might need picking out the right tool for the job. 

  • Can make cross-cut or rip cuts on any type of wood easily (whereas a bow saw is better at making straight cuts). 
  • Regardless, both types of saws can make either cut with some precision if needed. 
  • Harder to cut thicker logs or pieces of wood.
  • Is made out of plastic or wood, making it more fragile and prone to breaking if dropped or mishandled. 

When Would You Use A Bow Saw Vs A Hand Saw? 

Bow saws are great if you’re looking to cut through thick logs or difficult pieces of wood without much hassle. A hand saw is better for less strenuous cutting (for example, making cross-cut or rip cuts).

If you need to make precise cuts down the center of a piece of wood, then you’ll also want to go with a hand saw. Either way, these two types of saws can do some pretty impressive things! In the end, it’s up to you which tool works best for your needs!


The bow saw is a great choice for those who are looking for a portable and easy-to-use saw. It’s perfect for light projects around the house or campground. The hand saw, on the other hand, is better suited for more heavy-duty projects that require greater precision and accuracy. If you have a lot of cutting to do, the hand saw is probably your best bet. ((Learn about Bow Saw Vs Pruning Saw).


What are the benefits of using a bow saw vs a hand saw? 

A bow saw is more effective at cutting through thick logs or pieces of wood that are large in size. A hand saw, on the other hand, is better for making cross-cuts or rip cuts on smaller pieces of wood. Either way, they both have their own advantages depending on what purpose you plan to use them for! 

When would you need a bow saw vs when would you need a hand saw? 

A bow saw would be needed if you’re looking to cut thicker logs or larger pieces of wood without any difficulty. A hand saw is better if you’d like to use it for more precise cutting – making special cuts down the center of your piece of wood (for instance). No matter which one you go with, these tools are both extremely useful around the house.

Which one is better for beginners – a bow saw or a hand saw? 

A hand saw is typically the better option for beginners since it’s easier to control and maneuver. A bow saw can be difficult to use at first, especially if you’re trying to make precise cuts on something other than straight lines. If you’re a beginner looking for a more simple tool that will still get the job done, then a hand saw may be your best bet!

Which one is better – how does it work? 

It depends on what type of cut you need to make! A bow saw requires less effort while cutting large pieces of wood or logs while hand saws are generally faster when making cross-cuts or rip cuts. Both types of tools have their own advantages and disadvantages depending on the size and type of wood you’re trying to cut through!

When would you use a bow saw vs when would you use a hand saw?

Bow saws are great for cutting thicker logs and pieces of wood that are large in size, whereas hand saws work better for making cross-cuts or rip cuts. Hand saws can also make precise center cuts on small pieces of wood if needed.

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