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View andyboy's profile

Cleaning your table saw blade

by andyboy
posted 07-29-2009 04:22 AM


34 replies so far

View jim1953's profile

jim1953

2678 posts in 2590 days


#1 posted 07-29-2009 04:27 AM

nice

-- Jim, Kentucky

View FEDSAWDAVE's profile

FEDSAWDAVE

288 posts in 2180 days


#2 posted 07-29-2009 04:29 AM

We’ve suggested that to customers for many years and it’s a heck of a lot less money that some of these “pitch & gum removers” that are pretty much oven cleaner with a floral scent. Spray oven cleaner on the blades…go to lunch…remove oven cleaner when you return.

To many folks try and turn in a blade for sharpening that they think is dull but just has pitch buid-up. Clean it and keep cutting!

Right on andyboy.

-- http://www.federalsaw.com

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15076 posts in 2424 days


#3 posted 07-29-2009 04:31 AM

If it damages alloys, how can you be sure your blades aren’t made of one of them?

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Innovator's profile

Innovator

3584 posts in 2162 days


#4 posted 07-29-2009 04:40 AM

Thanks for the tip.

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View andyboy's profile

andyboy

501 posts in 2021 days


#5 posted 07-29-2009 04:42 AM

Hey guys, one of my student’s is an air craft mechanic and she wondered if it might even wreck the steel. She also agreed however, as long as the cleaner is neutralised with water and maybe lightly oiled, it would be sweet.

-- Andy Halewoodworker. You can't finish if you don't finish. So finish it, because finish is everything.

View Kindlingmaker's profile

Kindlingmaker

2654 posts in 2275 days


#6 posted 07-29-2009 05:02 AM

Simple Green is earth friendly and works VERY well.

-- Never board, always knotty, lots of growth rings

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15076 posts in 2424 days


#7 posted 07-29-2009 05:02 AM

The bottom line is clean the blade and get it off, eh?

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112892 posts in 2325 days


#8 posted 07-29-2009 05:10 AM

goof off works well too

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View FirehouseWoodworking's profile

FirehouseWoodworking

635 posts in 2021 days


#9 posted 07-29-2009 05:34 AM

I have used both Simple Green and EasyOff Oven Cleaner. Just depends if I want to walk to the laundry room or to the kitchen to get the cleaner!

I must say that EasyOff does a better job on that really heavy buildup. I bought a couple of 10” blades at a garage sale once because they were so cheap. Very heavy buildup. After an overnight soak, they looked almost brand new!

Routine cleaning gets the Simple Green. Works very well.

As a hint, go to the dollar store and buy a metal pizza pan, the kind with the lip that’s about a half inch deep. I have one that’s 11 inches in diameter. Ten inch blades fit perfect. That way you can put a couple washers in the pan (I superglued mine in – it keeps anybody from thinking about using the pan to make pizza! ) that will hold the blade off the pan’s bottom. Pour in enough Simple Green or EasyOff to cover the blade and let it soak. (I also spray painted the outside of the pan RED in case they missed the washers!)

Cheers!

-- Dave; Lansing, Kansas

View Mike Gager's profile

Mike Gager

617 posts in 2015 days


#10 posted 07-29-2009 01:34 PM

strong black coffee works to.

ive heard oven cleaner is not a very good idea to use

View Broda's profile

Broda

313 posts in 2267 days


#11 posted 07-29-2009 01:55 PM

I think i have also heard about certain types of cleaners which might loosen the bond between the blade and the carbide on the teeth

not sure but…

-- BRODY. NSW AUSTRALIA -arguments with turnings are rarely productive-

View ND2ELK's profile

ND2ELK

13495 posts in 2522 days


#12 posted 07-29-2009 04:30 PM

Thanks for the tips guys.

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View RedShirt013's profile

RedShirt013

219 posts in 2410 days


#13 posted 07-29-2009 05:43 PM

Does it work on coated blades too or would it damage the coating? I use easy-off quite a bit to strip paint from plastic models and it removes acrylic/enamels/chrome plating very well. Not sure how much that will strip my freud blade’s chrome.

-- Ed

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

5603 posts in 2124 days


#14 posted 07-29-2009 05:49 PM

I’ve had good success cleaning blades with several methods, but I consider oven cleaner to be among the harshest and messiest…it works but no better than many other methods. IIRC, Freud warns against oven cleaners, and long term soaking in Simple Green due to possible damage to the binders.

