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All Replies on Is it insane to put a 15" blade on my 12" radial arm saw?

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View thedudeabides's profile

Is it insane to put a 15" blade on my 12" radial arm saw?

by thedudeabides
posted 1733 days ago


50 replies so far

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112001 posts in 2181 days


#1 posted 1733 days ago

#1 your saw is not designed for that kind of use. #2 you probably want to live a little longer. Most of the time people use chain saws or beam saws( still very dangerous if you not careful)

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View cstrang's profile

cstrang

1769 posts in 1772 days


#2 posted 1733 days ago

Please do not do this, think safety always!! As Jim said ”#1 your saw is not designed for that kind of use. #2 you probably want to live a little longer.”

-- A hammer dangling from a wall will bang and sound like work when the wind blows the right way.

View thedudeabides's profile

thedudeabides

75 posts in 1744 days


#3 posted 1733 days ago

I can imagine it might burn out the motor, or the blade might not have enough power to cut through it, but from a safety standpoint, what do you think the dangers are?

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112001 posts in 2181 days


#4 posted 1733 days ago

If it broke the arbor and in planted the blade between your eyes would your consider you might have made a mistake. Graphic I know but is cutting these 6×6 s that important to have any chance of serious injury. You must know someone with a chain saw thats how lumber yards cut them all the time.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View cstrang's profile

cstrang

1769 posts in 1772 days


#5 posted 1733 days ago

It is all about torque really, a very powerful force and 15” blade can generate alot more than a 12” dado stack.

-- A hammer dangling from a wall will bang and sound like work when the wind blows the right way.

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#6 posted 1733 days ago

OK I’ll be the odd duck and say I don’t think it’s a big deal. Makita makes a 16 5/16 circle saw. The blade fits his arbor…its made to fit that size arbor.

View lew's profile

lew

9954 posts in 2359 days


#7 posted 1733 days ago

You know how a radial arm will tend to walk thru a piece. The larger the blade, the more likely this will happen and with even more force. When that little voice in your head says “I wonder if this is safe”- it probably isn’t.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 2903 days


#8 posted 1733 days ago

What would you do about a blade guard? This could be very dangerous.

The RPM may be wrong for that blade.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN. http://www.woodcarvingillustrated.com/gallery/member.php?uid=3627&protype=1

View okwoodshop's profile

okwoodshop

442 posts in 1779 days


#9 posted 1733 days ago

We have a saying in tennessee for this kind of stuff, it goes somethin like this—”hey ya’ll watch this S#%t”. And is usually followed by a scream and a 911 call. Putting this question on here is that little voice in your head.

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#10 posted 1733 days ago

What would you do about a blade guard? This could be very dangerous.

hmm I run a saw with a 42 inch blade without a guard.

View thedudeabides's profile

thedudeabides

75 posts in 1744 days


#11 posted 1733 days ago

Remember, there are no bad questions. I’ll probably just use the chainsaw, but before the Internet I’d have no way to know. Keep in mind, we’re not all master woodworkers in here, some of us are newbies who just want to make sure. For all I know it could be common to swap out blades for larger ones. The dumb thing would have been to just try it, the smart thing would be to post it in a woodworking forum to get advice first.

View okwoodshop's profile

okwoodshop

442 posts in 1779 days


#12 posted 1733 days ago

AMEN

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112001 posts in 2181 days


#13 posted 1733 days ago

“I run a saw with a 42 inch blade without a guard.”
Hmmm imagine that kick back!
We all do things are own way, some of us have better health insurance than others. LOL

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#14 posted 1733 days ago

thedudeabides…I think you know what you can do or not..personally I might consider it given more information. But I have no idea what typo of experience you have so obviously I can’t suggest you do anything. Take care.

View Cosmicsniper's profile

Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1762 days


#15 posted 1733 days ago

My dad’s RAS would choak itself and give up the ghost if it tried that, especially if it was tried in one pass. Then, my dad would kill me, if I didn’t get killed in the process.

