Best Jigsaw Blades for Plywood – 2021 Round-up

Cody
| Last Updated: January 26, 2021

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Finding the best jigsaw blades for plywood projects can be difficult but also very rewarding once you get the right tool for the job.

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What’s great about these blades is that most of them are universal fit, which means that you can improve the cutting capabilities of even lower-end jigsaws.

Hoping to cut right to the chase? Here are the best jigsaw blades for plywood:

  1. Best Overall: Bosch T101AO3
  2. Runner-up: Makita 5-Piece Wood Jiigsaw Blades
  3. Best for the Money: Gun Pla 15-Piece Jigsaw Blade Set

Comparison of the Best Jigsaw Blades for Plywood

Product

Specs

Price

Bosch T101AO3

  • Anti-splintering design
  • 5-piece pack
  • 20 TPI

Makita 5-Piece Wood Jiigsaw Blades

  • 6 TPI
  • 5-piece pack
  • High carbon steel material

Gun Pla 15-Piece Jigsaw Blade Set

  • Best for the Money
  • 15-piece kit
  • High carbon steel

WorkPro 35-Piece Jigsaw Blade Set

  • Honorable Mention
  • 36-piece kit
  • Chrome vanadium steel

Craftsman CMAJ1SET13

  • Editor's Pick
  • Carry case included
  • 13-piece kit

What Makes a Jigsaw Blade Great for Plywood?

Let's find out:

Quality T-Shank Designs

It’s no secret that a T-shank blade is very good for cutting into or out of plywood. It’s more stable, and it comes with even higher tooth counts, if needed, and has very little wobble compared to a U-shank blade. This is what makes it a better choice for plywood.

The Tooth Design and Count

The number of teeth or TPI rating is not the only thing that will affect the quality of the cut. For example, ground teeth are much better at cutting through plywood because the end result requires less cleanup or sanding.

Material Quality

Jigsaw blades are made from various materials, including tungsten, carbide, steel, carbon steel, and bi-metal blends. Nevertheless, a high carbon steel blade is almost always going to be the superior choice for woodworking.

Even some of the cheaper high carbon steel blades tend to do better than tungsten carbide blades, for example, because of the superior flexibility. They’re just going to perform better on curved cuts due to this property.

Manufacturer

There’s no way around the fact that some manufacturers simply make better jigsaw blades. If you’re shooting for top quality then you have to consider manufacturers like Bosch, Craftsman, Makita, and like more than the alternatives.

What Size of Jigsaw Blade Do I Need for Plywood?

To figure out the perfect size for your project, you need to check the blade clearance versus the thickness of your plywood workpieces. Generally speaking, blade manufacturers make only plywood or woodcutting blades of readily suitable lengths.

That said, wider blades are your best bet for cutting straight while narrower designs work better on curved cuts. Often, the TPI rating is more telling about how good the blade is and what it can do, e.g. smaller teeth make smoother edges, larger teeth are faster, and so on.

Review of the Best Jigsaw Blades for Plywood

To understand just how much variety there is with jigsaw blades for plywood, here are some well-researched options for you to consider. Notice how many TPI ratings you can find and how even the actual blade quality can make a difference in certain types of cuts or projects.

Best Overall:
Bosch T101AO3

PROS

  •  Come in a five-pack
  • Universal fit T-shank blades
  • More than enough blade length
  • Near professional-grade high carbon steel blades
  • Suitable for plywood, ceramic tiles, and even cement boards

CONS

  • May be a bit more fragile than advertised
  • May not be the best choice for the inexperienced woodworker or hard-to-control jigsaws

Our Review

A universal fit is always good, which is why the Bosch T101AO3 T-shank blades are a solid choice for a variety of jigsaws. These blades can cut through 2” thick wood but they are dependent on no slipping or wobbling on your part.

The ground teeth are a nice touch and can help to get cleaner cuts into your plywood workpiece. With the 20 TPI rating, these blades can handle curves much better than others, even though you may lose some speed along the way.

Of course, a tool-less blade swap system is always nice to have should something go wrong at any point.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

One of the things that makes these blades stand out is the 3.25” length. This is more than enough to cut through thicker plywood workpieces, and other materials too. The fact that the blades have some flex is also helpful in maintaining a quality cut even if you’re approaching the line at odd angles.

