Best Compact Circular Saw
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10 Best Compact & Mini Circular Saws in 2021 [Small but Powerful]

As a newbie or a DIYer in woodworking, using a full-size circular saw can be strenuous and arduous sometimes. That’s where a compact circular saw comes in. It is a small, compact, and lightweight tool that takes up much less space than a full-size saw. Mini circular saws reduce stress and offer you more control with simpler maneuverability.

They come at a lower price and are very easy to maneuver, making them ideal for newbies in woodwork and DIYers. There are hundreds of options available on the market, promising to deliver high performance – but they end up working inadequately.

Getting the best mini circular saw can either be a miss or a hit for you if you don’t know exactly what to look for. To help you with the buying process, we’ve gathered some crucial information about the best compact circular saws within your budget.

Why & When should Buy/ Need a small circular saw?

Before deciding on buying a mini circular saw, you need to have a solid understanding of why and when you should buy/need it. If you know you’re not going to work on larger jobs that requires a heavy-duty saw, then go for a compact saw.

But if you’re into professional or commercial woodworking projects, then you’ll need something more heavy-duty like a full-size circular saw. Just look for something that will help you make accurate and convenient cuts. Perhaps cordless circular saws are suitable for people who need something a bit larger and portable at the same time.

A compact circular saw will cut tile effortlessly since the cutting process does not require making rough cuts. So, if your cutting task involves making irregular or curved cuts, then it is ideal to go for a portable bandsaw.

What is a compact circular saw used for?

A compact circular saw is designed for small projects to cut in straight lines. It is compact, handheld, and lightweight, making it suitable for confined spaces. A compact circular saw has enough speed and power to cut through materials such as wood, sheet metal, and tile. This type of saw is good for a variety of cutting tasks, including:

  • Ripping
  • Fine cutting
  • Crosscutting
  • Bevel cutting
  • Cutting stone, wood, plastic, metal, and many more.

What can you do with a mini circular saw?

You can actually do a lot with a mini circular saw. A mini compact circular saw is a portable pool tool used for woodworking projects and DIY tasks. A mini circular saw can be used to cut wood pieces, tiles, bricks, plastics, and many more.

Why Is the Compact Circular Saw a Good Choice for Beginners?

Compact circular saws are a great choice for beginners because they are easy to maneuver, lightweight, and easy to transport. They offer beginners the possibilities and flexibility that full-sized saws don’t deliver. Also, beginners would enjoy working with a mini circular saw because it is great for confined spaces.

Most full-size circular saws are strenuous to work with and a bit complicated to handle. But that’s not the case with mini saws! These saws can be easily handled and operated by DIYers and newbies in woodwork.  If you’re a beginner who has limited working space, the compact circular saw is a good choice for you.

Who makes the best mini circular saw?

There are hundreds of models and few brands that make high-performing mini circular saws on the market. Makita, WORX, Rockwell, and Genesis are very reliable manufacturers of the best compact circular saws on the market. Their circular saws are well-designed and built for ultimate performance. That’s not all! You’ll get a very durable and sturdy product at a reasonable price.

Buyer’s Guide – Things to Look Out For Before Buying

There are certain things you need to consider before spending your hard-earned money on a compact circular saw. If you truly want to have the best mini circular saw for your needs, you need to take a look at these important factors.

Power

The very first thing to consider before making a buying decision on your preferred circular saw is the power. The power of a mini circular saw determines how fast it’s going to cut and certainly determining the type of material you can cut with it.

The truth is, mini circular saws are small machine which produces only small amps compared to the kind of amps in full-size saws. You’ll find an average mini circular saw with an average amp ranging from 3-5. Furthermore, you need to choose between a cordless or corded saw.

A cordless saw doesn’t have cord, making it easy to move around the job site. But the only thing you need to consider is the battery life of the saw. The battery life solely determines the amount of work that you’ll be able to complete at a time.

Corded saws offer much more sheer power than battery-powered saws. It is left for you to choose between mobility and convenience vs. reliable power. A full-size circular saw is ideal for people who prefer saws with powerful performance.

Ergonomics & Safety

Many woodworkers suffer hand pain because their tools don’t come with an ergonomic design. Go for a mini circular saw that won’t put too much pressure on your hands quickly. Your preferred mini saw should be lightweight and portable for easy maneuverability and great positions of control. Look out for the size of the grip too.

Make sure it’s not too small or too big. A mini circular saw should feel natural without causing any discomfort. Next, don’t go for a saw that doesn’t have at least one safety function. You have to understand that mini saws are as dangerous as the full-size saw when not used properly. They might be small but still, need to be used properly to avoid injuries and complications. A power brake is an ideal safety option that helps to stop the blades immediately.

