How to use a circular saw

A hand-held circular saw is one of the basic tools that should be in any DIY enthusiasts workshop. With it you can cut any kind of timber and board quickly and accurately.


A circular saw is easy to use once you get over the initial 'wow' of noise level. My first experience with a circular saw was scary to say the least! Remember that this is a deceptively dangerous power tool and needs to be handled with care and safety.

Because a circular saw is compact, relatively lightweight, and its blade is nearly always covered by either the guard or the wood you are cutting, it's easy to become careless when using it. Make sure you understand the safety instructions that come with the tool, and follow them carefully whenever you are working.

What is a Rip Cut?
A rip cut is rough cut, generally used to cut large sections down to size by cutting in the same direction as the wood grain.

What is a Cross Cut?
Also used to trim large sections down to size - but across the grain of the wood.





What is a Plunge Cut?
These cuts are done when the blade cannot start at the edge of the board, such as when cutting a hole in kitchen countertops or floors. To make this cut, place the front of the shoe against the workpiece. Then, switch on the saw to turn on the best circular saw blade and slowly lower the blade into the material.

Tips of using a Circular Saw
Always use the correct blade for the material you will be cutting and ensure that it is properly seated and tightened. Never use dull blades as they will bind to the wood and overheat. Ensure that the wood is sufficiently supported on both sides and ends and clamp smaller pieces if you have to.

Check for knots or nails before cutting any piece. When operating a circular saw, start the blade before it meets the wood. Be comfortable when holding the unit - don't over-reach. Don't push the saw, simply guide the unit along the cutting line.

Electrical cables and cords should be positioned safetly out of the way.

Be prepared for a lot of mess, and if you are not using a vacuum hose connection, stand clear of the outlet.