DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Saw Review

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DEWALT DCS334 XR 20 Volt Jig Saw

DEWALT DCS334 XR 20 Volt Jig Saw

4.5/5
Manufacturer: DEWALT
Model number: DCS334
Price: $179.00 Bare $329.00 Kitted
Power source: 20 Volt Cordless
Motor size: Brushless 3200 SPM
Weight: 4.6 lbs
There is no doubt that today’s cordless tools make our work easier, and save time on tasks. DEWALT just released the DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Saw which is aD-handle model, and will soon follow up with a barrel grip saw in January 2019.

For those of you wondering, the XR stands for “extended runtime,” and is designed to deliver advanced electronics, extended run-time and faster application speeds for extreme performance.

Jig saws are a power tool that really benefit from going cordless. Anyone that’s spent time spinning a jig saw around cutting out a hole know how often the cord would be in the way. Not having to worry about the cord is a huge safety and productivity improvement.

We’ve had some time to use D-handle Jig Saw on our jobsites and here’s what is new:

First Impression

DEWALT redesigned this newer model which is smaller, lighter [4.6lbs], faster, has a lowered motor position, and improved the blade clamp.

Redesigned Blade Clamp

The older model had been designed to accept both U-shank and T-shank blades. The problem with that model is that it did not hold the U-shank blades well, causing user frustration. U-shank blades, in our opinion, tend to wobble, flex more, and produce more tear-out than T-shank blades.

The new DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Saw has a more reliable and durable blade clamp. DEWALT reworked the entire mechanism and actually reduced the number of parts in it. The result is a well-designed secure blade clamp with a better designed release lever.  The blade clamp does NOT eject the blade.

Variable Speed Dial and Increase Strokes Per Minute

There is a variable speed dial adjustment on the top handle, and a variable speed trigger that controls the saw from 0 to 3,200 strokes per minute. [SPM] This is a blade stroke increase from the older saw that offered 3,000 SPM.

The saw does have a variable speed trigger, but the dial lets the user “set and forget” the speed, on the saw and pull the trigger fully. The variable speed dial also has a ratchet-like action that “clicks” every number you move it, to prevent accidentally changing the setting with your hand.

Having a variable speed dial, results in freeing up focus on trigger/ blade speed and allows the users to focus fully on maneuvering the saw through the cut. The obvious win here is that it’s easier to operate for more precise a cuts.

Brushless Motor

The DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Saw was redesigned with a brushless motor that operates quieter, and sits lower to the work surface giving the user more control. The older model was taller, and noisier.  The barbell grip saw will provided even more control.

After using both saws it’s obvious to us, that the new model is more powerful and much smoother to operate.

Accuracy and Blade Deflection

To minimize blade deflection and improve accuracy, DEWALT lowered the position of the saw bearing, wheel-retainer, which helps stiffen the blade. Additionally, the groove in the bearing wheel is deeper, so the blade indexes better and stays in place.

I often find that a jigsaw’s quality can be summed up pretty fast if you try to cut a 45-degree bevel on a piece of 3/4″ plywood. If you can cut that bevel in a nice straight line without fighting the jigsaw than you’ve got a winning combination. This jigsaw had no problem cutting nice straight 45-degree bevel cuts over long lengths.

We tested the jigsaw in Mahogany, Pine, Maple and plywood. The saw cuts well in all of those materials, and tracks well. We made straight, 45 degree and scroll cuts and checked for square and parallels. We made some moderate, and aggressive scroll cutting in hard Maple. On this test we did see some moderate deflection.

Less Vibration

All jigsaws employ some sort of counterbalance system to reduce the up-and-down shaking created by the reciprocating plunger and blade.DEWALT updated this saws counter balance system and its noticeable.

The older saw had a longerScotch Yoke reciprocating motion mechanism which resulted in more vibration. A Scotch Yokeconverts the linear motion of a slider into rotational motion. (or visa-versa) resulting in the vertical blade movement.

Less vibration translates into less vibration and more accuracy.

Blade Change and Blade Stroke

The front of this tool has an all-metal, key-less, lever actuated, blade change that just screams of quality craftsmanship and mechanical design.   This jigsaw uses all standard T-shank blades.

The saw features a 1-inch stroke length, 4-position orbital actionswitch to allow the jigsaw versatility when cutting different materials.

Bevel Adjustment

The all-metal keyless shoe bevel has detents at 0° and 45° and holds its position in between those settings well.

2 LED Lights

Two LED lights were added to the DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Saw, which is a trend we are seeing on most cordless tools. LEDs are cheap, draw little power, illuminate the work surface, and enhance the user experience through increased safety and quality of cut. These LEDs do a great job at illuminating the line of cut and stay on for 21 seconds after the trigger is released.

Integral Dust Blower

The older model had a dust blower that you could flip a switch, to turn on or off and control. User experience was that most folks hadn’t a clue what the switch was for or how to use it. The new DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Sawhas an integrated dust blower that operates all the time, which is smart and efficient. There is no control switch to operate it, reducing confusion. We found the dust blower to work ok – not great.

Dust Collection

Currently there is no dust collection on the U.S. version of the XR jig saw. The model in Europe does have one, and you will see a dust port option that slides under the shoe plate in 2019.

Improvements

I did not like the anti-splinter insert and challenge DEWALT to find a better alternative to their flimsy, plastic insert.  This insert is designed to reduce workpiece tear-out but does not stay in place and fell out on us several times.

The dust blower could be more aggressive, I still found myself blowing the dust off my cut line.

How much and Where to Buy

Available in fall 2018, the XR Brushless Jigsaw comes kitted and as a bare tool.

  • Kitted with a 5.0Ah Battery, charger and toolboxfor $329 MSRP (DCS334M1)
  • Bare tool for $179 MSRP (DCS334B)

DEWALT will also be launching a barrel grip version in January 2019 that will be sold as a bare tool for $199 MSRP (DCS335B).

Overall Conclusion

Power tools get abused, day-in and day-out, yet we expect them to continue performing like the day we bought them. In a day of more and more plastic parts in the tool industry we were really impressed with DEWALT’s heavy duty, metal parts/features.

Overall this is a really impressive tool with thoughtful improvements its earlier model. It’s a compact, powerful, and easy to use jigsaw.

What more do you need?

DEWALT DCS334 XR Jig Saw Video Review

About the author

Rob Robillard

Robert Robillard is also the Editor of Tool Box Buzz and the editor of the blog, A Concord Carpenter and principal of a carpentry and renovation business located in Concord, Massachusetts. As a carpenter and web editor, Rob is a recognized leader in tool and how-to information for building professionals. He is the carpenter correspondence for and writes a Q&A column, in the Sunday Boston Globe, called "Ask the Carpenter."He hosts the Concord Carpenter Cable TV Show,, offering the do-it-yourself audience in Boston’s Metro West region expert advice on home repairs and maintenance. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review - Video Channel, where we post all of our tool reviews and video editorials. Rob enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate on best practices in the remodeling industry. The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

http://www.aconcordcarpenter.com/@https://twitter.com/robertrobillardRob Robillard

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