DeWalt DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw Review
The DeWalt DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw takes the best of the old 18V tool and combines it with new electronics, a more powerful motor and updated battery technology. With an industry leading 1-1/8″ stroke, an adjustable depth of cut shoe and a unique four-position blade clamp, many professional contractors and tradesmen have come to depend on the tried and true DeWalt cordless reciprocating saw. This new saw builds on this reputation and adds a longer run time and a more comfortable grip thanks to the new 20V MAX battery technology.
DeWalt DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw Features
The DeWalt DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw comes in a tough hard case that also includes one 3.0Ah 20V MAX battery and a universal charger that is compatible with all the 12V and 20V MAX series of batteries. Delivering 0-3000 SPM (strokes per minute) with a 1-1/8″ inch stroke length, you can be sure that you can tackle most cutting and demolition jobs with relative ease. This is a standard reciprocating saw in that it does not offer or operate in a orbital mode. Perhaps in future iterations an orbital optioned saw will be available to make demolition work even faster. To protect the motor and shaft, there is a double oil sealed shaft that helps to reduce contamination and provide durability. A pivoting adjustable shoe allows depth of cut control and can help to extend blade life. Adjusting the shoe is easy and is done by simply pressing the round yellow button up near blade end of the saw. One of the most handy features of this saw is the four-way multi-positional blade clamp that offers more versatility since it allows for easier flush cutting and reaching tight spaces. As is the case with all the new 20V tools, the grip on this saw is slimmed down and has extra black rubber overmold which goes a long ways in helping to make this tool more ergonomic. The entire front portion of the saw is covered with a thick rubber shield that not only gives a good place to grip the barrel of the way, but also helps to offer some vibration control and also protect the all metal gear case that is inside.
New to the 20V MAX line of tools is electronics that are built into the switches. The idea of these electronics is to provide peak life for the tools and batteries by helping to protect them from overheating, overloading and deep discharge during use. The 20V MAX designation for these tools is just the voltage measurement that comes from a
battery that is freshly charge with no applied load. Once being used in a tool, they measure a nominal 18 volts. The reason for the new new name is because DeWalt wanted to minimize the confusion with their current 18V line which they will continue to manufacture. Unlike the 18V top post design like we know, the new 20V MAX batteries are a slide on sled style much like their new 12V MAX compact cordless tools. The DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw comes with a three-year limited warranty, one-year free service contract and 90-day money-back guarantee. The included 3.0Ah lithium-ion battery pack come with a three-year free service contract. The 3.0Ah Lithium-Ion battery provides up to 35 percent more runtime than other DeWalt Lithium-Ion batteries on the market and only takes 30 minutes to fully charge.
Testing and Use
For many demolition and construction projects, contractors and tradesmen know that having a good reciprocating saw is an indispensable tool. Many times, it is the only type of saw that will work for many situations. The DeWalt DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw has the features and functionality that we would expect for a professional grade tool. Pretty much, it has everything that you need and nothing that you don’t. That is with the exception that this saw does not have a orbital mode. The long 1-1/8″ stroke with a fast 3000 strokes per minute will make up for that from what we could tell in our tool testing. The saw has a reasonable heft to it but in no way did it make it unmanageable. The new pistol grip handle shape did a lot to make the saw more comfortable to hold. Probably one of our favorite features is the four-position blade clamp that makes it super easy to position the blade exactly for the cut you are trying to make. All in all this saw had a very familiar feel since in many ways it is similar to the current 18V version.
The DeWalt DCS380L1 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Reciprocating Saw is an great choice for remodelers, contractors, carpenters, plumbers, electricians, and mechanical contractors. The extended run time of the new 20V MAX batteries along with the smart electronic technology that is built into this new line of tools make for a compelling decision. For our Performance rating, we gave this reciprocating saw a 7/10 because we liked the four position keyless blade clamp and the long 1-1/8 inch stroke length. For our Value rating we gave this tool a 5/10 since it only comes with one battery and comes in at a price point that is higher then many competitive products on the market. Probably the best way to pick up one of these reciprocating saws is to spend a little bit more money and spring for a combo kit that includes the reciprocating saw along with some other useful tools.