Arbored Saw Vs Non-Arbored Hole Saw: Which One is Right for You?

Arbored saw vs non-arbored hole saw: which one is right for youThere are two types of hole saws: arbored and non-arbored. The difference between the two is how the blade attaches to the body of the saw. Let’s take a closer look at these different types, so you can make an informed decision about which one will work best for your needs.

The arbor type has a metal or plastic hub that extends from both ends of the blade, with a shaft in the middle where you screw it on. This type is better if you plan to use your hole saw frequently because it provides more stability and less vibration when cutting into materials like drywall, plywood, or other soft materials that tend to shift during cutting operations. However, if you only need occasional access to holes and don’t need to use it often, a non-arbored hole saw is just as effective.

The non-arbored type has the blade attached on one end with no hub extending beyond it. This type works more like an oversized drill bit than a more traditional hole saw because you attach them directly to your power drill instead of using a stand or vise. This type is better if you are only going to use your hole saw occasionally since they are generally less expensive than arbor types and can be more easily stored.

How to utilize hole saws?

Hole saws are one of the most useful tools you can own for DIY projects around your home. They provide a quick and easy way to bore holes in sheet material or softwood, making them a great option if you need access through walls or floors without having a professional cut-out section for you.

It’s important that when shopping around for hole saws, it’s just as important to consider what type works best with your power drill so make sure they have compatible shank sizes before purchasing any new ones!

To attach your non-arbored hole saw onto your power tool, insert the arbor from underneath into its top chuck where regular drill bits fit. Make sure it is oriented correctly by that there isn’t too much space between the sides of the hole saw and your drill bit, otherwise it won’t cut.

To attach an arbor type to your power tool, place its center shaft over the top chuck (where regular drill bits fit) with any rubber or plastic ring that might be included facing down towards you for easier grip. Once in position, firmly tighten by hand until it is secure then start drilling!

What is a hole saw?

A hole saw is a metal or plastic cylindrical blade with saw teeth on the outside edge that is used to cut holes in materials like sheetrock, plywood, and other softer woods. The size of the hole saw you need depends on the specific project you are working on – there are hole saws available in diameters from less than an inch up to several inches.

The majority of hole saws have an arbor, which is a shaft that extends from both ends of the blade and has either a threaded end or collar that screws onto the drill bit shank to hold it in place while drilling.

Hole saws are one of the most versatile tools in your toolbox and can be used for a variety of projects around your home including:

  • Cutting holes in walls or floors for electrical outlets or plumbing
  • Creating window or door frames
  • Drilling out pilot holes before inserting screws or other fasteners
  • Making decorative cutouts in wood panels or furniture pieces

What is a non-arbored hole saw?

A non-arbored hole saw is a type of hole saw that doesn’t have an arbor. The blade is attached directly to the drill bit shank and does not extend beyond it like with an arbor type. This type of hole saw is generally less expensive than the arbored versions and can be more easily stored in smaller spaces when not in use.

Non-arbored hole saws are best used for occasional projects or if you only need access to holes through softer materials like drywall, plywood, or other lightweight woods.

They cannot be used for heavier materials or metals because they don’t have the stability needed to produce clean cuts without wobbling around – this can cause damage to your material or even worse, your power drill.

To attach the non-arbored type to your power tool, slide it onto the shank of a standard drill bit and secure it with your hands by turning counterclockwise until tight. Then start drilling! If you need more support from your materials when using these types, try putting something underneath them like a scrap piece of tile for increased stability while cutting into harder surfaces.

What is the difference between an arbored hole saw and a non-arbored hole saw?

The main difference between an arbored hole saw and a non-arbored hole saw is that the former has an extendable blade with teeth on it that screws onto the drill bit shank, while the latter has a blade that is attached directly to the drill bit shank.

An arbored hole saw is more versatile because it can be used to cut through harder materials like metal or plastic, while a non-arbored hole saw is best suited for softer materials like sheetrock, plywood, and other lightweight woods.

Another key difference is the price – arbor-type hole saws are generally more expensive than their non-arbored counterparts. This higher cost usually reflects the increased durability and stability of the arbor-type blades.

  • Longevity: They tend non-arbored hole saw last a shorter time than arbor hole saws.
  • Efficiency: The small teeth on the outside of the blade cause them to tear away material instead of cutting through cleanly and quickly as an arbor saw would do.
  • Guiding plate: While most non-arbored versions come with plastic guiding plates that attach around the blade, they typically aren’t as strong or durable and can break easily during use.
  • Usability: Non-arbor hole saw blades are attached directly onto your power drill bit shank – this method is less stable when working with harder materials because it doesn’t allow for much support from your material underneath (i.e. using a scrap piece of tile to help brace the material you’re cutting into).
  • Pilot hole: Most non-arbored versions cannot drill pilot holes before beginning your cut, which is a helpful step when working with harder materials so that you don’t damage your power drill bit or the blade itself.
  • Stability: Non-arbored hole saws are less stable than their arbor counterparts and can wobble around while drilling, leading to an uneven or rough cut.

