Scroll Saw Vs. Band Saw

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  March 28, 2022
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The saw is an incredibly useful tool. It is a tool that cuts solid materials into the desired shape and size. In cabinetry, sculpting, or other similar works, power saws play a vital role.

Saws are tools that basically use blades to cut through hard materials like wood, metal, or glass. There are two types of a blade in a saw, one being a strip with teeth like grooves and the other being a sharp spiky disk. Strip-blade saw can be hand or machine powered while the circular disk bladed saw is machine powered only.

There are many kinds of saws available in the market. Some of them are the hand saw, band saw, scroll saw, and many more. They vary according to size, functionality, usage, and type of blade used.


In this article, we are going to paint a brief picture of the scroll saw and the band saw and do a scroll saw vs. band saw comparison for you to ascertain the correct tool for yourself.

Scroll Saw

Scroll saw is an electric powered instrument. It uses a blade strip to cut through hard objects. The scroll saw is a light tool and is very helpful to make small crafts or artworks, designs, or anything that needs precision without being too large.

These tools aren’t much used in heavy tasks. They cannot cut through large pieces of wood. Generally, anything beyond 2 inches of wood is impossible for the scroll saw to cut through.

The scroll saw cuts away hard materials in a downward direction. That makes it, so that little to no dust is created while working on a project. Silence is also a strong point of the scroll saw. It is also a relatively safe instrument.

Most of the time, the saw cuts so delicately and smoothly that the end product needs little to no sanding. It is able to go through tighter spaces thanks to the precise action of the machine. Difficult pierce cuts are easy to pull off using this instrument.

The instrument comes with variable speed control and tilt functionality. Thanks to the tilt function, you don’t have to tilt the table to make angular cuts, which could potentially ruin the perfection of the piece. Instead, the head can be tilted to adjust the angle. There is also a foot pedal functionality that allows the user to hold the piece steady using both hands.

That being said, let us highlight some of the advantages and disadvantages the instrument provides.



  • It makes little to no noise.
  • Using this type of saw doesn’t produce a lot of dust
  • By swapping the blade for a steel or diamond blade, it can be used to cut through metal or diamond as well.
  • It is very safe to use.
  • A scroll saw provides unparalleled precision, which makes it ideal for delicate artworks or sculpting


  • This type of saw is not designed to cut through thicker or multiple stacks of materials.
  • It can heat up a lot, really fast.
  • The blade tension causes the blade to loosen often; this can, however, be tightened again.

Band Saw

The band saw is a powerful saw tool. It is generally electrically powered. When it comes to woodworking, metalworking, and lumbering, the band saw is really useful. As the band saw is really powerful, it can also be used to cut through various other materials.

A strip of the metal blade is coiled around two wheels positioned above and below the table. This blade moves in a downward direction spontaneously, which generated the cutting force. Since the motion is downwards, less dust is produced.

A band saw is a very commonly used saw. It is used by butchers to cut meats, carpenters to cut out wood into the desired shape or resaw lumber, metal workers to cut through the metal bar, and many more. Therefore, we can have a basic understanding of the versatility of this instrument.

The instrument excels in cutting curved shapes like circles and arcs. As the blade cuts through the material, the stock repositions itself. This allows for more intricate and refined cuts.

As of cutting through stacks of wood or other hard materials at once, band saws accomplish that task flawlessly. Other saws struggle to punch through stacked layers. Band saws are really efficient for this task.

We have highlighted some advantages and disadvantages of a band saw.



  • Band saws are perfect tools for cutting through thick or multiple layers of material.
  • Ultra-thin veneers can be achieved by using a band saw.
  • Unlike most saws, the band saw is capable of cutting straight lines really accurately.
  • For resawing, a band saw is a great unit.
  • This instrument is great for workshop use.


  • Pierce cutting cannot be done with a band saw. In order to cut in the middle of the surface, the edge has to be sliced.
  • It is slower while cutting as compared to other saws.

Scroll Saw vs Band Saw

Scroll saw, and band saw both are invaluable assets to people who need them. They offer different utility and are used for different reasons. Therefore, both instruments have equal credit when it comes to being great instruments. Here is a comparative analysis on the scroll saw vs. band saw.

  • Scroll saws are used for small, delicate, and precise works like woodcraft, small details, etc. On the other hand, band saws are powerful instruments. Therefore, they are used in more complex works like resawing, lumbering, carpentry, etc.
  • Scroll saw uses a thin blade with teeth on one side to cut through objects. It strikes objects in a top to down motion. The band saw, on the other hand, uses two when coiled with the metal sheet of the blade. This, too, applies downward force similar to the scroll saw, but their mechanisms differ.
  • The scroll saw excels at cutting circles and curves, much more than a band saw. The band saw can cut circles and curves too, but a scroll saw can do it much more efficiently.
  • When it comes to making straight-line cuts, the band saw is a great specimen. Scroll saws are hard to cut straight lines with. Band saws can greatly ease up the experience.
  • As for the thickness of the blades, the scroll saw uses thin blades. These instruments are designed for lighter jobs. Thus, they get away with thinner blades. On the other hand, Band saws can cut thick objects. Therefore, their blade can be from little to very wide.
  • What makes the scroll saw great and most efficient for making detailed pieces and designs is that it can do pierce cuts. Pierce cuts are cuts that are made in the middle of the surface. With a scroll saw, you can remove the blade from the unit and insert it into the unit after you’ve got it in the middle of the piece. Band saws cannot carry out this kind of cuts. For cutting between wood, you need to cut from the edge of the piece.
  • In a scroll saw, you can tilt the unit’s head to make angular cuts. This isn’t possible with a band saw.
  • And as for price, the scroll saw definitely comes in cheap. Therefore, anyone can afford it easily as opposed to band saws.

The above comparison doesn’t prove one instrument to be superior to the other by any means. By the comparison, you would know more about the respective instruments and can have an idea of which one is the appropriate one for you.

Final Thoughts

Be an amateur, home DIY-enthusiast, or a professional; both these instruments are great tools to have. Power saws are a vital part of a workshop. Therefore, knowing to decide on which one is needed for you is just as important as anything else.

We hope you found this comparison article on the scroll saw vs. band saw helpful and are now able to decide which instrument is right for you.

I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.