In August, Porter Cable announced a new line of 12 Volt MAX lithium ion, cordless power tools. These tools are compact and lightweight with the quality professionals demand. There are 4 tools in this line: a 3/8″ Drill/Driver (PCL120DDC-2), a 1/4″ Impact Driver (PCL120IDC-2), a Two-Tool Kit (PCL212IDC-2) and a ClampSaw™ Kit (PCL120CRC-2). They are designed to tackle the most common drilling, fastening, and cutting applications in small workspaces. Porter Cable was kind enough to provide several tools as part of a test kit, so stay tuned for more reviews.
Porter Cable Cordless ClampSaw (PCL120CRC-2)
Today’s post focuses on the Porter Cable ClampSaw, styled after a reciprocating saw but much more compact. Plus, it’s equipped with an adjustable clamping shoe.
The Good: Compact; pivoting handle; clamp shoe; variable speed trigger; 2 batteries included
The Bad: Allen key to adjust clamp shoe
Overall: A great tool for making on-site cuts; cutting small stock materials
The ClampSaw is small and compact, perfect for working in tight spaces, and the pivoting handle features three-positions for maximum versatility. Rotate between 0°, 45° and 90° by engaging the pivot release and sliding the handle until it locks.
Styling and Ergonomics
Porter Cable made the ClampSaw to fit right into your hand. The trigger, pivot release, and lock-off switch are all placed for easy, one-handed operation. There’s a comfortable rubber grip on the handle and around the motor housing for your support hand; however, this saw weighs less than 3 pounds making it easy to use one handed.
The ClampSaw is named for the clamp shoe that helps lock materials in place and reduce work piece vibrations. You are able to adjust the shoe using the included Allen Key, accommodating 2″ stock or smaller. This is a real advantage for making repetitive, on-site cuts, like a plumber cutting copper pipe or an electrician cutting conduit.
I’m a big fan of tools that make it easy to change blades and Porter Cable delivers. Rotate the blade clamp collar to release the blade. Make sure to fully insert the blade shank and release the collar. Blades can be inserted teeth up or down depending on application. Be careful as used blades can be hot.
Porter Cable included a variable speed trigger allowing you greater control, delivering up to 3,000 strokes per minute and a 5/8″ stroke length. It’s designed to cut medium-duty wood, metal, PVC, copper pipe, threaded rod, and more. The ClampSaw performed admirably on my test materials- 1″ copper pipe and rugged plastic. The hinged body and clamp shoe also make one-handed cuts much easier. I also want to mention the integrated LED that activates with the trigger.
Battery & Charger
The entire line of 12v MAX tools is equipped with 12v lithium ion batteries, holding charge for extended periods of time. I love that Porter Cable included two batteries! That means you can have one in the charger as a backup. Batteries recharge in 30 minutes in the included charger.
Price and Where to Buy
The entire 12v MAX line just became available in October 2010. Look for them at Lowe’s and through the independent channel with a suggested retail price of $129.00. Here’s what included with the ClampSaw kit:
- Porter Cable ClampSaw (PCL120CRC-2)
- (2) 12 volt lithium ion batteries (PCL12BLX)
- Battery charger (PCL12C)
- (1) 4-inch wood cutting blade and (1) 4-inch inch metal cutting blade
- Side-sided storage bag
- Voltage: 12V Max
- Strokes/Min: 0-3,000 spm
- Stroke Length: 5/8″
- Length: 9.5″
- Width: 2 1/4″
- Height: 3.4″
- Weight: 3.4 lbs w/Battery
What do you think? How would you put the ClampSaw to good use?