Dewalt DCS387P1 Compact Reciprocating Saw Kit Review

We’ve always been a big fan of Dewalt, primarily when it came to their corded high-powered recip saws, so we were surprised to come across this compact cordless saw that has a reputation for packing the same type of power and overall performance as its corded brothers. Granted, you’ll experience more vibration with this model due to it’s shorter design and lighter weight, but overall, for the price, a smaller recip that offers this type of power is definitely worth a second look.

The Dewalt DCS387P1 reciprocating saw is slightly shorter than the manufacturer’s premium cordless model, which allows it to go where other models can’t. In addition to the saw’s ability to fit into tighter spaces, this new compact model offers better control than traditional recip saws. The saw comes equipped with a traditional four pole brushed motor, four position blade clamp, 0-2,900 variable speed, and 1 1/8 inch cutting stroke length.

Dewalt Compact Recip Saw Assessment and Features

While this saw is also available in a bare package, at a more affordable price, purchasing the kit option can save you some extra cash. Bare models will only come equipped with the stock blade and zero extras, but this package option comes with everything you’ll need to get started sawing right away.

This Dewalt kit comes with a charger, lithium-ion battery pack and kit bag. It also features a built-in LED light, ergonomic soft grip handle, and pivoting shoe.

We’re curious why Dewalt uses a brushed motor instead of a brushless for this saw, which is somewhat of a disappointment. As it is, this new compact model offers some advantages over other saws in certain areas, such as the ability to fit into corners and tight work areas.

If you’re looking for a cordless recip with a lightweight design, you’ll love how this Dewalt handles. The saw’s balance is great, allowing you to make cuts using one hand.

Based on its features, this saw was designed for both personal and professional use.

The saw’s motor is installed on the front side of the trigger. With a length just under fifteen inches, it’s considered one of the most compact models on the market. It also weighs in under five pounds. This lighter build allows you to use the saw for longer periods of time. The ergonomic soft grip handle also helps to encourage longer use.

The recip saw’s four position blade clamp makes flush cutting with this saw a cinch. The blade release system is located on the upper handle, allowing for a faster switch out time. The blades can also be installed in different orientations at 270, 180, 90, or 0 degrees relative to the trigger or handle. This feature helps to promote increased safety.

Dewalt Lightweight Recip Pros and Cons

Pros: You’ll be able to easily make cuts, even in tight spaces. It also contributes to positional versatility thanks to the tool-less blade changes. This saw is able to go where corded models cannot. Additionally, it also offers better handling and control compared to heavier corded saws.

The saw can even fit between studs, which is why many consumers in construction swear by it. The variable speed trigger will provide increased blade control for more precise cuts. The trigger is only large enough for one finger operation.

The pivoting shoe offers more versatility when the saw is in use. The built-in LED light located on the front of the saw is perfect for working in low light conditions and works even with the lock on. The saw blades can be mounted right or left, down or up. The dual blade insertion allows you to install or change out blades horizontally or vertically.

The 1 1/8-inch stroke length provides an impressive, faster cutting speed that will save you both time and energy.

The variable speed trigger provides improved blade control and is simple to use. The motor’s vertical position contributes to perfect balancing when the saw is in use. It can saw pretty much anything, just as long as you keep the saw placed firmly against the object to prevent any unexpected trembling. When it comes to wood, it’s really useful for raw sawing, but not for straight line cuts. One buyer reported this model is easily able to handle branches up to five inches thick. While the saw can experience some startup trembling, once you begin to push the show into the material, the vibration is significantly reduced.

This saw comes with a three-year product warranty on all parts.

Cons: Some users felt that the trigger spring tension was a bit too tight, however, this increased tension helps to maintain speed controls if you’re not using it at max capacity. The fact that the saw isn’t equipped with a brushless motor is a big downside for potential buyers. There have been plenty complaints regarding vibration, simply because this saw is so light that there’s nothing to dampen the type of vibration that commonly comes with a saw of this weight and size. You definitely won’t be disappointed with how this model performs, but you should expect some vibration when you’re working with tougher materials. We felt that the handle was a little cumbersome and can make the saw uncomfortable to use after an extended period of time.

If you’re looking for a saw that features an orbital mode, check out the Ridgid orbital eighteen-volt cordless reciprocating saw R8641B.

Compact Sawzall Final Thoughts and Rating

This model is very similar in functionality to past Dewalt corded models, but the motor in this saw is installed in a diagonal position and placed right in front of the trigger, which is what keeps the saw’s build so compact. This sawzall does feature a much better four-way head with a quick release latch, compared to cheaper two-way head models produced by the manufacturer. It doesn’t have an extending shoe, due to its compact design, although the shoe does pivot. Our overall impression is that it performs and handles like a corded recip, but it’s clearly the best choice if a compact design is a big deal to you. Consumers who purchased this model gave it a high rating of four out of five stars.

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