Cutting Depth

You’ll complete more tasks when your saw is robust and sharp enough to make deeper cuts.  Most of the 7 ¼” models have a common cutting depth which is 2 ½”. Besides, circular saws are known to have the widest range of replacement blades. The smaller saw models are 6 ½” and 8 ¼”. Lastly, you’ll always find 4 ¼” or 4 ½” blades on the small trim saws.

Extras & Warranty

You need to look out for some extra features like built-in lights, laser guide, adjustable bevel, dust port, waterproof design, depth adjustment, caring cases, safety lock or electric brake, shaft lock/spindle, and easy blade replacement. Go for the features that suit your needs better.

Concerning the warranty, you should consider products with the best warranty service. You’ll get to enjoy a good measure of longevity when you choose a product with a longer warranty. Furthermore, look out for circular saws with refund or replacement warranty.

Ease of Use

This is another important factor to be considered as it makes the working task a hit or miss. Nobody wants to work with any tool that’s not easy to use. Every woodworker or DIYer would love to work with a user-friendly tool. Also, some saw models aren’t meant for left-handed users.

The visibility of the blade plays a huge part in this case. Left-handed users will find it difficult to use saw models with visibility on the left side. Also, right-handed users might find saw models with visibility on the left side difficult to work with. So, just go for the one that suits you properly for ease of use.

Versatility

The versatility of a mini circular saw will be impacted by most of the features we’ve mentioned above. Your circular saw kit must come with multiple blade options because different blades will be needed to cut through different materials.

Best Compact & Mini Circular Saw – Reviews

1. DEWALT DCS571B 4-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw

I believe you are not unheard of DEWALT DCS571 B 4-1/2 Cordless circular saw and its amazing features. You will get to know why it heads our list soon.

This saw is lightweight and compact. It makes super clean cuts with minimum dust. I believe this is the first battery-powered circular saw that has lots of power like the corded one. Moreover, for its being cordless, it is easy to move and can not limit your reach.

It has been 3 years now I am using to it. It still works great. I have the feeling that DEWALT made it for me. I think you will feel the same if you choose to buy it.

Okay, let’s see what it offers in detail. 

With the brushless motor, you can cut plywood, laminate, hardwood, 2*4 timber easily. You will have increased control while cutting. Thanks to its removable auxiliary handle. It’s an onboard blade key storage that gives you hassle-free blade change benefits. Its gear helps to cut 2x material at 90 elegance while bevel lever to bevel at 45 degrees to cut 1X dimensional lumber.

It also comes with an electric blade brake to stop the blade quickly if necessary. Thus, it increases safety and productivity. 

Must give it a try. It won’t disappoint you.

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Minimum dust
  • Powerful
  • Increased control and balance
  • Safe storage
  • Hassle-free blade change
  • Can stop immediately when necessary

Cons:

  • Not worth mentioning

2. DEWALT DCS391B 6-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw

If you are not concerned about speed, then DEWALT DCS391B 20 Volt MAX circular saw fits you well. Its 5150 RPM motor delivers enough power and speed to make it more demanding and handy to experienced woodworkers and hobbyists. You can also get a smooth cut with this power and speed. It’s a cordless saw. It also features magnesium shoes to offer durability and lightweight.

Comfort is provided with a rubber over-molded grip to balance and control. Moreover, it has a 65-inch carbide-tipped blade to cut two* material at 90″ and 45″ 0-50 degree bevel capacity for flexible angle cutting.

It comes aligned and adjusted. You will like the blade brake. Why? Because as soon as you released the trigger, the brake stops immediately. The led light illuminates the line of cut and ensures accurate cuts. It also comes with a safety switch, and it works well. To prevent any accidental hit, I carry the unit without the battery and put the battery in when using it.

Pros:

  • Low price
  • Durable and lightweight
  • Cordless

Cons:

  • Battery and charger are sold separately

3. Makita SH02R1 3-3/8-Inch Cordless Circular Saw

Makita SH02R1 compact saw has a 3-3/8″ blade, which maximizes cuts to a depth of 4″ for a wide variety of cutting applications. You can handle it very quickly. Its movement is smooth. On top of that, you can do your household improvement projects smoothly. You can adjust your cut at a depth of 1″ at go Degree angle and 518″ at 45″ degree angle. It can cut almost everything like plywood, MDE, pegboard, melamine, drywall, and more. To make it’s cutting faster, Makita has built four motors that deliver 1,500 PRM. Above all, it is a powerful and lightweight saw which helps you to set whatever you want according to your needs. It comes with two batteries and a charger.

