Can a Router Cut Like a Saw: The Best Alternatives To Cut Wood

The art of woodworking needs patience, expertise as well as the right tool. Without proper tools, a craftsman cannot pull a project properly. But there is always a drawback. Think you are in the middle of an urgent project and suddenly find out your saw is not working properly, what will you do then? Well, the answer is to find the best alternative to saw.

Woodworking requires different steps like sharpening, and cutting shaping before getting the final shape. Every step needs different types of tools and expertise to be done. The result of the woodwork depends on the proper use of this tool besides the general skill of the woodworker. Undoubtedly tools are everything for woodworkers, but what if the saw suddenly breaks or becomes unusable? Then it is better to use an alternative instead of stopping the work, especially when the project is important.

A saw is typically used to make crosscuts, ripping cuts, and angled cuts, while a router is primarily used for decorative edging, routing grooves, and shaping.

However, with the use of special jigs and accessories, a router can be adapted to perform some of the same cuts as a saw. For example, a straight edge guide and a specialized bit can be used to guide the router along a straight line, allowing it to make precise rip cuts. Similarly, a mortise jig can be used to create mortises, which are rectangular cuts that are used to join two pieces of wood together.

It is important to note that while a router can be adapted to perform some of the same cuts as a saw, it is not as efficient or precise as a saw. Routers have a tendency to wander, especially when making long cuts, so it is crucial to take the time to set up the jigs and guides properly to ensure accurate cuts.

Router as an Alternative

The best alternative to a saw can be a router. You can use an electric router instead of a saw. First, install the router bit and set the gauge according to your desired depth. Then place the wood piece, and pull the trigger. 

Next, you will have to move the router in the right direction to cut the wood. After finishing the cutting, release the pressure on the handle. For different types of cutting, you can you different types of bits.

However, cutting wood with the router is not very convenient and optimum. If you do not have efficiency, you might find it complex. Besides, wood routers cut wider swaths and create more sawdust and wood chips. Moreover, since the router cut slowly on thicker material without proper control, you won’t get the right finishing.

Other Alternatives

apart from the router, some other alternatives can cut wood. Such as

  • Knife
  • Machete
  • Drilling machine
  • Axe
  • Chisel
  • Plane
  • Lathe


if you can use alternate tools, woodworking will be easier for you. It will also reduce your dependency on a specific tool. However, using some alternate tool can be trickier, and on the first try, you might not get the perfect result. From my experience, I can suggest you can try using the alternate tool during your off time to see the outcome. But it is better to do such a type of experiment with an expensive tool.

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