February 26, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros

Makita 18V Compact Band Saws

Makita Compact Band Saws

Makita Compact Line Focuses On Lightweight, Fast Operation

Band saws are an integral part of a lot of jobs, and particularly in pipework. Since a lot of those pipes exist in overhead spaces, the Makita 18V Compact and Sub-Compact line of band saws make a lot of sense. Not only are they more convenient with 18V batteries instead of dangling cords, but the lightweight and compact frames work well in overhead and one-handed work.

Makita XBP03 Compact Band Saw

Makita Compact Band Saws

This Makita 18V Compact Band Saw gives you fast, smooth, safe cuts. It’s light enough for one-handed operation, making overhead work easy. Blade installation/replacement is quick and the feature set makes your work efficient. The tradeoff to the compactness is the 2-1/2-inch cutting capacity, but we’d bet that’s enough for the majority of cuts you’ll need to make. Makita did everything right with this band saw – and we’re more productive for it.

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Makita 18V Compact Band Saw Specs

  • Model numbers: XBP03Z (bare tool); XBP03T (kit)
  • Cutting capacity (round workpiece): 2-1/2 in.
  • Cutting capacity (rectangular workpiece) : 2-1/2 x 2-1/2 in.
  • Speed (no load): 630 fpm
  • Blade length: 32-7/8 in.
  • Overall length: 18-3/4 in.
  • Weight (w/battery): 9 lbs.
  • Built-in light
  • Price (XBP03Z bare tool): $234.99
  • Price (XBP03T kit): $343.18

Makita XBP04 Compact Band Saw

The Makita XBP04 Compact Band Saw takes the good foundation of the XBP03 and adds a brushless motor to the design. The result is a smaller-framed band saw with an even greater cut capacity.

Makita Compact Band Saws

With its variable speed dial, the brushless motor on this cordless band saw delivers 0-630 ft per minute, which falls into line with the rest of the Makita Compact lineup. However, out of the options available, the XBP04 offers the best cut capacity at 2-5/8″. Constant speed control automatically applies additional power under load to maintain blade speed.

It measures in at 15-1/2″ long and only weighs 7.9 lbs with the battery attached, making one-handed operation not only possible but really comfortable. It does feature an optional auxiliary side handle that threads on for when two-handed operation is still ideal.

Makita Compact Band Saws

The Makita XBP04 features a blade tracking dial in the event the band saw blade tends to slip out from the wheel. An adjustable stopper plate also lets you make flush to surface cuts. The hex wrench for adjusting that stopper plate stores onboard. However, the blade change lever doesn’t require any tools, which keeps swapping out the 32-7/8″ x 1/2″ blade a quick and painless process.

Makita Compact Band Saw Specs

  • Model: Makita XBP04Z (bare tool)
  • Cutting capacity (round workpiece): 2-5/8 in.
  • Cutting capacity (rectangular workpiece) : 2-5/8 x 2-5/8 in.
  • Speed (no load): 630 fpm
  • Blade length: 32-7/8 in.
  • Overall length: 15-1/2 in.
  • Variable Speed Dial: Yes
  • Weight (w/battery): 7.9 lbs.
  • Built-in light
  • Price: $299

Makita XBP05 Sub-Compact Band Saw

Finally, Makita also offers a sub-compact option in this line of cordless band saws. It also features a brushless motor that generates 630 feet per second. Again, Makita includes the constant speed control on this model as well. Like Makita sub-compact drills and impact drivers, this tool provides 12V size and power while keeping you on the familiar 18V LXT platform.

Makita Compact Band Saws

The Makita Sub-Compact saves even more space with a 14-3/4″ length. It has a 2″ cut capacity. This is not as much cut capacity as the XBP04, but it’s smaller and lighter at 7.3 lbs. Any of these Makita Band Saws make for a good choice in overhead or one-handed application, but this model slightly tips the scales in compactness. The only problem Makita has is that its XBP04 already feels so compact, you may not want or need to drop down to their sub-compact model.

Makita Compact Band Saws

The XBP05 features a catch bar to keep your from accidental follow through on repetitive cutting. An adjustable stopper gives you material support for flush cuts. And, like the other saws, you get toolless blade changes and toolless tracking adjustments. On this model, Makita doesn’t make a side handle an available option.

Makita Sub-Compact Band Saw Specs

  • Model: Makita XBP05ZB (bare tool), XBP05PT (kit)
  • Cutting capacity (round workpiece): 2 in.
  • Cutting capacity (rectangular workpiece) : 2 x 2 in.
  • Speed (no load): 630 fpm
  • Blade length: 28-3/4 in.
  • Overall length: 14-3/4 in.
  • Variable Speed Dial: No
  • Weight (w/battery): 7.3 lbs.
  • Built-in light
  • Bare Tool Price: $279
  • Kit Price: $339

Related Accessories

  • E-04139 28‑3/4″ 18 TPI Bi‑Metal Sub‑Compact Portable Band Saw Blade‑$11.99
  • E-06264 28‑3/4″ 24 TPI Bi‑Metal Sub‑Compact Portable Band Saw Blade‑$11.99
  • B-40559 32‑7/8″ 18 TPI Bi‑Metal Compact Portable Band Saw Blade, 5/pk‑$49
  • B-40543 32‑7/8″ 14 TPI Bi‑Metal Compact Portable Band Saw Blade, 5/pk‑$49

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