Makita SH02R1 Lithium-Ion cordless circular saw helps you accomplish your job even in confined spaces. It is compact and lightweight. It weighs only 3.5Ibs with a battery that lessens the operator’s fatigue. With a rubberized soft grip, it also ensures the user’s comfort.

A blade wrench is attached to your saw to change the blade if you ever need to. You also won’t face overloading, over-charging and overheating problems. Thanks to its battery protection circuit.

Pros:

  • Can be adjusted easily
  • Ideal for household improvement
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • No dust port

4. WORX WX429L 4-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw

If you want to get the best one for your trade but on a tight budget, you can go for WORX-WX429L. It is a cost-effective and lightweight yet incredibly powerful and convenient saw.

You can trust the WORX WX429L circular saw for a project or occasional fix around your house. It’s small in size and weighs 50x less than a traditional one. It is cost-effective too.

But don’t go with its size weight and price. It is an incredibly powerful and convenient saw. Its small size and weight just make its maneuver easy and simple.

So, if you want to get the best one for your trade, you can go for WORX-WX429L.

Let’s see what it offers.

It has a thin blade that ensures a quick and easy cut of 2*45 in a single pass. The thin blade also helps to reduce tool strain with its full power and speed of the saw. For quick adjustments, it also has an easy-set depth gauge lever and 0-45-degree bevel settings. Its ability to cut wood, metal, tile, or plastic with ease is its most advantageous feature. It can also cut through nominal 2-inch lumber. A left-sided blade is also well-organized and designed for excellent cut-line visibility and gripped with an integrated safety trigger for comfort, balance, and control. It includes 4-1/2″ WORXSAW 24T Carbide-Tipped Blade, parallel guide, Vaccum Adapter, Allen key.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Lightweight yet strong
  • 3-year warranty

Cons:

  • Overheat if used repeatedly

5. SKILSAW SPT77WML-01 7-1/4-Inch Worm Drive Circular Saw

Only after experiencing this SKILSAW SPT77WML worm drive circular saw do you understand you have already lost much not buying this.

Yes, it is not an exaggeration. This is the lightest worm drive circular in its class so far. It provides the perfect balance, power, and results. It cuts great. It has all the features you could ask for in a circular saw; no unnecessary add-on.

You will find this worm drive circular stays true to SKILSAW quality and performance. It weighs II.5 Ibs making it the most lightweight and maneuverable. Being lightweight, you can carry the saw right through the board like it was a hot knife going through butter.

The saw’s rugged magnesium is to decrease the heat transfer from the motor and it is to keep the motor cooler and give you a powerful performance job offer job.

The torque is also unparalleled; the motor can spin up to 5,300 RPM. With such power and speed, you can power through well 2x lumber all day.

The handle is pointed back behind the saw to help you have accuracy and less fatigue.

On top of that, cut -ready depth of the cut system ensures quick and accurate depth measurement.

It also comes with a spindle lock to quicken blade change, and a saw hook to ensure safe storage on the job site.

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Perfect balance and control
  • Easy maneuverability
  • Less fatigue
  • Accurate depth measurement
  • Safe storage

Cons:

  • Not found

6. Rockwell RK3441K 4-1/2-Inch Corded Circular Saw

Rockwell RK 3441K 4-1/2″ Compact circular saw is highly recommended because of its lightweight. It is only 5 pounds in weight. It can cut through 3*45 in every kind of material in a single pass. Its powerful 5-amp electric motor generates 3500 rpm, which enhances its capability and reliability. This saw can cut at a depth of 1-11/16″ at 90 degrees and 1-1/8″ at 45 degrees. What is praiseworthy about this saw is that it offers you excellent cut line visibility through the left-handed blade. It is a balanced, comfortable saw.

This is also a compact circular saw, But it gives you all functionality and benefits of a full-size circular saw. The lightweight and compact design help you make cuts easily. Also, you can control its weight with just one hand. You will feel more balanced and controlled while using this saw.

You can also clear out debris right out of the air even while in use. What you need to do is to hook up a dust vac and pull it.

You can change the cut even on the fly with the readily accessible adjustable lever while the bevel adjustment lever helps you cut from 0-45 degrees.