I doubt your RAS will have the HP for it, which is why it is 12” in the first place.

If I were to try it, I would do it in two or more
passes. But at that point, you might as well use a regular blade and run two passes, top and bottom.

Come to think of it, what’s wrong with doing that? I do it all the time on my table saw.

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

View thedudeabides's profile

thedudeabides

75 posts in 1744 days


#16 posted 1733 days ago

“Come to think of it, what’s wrong with doing that? I do it all the time on my table saw.”

I’ve got a large barn that I’m constantly repairing and upgrading as my workshop grows and takes over more space. The whole thing is full of these giant timbers, ranging from 6×6s all the way up to 10×10s, and I need straight precision cuts to ensure the barn retains its structural integrity while I repair and replace some of the beams (some are rotted and can be repaired, others replaced), or at least a more precision cut than my recip saw or chainsaw can achieve. The professional beam saws are expensive and out of my budget so I’m looking for a more affordable way to cut these with at least some accuracy.

Cutting twice while flipping is laborious because the length of the beams are quite large and can weigh a few hundred pounds a piece. I work alone in the shop so it’s a bitch flipping these suckers around. A lot more of a pain than changing to a larger blade, which is why I asked in here if it’s feasible. Sounds like it’s not an option unfortunately.

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112001 posts in 2181 days


#17 posted 1733 days ago

You can just use a 7 1/4’ cirular saw and do that I ve done it lots of times. If your good with a chain saw you can also get a good square cut with it if you just mark the 6×6 on three sides.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Cosmicsniper's profile

Cosmicsniper

2199 posts in 1762 days


#18 posted 1733 days ago

I get where you are coming from where size is concerned, but it’s quite possible to still get accurate, seamless cuts using that method, assuming of course that your RAS blade is perpendicular to the table. That’s not always a given with an RAS, especially my dad’s old Craftsman.

-- jay, www.allaboutastro.com

View LesB's profile

LesB

1060 posts in 2047 days


#19 posted 1733 days ago

Besides things already mentioned there are a number of other factors to consider in the situation. First the number of teeth in the 15” saw; their angle of cut and set. To many teeth will make it too aggressive and hard to control. Next you need to consider that the circumference is 25% greater so it is traveling much much faster. Probably faster than the blade is rated for.
If you decide to do it I would make multiple progressive cuts and maybe even push the blade into the wood instead of pulling it. In other words do it backwards; from the outside in. You will have better control.

My suggestion is a reciprocating saw or for ULTIMATE SAFETY use a hand saw if it is only a dozen cuts. The exercise is great.

-- Les B, Oregon

View papadan's profile

papadan

1118 posts in 1972 days


#20 posted 1733 days ago

You only have a dozen to cut, clamp some angle onto them as a guide and cut them with a hand saw.

-- Carpenter assembles with hands, Designer builds with brains, Artist creates with heart!

View yarydoc's profile

yarydoc

417 posts in 1748 days


#21 posted 1733 days ago

I dont think my RAS would hold that much weight and make a true cut. I have a rule If I think it might not be safe I dont do it.

-- Ray , Florence Alabama

View hootr's profile

hootr

183 posts in 1950 days


#22 posted 1732 days ago

jim’s right, just use the circular saw
mark with a square, cut 1 pass and flip 1/4 turn at a time

-- Ron, Missouri

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 2903 days


#23 posted 1732 days ago

If the blade doesn’t go quite deep enough, finish the cut with a hand saw.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN. http://www.woodcarvingillustrated.com/gallery/member.php?uid=3627&protype=1

View okwoodshop's profile

okwoodshop

442 posts in 1779 days


#24 posted 1732 days ago

you could probably make a jig to guide your circular saw on three sides and get a very accurate cut that way. Might even come in handy on some other projects. would really like to see some of these big beams, bet that barn is cool.

