Tool review Bosch GSA 1100 reciprocating saw

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skeetstar
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Tool review Bosch GSA 1100 reciprocating saw

Post by skeetstar »

Bought one of these recently to help me remove old pews in a church. Thought I'd share my views on the tool.

Tool specs are here

Usual sturdy case is supplied. The case has a small section for storing blades that is a waste of time, every time I opened the case , the door of the compartment had opened and the blades were spread around the tool case. Not a major drame, really.

Out of the box, the tool feels heavy and quailty. This is definately a two handed tool, it is not possible to use this one handed. Decent power cord on it, 10 foot or so I would say.

The front 'handle' area is well shaped and really aids the use of the tool, the rear handle gives a good grip and houses the trigger on/off mechanism. At the front there is a light which is designed to illuminate the cutting area. On the top is a vast metal hook device which is helpfully provided to hang the tool up 'during meal breaks', and towards the rear is a housing for an allen key which is used to remove the blade holder. The trigger cannot be operated unless an ambidextrous button is pressed to relase it. The trigger is electronic, so a little pressure results in a slower saw stroke.

In use the saw didn't vibrate much at all, is is really well made in this respect. With decent blades it made really short work of 30mm timber, overall teh swa has plenty of power. Blade changes in the first week of use were easy to do, if a bit fiddly. After that things went downhill. The blade change is designed to be tool less, but the blade holder is very small and though not cheaply made isn't the best deisgn. I have had problems removing blades that are jammed in, and then problems trying to get blades into a jammed up mechanism. The saw went back to the retailer and they cleaned the holder with an air line and wd40, and that fixed the problem, they told me that there was a lot of saw dust in the mechanism. Since then I have had tio use pliers on the little locking tab to get blades out. This makes it sound like the tool is a duffer. It isn't, it just needs careful cleaning and looking after. Also the trigger release button is awkwardly sited, and I had to twist my hand round to press the button before I could use the trigger, this problem is exacerbated if you want to use the tool upside down.

Pros
Well made save for the blade holder, the motor and case etc feel like they will last forever. Easy to use in all sorts of orientations, nice to be able to vary the speed of the saw stroke.

Cons
The light is on all the time, the trigger release button isn't very ergonomis, and see the comments above re the blade holder.nmic

I paid £120 for it from a local tool supplier. I don't regret buying it, since now I know how to get the best from it. I suspect that a builder or other tradesman might be a little less forgiving.
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Job and Knock
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Re: Tool review Bosch GSA 1100 reciprocating saw

Post by Job and Knock »

Thank you for the review. In terms of use I'd have to saw that absolutely no recip saw is ever going to be a one-handed use tool - they are far too dangerous for that! (especially when fitted with a 300mm demolition blade). Myself I have a relatively new GSA1300PCE and I found the comparison interesting because I did consider the 1100 during my search. The 1300 comes with a toolless change which has behaved faultlessly through about 50 or so blades (mainly heavy demo blades, although some metal blades as well), so maybe yours is a Friday afternoon tool? I have found it necessary to "oil" the tool holder (I used PTFE spray) a couple of times, but other than that I've done nothing other than to blow it out from time to time. My main use has been cutting out flooring timbers (8 x 3in up to 12 x 4in, mainly pitch pine), lath and plaster ceilings and walls (which is an old blade task because it strips teeth in next to no time) and the odd bit of steel pipework and 20mm steel bolts. One question, though, does the 1100 feature an orbital cutting pattern or is it a straight forward-backwards tool?
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Re: Tool review Bosch GSA 1100 reciprocating saw

Post by skeetstar »

Sorry JaK, been a while since I was on here.
No my model does not have a orbital cutting feature, it is just
plain forwards and backwards stroke.

Noted your use of PTFE, I may try that to see if it solves my problem. I guess if I blew mine out more often the problem would go away, but I don't have an airline - just have to resort to the Mark 1 Human lung.

Glad o hear yours is performing so well, I reckon mine will if I look after it a bit better.

Thanks
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