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Deep cutting
  • Dust port

Cons:

  • Not having a carrying case

Read More: Rockwell RK3441K Review: An Incredible Circular Saw with Adequate Functionality

7. Rockwell RK3440K Compact Corded Circular Saw

No woodworkers can deny the ambidextrous usefulness of the Rockwell-Circular Saw. It is a powerful, multi-functional 4.0 amp ultra-compact circular saw. It is filled with extraordinary versatility. What amazes a woodworker is its capability of cutting a wide variety of materials such as tile, wood, sheet metal, plastics flooring, and more. It is designed with a slim grip handle, which makes it comfortable and helps you hold it tightly and control it with just one handle. It also includes a laser guide that enables you to align the perfect cut. It features a dust extraction adapter to keep the cut line force of dust for improved visibility.

It features a lock-off switch to prevent accidental starting. With the versa cut, you can even reach in tight spaces that can not be accessed easily by a regular circular saw. It also helps ensure power and accuracy.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Versatile
  • Can cut a wide variety of materials

Cons:

  • Need power

Read More: Rockwell RK3440K Review: A Versatile Circular Saw for Light Cuts

8. BLACK+DECKER BDCCS20B 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw

To get a wide variety of cut BLACK + DECKER BDCCS 20B, 20 Volt Max circular Saw has a fast cutting Blade. If you take into account price and size, it works well. It is easy to adjust, and move anywhere you want. Its tool-free deep cut helps it for easy adjustments.

A high torque motor and easy depth adjustment make woodworkers buy it, though you need to buy a battery and charger separately.

On safety ground, its two-hand hold blade stops instantly when you release the trigger.

Pros:

  • Smooth cut
  • Durable

Cons:

  • Battery and chargers are sold separately
  • More expensive

9. Genesis GCS445SE 4-1/2-Inch Corded Circular Saw

Who are on a tight budget must buy Genesis GCS 445SE 4-1/2 inch corded circular saw. It is affordable. But it is no less than any high-end models in the market.

Usually, a circular saw is huge and not easy to cut use. It is lightweight and compact. It comes with a barrel grip, which helps you operate it with only one hand. It features a small 4.0 amp motor and the motor can spin 3500 RPM. It can power through all 2X material without any issue. This circular saw provides you with easy use of Depth and Bevel controls, which allow you have beveled, rip, and crosscuts easily.

Its spindle lock feature makes your blade change quickly and safely; literally no risk.

It also includes a built- dust port and vacuum adapter to keep your cutting are debris-free.

On top of that, you will get a premium 24 tooth carbide-tipped blade and a rip guide.

Above all, it is unbelievably affordable yet gives an excellent performance. It is compact, lightweight, and easy to use. You may wonder what’s not offers?

So, now you don’t need to end up with cheap products due to a low budget.

Grab it now, enjoy your work.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Easy-to-use Depth and Bevel control
  • Quick blade change
  • Built-in the dust port

Cons:

  • Not worth mentioning

10. TECCPO TAPS22P 3-3/8-Inch Corded Circular Saw

TECCPO TAPS 22P 3-3/8 inch corded circular can be a wise choice for DIY lovers. It is portable, lightweight, compact, and features with an advanced pure copper motor, laser guide, and double safety switch. So, it is guaranteed that you will get a professional touch in your work.

With its powerful 4.8 motors, it gives a high speed of above 3700 RPM. This kind of speed helps you breeze through tile, wood, aluminum, plastics, and flooring in a single pass.

It weighs only 5.25 Ib and also comes with an ergonomic rubber handle. So, you don’t feel much fatigue even working with one hand.

The lightweight and compact design also help you have better control over the saw.

To let you know, the precise laser guide was the deciding factor in my decision to buy this mini circular saw. And I am glad to inform you that it didn’t disappoint me. This feature is to ensure accuracy and precision in cutting.

It also includes a metal scale ruler to guide you to make a precise and perfect cutting line without error.

On safety grounds, it comes with a table safety switch. It prevents accidental start-up. You will get maximum protection for sure.

With the 15-75inch vacuum adapter hooked up with a vacuum cleaner, you can keep your eyes and clothes away from flying sawdust.

What I must tell you is that it may take some to get used to it. But once, it starts working, it just works great.

Buy and ensure a professional touch-up in your work.

Pros:

  • Lightweight
  • Compact
  • Laser guide to ensure accuracy and precision
  • Maximum protection

Cons:

  • Takes some to get used to it

Final Verdict

While buying any power tools, it is obvious that you will think of how well they can perform, or how long they will last, how easy it will be easy to carry, or is it well worth your money, and so on. And it is not illogical and irrelevant. But it may be difficult for you to decide as so many high-performing mini circular saws are on the market. Above I have reviewed some of these, hope that it will be to your benefit. But if you want me to choose one over these, my vote is for DEWALT DCS571B 4-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw. It heads our list too.

