Bosch has launched two new 18V cordless circular saws, GKS18V-22 and GKS18V-22L. Both feature brushless motors and a 6-1/2″ blade size and have one big difference.
One of the new Bosch cordless circular saws is “blade-left,” and the other is “blade-right.”
Many users have preferences regarding circular saw blade direction.
Blade-left saws, for instance, tend to offer better cut-line visibility for right-handed users. Similarly, left-handed users might prefer the better cut-line visibility of right-handed saws.
I have also heard opposite preferences, such as where right-handed users prefer blade-right designs. Such users might prefer saws that can be held and used without having to cross their arms over the path of the blade.
Many users have preferences that come from long-time use of corded saws.
Bosch is not the first brand to offer blade-left and blade-right versions of the same circular saw, but this is the first time I have seen this done in the cordless realm.
You might also have noticed that cordless 6-1/2″ circular saws tend to be blade-left, and 7-1/4″ circular saws blade-right.
With these two saws, users have a choice.
The blade-right model is GKS18V-22.
The blade-left model is GKS18V-22L.
Features & Specs
- 6-1/2″ blade size
- 0-5,000 RPM
- 50° bevel range
- Bevel detents at 0, 22.5°, 45°
- Pivoting dust shoe
- Electronic brake
- Cut-line LED light
- Weighs 6.1 lbs (tool-only)
Tool-Only Model Numbers: GKS18V-22N, GKS18V-22LN
Kit Model Numbers: GKS18V-22B25, GKS18V-22LB25
The kits come with a charger and 2x Core18V 4Ah batteries.
Price: $199 for tool-only, $349 for the kit
My first saw was a hand me down blade-right Porter Cable. I hated using it but it gave me years of faithful service.
I donated the PC and upgraded to a blade-left brushless Ryobi without knowing there were options and it was like the clouds parted. I can see the cut! Rip and even cross-cuts are more comfortable and accurate now.
Yes, blade left circular saws give better visibility, but for right-handed users, your hand/arm is now in the line of fire in the event of a kick-back.
And that’s why it’s good to have choices.
Dang, and there was me thinking they had made a saw you could flip the handedness on.
Now that’s be either the most gimmicky new tool this year, or a complete game changer.
Also it’d be about a nanosecond before someone mounted a blade to both sides for the social media clicks.
They probably never liked their fingers anyway.
I think it could be done! The handle could swing around a pivot on top of the saw. A reversible motor isn’t a problem, especially with brushless motors.
You’d have to manually flip the blade as well or the teeth would be cutting backwards.
That’s true! But easily done.
I vaguely remember the Stanley “Eager Beaver” reversible circular saw:
I recall that some said that it posed some special hazards
Amazing. The handle has two triggers!
Come to think of it, the blade guard would also have to be designed to work in two directions.
I was hoping too
Imagine for a moment what would happen if Bosch USA actually read and learned from posts on their own tool forum.
Definitely seems like an upgrade over the CCS180B, on paper at least.
Wonder how having twice the tooling cost played into the pricing decision?
I use circular saws for so many different projects, from corrals to other more precise things. And I’m steadily thinking I’m going to buy a left blade, cordless saw. But I’m still leaning towards Flex’s belt drive, left blade saw. I think the extra deep cut and narrow shoe, would be features that I’d like. But what grabs my attention as much as anything, is the front and right angled dust port. It looks so natural. Like that’s where a left blade saw should be porting sawdust.
*I guess I’m just getting myself talked into actually buying it!
If you’re talking about the 6 1/2in “Inline” saw from Flex, that thing is awesome. It’s so narrow that you have excellent visibility at the cut regardless if you’re using it in your right or left hand. The handle being more inline with the blade also helps keep your cuts straighter.
Also, I just happened to notice that Acme Tools has a promotion on Flex right now. Spend $300 save $30, Spend $400 and save $80, spend $500 and save $150. It doesn’t apply to every tool it seems but it does apply to most of them!
This is again off topic so I apologize, but looks like Husqvarna is launching some cool 18v OPE that (should be) compatible with Bosch 18v?
I mention this mostly because as far as I know Bosch users have never had an OPE option. I know Stuart has written about some of these battery alliances before but didn’t remember seeing this
I’ve never heard of that before – neither Bosch nor Husqvarna have shared any information about it.
