Garden & Lawn

5 Best Bow Saws For Thick Branches and Awkward Spaces

Last updated on May 26th, 2022

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Bow saws are nifty tools to have around because they saw wood in spaces that normal saws would have a problem accessing. They tackle wet and dry wood easily depending on the type of blade they possess. In this post, we reveal some of the best bow saw models available on the market. These bow saws are reliable and their prices are affordable, thus you are guaranteed to find a suitable model.

We have compiled the information in the sections below. The detailed reviews reveal more information about the products while the buying guide indicates which features to watch out for. Regardless of whether you are shopping to replace an old bow saw or looking for a gift for a friend, you are guaranteed to find the best bow saw for tight spots. 

You can also peek at the Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw straight away if you’d like. It is our best pick because of its robustness and positive reviews among users.

Alternatively, our runner up, the Gardena Comfort Bow Saw will handle heavy-handed work with the utmost ease and it offers a long 25-year warranty.

Each bow saw here has something to offer, therefore, don’t be hasty in your decision.

BEST PICK

Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw
Slice through greenwood easily using the Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw. This model offers a durable weatherproof frame and sharp 30-inch blade to cut through those thick branches. It comes with a comfortable handle to use and a blade guard for safety. This model is not only affordable but it is easy to use as it has a simple blade replacement/tension system. You can get a large amount of work done over the years using this model indicating why it is so popular with customers.

RUNNER UP

Gardena Comfort Bow Saw
Another durable bow saw that handles both dry and wet wood without the need of switching blades. It has a long 53cm blade that cuts through thick branches and a comfortable handle to keep the user comfortable. This high-quality model navigates tight spaces with ease because of its design. It has a long 25-year warranty just to show you that the quality of the bow saw will last for a very long time thus offering good value for money.

Best 5 Bow Saw Reviews

1. Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw 30 Inch

BEST PICK

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Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw

First in our review is the Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw which features a 30-inch blade to cut through green and wet wood. The lightweight saw is made from durable metal that will not rust. This is because the metal has an enamel finish that protects the metal from the elements. The model weighs 0.08 kg and measures 3 x 88.5 x 26cm, making it incredibly easy to maneuver.

Instead of incurring blisters on your hands for no reason, the bow saw is fitted with a strong plastic ergonomic handle. Your knuckles are protected because of the handle’s ergonomic design. You can adjust the tension of the blade or fix a new blade by making use of the winding mechanism. When you are done using the saw you can snap back the blade guard and take the saw to storage.

Pros

  • Offers a sharp 30-inch blade to cut through wet and dry wood.
  • Features a lightweight weatherproof body that makes it easier to work with.
  • Comes with an easy-to-use blade replacement and winding mechanism.
  • Possesses a blade guard to protect the blade from damage and the user from unwanted injuries.
  • Offers good value for money.

Cons

  • The blade sometimes flexes preventing straight cuts. This flaw depends on the thickness of the wood.

Our recommendation

The Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw is ideal for those looking for a bow saw designed to cut through green wood, although it is specially designed for use on wet wood.

There is a blade designed to work with dry wood but that needs to be purchased separately. You can purchase a blade for dry wood instead of buying another bow saw for the same use.

This is an affordable bow saw that is lightweight and easy to work with. It comes with a blade guard, but be careful not to cut yourself while engaging the blade guard. The blade on this model does flex a little but it is nothing that cannot be managed. Otherwise, it is a robust saw that gives good value for money.


2. Gardena Comfort Bow Saw 530

RUNNER UP

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Gardena Comfort Bow Saw

Handle heavy work with ease using the Gardena Comfort Bow Saw. This bow saw is designed to cut both dry and wet wood comfortably. The model features a long fine-tooth blade of 53cm to cut through thick branches. It weighs 771g and it measures 67.5 x 23.5 x 3.2cm making it suitable for working in tight spaces comfortably.

This bow saw is made of robust metal that is protected from the elements, making it perfect for British weather. The saw is fitted with a screwing mechanism to make tightening or replacing the blade a simple job with no tools required. Furthermore, the model is fitted with a comfortable handle that can absorb impact, therefore, ensuring your hands remain comfortable as you work. This model is backed by a 25-year warranty to attest to the great quality of the product.

Pros

  • Made from robust metal with an anti-twist shape.
  • Ideal for both wet and dry thick branches.
  • Features a strong sharp fine-tooth 53cm blade.
  • It comes with a screwing mechanism that makes it easy to replace and tighten the blade.
  • Possesses a rustproof body with an anti-twist design.
  • Comes with a comfortable ergonomic handle.
  • Accompanied by a 25-year warranty.

Cons

  • Might be hard to use on branches that are high up.

Our recommendation

If you are looking to cut thick branches that are within reach then the Gardena Comfort Bow Saw is perfect. It can cut through both wet and dry wood with ease and it is lightweight so it won’t make you unnecessarily tired. This sharp blade bow saw has a solid design so it won’t get bent out of shape. It has a comfortable handle and it comes with a blade guard. 

