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92 of 100 found the following review helpful:
BewareApr 11, 2007
By T. Sheffield
I have used a Dewalt jig saw many times before with excellent results. This led me to buy one of my own. I chose the DW331K because of its power and especially for the ability to do bevel cuts without either an allen wrench or a screwdriver to make the adjustment. I also liked the toolless blade change and that is where the problem lies. The arm that is the pivot point for the blade release is extremely thin where the pivot point is. As a result, in very short order this little arm broke. This renders the saw unusable until it is repaired. After this happened I used a co-workers same saw that he got because he liked mine so much. When he tried to change the blade the same thing happened to him. This was within several hours of mine breaking. Coincidence? No. It would appear to be a design flaw. The pivot point should have been beefed up or a stronger material used. It appears to be some sort of white metal casting. At least the bevel adjustment works great so far. I'm not sure if I would buy another knowing what I know now and I have many Dewalt products. We'll see how they treat their customers now.
This is now six months later and I must downgrade my previous rating to one star. After spending shipping money to have the saw fixed under warranty it has broken again in exactly the same way. It has also developed the loose bevel adjustment lever that others have spoken about. This problem however can be fixed with an allen wrench on the bottom of the saw but if you make it too tight it makes it difficult to move the lever; it must be just right. This saw is more of a headache than it is worth so now I will be purchasing a Bosch as the one that I have used in the past is great with none of the headaches of the Dewalt....I hope.
Well here we are more than a year later. The blade clamp/release has broken for a third and final time. This saw is a total piece of junk. I have had enough of Dewalt altogether. I purchased the Bosch with quick blade release and simple bevel adjustment and so far it is far superior to the Dewalt. From now on I will ignore Dewalt and stick with Makita and Bosch as they seem to actually hire engineers to design their tools.
77 of 83 found the following review helpful:
A great jigsaw!Oct 15, 2005
By Kermit Howell
I really like this jigsaw! I've been using a Bosch jigsaw, and while it is a very good jigsaw I never really warmed up to it. When Dewalt brought out the DW331K I looked it over and decided to try it. I'm glad I did. First I like the quick, easy, no tool blade change. I far prefer the lever type system that Dewalt uses to the spinning knob system that Bosch uses. Every time I changed blades on the Bosch and the knob snapped when it locked the blade in it always felt like something had just broken. Also another feature that I'm really happy with is the dust blower on the Dewalt. It works! The dust blower on my Bosch has never worked well at all. I also like Dewalt tools because they appear to be of good quality, and sensibly built. I may keep the Bosch as a backup, but when it comes to a jigsaw the Dewalt DW331K is my weapon of choice.
43 of 46 found the following review helpful:
Great Saw, but takes some playing withApr 18, 2007
By J. Eklund
"I spend too much time on research...."
I have had this saw for about 8 months now, and I have to say that it has been great. I haven't used it as much as some other people may in that time, but it's been very handy when I've needed it. When I first received this item, it seemed to have scratches on it. The blade also fell out when I went to use it. I sent it back to Amazon, who was completely awesome about the return, and received a new one.
When I got the new one, I opened the box and was shocked to see some of the same scratches on the saw that the one I sent back had. When I went to use it, I noticed the same bevel problems that others have stated- even at 0 the bevel would slide under pressure. Since the jig saw is the kind of tool you lean on a little when you use it, this was unacceptable. I called Amazon and got a third saw- figuring 3 strikes and you're out.
The third saw came, and there weren't as many "scratches". It appears upon closer inspection, that what I saw may have just been marks from the case. I started using the saw a little more and noticed something interesting. The shoe moved not only in a beveled left/right motion, but also front to back. The arm to release the shoe would give some pressure no matter what, and appear to hold the shoe in place until I put pressure on it. On inspecting the motion more closely- I realized that the shoe is designed to have the arm unlocked, then you pull back the shoe, set the bevel, push it forward to click it into place, and then lock the arm. It is VERY easy to miss this "push forward" step and then the shoe would not lock. Once it's done right though, the shoe is unmoveable. My mistake- I am glad I figured it out though. I'm not sure if this would solve other's issues with the bevel not staying in place on this saw, but I think it may.
