Bosch 12v Mini Reciprocating Saw Review – A Homebrewer’s Best Friend?

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Bosch 12v max Mini Reciprocating SawI’ve been known to use my full size reciprocating saw for all kinds of tasks, including some slightly unconventional. Armed with a toothy long blade, I’ve made short work of trimming shrubs, trees and large plants. Let’s face it though, a reciprocating saw is not exactly a pocket tool. I’ve wielded them from a ladder one-handed (not recommended), and I think my forearms needed to be about two to three times as big as they currently are. For some smaller tasks, like cutting small pipes, hard to access nails, etc. the reciprocating saw is not only overkill, but it’s often impractical too. What’s the alternative? Usually the hacksaw. I have a confession to make; I’ve never really liked hacksaws. For what they cut, they’re big, cumbersome, hard to keep on-track, and blade changes are a pain. If you’ve ever had a task where a hacksaw just doesn’t do enough and a recip saw does too much, you’ll want to check out the Bosch 12v Mini Reciprocating Saw.

Last year, Jay over at pointed out the striking similarity between the Bosch and Milwaukee 12v mini recip saws. Since I might have detected a hint of tension between the companies on this front, I’m going to diplomatically avoid further comment and tip-toe onward with this review. If you’re a Milwaukee Tool loyalist, then rest easy a very comparable tool is available to you, and if you’re more a Bosch fan, then they have you covered too.

Bosch mini recip
My daughter insisted on hearing protection despite the saw being off

As fate would have it, my friend Ryan gave me a call shortly after I received the Bosch 12v Max Mini Reciprocating Saw from Bosch. He was facing a dilemma and needed advice. Ryan is an avid homebrewer, and he was working on a custom copper rig to enhance his brewing magic. The piece required dozens of cuts in copper pipe and Ryan wasn’t enthused about his progress with a hack saw or a Dremel rotary tool. So I invited Ryan over to give the new Bosch 12v Mini Recip saw a go. It’s also important to note it’s never a bad idea to provide a favor to someone that’s a skilled homebrewer. Homebrew karma can be very full-bodied, with mild hopiness, a hint of malt and a smooth finish.

12v mini reciprocating saw in action

I carefully loaded each section of copper pipe into my vise, mindful of how soft copper is. It was then time to fire up the mini reciprocating saw and see how it handled the metal cuts. It turned out my biggest concern was not sawing right through the pipe (the goal here was to create just a narrow slit in the top half of the pipes only).Precision cuts were no sweat

bosch mini reciprocating saw precision cuts
Precision cuts were no sweat
With a full size reciprocating saw I would have no doubt accidentally cut right through. The stroke length, speed and power of a full size recip just wouldn’t have allowed me the precision I could get with this more precise tool. Amazingly, I managed to do all the cuts without over-cutting the material. The Bosch 12v Max Mini Reciprocating saw performed impressively.

Cut after cut went remarkably smoothly and without the blade-binding, jerky, sweaty work of manually cutting with a hacksaw. What would have taken a small eternity with a hacksaw or Dremel was done in about ten minutes with the Bosch 12v Max mini recip saw. Somehow I thought the Bosch engineers over in Germany would be happy to know their tool was being put to such a noble use: beer brewing. Here’s the finished product, ready for brewing.

the 12v mini reciprocating saw's handiwork

bosch mini recip LED light
Quick change chuck and handy LED light

Despite surprising power, the Bosch mini reciprocating saw is small and responsive. It’s great for overhead work since you can easily one-hand it. Having one hand on the saw also gives you the ability to keep your other hand stabilizing the piece you’re cutting. Like many of the 12v Max tools, Bosch thoughtfully included an onboard fuel gauge, an LED light to help shed light on the cutting area, and a trigger lock. Speaking of trigger lock, before anyone calls Child Protective Services, my daughter and I had a thorough discussion about power tool safety before the photo-shoot seen above (plus I secretly engaged the trigger lock in case a sudden burst of premature teenage rebellion kicked in).

bosch mini reciprocating saw gauge and trigger lock

All in all, the Bosch 12v Max Mini Reciprocating Saw is an immensely handy tool, even if you’re not into homebrewing beer. If you ever find yourself cursing your hacksaw, or, if you ever feel like your full size reciprocating saw is like squirrel-hunting with a tank, you owe it to yourself to grab one of these. You can find the
Bosch PS60-2A 12V Max Cordless Lithium-Ion Pocket Reciprocating Saw
kit from our sponsor Tyler Tool for around $150 or the
Bosch PS60B 12V Max Cordless Pocket Reciprocating Saw (Tool Only)
– minus the bag, charger and batteries, for around $70. Happy brewing!

Photo of author

About Marc Lyman

Marc grew up under a brave single mom who "encouraged" home improvement on the family home. Early toddler gifts included a tool set, and even a cordless Bosch drill when cordless drills first came out. In grade school (give or take a few years), Marc's mom said, "We need to cut down some trees. . . . here's a chainsaw." A father figure also involved Marc in many home improvement projects, including a summer of home remodeling in Palo Alto, CA. Toss in some Obsessive Compulsive personality traits researching everything home improvement related. The end result: a genetically pre-disposed, socially sculpted home improvement machine! For his complete profile, please visit our About page. Really, it's worth it.

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4 thoughts on “Bosch 12v Mini Reciprocating Saw Review – A Homebrewer’s Best Friend?”

  1. I’ve found the same thing: smaller reciprocating saws are a precision tool. The big ones are a bit cumbersome, and, frankly, dangerous. I hope home brew karma repaid you with a tall glass of happy refreshment!


    • That does sound like a key benchmark Barks. Sadly, I haven’t become delinquent on a large number of parking citations. And I’m not willing to risk jail time liberating other people’s vehicles. Maybe some of the more underground elements of the HomeFixated reader community can weigh in? ; )


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