It’s great using a corded circular saw in one place but soon becomes a pain trying to find the nearest power point, and then having to make sure the leads aren’t a trip hazard. The best way to untangle the situation would be to use a cordless circular saw.
However some people may complain that there’s not enough power or the batteries don’t last long enough. Corded or cordless, you could argue this back and forth like a seesaw. To help sway my choice I was given Hitachi’s C18DBAL 18v Brushless Circular Saw to test.
As soon as I got my hands on this saw I was initially impressed at how compact, light and well-balanced it was. The weight distribution helps maintain the tool’s body in a horizontal position. As it’s been built around the centre of gravity, it means that you’d be less tired when working with it. I also noticed the soft material on the handle, making it extremely comfortable.
Cutting to the chase, you can really feel the power when you press the soft start switch. Thanks to the brushless motor there’s no friction or voltage drop that brushes create, so overall efficiency is increased. This saw has a number of other innovations, including an optional fluorine plate, which, due to less frictional resistance, increases the cutting speed by up to 20 per cent.
It has an extended cutting depth of 66mm, with depth markings visible at the back and on the lower guard. Set at 90o it will cut at 66mm deep and 45mm when cutting at 45o. The smooth swivelling system can be locked at certain cutting angles. These are embossed on the metal plate, ensuring they won’t fade away. The guide piece is clearly visible, leaving no room for excuses for wavy cuts. However, there is always the option to use the fence.
A feature which is great for working in noise-sensitive areas is the ‘Silent Mode’. When the ‘Silent’ button on the saw is pressed, it lowers the noise of the saw by 5db. This mode also improves the motor’s efficiency and runtime by about 30 per cent.
However, it goes back into power mode when the load increases again. It has a blower function and can be connected to a dust extractor keeping the work area clean and preventing the blades from clogging. However, when it does come to changing the blade, the motor housing had been designed flat, so the saw can be laid on its side, allowing a quick and easy blade change.
Another bright idea includes the selectable lighting mode that shines a bright twin LED light. Then there’s also the useful remaining battery indicator display.
I was lucky to be able to test the saw with Hitachi’s new 6Ah Lithium-ion Battery. The battery certainly kept me busy before it needed recharging. Don’t worry it’s also the same size, weight and even backward compatible to Hitachi’s entire 18v range.
To conclude, I am impressed by the big power output of the small C18DBAL 18v Circular Saw. Its runtime when combined with Hitachi’s 6Ah battery was also admirable.
For further information on the Hitachi C18DBAL 18v Circular Saw click here.