Coping Saw vs Jigsaw

There are a lot of saws on the market, and it can be hard to decide which one is right for you. Do you need a coping saw or a jigsaw? What’s the difference?

Both coping saws and jigsaws have their place in the workshop, but they are not interchangeable tools. Let’s take a closer look at the differences between these two types of saws.

If not, this article is for you. We’ll go over everything from their uses to how they work so that by the end of it, you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed decision about which one is best for your project.

Coping Saw vs Jigsaw – Which is better for you?

A coping saw has a thin blade with teeth on just one side while a jigsaw has teeth on both sides of its blade. The main difference between these two tools lies in their intended purpose. Coping saws are used primarily for cutting curves or intricate details into the wood while jigsaws are used more often for making straight cuts across boards or plywood sheets.

They can also be used together in order to create complex patterns like those seen on crown moldings or wainscoting panels found in homes built during certain eras throughout history (like Victorian-era homes). 

Coping saws are typically smaller than jigsaws because they don’t require as much power as their larger counterparts do since they’re mainly designed to cut through thinner pieces of wood rather than thick ones like what’s needed when using a circular saw or table saw. Best Coping Saw that I use IRWIN (2014400).

Jigsaws, however, come with blades that can be swapped out depending on whether it needs to cut through thicker materials such as hardwoods and plywood sheets or thinner materials such as drywall and sheet metal. Best Recommended Jigsaw BLACK+DECKER (BDEJS300C).

This makes them versatile enough to handle most DIY jobs that don’t require a circular saw or table saw.

What is a coping saw and what is it used for?

Coping saws are small-framed, handheld tools with a thin steel blade running through their center. The blade is sharp on one side (with teeth) and comes in different sizes ranging from 5 inches to 10 inches depending on the size of the tool itself. These blades are designed to be flexible so that they can cut through wood with curved edges more easily. The blades can be adjusted and locked into place with a small knob located near the top of the frame. Some coping saws also come with a handle that is raised off of its base so that it can cut down on wrist fatigue while you’re working. 

The primary purpose of this tool is to make cuts in wood with rounded edges such as chair spindles, for instance, turning them into dowels or curves; or making intricate details like carvings or grooves seen on moldings, wainscoting panels, and crown moldings. Coping saws are typically used by hand rather than mounted on a workbench like standard jigsaws and circular saws would be (although some power-driven coping saws do exist and can be used as a stationary tool). This tool is great for beginners because it’s inexpensive, easy to use, and requires very little force. Coping Saw Blade I Use IRWIN (2014500).

The blades are also very small and flexible so they can cut through smaller pieces of wood without too much effort (depending on the size you choose to get, of course). It should be noted that coping saws come in many different shapes and sizes; there are those with straight frames designed to create clean cuts along flat surfaces while others feature bent frames for making curved cuts.

Coping Saw Tips & Tricks            

This tool has more limitations than other power tools would have but overall, it isn’t difficult to operate. If you’ve never used one before then make sure to practice on a scrap piece of wood before cutting it into the real thing. Once you feel comfortable using it, here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind that can help make your experience with this tool more enjoyable:

  1. When making curved cuts, always draw the desired curve onto your workpiece first then cut along its outline.
  2. If possible, invest in blades that already have pre-cut teeth (also known as skip tooth blades) designed for cutting through thin sections of wood so you don’t overwork yourself while trying to cut through thicker pieces of lumber. These blades are also great for cutting through metal because they move very quickly so there’s less chance of them getting stuck or breaking inside the materials being cut.
  3. You can also use coping saw blades with pre-drilled holes to make your own wooden beads.
  4. Always set the blade tension using a small knob located near the top of the tool’s frame before fastening your handle and adjusting it for optimal flexibility.
  5. If you’re cutting through thin pieces of wood with this tool, don’t force it because it’ll only get stuck or snap in half. Take your time when making curved cuts along edges that aren’t already flat enough to support their weight.      

What is a jigsaw and what is it used for?

Jigsaws are handheld power tools that come with a blade mounted on a flexible arm attached to a base where you place both hands when working so there’s better control. The blade itself is usually made from high-speed steel and can be adjusted or replaced depending on the project at hand or your preference. 