All things considered, this saw is perfect for both domestic and professional use and the long warranty speaks for itself.


3. Bahco 3311523 15-inch Bowsaw

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Bahco 3311523 Bowsaw 15-inch

The Bahco 3311523 15-inch Bowsaw is a small model that you can use to cut branches in tight spaces. This model features a pointed nose and ergonomic handle to make work easier, whether you are working on branches that are high up or low down. The 15-inch saw measures 10 x 10 x 40cm and weighs 99g, meaning it is easy to maneuver thanks to the compact and lightweight design.

This bow saw is designed to cut through wet and green wood. It has a sharp 23-series blade that is so effective it can cut through seasoned wood. The blade is secured so it doesn’t move around when you are cutting through wood. If you are not using the bow saw, place the blade guard back on for safety purposes. This affordable model is rustproof thus it will be able to keep up with outdoor use for a long time.

Pros

  • Made from durable rustproof metal.
  • Features a 23 series blade that cuts through green wood with ease.
  • The blade can be securely tightened to prevent any unnecessary movement.
  • Comes with a blade guard for safety.
  • Possesses a comfortable handle with knuckle protection.
  • Suitable for tight spaces because of its pointed nose.
  • Sold at an affordable price.

Cons

  • Not suitable for overly thick branches due to its size.

Our recommendation

The Bahco 3311523 Bowsaw is a small but durable bow saw that you can purchase if you need a small tool to handle the pruning and cutting of medium-thick branches.

It has a pointed nose so tight spaces will not be a problem. We love that the blade fitted is sharp enough to cut through wood neatly. It is even more pleasing that this high-quality bow saw is affordable and thus can fit into any budget. 

This model does not have any noticeable flaws and it requires little maintenance, thus you get good value for money.


4. Gruntek Marlin Bow and Hacksaw

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Grüntek Marlin Bow and Hacksaw

The Gruntek Marlin 610mm Bow and Hacksaw comes in a hard-to-miss green and yellow colour. The large bow saw possesses a 61cm blade that features pulse hardened precision separation to give clean cuts. This model cuts both dry and wet wood without struggling, thus, whether you are working with thin or thick branches this model will perform optimally.

For a bow saw that has a long blade, this model is well balanced providing easy maneuverability. It is among the lighter models weighing in at 595g and it is also equipped with an ergonomic handle for user comfort. You do not need any tools to secure or replace the blade which saves time in the long run, especially on busy days.

Pros

  • Cuts through both wet and dry wood.
  • Features a long 61cm blade to cut through the thicker wood.
  • Requires no tools to replace or secure the blade.
  • Lightweight model hence easy maneuverability.
  • Features an ergonomic handle for user comfort.
  • Comes with a pulse hardened precision separation blade.
  • Sold at an affordable price.

Our recommendation

The Grüntek Marlin 610mm Bow and Hacksaw is an affordable option for those seeking a large model to work with. This colourful model is lightweight and balanced therefore working with it is easy. It caters to both green and wet wood comfortably because of its sharp blade. If you want to cut through metal, you can switch out the blade and fit in a hacksaw blade easily.

You will need to put in a bit of muscle if you are cutting through thicker branches but doing so won’t leave you overly tired. This bow saw is durable and affordable, making it a worthwhile purchase.


5. Fiskars 21 Inch Bow Saw SW30

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Fiskars 21 Inch Bow Saw SW30

Another impressive model is the Fiskars 21 inch Bow Saw. This model is made from high-quality steel so it won’t warp easily under pressure. The bow saw features a 62cm blade that can slice through thick and thin branches without getting blunt. This bow saw is intended for wet wood and it can be used by both right and left-handed people.

Weighing 579g, this lightweight model comes with a plastic handle for user comfort. The ergonomic handle provides a firm grip even for those with sweaty hands. When you are done using the bow saw, slip the blade guard on to prevent damage to the blade during storage. This model is affordable and therefore perfect for those on a budget.

Pros

  • Made from high-quality steel for durability.
  • Bears a sharp 62cm blade to slice through wet wood.
  • Comes with a blade guard for storage.
  • Features an ergonomic plastic handle that can be used by both right and left-handed people.
  • Offers good value for money.

Cons

  • The frame is a bit flimsy therefore the blade is unable to cut straight, especially when handling heavy jobs.

Our recommendation

The Fiskars 21” Bow Saw is a large bow saw that is perfect for light jobs. It has a stainless steel frame and blade to provide longevity in service. The model does have a sharp blade to make cutting through wet wood possible. 

We find it more suitable for light jobs because the frame is a bit flimsy to handle heavy-handed work. If you need a blade that can handle a bit of heavy-handed work you might want to try the Gruntek Marlin 610mm Bow and Hacksaw. Other than that, this bow saw performs very well for the price that you fetch it for. 

Additionally, unlike the Gruntek Marlin model, this bow saw is supplied with a blade guard so you won’t need to spend any more money.


Buyer’s Guide

What works for one person might not work for another, and that is why it is important to understand which features make up the best bow saw. Selecting the right model will not only help you attain a reliable bow saw but it will also save you money. A durable bow saw will last for years without needing a replacement or frequent maintenance, most will just need a new blade now and again. 

