Ridgid 18V Octane One-Handed Recip Saw R86448 – Reciprocating The Love

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Ridgid R86448 18V Octane 1-Handed Recip Saw.

What's This?This post is sponsored by The Home Depot. Ridgid 18V Octane tools (and batteries) really step up the game from earlier 18V iterations. We’ve already reviewed a handful of Octane offerings (with more to come) and have yet to be disappointed. Today we get to cut it up with the Ridgid R86448 one-handed reciprocating saw. This cordless, brushless tool is more than a Jack of all trades; it’s actually mastered at least a few of them. Let’s take a closer look at the high Octane beauty and see what it has to offer!

Fit & Finish – Making A First Impression

Ridgid R86448 18V Octane One-Handed Reciprocating Saw
You have to hold the R86448 for yourself to fully appreciate the build quality. Photos don’t do it justice.

From the moment you unbox this saw it’s obvious you’re holding a professional quality tool. The overall build feels extremely solid with tough, durable plastic and grippy rubber overmolds. Whether you use it one-handed or two, right-handed or left, the heft and ergonomics alone convey a sense of power and control. Use immediately confirms the content justifies the cover.

The R86448 recip saw (and all 18V Octane tools) is backwards compatible with all of your old Ridgid 18V battery packs. Or use with an 18V Octane battery for ultimate performance. Other great features include:

* 3/4” blade stroke.

* 0 – 3,000 strokes per minute (SPM) variable speed trigger.

* Switchable orbital action for faster cutting in wood.

* Tool-less blade change.

* Brushless motor.

* Overheat protection.

* Lifetime service agreement.

* Ambidextrous design can be used one or two-handed.

* Includes a 7 teeth per inch (TPI) wood cutting blade.

* Weight (bare tool): Approx. 4 lb, 10 oz. (w/ 6Ah Octane battery): 6 lb, 6 oz.

Get A Grip On Your Ridgid One-Handed Reciprocating Saw

"Hex Grip" overmold.
The rubbery “Hex Grip” textured handle gives sweaty hands a firm grasp without feeling sticky.

The hand grip is one you may already be familiar with from much of the Ridgid 18V lineup (and other Octane tools). I’m cool with that; the size and shape are perfect for my average sized paws. And it should be suitable for larger or smaller hands as well.

Ridgid R86448 hand grip.
From right to left: Variable speed trigger (index finger), trigger lock (middle finger) and LED light button (pinky finger).

Unlike some of the other tools with this same grip, I find this particular one easy to pick up and hold without accidentally bumping the button that activates the LED lights. That makes me happy.

Making The Cut – Ridgid 18V Octane One-Handed Reciprocating Saw

Cutting wood with the 18V Octane One-Handed recip saw.
Wood is only one of many materials at your mercy.

As a category, reciprocating saws are surprisingly versatile. Install the appropriate blade and you’re able to cut everything from wood to plastic to fiberglass to steel. So it’s no surprise that they’re frequently used in plumbing, construction, demolition, pruning / landscaping, electrical and other lines of work.

Tool-free blade holder.
The tool-free blade holder is so quick and easy to use I honestly think only magic could make the process any faster; and I’m pretty sure magic isn’t real. A pair of winged tabs make twisting the collar almost effortless, even with oily fingers.

I spent several hours cutting things with the Ridgid R86448 Octane one-handed reciprocating saw and didn’t quite drain my 6Ah Octane battery pack. But if you plan to work it hard all day long, you’ll want a spare to run while the first one recharges.

Demolition work with the R86448.
I didn’t feel like destroying any of the walls in my home or shop, so I’ll let this guy tear up his. But given what I did cut, I know this baby will have no problem with demolition work. Photo – HomeDepot.com

No matter the material, the saw’s performance felt indistinguishable from a corded tool (And as a bonus, there’s no power cord to impishly toe my cut line). Even pressure treated 4×4 is no match for the brushless 18V Octane motor, especially when paired with an Octane battery.

Stellar Orbit – A Tool On A Mission (To Save You Time)

Orbital cutting mode for wood.
This control turns orbital mode on and off.