There are also Jigsaw blades that have diamond-coated edges for cutting through harder materials like metal, masonry, and even plastics. This tool is primarily used to cut out shapes in a variety of materials such as wood, drywall panels, tile, and sheet metal just to name a few. It’s got a very efficient design since both arms can move independently so it can create more complex cuts with less effort compared to other types of saw blades which only have one arm attached near their handle so they’re forced to move back and forth instead of from side to side as you’d need them to do. Best Jigsaw Recommended Blades BOSCH T5002.

Both of these arms have a stopper mechanism to protect the user from injury and prevent the blade from slipping off whatever it’s being used on. Jigsaws also come with a blade release lever so you can easily remove your replacement blades once they become dull or if you need more flexibility while cutting through thicker materials.         

Here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind if you’ve never used a jigsaw before: 

Make sure both your workpiece and your base are as flat as possible before starting otherwise, the tool will be less effective at making smooth cuts. Always cut on top of a workbench or something sturdy that won’t move around while you’re using this power tool. Never place your workpiece directly on the floor.

  1. When cutting, move the tool steadily along the line that you drew to create smooth curves instead of abrupt angles. The faster you push it into its material, the more likely it is to get stuck so take your time and adjust the speed as needed depending on what kind of cut you’re making.
  2. When making curved cuts with this tool, never force it through any section that isn’t already flat enough for its weight, or else it’ll snap in half or get stuck inside your workpiece. If you’re having trouble getting it started then try switching blades first before deciding if there’s something wrong with your jigsaw.
  3. Always place both hands into position around its base before pressing down slightly so you can properly control it during all stages of your cutting job. Moving both handles independently is what helps it create more complicated shapes so always keep that in mind when using one of these tools. This way, you’ll avoid accidentally injuring yourself or damaging the materials being cut with your jigsaw blade.
  4. Always check its tightness level before starting each new cut by holding both arms completely still and firmly pushing along its base to see if any gaps appear between them and their workpiece. If there’s anything loose then tighten this screw until everything is perfectly secure before turning it on for added safety precautions especially if you’re working on something smaller like a bowl or picture frame where fingers might accidentally get in the way of moving parts. 

How do you use a coping saw?

Coping saw blades are primarily used to cut out shapes in thin materials like wood, plastic, or metal panels. It is a handheld power tool that you hold around the center where both of its arms have been attached so you can use your hands and fingers to control it while leaving your other hand free for holding down whatever item you’re trying to cut.

This tool also comes with a blade release lever so you can easily replace or remove your coping saw blade whenever necessary.

How do you use a jigsaw?

Jigsaw blades are primarily used to cut through thicker materials like plywood sheets, metal pipes, or tiles. This tool works just like a coping saw in the sense that it has two arm-like components which you hold onto with your hands and use your fingers to control while leaving the other hand free for cutting through materials using this jigsaw blade.

Just like coping saws, it also comes with a blade release lever so you can easily replace or remove your replacement jigsaw blades whenever necessary.

How to use each tool properly?

In order to use a coping, saw properly, make sure your workpiece is as flat as possible and that both it and the base you’re using are steady before starting. You should also try holding it down with one hand if you need more stability before slowly pushing it through your material of choice.

If you’re having trouble with a certain section during your cutting process, try switching blades first to see if there’s an issue with your coping saw this way, you can minimize any further damage caused by forcing it through difficult cuts or by accidentally injuring yourself on its sharp blade edges.

When making curved cuts, keep in mind that the jigsaw should be pushed into its materials steadily so you don’t run the risk of forcing it forward through sections that are already flat enough to support its weight. If you find yourself struggling throughout the entire process, take a break and try again before deciding if it’s your jigsaw that has something wrong with it or if there’s actually a problem with your workpiece.

Start by holding both handles firmly before pressing down along its base just hard enough so that it can move through your materials while still being easy to control. This way, you’ll avoid injuring yourself on sharp blades or accidentally damaging your work since moving arms independently is what lets you make more complicated cuts. Just like coping saws, always check for loose parts by holding both arms completely still before firmly pushing them together to make sure they are secure enough for use before switching them on. 


A coping saw is a versatile tool that can be used for many different projects. It is important to know the difference between the types of blades available so you can choose the right one for your project. A jigsaw is a great choice for intricate cuts, while a coping saw is better for larger pieces.