At a quick glance that’s Power4All which is IIRC Bosch 18v green aka their DIY / homeowner brand, not Bosch 18v blue aka professional. Only Bosch blue has ever been released in the USA.
I think Bosch green already has some OPE.
I have different handed saws; two ridgid saws different generations and two makita which don’t look the same. I pick the one best suited to the task.
I thought ‘rafter hook’ would be the answer.
I never take my saw into the roof space… 🤦
I’ve been hoping Bosch would release a new circular saw, and because this has a blade-left orientation, I’m all in. I have several 18V Bosch tools (and 12V and corded ones). I’m just a homeowner, and this is exactly what I’ve been waiting for.
As a lefty, I generally prefer blade-right saws and have been waiting for such a blade-right 6-1/2” circle saw to be available.
What’s more, this is a blade-right saw that has an adjustable dust port, and it seems that you can aim the dust away from your body. This is different from most blade-right circ saws, which have a build-in fixed dust port that blows the dust directly at your waist when you hold the saw in your left hand!
They also have a new 7-1/4 “PROFACTOR” brushless saw, model GKS18V-26LN. It is also blade left. Most places don’t seem to have it in stock yet, but it looks like the retail is about $230.
It does not appear there there is a blade right version of the new 7-1/4″ saw.
I forgot to say: I’m disappointed that neither the 6.5 nor the 7.25 saws have track compatibility 🙁
They released the blade right 7-1/4″ saw quite a while ago: GKS18V-25CN. There’s also a track compatible version for a bit more: GKS18V-25GCN. That one also has variable speed and a “one-touch” thumb-controlled depth adjustment.
The new GKS18V-26LN is not just a blade left version of the blade right GKS18V-25CN. The new 26LN appears to be a redesigned 7-1/4 profactor saw. Compared to the older blade right 25CN, the new blade left 26LN has a very slightly deeper depth of cut and cut-line LED. I am wondering if the motor may have been upgraded also, because the 25CN reviewed quite poorly.
Moreover, the 25GCN is not just a track-compatible version of the 25CN. The GCN is a substantial upgrade and is both heavier and more powerful (and also has the additional features you mentioned). Also, the GCN is made in Hungary vs. China for the CN.
Confusing, but that’s Bosch NA for you.
There are TWO blade-right versions of the new Bosch 7-1/4” saw.
Are you referring to the GKS18V-25CN and GKS18V-25GCN that I mentioned above? If so, I wouldn’t call those “new”, as they were available for sale in Dec 2020.
The newly introduced GKS18V-26L is blade left, and has different features compared to the blade right 25CN and 25GCN.
Agreed. Thanks for the clarifications.
For the blade right or left discussion, when I got my first Makita LXT 18v saw in 2008, I loved being able to see the blade and cut line. In recent years, using saws from both sides, My preferred is the original, blade on the right side.
The main reason is when cutting, I have the large part of the “shoe” or base plate on the supported would + the weight of the motor. On a left side blade, I have the edge of the shoe on the supported piece of wood and brunt of the weight on the unsupported side.
I have been cutting long enough that the benefit of seeing the blade and cut line, although nice, is not as important (for me) as having a blade on the right, where the weight is better supported and the shoe is also.
(I know, I could switch my cutting setup so I could have the sawhorses on the right side of my body…but it feels weird; not going to happen)
The Bosch green was available in Canada during the 70’s and 80’s. It was an economy of or like the other post mention, a homeowner line of tools. It was carried by Canadian Tire and a couple of other places.
This should truly become standard practice. sure it results in a duplication of pretty much all the parts except for maybe the dust port, but I think it’s worth it. It reminds me of when you’ll pretty much have the same model of grinder bit one had a paddle and one has a top switch. People have preferences, and to accommodate them results in brand loyalty. I applaud Boschs efforts.
Doesn’t Makita have a cordless 18v Left and right
6 1/2, saw ?
Yes they do, quite a few versions, I just purchased a brushless 6 1/4 blade right.
I have always called a right handed saw is for left handed people and a left handed saw is for right handed people. They need to institute a universal name change
Cool. Now make all tracksaws with the blade on the left side and we’ll be done.