Those looking for a compact, battery-powered jigsaw should give Makita’s new 12-volt CXT model a closer look. It features a Makita-built variable speed motor that delivers from 0 to 2,900 strokes per minute at an 11/16-in. stroke length, plus three orbital settings and a straight cutting setting to suit a wide range of materials. At under 10-in. long and weighing 3.8 lbs. with a battery installed, this jigsaw can cut wood up to 2-9/16-in. thick with its die-cast aluminum baseplate set at 90 degrees. It will cut aluminum up to 5/32-in. thick or 1/16-in.-thick mild steel.
The tool’s blade mount accepts T-shank jigsaw blades. An onboard wrench will help to make blade changes more quickly.
Other standard features include a low-profile design for improved handling in confined areas, pivoting baseplate that tips left or right to 45 degrees, a built-in dust blower to keep cutting line-of-sight clear and both an electric brake and lock-on button for continuous operation.
The jigsaw is powered by Makita’s 12V max CXT™ Lithium-ion batteries (it is not compatible with 12V max pod style batteries and chargers).
You can buy the Makita 12V max CXT Jigsaw (model VJ04Z) as a bare tool for around $99, which includes a jigsaw blade. Or, in kit form for about $175 (model VJ04R1), the jigsaw also comes with a blade, two 12V max CXT 2.0 Ah batteries, charger and a tool case.