Bosch 18V Cordless Top-Handle Jigsaw Maintains Control with Low Vibration
Bosch has a long history of quality pro-grade tools fit for serious professionals and their woodworking tools are no exception. We brought in the Bosch 18V cordless D-handle jigsaw as part of our look at the best cordless jigsaws of the year. Despite its age, this workhorse still keeps popping up among our favorites.
- Incredibly low vibration
- Outstanding control
- One-handed blade change
- Compact design
- No tool-free bevel adjustmemt
- No lock-on feature
- One of few professional models still using a brushed motor
Bosch 18V Cordless Top-Handle Jigsaw Performance
The Bosch 18V cordless jigsaw is a little slower than some other pro-level jigsaws at just 2700 SPM. For most professional jigsaws, it’s typical to see average SPM rates between 3000-3500. However, even with the slower SPM rate and sporting a brushed motor, the JSH180B powered through finish boards and even 2x with relative ease.
A four-position selector switch lets you easily adjust how aggressive the blade cuts, depending on your material and desired level of precision.
This jigsaw has a ridiculously low level of vibration while in use compared to its cordless competitors. I could easily use this thing all day without experiencing the dreaded jelly-arms. The low vibration level also aids in staying on your line during a precise cut.
I took to the shop in an effort to really understand this saw’s level of control, I gotta say…the Bosch did not disappoint. Cutting semi-circles, curves, and corners, the control was outstanding, even at 45° bevel.
Several things come together to make it happen. The aforementioned vibration control plays a big part and so does the size of the tool. Compared to other D-handle models, Bosch’s design is shorter, putting your hands closer to the material. Add in that lower stroke rate and this was the easiest D-handle model to control from our test group.
Unlike many of its competitors, this cordless jigsaw features a variable speed trigger only instead of pairing it with a speed control knob. Personally, I didn’t mind because I prefer to have my finger on the pulse of the tool, so to speak.
If you prefer an on/off switch rather than a trigger, or would like a barrel grip design, take a look at the Bosch GST18V-47N.
Pro tip: Blade selection plays a big part in how tight you can cut curves with a jigsaw. Learn more about blade selection here.
Bosch 18V Cordless Top-Handle Jigsaw Design Notes
Size and Weight
Right out of the box we noticed that this jigsaw is more compact than most cordless models. Standing just 7.5 inches tall and 8.5 inches in length, this makes it one of the smallest 18V jigsaws we’ve tested. The saw weighs 5.31 pounds with a 4.0Ah Core18V battery. As a bare tool, it’s a very reasonable 4.13 pounds.
Bosch chose to go the traditional route with its bevel adjustment mechanism. Simply loosen the screw on the bottom of the aluminum shoe and use the gauge on the back of the saw to get your desired bevel angle. When finished, the included Allen key securely stows away near the back of the tool.
The one-handed blade change is one of my favorite features on this saw. Gone are the days of touching hot saw blades. The blade clamp locks in the open position, so to install, take your favorite Bosch T-shank blade and firmly insert it into the chuck. You’ll hear a click when the blade seats correctly. When it’s time for a swap, rotate the lever on the chuck and that piping hot blade will automatically eject with spring-loaded enthusiasm.
Bosch keeps it pretty simple with the accessories accompanying this jigsaw. You’ll receive one stock blade, an anti-splinter insert(JA1013), and the bevel wrench.
- LED worklight
- Trigger saftey
Bosch 18V Cordless Top-Handle Jigsaw Price
At the time we’re writing this, the Bosch 18V top-handle jigsaw is running $149.00 and is only available as a bare tool. Keep in mind that you’ll need to pick up a battery and charger if you’re not already on the Bosch 18V platform.
The Bottom Line
The Bosch 18V cordless top-handle jigsaw lacks a brushless motor and is on the slow side compared to the top cordless models, but its other attributes make up for it. If control and low vibration are high on your priority list, giving up some top-end speed makes this saw completely worth it.
To learn more about the full Bosch 18V lineup, click here
Bosch 18V Cordless Top-Handle Jigsaw Specifications
- Model: Bosch JSH180
- Blade Type: T-shank
- Stroke Length: 1-inch
- No-Load SPM: 2700
- Weight: 4.13 pounds(bare), 5.31 pounds(With 4.0Ah Core 18V battery)
- Up to 45-degree bevel
- Dimensions: 8.5″ x 7.5″ x 3″
- Max capacity in wood: 3 1/2-inch
- Max capacity in steel: 3/8-inch
You guys are the best. Very thorough in your reviews!