View gagewestern's profile

gagewestern

300 posts in 1954 days


#25 posted 1732 days ago

why not buy a saw to fit the 15” blade

-- gagewestern

View Moron's profile

Moron

4666 posts in 2497 days


#26 posted 1732 days ago

I have a 14” table saw but normanlly I put 12” blades on it. On rare occasions I put a 18” rip blade on it, crank it all the way up and turn the saw on…....my heart POUNDS and the sound is SCAREY always checking my underware. I’m so nervous ripping and or mitering.

I wouldnt recommend it

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View WayneC's profile

WayneC

12255 posts in 2701 days


#27 posted 1732 days ago

Too bad you did not think of this a week ago. You could have made a cool halloween video. : ^)

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View SUPERDOG683's profile

SUPERDOG683

36 posts in 1730 days


#28 posted 1727 days ago

do 2 pass with the 12 inch blade
then use belt sander to clean it up.
little more work but you can get clean square ends
then again if the blade fits dosent hit the guard or the table
and you are able to feed it slow go for it.
youll always be taking so risk with stuff like that
if that saw jumps and jams in the wood you better have
a kevlar body suit because your #%%@*&^@ed

View SUPERDOG683's profile

SUPERDOG683

36 posts in 1730 days


#29 posted 1727 days ago

ps i forgot they make special low bite chains
for limbing and land scape ties.
if you have a 10 or 12 inch saw they only cost
30-40 i used them all day long when i used to do tie walls.
need a wood jig to kep you straight or else you will
wander. it can just be some scrap wood. i used i jig and small wood chisel
the sharp chisel gives a good line you can see. a pencil or marker
just isnt enough when the chips are a flying

View Kindlingmaker's profile

Kindlingmaker

2654 posts in 2130 days


#30 posted 1727 days ago

Just a thought… During WW II the aircraft manufactures put larger engines and bigger props on their airplanes and when they started and ran their engines the props broke because the tips were traveling faster than the speed of sound. They had to cut the nice rounded ends of the props off and make the dia. shorter to keep the props intact. hummm… I wonder if saw blades are the way…

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

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1599 posts in 2066 days


#31 posted 1727 days ago

Its questions and thoughts like this that keep me in business. If you do put that blade on and attempt to use it I would call 911 in advance and have them on standby. This sounds like a Tim “the tool man” Taylor move

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their therapist....medic20447@gmail.com

View davcefai's profile

davcefai

37 posts in 2000 days


#32 posted 1726 days ago

Kudos to the OP for asking rather than diving in. In these situations It is worth asking oneself “Do I really want to be featured on the Darwin Awards site?”

http://www.darwinawards.com/

-- David

View LSJ's profile

LSJ

71 posts in 1956 days


#33 posted 1726 days ago

You might be a redneck if you you put a 15” blade on a 12” saw. That should be all that I should have to say.

-- I like to turn

View BurtC's profile

BurtC

89 posts in 1734 days


#34 posted 1726 days ago

I know I wouldn’t think of it. Just way too risky. Let a lumber yard deal with that big stuff.

View stefang's profile

stefang

12600 posts in 1938 days


#35 posted 1725 days ago

I think Jim had the best suggestion with the circle saw. It might be a good idea to figure out a way to easily turn the wood. Maybe a simple chain hoist or two to lift them and set them on saw horses and some simple way to turn them around for each cut. be creative!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View BlankMan's profile

BlankMan

1487 posts in 1957 days


#36 posted 1725 days ago

First off I’d bet your 12” RAS would be underpowered for a 15” blade. Taking a look at Delta’s 14” & 16” offerings they come with a 3HP or a 5HP motor, most 12” are in the 2HP range, some older ones even less. Second, I’d never use or even consider using my 12” RAS without a blade guard. If the blade bites and the thing comes at you that could be messy. And as was mentioned RPM could be an issue but from what I’ve seen 12”, 14”, & 16” all spin at 3450. But I still just can’t get past the no blade guard.

