What is a Keyhole Saw? Definition, Types, and Uses

If you are someone working on the drywall projects for a long time, you must be familiar with keyhole saws. Also known as alligator saw, these are mostly used to cut through difficult building materials. Let’s have a look at different types of the keyhole saw, usage, benefits and if you really need one.

What is a Keyhole Saw?

A keyhole saw has a narrow and long blade, which makes it ideal for cutting through materials and making small, sharp cuts. Its other name, drywall saw, indicates its usage to cut building materials. Its 5 to 15 inches long blade is perfect for small, precise cuts when powerful tools fail at it.

How many Types of Keyhole Saw are there?

Generally, three types of keyhole saws are seen in the market. Let’s have a look-

A fixed blade keyhole saw: A rigid 6-inch keyhole saw is considered to be a standard one. These are extra-sharp and comfortable to have a grip on. For people with bigger hands, this can be the right choice. The versatility of a standard keyhole saw makes it stand out. The sharp blades cut through wallboard like butter.

Replaceable-blade keyhole saw: This one can be named an all-in-one. The biggest feature it has is, you can interchange between all your blades and make different types of work done using just one keyhole saw. Additionally, you can make an extension to it at the end of the threaded handle. You can also use it to demo walls or cut through door and window openings.

Multi-position keyhole saw: If you are searching for one just for household usage, this four-position keyhole saw can be the one. It is perfect for using in drywall and can be re-positioned for better angles and fit. His kind may not be as powerful as the standard one, but it also comes with a lower price. However, for only household usages, it performs pretty well.

What are some common uses and benefits of keyhole saw?

The keyhole saw has a wide fan base for both professional and household works for a reason. Let’s go through what are the pros of a keyhole saw and how they can be used for:

Cutting smaller woods: There are various tools which you can use to cut wood but when it comes to smaller woods, it becomes very difficult to find the perfect tool. A keyhole saw is the best tool for tinier woods as it will give you the precision and it will also allow you to work in detail. You can easily make neat cutouts in materials like pinewood, fur, etc.

Working in detail: When you are trying to make delicate handicrafts, you will need a tool that will allow you to work accurately. Exquisite craftwork need sharp and refined tools that will help you get the desired outcome. Keyhole saw is one of those tools.

Working with gypsum board: One of the most common usages of saws is creating a hole for switch outlets or power outlets. It is hard to make a proper cut in gypsum boards popularly known as drywall. But you can certainly use a keyhole saw to make a perfect cut in a gypsum board.

Placing carpets: Whenever you are placing a rug, you will need to cut certain areas in order to properly fit in the carpet, especially in the corners. If you use a keyhole saw, the entire process will become effortless for you. You won’t have to spend much time making these minor changes.

Working on rubber: Some of the materials can be really difficult to work with. Rubber is one of them. There are times when you might need to work with firm rubbers such as placing a rubber stamp on something. You can simply use a keyhole saw to get the job done as they tend to work very well under challenging materials like rubbers.

Cutting plastics: You can also use a keyhole saw to cut plastic elements, but not a plexiglass. You will get a similar result as you will get in a block of wood. The best part is, you won’t have to put much effort if you are using a good keyhole saw.

What are the Benefits of Keyhole Saw?

Perfect for extra sharp cuts: This narrow keyhole saw has an extra sharp blade to cut through various materials. Also known as a drywall utility saw, it can make precise cuts and pierces through walls. The versatility in the usage of this saw makes it different from others. Even though designed for building materials, the saw can easily cut through firm but thin materials like rubber, plastic, and carpet. However, it does not do the job of hacksaw by cutting metals. If that’s not enough, the alligator-like blade can easily cut through cement backer board and wallboard. In Japanese saws, the Mawashibiki is the best keyhole saw.

Wide range of options: The keyhole saws come with a wide range of blade options, different types of handles, teeth count and lengths. You can explore the options and can get the one that is perfect for you.

High-quality blade: The best keyhole saws come with a blade that stays in its perfect shape for a long time. Even after repeated usage, its sharp teeth do not get blunt and bent after using for years. You can make this investment for a long time and relax. For the replaceable one, the blades are slightly angled to give you the ultimate experience. The blades are also perfect for making small cuts through switch boxes, pipes or any other small openings.

Perfect for people with bigger hands: If you have bigger hands than usual, then these keyhole saws will surely be a comfort to use. Its soft-grip handle provides firm control over the tool to avoid any unwanted situation.

Creates minimal mess: Cutting through the drywall usually results in lots of dust and mess, cleaning which becomes a whole new work. However, with the keyhole saws, you do not have to worry much. Unlike hole saws, which are used in the drill, this is a manual tool; it only creates a little dust, which can easily be cleaned using a vacuum cleaner in no time.

A handy tool: This amazing saw is so handy that you can even fit it inside your tool belt. You can keep the saw with you just in a belt and be ready all time for any necessary, quick small cut.

Replaceable blades: Another good side of the keyhole saws is that the blades can be replaced if needed. Generally, one blade goes a long way. However, if you ever feel like the teeth are not sharp enough for you to get the precision you want, you can easily replace your old blade with a new, sharp one.

One for everyone’s budget: There are keyhole saws of a wide price range available in the market. The standard keyhole saw comes with a medium price range, but the downside is that they are made with fixed blades. To solve the problem, there is the fancy replaceable one, which may cost twice as much as the first one; but will give you the luxury to replace and interchange your blades. Finally, if you are on a budget and looking for one to use your house’s drywall, you can get the 4-position model. This costs way lesser than the previous both, but you may have to compromise a bit with the performance.

Should you get one?

Before making any investment, we suggest you consider various factors to ensure that every penny is spent well. If you are into construction works and looking for a tool to make sharp, small, precise cuts or through any other rigid but thin materials, getting a keyhole saw may be the right thing to do. If you, a homeowner, just want to do some work on the home’s drywall, this may be the right choice as well. The saw will be useful if you are someone who loves to experiment with different blades and cuts.

However, keep in mind that as it is a manual tool, it may fail to provide the most delicate cuts the drilled one does. Also, if you are someone with smaller hands, the handle may not be too comfortable to use.

Bottom line

Looking at both sides, the bright side of using a keyhole saw seems to be heavier. A good keyhole saw can take your construction work to a whole new level. Check out the options available in the market and get the best one for you and have a great time experimenting!