Instead, I’d try 409, kerosene, Greased Lightning, LA’s Totally Awesome, Fantastic, Goo Gone, and even Windex….whatever you have available in the house. I spray, hit the blade with a toothbrush, rinse and wipe…it’s literally a 3-4 minute process. The important thing is to clean them often.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View Mike Gager's profile

Mike Gager

617 posts in 2015 days


#15 posted 07-29-2009 06:16 PM

just whatever you do, DO NOT mix household cleaners! and never ever EVER mix bleach with ANYTHING!

bleach + ammonia (as found in windex) = chloramine gas
bleach + acids (vinegar, some rust removal products, toilet bowl cleaners) = chlorine gas

Chlorine gas and water combine to make hydrochloric and hypochlorous acids.

View daltxguy's profile

daltxguy

1373 posts in 2662 days


#16 posted 07-30-2009 01:11 PM

Using an oven cleaner is actually an old trick. I first heard about it about 10 years ago but I am sure it’s older than that.

The main active ingredient in oven cleaner is caustic soda ie: sodium hydroxide (NaOH). It works the same way that soap is made. The caustic soda reacts with fats to produce a soapy residue which can then be wiped off.

I’m not entirely sure of the chemistry of removing pitch from blades but it does work but it’s smelly, messy and caustic.

A possible safer alternative would be what I now use to clean ovens: baking soda, vinegar and some salt as a slight abrasive.

Of course you could just use straight caustic soda as well or possibly make your own from wood!! Ashes from hardwoods will leach potassium hydroxide (KOH) when water is flitered through it. KOH is another caustic soda and this is how soap is made from ashes and fat!

Just always use gloves, safety glasses and be in a well ventilated area no matter what choice you use, natural or otherwise. Caustic soda burns the skin.

-- If you can't joint it, bead it!

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2419 posts in 2186 days


#17 posted 07-30-2009 02:12 PM

Tried Simple Green for the first time yesterday. I had an old blade that had never been cleaned. yellow paint on it. Black smears and lots of brown sap. I soaked it overnight. This morning it looked the same. But, when I went to pick it up out of the tray the blade came up but the other stuff slid off as if they were a thin film floating on the blade. It’s as if I unzipped the gunk and it fell off. I wirebrushed a couple of spots. Shiny new blade. I hadn’t seen the teeth in a long time. They’re in pretty good shape. I didn’t know as they were encrusted. So, my two best cleaning friends that get it done are:
Simple green for blade cleaning
Evaporust for rust removal.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View tenontim's profile

tenontim

2131 posts in 2492 days


#18 posted 07-30-2009 03:21 PM

I think my wife was stocking up on oven cleaner before the y2k scare, then we got a self cleaning oven, and now I have a life time supply of it. I don’t cut a lot of wood that has resin in it, mostly hardwood, but I do give the blades a cleaning now and then. Spray them in my deep sink, let them sit for a few minutes, wash them off and wipe them down with camilia oil.

View gerrym526's profile

gerrym526

265 posts in 2556 days


#19 posted 07-30-2009 08:23 PM

I use Pro 409 (the heavy duty version of 409) that you can get at the Ace Hardware. Have been using it for years because it’s very safe (no fumes, rubber gloves, etc) and does a great job.
You just put about a 1/4 inch of it in a cookie sheet with a rim, and soak the table saw blade in it for about 5min. You can then use an old toothbrush to scrub the pitch off the carbide teeth-very easy, almost no effort.
I used to use oven cleaner, but think there was an article about the 409 in an issue of FWW years ago.

-- Gerry

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15076 posts in 2424 days


#20 posted 07-30-2009 10:09 PM

We made soap at school usiing woodash and fat. The teacher told us to not use it on our face and hands when she sent it home with us. Imagine doing that today :-))

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View DanM's profile

DanM

90 posts in 2457 days


#21 posted 08-01-2009 01:48 AM

This is probably not an option available to most, but I used to do a lot of watch/clock repair, and I have a nice ultrasonic cleaner which I used for the movements. For those who don’t know, an ultrasonic cleaner is basically a tank you fill with an appropriate cleaning solution, which the cleaner heats slightly & permeates with high frequency sound waves, in the range of a few hundred thousand hertz. For saw blades, I’ve found a few minutes in the cleaner with a solution of water & dish washer detergent gets them literally sparkling. Of course, you have to be sure to dry the blades thoroughly afterward.