-- -Curt, Milwaukee, WI

View KnotWright's profile

KnotWright

247 posts in 2092 days


#37 posted 1725 days ago

PROS to putting a 15” diameter blade onto a 12” radial arm saw:

Well I was able to make the cut in one pass

CONS to putting a 15” diameter blade onto a 12” radial arm saw:

” Mr/Mrs EMS how long do you think it will take to pry that blade out of my chest?”

“Neighbor I”m sorry about launching that 6×6 timber into your house.”

“Honey can you help me find my hand, I’ve seem to have misplaced it, last I remember it was holding down a 6×6”

And lastly, “Other than that Mrs Lincoln, how was the play?”

Sorry just the volunteer firefighter in me, I’d rather you be SAFE than in the hospital!

-- James

View ToddTurner's profile

ToddTurner

144 posts in 1927 days


#38 posted 1725 days ago

ok guys, he is just the one to ask what we have all wondered if not tried. whats the difference in putting the 15inch blade on a 15 inch saw or a 12 inch saw? Heck, let us know how it goes. Now, we would question you (appluad later) if you wanted to to put, say a v6 on the saw running the oversize blade. Ive got 36 inch tires on my truck, which came with 32 inch tires and im fine. Kids are wearing their clothes 3 times too big too…

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#39 posted 1725 days ago

Given that the blade was made for that size arbor and the rpms are the same (3450)on the 12 inch motor and the 15 inch motor…other than the ASSUMED fact that the guard wont fit over the 15 inch blade..can one of the engineering experts explain to me why the 15 inch blade is going to some how break the arbor and kill the operator?
I can appreciate the caution and orthodoxy in relation to machinery operation…but let’s be real.

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#40 posted 1725 days ago

http://justsawblades.com/systimatic/terminology.htm
typical maximum rpm for a 15” blade is 5000 rpm

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#41 posted 1724 days ago

Well you know how us “stupid rednecks” are. ...always posting stuff when we don’t know what we’re talking about.

View DannyBoy's profile

DannyBoy

521 posts in 2469 days


#42 posted 1724 days ago

Why not try a large sled on a band saw? As long as you could support it on the side and had enough room, you could cross-cut that relatively safely.

-- He said wood...http://hickbyassociation.blogspot.com/

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#43 posted 1724 days ago

personally I would use a 16 inch beam saw but…that wasn’t the question.

View patron's profile

patron

12976 posts in 1945 days


#44 posted 1724 days ago

thats what God invented handsaws for !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View tjbier's profile

tjbier

8 posts in 1742 days


#45 posted 1724 days ago

I always use circular saw, cut all 4 sides and then hand saw the middle…
By the time people make jigs or get a different saw out you’d have it done already.
KISS, abide by it.

-- Tom.

View GFYS's profile

GFYS

711 posts in 2075 days


#46 posted 1724 days ago

yes it’s often alot easier to change a problem than solve it. But then maybe the change is the solution. mmmm coffee!

View LSJ's profile

LSJ

71 posts in 1956 days


#47 posted 1723 days ago

Buy a 15” saw to fit your 15” blade.

-- I like to turn

View sidestepmcgee's profile

sidestepmcgee

158 posts in 2329 days


#48 posted 1723 days ago

good ol hand saw,the way they used to do it.can be cut be cut straighter then you think.I cut large timbers like this all the time.

-- eric post, tallahassee FL

View buzsaw's profile

buzsaw

17 posts in 1991 days


#49 posted 1723 days ago

If you only have a dozen cuts to make go rent the propper tool for the job and pay a helper for a few hours work. SAFTY FIRST AND FOREMOST!!!

-- I work to much to turn as much as I would like to.

View WayneC's profile

WayneC

12255 posts in 2701 days


#50 posted 1722 days ago

Here you go http://sacramento.craigslist.org/tls/1462240553.html

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

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