It is battery-powered but provides power like the corded one. It’s easily maneuverable; ensures hassle-free blade change, maximum productivity, and safety.

It is the amalgam of what you need in a mini circular saw. I hope we will be on the same page.

Safety Tips While Using Mini Circular Saw

There are some safety tips and precautions to consider before and after cutting with a compact circular saw.

  • Put on protective gear like goggles or a face shield, a respirator or dust mask, and hearing protection.
  • Make sure you check the retracting lower blade guard to ensure it’s functioning properly
  • Ensure you’re working with a sharp blade. Some task requires sturdy and sharp blades.
  • Make sure you check the saw for proper rotation
  • Unplugged the saw as you set the blade depth and lock it at an appropriate depth. Make sure the lowest tooth doesn’t go beyond 0.3 cm beneath the wood piece.
  • Ensure that all the cords are around the cutting area.
  • Make sure the lower blade guard is enclosing the teeth completely and the unused part of the blade when cutting.
  • Don’t ever force the retracting lower guard in the open stance
  • Don’t move the saw with a finger on the trigger switch
  • Make sure you keep proper balance and footing, don’t overreach when cutting
  • Don’t apply too much force when cutting
  • The blade-locking nut must not be over-tightened
  • Check for obstructions like nails and screws before cutting a material
  • Use a guide clamped or a wedge when ripping stock
  • Your hand must not be under the saw guard or the shoe of the saw

How do I maintain my compact circular saw? (Maintenance Tips)

  • Keep your saw away from excessive humidity or moisture as it may cause the blades to rust quickly.
  • Maintain the good performance of your saw by keeping the blades clean all the time. The blade might become dull because of some accumulated sap, pitch, and other sandy materials.
  • Ensure you never use a wire brush to clean the saw blades. You may damage some parts of the blade with a wire brush if care is not taken. Instead, make use of a brass brush or nylon when cleaning the blades. Formula 409 or ammonia are effective cleaners.
  • Keep the blade low when cutting hardwood to prevent overheating. You can get injured when the tip fragment fly back to you when a thermal crack is created in the carbide.
  • Don’t place a mini circular saw blade on cement surfaces or steel. The top grind might be chipped causing the blade to be dull when you rest metal on cement or metal on metal. It is advisable to rest your saw blades on plastic or plywood.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

We’ve compiled a set of questions and answers to give you a solid understanding of the best compact circular saw.  

  • Are mini circular saws any good?

Yes, of course! Mini circular saws are very useful in cutting a variety of materials. These saws will deliver just the saw functionality as traditional circular saws but the only difference is that they have cutting depth limits,  come with lower motor power, and RPM.

  • How deep can a 7 1/4 inch circular saw cut?

The normal cutting depth of a 7 ¼” saw should be around 2 ½”. Depending on the design of the model, some models are capable of cutting up to 3”. If your cutting project needs deep cutting, then go for an 8 ¼” circular saw that cuts more than 4” deep.

  • How long will my compact circular saw last?

A mini circular saw blade will last between 12 and 120 hours of constant use. Although that depends on the material you’re cutting with the blade and the quality of the blade.

  • When using a circular saw is good side up or down?

For safety purposes, you’re intended to cut upwards into the woodpiece or any material with the teeth of circular saw blades from below.

  • What is the Best size circular saw?

The most useful circular saw size for newbies and DIYers is 7 and ¼ inches. Mini circular saws of this size are capable of cutting through more than 3 inches thick.

  • Can a mini circular saw cut a 2×4?

The latest WORXSAW mini circular saw will cut a 2×4 in a single pass.

  • Should my mini circular saw have a laser cutting guide?

It’s quite necessary even if it isn’t required. A laser cutting guide helps provide the most perfect straight and accurate cuts on your wood piece.

  • Is a mini circular saw a “Replacement or Supplement” over a full-size?

Honestly, it depends on your needs. Mini saws are quite helpful in cutting through a variety of materials, but they can’t replace a full-size saw when it comes to heavy-duty cutting tasks that require more power and efficiency.

  • Are all compact circular saws the same?

No! The blades of circular saws are different in shapes and sizes. That’s why they are used for different cutting tasks.

  • Should I get a 6.5 or 7.25 circular saw?

It depends on your cutting task. You can only cut through wood pieces or materials that are 2” in diameter with 6.5 inches saw blades. However, a 7.25 inches saw blade can cut through 4-inch wood pieces or other materials.

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