The next issue is the blade falling out. This happened to me a few times, and I finally figured this one out too. The blade goes in very firmly. You also have to have the lever all the way open to get it in all the way. Once it's in, you release the lever and pull the blade down to check it (please do this with the saw unplugged). You will feel how firm it is in there. As one other reviewer mentioned- you have to play with it a little to get the feel for it.
And finally- put good quality blades on this thing. The blades it comes with are sub-par. I bought a nice set of Bosch blades for something like $10 and they are far superior. Match the blade to the intended use. You'll be suprised at the difference it makes. Using inferior blades I couldn't cut square or smooth. With the bosch blades on this thing- I am amazed at how smooth things are. I do wish I could cut a little straighter with it- but I am pretty inexperienced with the jigsaw, and one end of the blade does roam freely, so some motion is to be expected. I have cut counter tops, pine, and maple with this thing though and everything comes out perfectly as long as you're careful.
All in all, I would give this 4.5 stars due to the fact that it came scratched because the case isn't designed "pefectly" (although I'd rather they give a great tool and an OK case than an OK tool and a perfect case), the fact that it comes with inferior blades, and the fact that you have to master a couple of tricks to overcome the complaints others have mentioned. However, I am thrilled with the purchase now and love the tool- I wouldn't hesitate to buy it again.
One last note- when I was searching I was looking between this saw and the Bosch 1790EVSK. I decided to break from the pack and go with the Dewalt. I just liked the way it felt in my hand better. Personal choice. I am sure the Bosch is also a great saw and since I've never used it I can't compare directly. However, I can't imagine it is perfect, or that much better than the Dewalt. If I was buying again- I know it would come down to the Bosch or the Dewalt and I would go to a store and hold each tool and pick the one I thought felt better. Maybe I'd be shocked if I used a Bosch- but I think that many of the Bosch users may be shocked if they gave the Dewalt a shot too.
37 of 41 found the following review helpful:
Time To UpgradeJan 10, 2006
By Bob Hogan
First let me say that 97% of my portable electric tools and air staplers/nailers are from Porter Cable. They and Delta remain my standards for comparison. I broke my old PC 348 jigsaw and nearly cried when I was told that most critical parts are no longer availabe. But then, I purchased it back in the late 70's so it has been a true workhorse. So what to replace it with? After much research and hands on at various tool stores I settled on the DeWalt DW331 and let me tell you that this is one fine machine in every way and that the yellow D can be very proud of this product. I rate it a full 10. Wonder if I can get 20+ years out of this one - I think perhaps. Best feature - the ability to flush cut to the wall. WOW!! The vibration is minimal, the adjustments are rock solid, the grip is as good as gets for a top handle, and jeesh there is gobs of power. Buy this one if you want to own the current standard for corded jigsaws. Oh, the yellow means it can't hide in the pile - it's like its saying "I'm over here, silly".
11 of 13 found the following review helpful:
need BOSCH blades, but still a huge problem with this saw.Jun 12, 2007
The other reviewers had complained about having the blade fall out. I had that problem too, but then realized that, for whatever reason, you have to use BOSCH "T-Shank" blades and not DEWALT blades. Since then I have not had any problems at all with them falling out, and have put some through very grueling tests. Long curves in 2" American Walnut for example.
The HUGE problem that I have had with this is with the shoe angle. I tried to get some intermediate angles with it when I first bought it, and it would never hold, continuously falling back into a stop. Now, I am having to tape that little lever in the back in place, just to keep it at 90degrees! The tape is working fine, since the problem seems to be that the lever just lets go, but I don't think of myself as the "duct-tape-will-fix-it" kind of a guy.
Yeah, the saw has the muscles to cut almost anything you would use a jigsaw for, but why would anyone buy a wimpy saw in the first place? All the higher end brands have enough power. I love the saw's blade system (best I have ever seen), the shoe plate is a great size and shape and it's non-scratch, removable pad is fantastic for cutting pre-finished trim, and veneered products. I just wish that it was able to cut a straight line! I know the trend is to have "tool-less" function these days, but a simple hex head screw on the bottom, like everyone else does, is not a wheel that need to be re-invented.
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