A new tool for your workshop means new possibilities and new things you can do. Moreover, it often also means fewer things that you can’t do. Fewer scenarios where you need to fix something around the house and just don’t have the available tool for the job. Fewer situations where you try and cut that piece of pipe, cord or wood and find that the equipment you have just isn’t up to the task.

This is certainly the case when you add a reciprocating saw to your arsenal. This is a tool that lacks finesse. This is not a piece of equipment for woodworkers who take pride in creating beautiful and perfect pieces of furniture. Neither is it something that you will enjoy using to make intricate patterns.

What it is is a tool that you’re going to pull out time and time again for all manner of odd jobs around the house. This is something you can use free hand and that will give you plenty of power for reaching into crevices and even around corners in some case. It is power on a stick.

And for those reasons, it doesn’t need to be particularly fancy or expensive – but you should get yourself one.

So how does the BLACK+DECKER BDCR20B stack up?

A typical recip saw ?

If a reciprocating saw is a down and dirty piece of equipment, then this is the archetypal reciprocating saw. That is to say that there are no fancy features here and this is no beautiful or powerful-looking piece of equipment. It’s just an orange and black handle with a saw poking out the end and that’s fine.

It’s still good quality for the money though and you know it’s going to do the job from the name alone. Black and Decker make highly reliable and functional tools and this one is no different.

The stroke length is 7/8-inch. There is a pivoting shoe to give you a little more versatility in terms of how you’re working and the saw is capable of 3,000 strokes per minute. The good news is that you also get variable speed in the trigger, this is very important because it means you can choose precisely how much power you want to use and how much speed – when cutting through metal for instance, you are going to find yourself using a much slower speed but you still need that power.

What’s also always important with a reciprocating saw is that the blade be easy to change. This is a tool-less job, which means you can easily pop the blade out and stick a new one in to suit the type of job that you’re doing.

This is a battery powered saw that will last a decent amount of time but note that this is sold as a bare tool, so you’ll need to get all your bits and pieces separately.

The good and the bad …

The good thing about this tool is that it is powerful and versatile for the price. The pivoting shoe really is very handy and this is great when combined with the variable speeds. In short, you can use this to tackle a range of jobs. The power is also going to be more than adequate for most household tasks, even if there are beefier tools out there.

The weight is good and this makes it easier to work at unusual angles. Of course this is a big advantage of any battery-powered recip saw.

On the negative end of things though, you will find that the tool vibrates a little bit during use and can occasionally show its limitations in that regard. The price is very good but of course it’s important to remember that this is a bare tool and to factor that in when considering the total cost.

What is left to say ?

Overall, this is a good if very basic recip saw. It does what it says on the tin, which is to lie in weight, always ready to go and capable of cutting through all manner of things when you don’t need any particular precision. This is a tool that you’ll find yourself reaching for often and while this certainly isn’t the most advanced of its kind, it’s perfectly fit for purpose and offers everything that most people will need.