Runner-up:
Makita 5-Piece Wood Jigsaw Blades

PROS

  • Good blade integrity
  • Superior teeth sharpness
  • Designed for accurate straight cuts
  • Ideal for wood and PVC workpieces
  • Comes in a five-pack of T-shank blades
  • Rating of 9 TPI for additional cutting speed

CONS

  • The low teeth count may not help too much with curved cuts
  • Less versatile and not the best at cutting through thinner workpieces

Out Review

Makita doesn’t just make good jigsaws but also good jigsaw blades. This five-piece set can offer many advantages such as increased stability when making straight cuts, higher durability, and less maintenance-intensive.

The integrity of the blades is spot-on and they can handle even more aggressive orbital settings on your jigsaw. The tooth sharpness is impressive and makes the blades a great pick in a fast-paced working environment.

What the blades may lack in terms of curved cuts consistency they make up for in other areas such as being easy to swap, long-lasting, and quite affordable too.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

The overall blade integrity and minimal wobble are the two standout features. Between the lower TPI rating, the T-shank design, and the extra thickness and sturdiness, these Makita blades should have little to no wobble even when making longer cuts through thicker workpieces.

Best for the Money:
Gun Pla 15-Piece Jigsaw Blade Set

PROS

  • All T-shank blades
  • Nice blade length variety
  • Three blade types included
  • Viable for a variety of cuts into plywood
  • Specialty blades add more value to the pack

CONS

  • Not the highest quality or most durable jigsaw blades
  • Metal cutting blades are nice but may not be of value to woodworkers

Our Review

This set contains two types of blades you might be interested in, the T244D and T144D blades. Each comes in separate 5-packs and the former is designed for curved cuts and the latter straight cuts.

Although the 6 TPI rating may not seem high enough for angled or curved cuts, it’s important to know that the blade has a thin profile. Between the blade length and the compatibility of the T-shank, this set is a good deal for beginner woodworkers.

Unfortunately, the other five blades, the ones with higher TPI ratings of 15 to 24TPI, are shorter and designed for metal.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

The quantity and the progressive-tooth blade design are what makes this set of blades valuable. Perhaps even more so to a versatile craftsman due to the inclusion of metal-cutting high TPI blades. Nevertheless, DIY woodworkers can get plenty of blades to practice on at a bargain with this Gun Pla 15-piece pack.

Honorable Mention:
WorkPro 35-Piece Jigsaw Blade Set

PROS

  • Carry/storage case included
  • High carbon steel value pack
  • 35 jigsaw blades to work with
  • Decent spread of teeth-per-inch
  •  Assortment of fast blades and precision blades
  • Decent compatibility with most T-shank jigsaws

CONS

  • Not suitable for harder plywood

Our Review

If you simply want to have as many spare blades as you can, this WorkPro 35-piece pack is a sweet deal. But, keep in mind that these aren’t the highest quality blades, even if they are made of high carbon steel.

Still, the set comes with a nice storage case and there are different blades inside, whether you need to make curved cuts, straight cuts, faster cuts, you name it. It should give you the versatility you need as long as you’re not expecting professional-level quality.

One of the bigger downsides is the inconsistent tooth quality, which can sometimes lead to rougher edges.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

These blades should be compatible with most if not all T-shank jigsaws, which is already a good start. Furthermore, getting to use a variety of different TPI ratings will only help you hone your skills. Even if sometimes you may get rougher edges than expected. The dedicated storage case is a nice touch too.

Editor’s Pick:
Craftsman CMAJ1SET13

PROS

  • Six different types of blades
  • Very sharp teeth out of the box
  • Quick to swap and with little wobble
  •  Includes wood blades and metal blades

CONS

  • May wear down slightly faster than other blades

Our Review

This is a very interesting offer. The CMAJ1 jigsaw T-shank blade set is one of the most popular from Craftsman. You get access to five 10TPI jigsaw blades, two 6TPI blades, two 12TPI blades, two 14TPI blades, and two 24TPI blades. However, the latter will be better suited for cutting metal.