The R86448 features an orbital function that plows through wood more aggressively than the straight stroke mode. Orbital action sacrifices some cut quality while increasing the cutting rate. After all, not every cut needs a showroom sheen. Especially with demo work or rough construction. And when your cuts do need a smoother finish (and for material other than wood), just switch back to normal mode. Here’s a look at the orbital in action (left side is on the orbital setting):


PVC, Steel And So Much More

Using the R86448 with a two-handed grip.
This heavy wall schedule 80 PVC pipe cuts like cold butter. Of course, I didn’t expect any less. Also, notice that the tool can just as comfortably be used with a more traditional two-handed grip; perfect for those times when you need precise control.

The saw comes with a 7 TPI wood cutting blade that also works on PVC, composite decking and other materials of similar density. For harder victims, such as metal and wood with nails, you’ll need a blade intended for the task.

Cut metal and other materials with ease.
I installed a Milwaukee Torch blade and cut up some retired steel store displays I have laying around for this very purpose. Again, no hesitation at all from the tool. Same with angle iron and black steel gas pipe.

Busting Pallets With A Ridgid 18V Octane One-Handed Recip

A couple years ago we showed some how to safely dismantle different types of shipping pallets. The Ridgid R86448 proves perfect for this. I have a stack of softwood pallets with nice, clean boards that I want to harvest intact.

Breaking down pallets with Ridgid 18V Octane 1-handed recip saw.
Using a blade intended for wood with nails, I cut between the ends of the boards and the pallet runners. On softwood pallets, this is a remarkably quick process.

Three things prevent me from trying to pry them apart: 1) There is no gap between adjacent boards, 2) The soft spruce or pine would bust into useless pieces even if I could pry on them, and 3) The maker used extra long nails and bent the ends over on the back side.

Cutting through the nails.
Now that the outer runners have been removed I cut the boards free from the middle runner, one at a time.

Rather than settling for a bunch of short pieces, I was able to salvage the entire length of the deck boards with virtually no damage to either face. Now I can easily punch the nail heads out from the back side; or just leave them in place, depending on how I decide to use the boards.

The Ridgid Octane One Handed Recip Saw – A Cut Above

Trimming small branches.
One thing I especially enjoyed doing with the saw was trimming low branches on a few trees in the yard. You may not think of a recip saw as a pruning tool, but trust me, this is a match made in heaven.

Whether you’re a pro or a do-it-yourselfer, a good reciprocating saw can be your best friend. Whatever the Octane’s corded counterpart can do, so can it (even plunge cuts into plywood and wallboard).

LED work light.
The front of the saw features a bright white LED that glows when you squeeze either the trigger or the dedicated light-only pinky button in the hand grip, and stays lit for 10 seconds after it’s released.

I already owned a reciprocating saw. But this is my new go-to, without question. Not only because my other one is corded, but because the Ridgid 18V Octane R86448 is vastly superior to my old recip saw in every way but one: my corded unit has a rotating head. Despite The Home Depot’s providing the saw for our evaluation, this one earns a resounding recommendation for being nearly perfect in almost every way. And the ability to comfortably use it with one hand free is a compelling reason to consider it over Ridgid’s other – slightly higher priced – 18V Octane Reciprocating saw.

Get the Ridgid brushless 18V one-handed reciprocating saw (bare tool) for just under $130:

Buy Now - via The Home Depot

I acknowledge that The Home Depot is partnering with Home Fixated in sponsored content. As a part of the sponsorship, Home Fixated is receiving compensation for the purpose of promoting The Home Depot. All expressed opinions and experiences are our own words. This post complies with the Word Of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) Ethics Code and applicable Federal Trade Commission guidelines.

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About Steve

Steve made his first woodworking project at age 9 (in 1982) and whittled his first wooden chain at 18. He was also a consumer electronics repair tech and shop owner for a little over 20 years, until his impending obsolescence became impossible to ignore. Since then, Steve has focused passionately on manipulating his wood... in his workshop. Don't judge him.

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