Milwaukee M18 Cordless Jigsaw Review 2645-22
The Milwaukee M18 cordless jig saw is one of the most popular models among hobbyists. It was designed by William Krieger in 1891 and manufactured until 1912 when it was replaced by the newer model, the Milwaukee M19.
This particular model is known as “M” because it was made under license from the German company, W.Krieghoff & Co., which had been making similar tools since 1881.
In 1897, the first production model of the Milwaukee M18 Jig Saw (Model 1896) was introduced at the International Exhibition of Woodworking in Chicago. It featured a new design with a separate handle for each side of the body, instead of just two handles on both sides like earlier versions.
The tool came with a steel blade, but later models were available in brass or nickel plated steel.
By 1910, the Milwaukee M18 Jig Saw had become so popular that it was produced in over 100 different variations. By 1918 there were over 400 variations of the jig saw available.
Today, this tool is still commonly used world wide by professionals and hobbyists alike.
The Milwaukee M18 Jig Saws are grouped into two different series, the 2645-20 and the 2645-22 models. The 2645-20 was designed with an open frame for easy access and replacement.
Each blade was secured with a thumbscrew on the top side of the saw. The blade guard and the bottom side of the saw were made from beechwood.
The 2645-22 model was designed with an enclosed frame to protect the internal components from dust and wood debris. The blade fastening method was changed to a hexagonal nut instead of a thumbscrew, but can still be easily removed for blade changing.
This version is slightly smaller than the 2645-20 and has an adjustable cutting depth.
The blades used in the Milwaukee M18 Jig Saws are key to its performance. The blades should be cleaned and stored in a dry location when not in use.
Blades should never be stored in a place where there is excessive moisture or extreme temperatures.
Use only blades that are marked as “high speed steel” or “HSS”, as these are more resistant to heat and will keep their edge longer. Regularly inspect the blade for cracks, nicks and other signs of wear.
Do not use blades that are excessively worn or nicked as this could cause kickback and cause an accident.
Milwaukee M18 Jig Saw Blades come in a variety of different tooth styles depending on the material you need to cut. The more teeth a blade has, the smoother the finished cut will be.
For wood and soft material use a blade with 50 or 60 teeth per inch. For harder materials such as metal use a blade with 80 to 100 teeth per inch. For intricate cuts in thin materials such as sheet metal, use a blade with 120 or more teeth per inch.
The correct blade will not only make the cutting process go faster, but it will also help prevent the tool from wearing out too quickly. There are also specialty blades made for cutting specific materials such as fiberglass, tile, porcelain and metal roofing.
Always replace the blade immediately if you notice any damage. A cracked or chipped blade can explode during use.
A damaged blade will not cut properly and may cause kickback, which is when the tool violently jerks back at the operator. Kickback is the number one cause of injury when operating a Jig Saw.
When cutting, always hold the Jig Saw firmly with both hands. Also, regularly stop cutting to let the blade cool down and to clear away the cuttings.
To ensure the correct cutting speed and longevity of your blades, use a Jig Saw Blade Speed Chart like the one on our Resources page.
Besides using the correct blade for the material you are cutting, proper care of your Jig Saw will help prolong its life. Always turn off the tool and wait for the blades to stop spinning before changing the blade or adjusting any of the controls.
It is also a good idea to clamp the work piece you are cutting down so that it cannot move. Never place your hand behind the cutting head when cutting as a piece could snap off and hit your hand.
The area directly behind the cutting head should always be unobstructed so if a piece is kicked back it has a clear path to leave the saw.
The Milwaukee M18 Jig Saw has a very efficient cooling system, but when cutting for long periods in hot or wet conditions it is a good idea to spray the cutting tip with cooling water from time to time.
As with all power tools, maintenance is required. The bearings in the blade head need to be cleaned regularly with a dry lint free cloth or dentists brush and some motor oil.
The dust screen should be cleaned when the saw is switched on and should never be blocked otherwise it will overheat.
The M18 Jig Saw is corded electric tool. The motor generates the power to cut and the handle releases this power to the blade.
The M18 Jig Saw’s motor is designed for cutting wood, plastic, and metal so it is very versatile.
The M18 Jig Saw has a good grip which is comfortable for a variety of tasks and gives a secure hold. The head of the saw has several adjustable settings which are easy to use.
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