The blade length could be longer. That said, the variety in TPI rating and the inclusion of two downcut blades does make the pack appealing to woodworkers that want to expand their repertoire of cuts like tackling a variety of material sizes and intricate cut patterns.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

Although metal-cutting blades can be more or less useless for woodworkers, having access to both types still makes this a standout. We also think that the variety of tooth counts is more impressive than in other similar packs, even if that means that there are fewer spares for each type of blade.

In summary, here are the best jigsaw blades for plywood:

  1. Best Overall: Bosch T101AO3
  2. Runner-up: Makita 5-Piece Wood Jiigsaw Blades
  3. Best for the Money: Gun Pla 15-Piece Jigsaw Blade Set

Cautious Considerations to Keep in Mind

Buying jigsaw blades can be somewhat difficult, especially for working with plywood. It’s not always about the TPI rating, or the blade length, or the orientation of the teeth, but more about finding the right balance of all these traits.

Some Blades Are Too Thick

Jigsaws excel at creating curved cuts. However, some jigsaw blades may have the right TPI rating and sharpness but a bit too thick to allow you to create intricate cuts (without a few splinters along the way).

Do You Double Down or Shoot for Variety?

You always have choices. You can get tons of spares of the same blade or stock your workshop with an assortment of blades and experiment with more than one type. This is something that’s just hard to determine, especially for those who don’t already have a few years of experience or a few projects under their belts.

Do You Cut More Than Plywood?

A jigsaw is not a one-trick pony. Therefore, even if plywood is your main work material, you could also go with a set that includes other blades so you can handle a variety of projects. Figuring out what’s worth more to you can be difficult.

How to Cut Plywood with a Jigsaw

Cutting plywood with a jigsaw is pretty straightforward stuff. But, make sure you have the right blade for the job and the right tooth orientation. Depending on how you want the cut to look, of course. Generally, an upward orientation will give you smoother upper edges. Also, make sure that you’re using the right number of teeth for either more cutting speed or smoother cutting.

  • After your saw is set up and the right blade fitted, you’ll want to draw your cut line on the material. A pencil and a ruler are usually enough, but a compass or jig will help too if you plan on making more curved cuts.

  • Adjust the orbital setting or speed of your saw. Plywood calls for less aggressive speed settings.

  • Bring your blade to the cut line with the jigsaw powered off, before making the first inward cut.

  • If you’re going towards the edge, use a drill or something similar to make a cutout for your jigsaw.

When cutting plywood, try to keep a steady speed as you push the blade into the workpiece. Going too fast will risk breaking off too many splinters and creating very rough edges.

Conclusion

The best jigsaw blades for plywood projects can come in different sizes. But it’s always the combination of tooth count, orientation, and blade design that seems to separate the average from the rest. What’s most important to remember is that some blades are made for straight cuts and others for curved cuts, and there aren’t really any blades that excel at both.

People Also Ask

There are of course other considerations too when you’re browsing for plywood jigsaw blades. Mainly, more specific blade details for specific types of projects. Some of these more popular questions from amateur woodworkers are answered below. Variety may be nice but sometimes you may need something more niche.

What Size Jigsaw Blade Should I Use to Cut 3/4 Inch Plywood?

Any specialty jigsaw blade that’s between 3.7” to 4.3” should be more than enough to cut 3/4” plywood. Don’t forget that the tooth count will matter too, as will the adjustability of the orbital speed on your jigsaw. Blade length only helps so much with clearance, but the quality of the cut depends on other factors too.

How Many Teeth Should I Get on a Jigsaw Blade for Cutting Plywood?

Most blades have between 6 and 20 teeth, but there are even lower tooth counts that you can use to power through the workpiece. Depending on how clean you want the edges to be, you want more teeth for a smoother look. Fewer teeth will equal higher cutting power and speed, so if that’s more important, go with a lower TPI rating.

Cody

My name is Cody and I've been a writer for Tool Tango for quite some time now. I've always had a knack for building things with my hands and creative writing, so being able to combine the two has been great. I love being able to give back to the DIY-community, while also learning a thing or two along the way. When I'm not writing, I enjoy watching Netflix with my girlfriend, fishing, and working in the shop.