If someone happens to have such a cleaner, they may want to give this a try.

Dan

View Eric's profile

Eric

185 posts in 1259 days


#22 posted 07-25-2011 01:09 AM

The bottom of a 5 gallon bucket makes a great soaking tray too.

-- Eric

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2419 posts in 2186 days


#23 posted 07-25-2011 01:42 AM

“The bottom of a 5 gallon bucket makes a great soaking tray too.”

Three washers underneath the blade get it clean on both sides.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View Towtruck's profile

Towtruck

70 posts in 1357 days


#24 posted 07-25-2011 02:20 AM

I cut a lot of white pine and get into pitch often, I’ve found cooking no-stick spray and a soft brass wire brush does wonders. Definitely not toxic or hazardous. The bucket bottom does made the job easier.

-- I cut it off 3 times and it's still too short!

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6968 posts in 1662 days


#25 posted 07-25-2011 02:52 AM

gerrym526 does what I do, “409” and let it soak a few minutes. I also find that even “Dawn” dish washing liquid and a toothbrush work wonders after a few minutes soaking. And NO caustic sprays!

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15076 posts in 2424 days


#26 posted 07-25-2011 03:21 AM

cr1 You should call Charlie and I when you find these threads. We like beer and popcorn to ;-))

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15076 posts in 2424 days


#27 posted 07-25-2011 03:24 AM

“Dawn” is one of the best degreasers in the world. The late Great Paul Harvey once reported an oil spill that the highway dept couldn’t get off the road. Finally, the makers of “Dawn” came to their rescue. It took the oil off the road!!

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Eric's profile

Eric

185 posts in 1259 days


#28 posted 07-25-2011 04:39 AM

Paul Harvey. Now there’s a name I haven’t heard for a while. I always liked his stories.

-- Eric

View TheWoodNerd's profile

TheWoodNerd

288 posts in 1940 days


#29 posted 07-25-2011 04:47 AM

I looked at a bunch of different ones last year – http://www.thewoodnerd.com/reviews/bladeCleaners.html

Water – not too good
Coffee – barely better than water
Rubbing alcohol – eh
CMT 2050 – stinks and not all that great
Simple Green – Works OK, nasty odor
Goo-Gone – Adequate
Boeshield – Works well, smells bad
Empire BladeSaver – best cleaner of the bunch. Slightly better than Boeshield, slightly less stinky.

The very best thing I found was a couple months ago – Rockler’s blade cleaner – http://www.thewoodnerd.com/reviews/rocklerBladeCleaner.html. Works well and fairly quick, no nauseating smell, but you can’t store the cleaner in the tub.

-- The Wood Nerd -- http://www.workshopaholic.net

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

15076 posts in 2424 days


#30 posted 07-25-2011 06:25 AM

Yes, Paul is missed!! Too bad he had no peers!! Even young Paul couldn’t come close to filling his chair at the station ;-(( It was always such a disappointment hearing Mort sitting in ;-((

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View woodshaver's profile

woodshaver

2884 posts in 2101 days


#31 posted 03-31-2012 02:05 AM

I had a friend that had a nice new cast iron table saw. His wife gave it to him for his birtday. The blade stayed brand new and free of gum for a long long long time…. because it sat in his basement, and he wouldn’t plug it in.

-- Tony C St Augustine FL, My high school shop teacher said "You can do it"... Now I can't stop!

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2419 posts in 2186 days


#32 posted 03-31-2012 02:21 AM

cut the bottom of a 5 gallon pail and put an inch of simple green in it. suspend the blade using three nuts or something that height. Next day the gunk falls off the blade as you lift it out. Not expensive and environmentally friendly.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View andyboy's profile

andyboy

501 posts in 2021 days


#33 posted 03-31-2012 09:47 AM

I sprayed them once with oven cleaner. Bit messy but that’s the Scottish blood in me I guess. Works though.

-- Andy Halewoodworker. You can't finish if you don't finish. So finish it, because finish is everything.

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3582 posts in 2709 days


#34 posted 03-31-2012 02:40 PM

Well, there’s one everyone missed.
Arm & Hammer WASHING SODA. Non caustic, no odor, biodegrades, quick, cheap, and it comes in a nifty yellow box.
OOO’s comments were a hoot. Spewed my coffee.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

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