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Skil 5280-01 Review

The Skil 5280-01 is a more affordable circular saw but it has a laser guide in it which is great because this saw doesn’t come with a top handle to help guide the cut. A laser-guided circular saw would normally cost a bit more but with the high rating this saw seems to have from the users, we couldn’t help but indulge in our curiosities. How does this handle cut? This saw handles cuts smoothly and seamlessly. It’s also great for the hands because it weighs 15% less than the predecessor, the SKIL 5680.


This circular saw employs a two-handed position that puts your hand relatively close together and doesn’t have the overtop handlebar for gripping that we prefer on some of our circular saws. However, this isn’t a deal-breaker and its laser-guided, so you shouldn’t have any trouble making optimal and perfect cuts. Even though it’s kind of mini circular saw, it does come with its carrying bag for storage and convenience. The beam laser is the most impressive part of the design of this circular saw. It’s scarily accurate and this saw packs a lot of power for its size without being hard to handle.


  • The design of this saw was kept simplistic to be as simple as possible as all the functions of the saw are easy to operate, it’s lightweight, it’s easy to hold and it’s cost-effective as well, so it won’t cost you an arm and a leg or even $100
  • This product is offered with free shipping if you thought the price being low wasn’t good enough and while you may not get it the next day, the shipping is generally pretty fast from Skil at least in our experience, so when you check out, make sure to take advantage of Amazon’s free shipping for this product
  • This saw is 15% lighter than the Skil 5680 which helps reduce fatigue and allows you to work longer on the projects you love most while being less of a hassle and less of a danger to your hands because being fatigued halfway through a job is never fun
  • The motor and the power usage of this saw is also better than the 5680 model, which are two areas they’ve worked significantly on to make sure they’re giving you the best product possible
  • Need to cut at a bevel position with a deep cut? Well don’t worry because the bevel can go up to 51 degrees and there’s a positive stop at 45 degrees for even those tough cuts

Pros & Cons


  • The Skil 5280-01 Circular Saw comes with a laser beam to help guide you in making those cuts, even the significantly hard cuts that seem like they’d be hard to cut guiding it by hand
  • Smooths out the edges when you’re cutting and doesn’t give you a hard time like other hand saws do as this makes a clean cut and leaves a minimal mess of dust behind which is great for cleanup and the finish of your wood
  • The overall cut capacity of this saw is just better than the competition and better than the previous model of Skil, the 5680 which doesn’t mean the 5680 is a bad saw but this one just has more significant improvements
  • The weight reduction alone makes this a great gift for older people who like to work with wood and people with bad hands that can’t hold a saw for very long, so thanks to Skil for making this a lightweight saw that anyone can use
  • The arbor size if 5/8 inches and the cord length is 6 feet so you may not have to get out the extension cord after all as we all know; extension cords minimize the power output of a tool the longer the cord is


  • The guard could be designed a bit better, especially during bevel cuts but other than that, it’s great


Q: Can I adjust the laser to my liking?
A: This is a common question we’ve been seeing on saws with lasers on them and we’re not sure why people would want to adjust the laser. The laser is not adjustable and it’s zeroed in perfectly with the saw blade upon receipt of the saw. There’s no reason or benefits to adjusting the laser, even if you could do so. It’s best to leave the laser alone as no one has any problems with it and if you do have a problem with the laser, you should send the product back to Skil.

Q: Can this auto switch?
A: There’s a way to do this but it’s not a recommended fix and it’s not something the manufacturer recommends you do. What you can do is, zip tie the trigger and use the switch that’s on the power plug. Again, we don’t recommend you do this and this may void any warranty that may be included with the product as it’s not something they endorse doing.

Q: For some reason, the cut seems about a quarter-inch off for me.
A: When you’re cutting, you have to take the curve into account or else, you’re going to be off by a quarter inch.

Skil 5280-01 Review Conclusion

If you’re looking for a cost-effective saw that won’t punch a hole in the wallet but will quickly put holes in the boards you want to cut, the 5280-01 is a great saw. Is it the best? It’s probably not the best handheld saw out there (for options, click here) but you have to lower your expectations for a saw that costs less than $100 and we don’t see many complaints about the saw. Most of the people have praised it and it’s an Amazon’s Choice item with glowing reviews. So, it may not be perfect and it most certainly has some tiny problems here and there but it doesn’t diminish the quality of this saw or what you can expect to get out of it.

SKIL 5280-01 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Skil 5280-01 Review
6.5 Total Score

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