Whether you are looking for the best bow saw for tight spots or generally, the best bow saw for cutting logs, this is the information you need.

Purpose 

First things first, are you looking to cut through wet and green wood? Do you want to cut fresh wood, especially dry wood such as firewood? By knowing what the saw will be primarily used to cut, you can select a model with a suitable blade. There are models made specifically for dry or wet wood and then some models can cater to both. 

If you want a versatile saw then you need to settle for a model whose blade can cut through both wet and dry wood. The size of the wood you plan to cut through matters as well because it influences the size of bow saw you will get.

Quality of the blade

The blade is the heart of the bow saw. Without a decent blade, the user ends up using a lot of energy. Most of the blades used are made from steel and they have been sharpened to provide a clean cut. Depending on the price you pay for the bow saw, you may end up replacing the blade with a better one. This is because some manufacturers provide basic blades that get blunt after a few uses.

Tension system

You want to buy a bow saw that has a good tensioning system so that the blade stays in place. A tension system that keeps getting loose will not only affect the quality of cut provided but it might be dangerous for the user.

Some bow saws use a tool-less tensioning system which is convenient if you don’t want to deal with tools. It also saves time too, especially in commercial environments.

Length of the blade

How thick or thin is the wood that you are working with? If you are cutting small branches then there is no need of getting a bow saw with a 61cm blade. If you are working on thick pieces of wood then a long blade is suitable. Small branches need a small bow saw for easier maneuverability.

Suitability for the user

An ergonomic handle protects the user’s knuckles from impact and also provides a firm grip. The best bow saw will have a handle that both left and right-handed people can use. It is also important that the handle offers adequate room for someone wearing work gloves to work comfortably.

Protection from the elements

Bow saws are designed to be used outside and because of that adequate protection from the elements is required. Both the frame and the blade need to be rustproof to provide longevity. In many cases, the saw frame bares an enamel or paint coating to protect the metal from getting rusty.

Additionally, a blade guard is important to protect the blade from getting dusty and blunt over time. After using the bow saw, clean it and place the blade guard on before storage. Many manufacturers deliver the saw together with the blade guard, but if this is not the case you can purchase one at an affordable price.

Price

As always, the type of bow saw you can access is determined by the amount of money you can spend. Also, how long you are planning to use the bow saw will affect the price you choose to pay. Bow saws intended for one-time jobs need not be too expensive. Bow saws intended for heavy-handed work will require a bit more of an investment if you want something robust.

Warranty

A warranty is a safety net just in case there is a problem with the product. Not many brands offer a warranty but you will find a saw like our runner up model that offers a long warranty of 25 years. Such a long warranty is a good sign that the quality of the product can be trusted to last a long time.


Safety Tips

When using a bow saw you have to be careful to avoid injuries. Some safety tips include:

  • Avoid using bow saws with blunt blades because you may end up hurting yourself by exerting more force than required.
  • Keep the blade away from human traffic, especially if the blade is not covered by the protective sheath.
  • Wrap old blades before discarding them to avoid the sharp ends from harming someone.
  • Always keep your hand away from the blade’s path while cutting.
  • Wear protective gloves when cutting through thick pieces of wood to prevent your hands from getting blisters or slipping when sweaty.
  • After lengthy cuts, the blade tends to be hot thus avoid touching it with bare hands.
  • Be careful when replacing the blade not to carelessly grab the sharp end and cut yourself.
  • Always keep a mental note of where the wood you are working on will fall to avoid accidents.
  • Wear safety glasses if you are cutting through dry wood in windy conditions to prevent pieces of wood from flying into your eye.

Final Conclusion

As you have witnessed there are plenty of reliable bow saws on the market. It is just up to you to select the model that suits your purpose well. Remember all the points of consideration listed in the buying guide and you will have no problem finding the best bow saw for tight spaces.

We used the same information to select our best pick the Bahco 10-30-23 Bowsaw which is a durable model that seems to be popular with many positive reviews.

Our runner up is the Gardena Comfort Bow Saw and it works with both dry and wet wood tackling tight corners easily thanks to its design. 

The market is crowded but it is possible to get the best bow saw for cutting logs without breaking a sweat. We are confident that you can select a model that offers good value for money. Keep your garden in good shape by using pruning saws if you don’t require these large bow saws. These small pruning saws will cater to those small branches within reach that require frequent pruning easily.

Main image credit – Shutterstock.com

Last update on 2022-03-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Welcome to my site, my name is John and I have been lucky enough to work in horticultural nurseries for over 15 years in the UK. As the founder and editor as well as researcher, I have a City & Guilds Horticultural Qualifications which I proudly display on our About us page. I now work full time on this website where I review the very best gardening products and tools and write reliable gardening guides. Behind this site is an actual real person who has worked and has experience with the types of products we review as well as years of knowledge on the topics we cover from actual experience. You can reach out to me at john@pyracantha.co.uk

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