Rules for working with a hole saw

arbored hole saw is best for larger holes

Source: YouTube

  • Make sure the blade is fully inserted into the saw housing before turning it on.
  • Do not apply too much pressure when cutting, as this can cause the blade to break.
  • Always use a drill guide when drilling through materials that are thicker than the hole saw’s diameter. This will help ensure accuracy and prevent the material from splitting.
  • When it comes to choosing between an arbored hole saw or a non-arbored hole saw, there are you need to consider the size of the hole you need to cut: an arbored hole saw is best for larger holes, while a non-arbored hole saw is better for smaller holes.

How to avoid tear-out?

you should try to keep the drill's speed as slow as possible

Source: YouTube

To avoid tear-out when cutting a hole with your arbored saw, you should try to keep the drill’s speed as slow as possible. This will minimize the damage done by heat and pressure buildup in the material being cut.

For materials that are prone to tearing out or splitting when using a non-arbored saw, such as plywood, it is better to use a Forstner bit instead of an ordinary hole saw when working from both sides.

When cutting smaller holes in thin materials like sheet metal or drywall with either type of hole saw, be sure not to press down too hard on the tool: this can cause unnecessary wear and tear on the blade and put extra stress on both your body and power tools!

How to enlarge an existing hole?

consider using an oversized arbored saw instead

Source: YouTube

If you need to make a hole larger, consider using an oversized arbored saw instead of increasing the size with multiple cuts. By enlarging the existing hole rather than cutting new ones in succession, saves time and prevents wear on your blade or drill bit.

To enlarge holes that are already cut into thin materials like metal sheeting without tearing through them entirely, try drilling one side at a time using Forstner bits: they leave cleaner edges than ordinary hole saws do!

How to cut a deep hole?

When cutting a deep hole, you’ll need to use a drill guide to keep the blade from wobbling and ensure accuracy. This is especially important when drilling through materials that are thicker than the hole saw’s diameter.

If your project requires holes that are deeper than the length of your hole saw’s blade, you can try using a step bit instead: this tool has multiple blades of different lengths, so it can be used to create holes of any depth.

For extremely deep holes, consider using an end mill: this type of drill bit is designed for machining metal and other hard materials. It can handle depths that no other type of drill bit can!

How to get wood out of a hole saw?

If your hole saw accidentally bites into a piece of wood, don’t worry! Just remove the drill from the material you are working with, place it in reverse and let go to release the bit.

When removing large pieces of wood that have been ripped out by accident using an arbored hole saw, try wrapping duct tape around one end of a stick or dowel before inserting it back inside: this will give you something firm to grip onto while carefully prying loose any stubborn pieces still stuck in there.

Get rid of sharp splinters left behind when cutting through plywood with non-arboborred holes saws, just use pliers to pull them off after drilling is done. You can also smooth over rough edges using fine-grit sandpaper.

If trying to pull pieces of wood out from the inside with a non-arbored hole saw, be sure to hold onto them when drilling through this will prevent them from flying off and injuring you or someone else!

To remove small bits of wood that may remain attached after using an arbored hole saw, try inserting a screwdriver into the center before turning your drill on this should push the fragments free without damaging your tool.

Safety tips

  • When using a hole saw, always wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from debris.
  • If drilling in an enclosed space, make sure the area is well ventilated to avoid breathing in harmful fumes.
  • Keep children and pets away from the work area while you are drilling: small pieces of wood or metal can be dangerous if swallowed.
  • Never try to drill through metal with an ordinary hole saw: it will quickly dull your blade and may even damage your drill bit.
  • To prevent the hole saw from wobbling when cutting, use a drill guide (or even just a piece of wood clamped to the material). This will also help ensure accuracy when drilling into materials that are thicker than the diameter of the hole saw.

When working with either type of hole saw for tasks other than making circular cuts (such as creating slots), it is important to use proper safety equipment such as gloves and protective eyewear: these will help protect your body from injury while also keeping your eyes safe from potential hazards!

Non-arbored vs arbored hole saw – which one to choose?

So which one is right for you? That answer largely depends on the specific project you are working on and your experience level. If you’re not sure, it’s always best to start with a small hole saw in case things don’t go as planned – that way you won’t waste too much time or money if it turns out the type of hole saw pe works better for you is through trial and error; if the blade doesn’t seem connected securely enough try tightening more before giving up on them entirely.

If they are too difficult to connect correctly even after loosening quite a bit first, chances are they were made specifically as an arbored version so go ahead and return them.


Arbored hole saws are the best option for most projects, but there are some occasions when a non-arbored hole saw is better. Make sure you know what type of hole saw you need before you start your project.

If you’re not sure which type of hole saw to use, or if you have any other questions about hole saws, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We would be happy to help!

Happy hole sawing!

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