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What do you use to clean your table saw blades?

by SC_Galoot
posted 10-15-2007 07:01 PM

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74 replies

74 replies so far

View TomFran's profile


2952 posts in 3416 days

#1 posted 10-15-2007 09:46 PM

If you are close to a Woodcraft Supply, they sell a very good product for cleaning blades. I bought a gallon of it several years ago and still have some. Of course you could order it online if there isn’t one nearby.

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View SC_Galoot's profile


30 posts in 3304 days

#2 posted 10-15-2007 10:01 PM

The closest Woodcraft to me is in Charleston – about 2 hours away. There is a WoodZone and Rockler outlet in town that I can easily buy cleaner at. However, I’m trying to avoid spending any money unless absolutely neccessary. I’m interested in ways of cleaning the blade using everyday household items. Any ideas would be welcome.

View Fingersleft's profile


71 posts in 3318 days

#3 posted 10-16-2007 12:42 AM

Hi Galoot -

If you’re looking for household cleaners, I’ve used Goop and a clean rag. Seems to take most of the tar and stuff off the blade, and I don’t think there’s anything in there that can hurt the blade or the tips.

-- Bob

View Dekker's profile


147 posts in 3302 days

#4 posted 10-16-2007 12:44 AM

Mineral spirits or turpentine, depending on what is gooping your blade… I’ve had great results with both. It also works for router bits.

-- Dekker -

View cassy's profile


29 posts in 3454 days

#5 posted 10-16-2007 12:55 AM

I have feard of people using oven cleaner,be sure your outside spray it on wait a couple of minutes,then with a scrubbing brush when all is clean just rinse it off with water and dry the blade. Hope this helps.

-- dave montreal

View USCJeff's profile


1062 posts in 3490 days

#6 posted 10-16-2007 04:23 AM

Just a heads up Dan, don’t use a degreaser. Most all degreasers (oven cleaner for example) contain a chemical that can break down the bonding of the carbide teeth. Something about carbide teeth flying through my shop gives me the willies. I believe it was Marc Spag that suggested using “little green” cleaning solution. We have it on hand for our little spot carpet cleaner. Soak the blade, and then brush off the resin. It can be reused many times. I also have a couple store bought preventative products I purchased locally. Mann Tool has a 3-pack of Boeshield products for about $30. It contains a preventative spray, a rust removal spray, and a blade and bit cleaner. Since you’re shops aobut 100’ from mine, feel free to borrow some little green if you want to test it before buying. Go to the WoodWhisperer site and watch the most recent podcast. Can’t remember the title. It’s the one in which Marc is doing maintanence after a project. He goes through the cleaning process. Video is worth many words!

-- Jeff, South Carolina

View Dadoo's profile


1789 posts in 3412 days

#7 posted 10-16-2007 04:28 AM

I did a forum on this about a month ago. Go read it. I used Acetone and a soft brass wire brush…Was very pleased with the results.

-- Bob Vila would be so proud of you!

View Karson's profile


35032 posts in 3822 days

#8 posted 10-16-2007 04:38 AM

I thought I remember someone using citric acid to clean rust and I thought they also said it cleaned the blade.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View WayneC's profile


12642 posts in 3519 days

#9 posted 10-16-2007 05:03 AM

I used citric acid to clean plane blades and bodies. Not tried it on saw blades.

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

View RickL's profile


253 posts in 3363 days

#10 posted 10-16-2007 12:40 PM

SC, I see you have a lot of choices but of all of the things I have tried, good old 409, a cheap rimmed baking sheet, and a brass brush work every time. I soak the TS blade in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes, bush, dry, and it is ready to go.

-- Rick, Union,KY

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 3736 days

#11 posted 10-19-2007 11:58 PM

Been using oven cleaner for years. Still have all my teeth. Only clean um once a year or so anyway.

View scottb's profile


3648 posts in 3749 days

#12 posted 10-20-2007 12:40 AM

I’ve used Simple Green, or any similar cleaners from the “organic” section of the supermarket. Works great with the scrubby side of a sponge.

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

View Alin Dobra's profile

Alin Dobra

351 posts in 3310 days

#13 posted 10-20-2007 04:51 AM

Simple Green, as Scott mentioned, works very well. I read this on the web about 2 years back (lots of people experimented with it). It is known not to cause any problems with the welding of the carbide teeth to the blade. I used it to clean both table saw blades and router bits and it works really well. I usually scrub with an used toothbrush. I usually do not bother to take the blade down (my father managed to drop a blade on the floor and bend a teeth; since then I clean them in place).

I would personally not bother with a specialized product since Simple Green is so good and is so much more cost effective (and you can use it to clan other things in the house).


-- -- Alin Dobra, Gainesville, Florida

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4010 posts in 3486 days

#14 posted 10-21-2007 04:42 AM

I’ve used oven cleaner, but it does peel the red coating off Freud blades… won’t do that again.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Robert Smith's profile

Robert Smith

102 posts in 3343 days

#15 posted 12-19-2007 01:22 AM


-- Robert,

View CutNRun's profile


122 posts in 3268 days

#16 posted 12-19-2007 01:48 AM

I’ve used the “orange or citrus version” of Pinesol. It was on sale at Safeway so I figured why not give it a try – the price was right. I found a shallow round pan, poured in some Pinesol and then put the saw blade in for a soak. With a light brushing it came out looking like new. I rinsed off the Pinesol, dried the blade and then used WD40 to remove any moisture. Rather than dump out the used Pinesol, I just used a funnel and put it back in the bottle.

-- CutNRun - So much wood, so many trails, so little time

View douglbe's profile


367 posts in 3383 days

#17 posted 12-19-2007 03:23 AM

I too use Simple Green with a brass bristle brush, cheap and works very well.

-- Doug, Reed City, Michigan

View TomK 's profile


504 posts in 3296 days

#18 posted 12-19-2007 05:07 AM

Orange Oil, fulll strength. Soak for 10 minutes and brush. Wear eye protection, this stuff is potent!

-- If you think healthcare is expensive now, wait until it's free! PJ O'Rourke

View Pathpounder's profile


98 posts in 3316 days

#19 posted 12-19-2007 11:31 PM

I used Simple Green on two of my blades last night. Set them in a pizza pan, sprayed on a little green, let it set a few minutes then brushed off with a brass brush. They look great but I have not cut with one yet.

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3296 days

#20 posted 12-19-2007 11:57 PM

WD-40 works pretty good.

View Joey's profile


276 posts in 3237 days

#21 posted 12-20-2007 06:12 AM

Home depot sells some stuff called krud kutter, it’s in the paint section. i clean both my router bits and saw blades with. It’s cheap and works great.

-- Joey, Magee, Ms

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3410 days

#22 posted 12-20-2007 06:46 AM

I keep a 5 gallon paint bucket on hand for cleaning my 10” blades. They fit perfect in the bottom.

For a cleaning solution, like others I use simple green and a brass brush after soaking overnight.
Just 1/4 to 1/2” in the bottom is all it takes. Then I empty it into a jar to use again.

Looks as good as new and is very cheap.


-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View steliart's profile


1817 posts in 2110 days

#23 posted 05-19-2012 12:10 PM

This post is very old but since I’m here…
mix baking soda with lemon and vinegar

-- Stelios L.A. Stavrinides: - I am not so rich to buy cheap tools, but... necessity is the mother of inventions - --

View woodman88's profile


125 posts in 2070 days

#24 posted 05-19-2012 12:27 PM

Without a doubt I use Simple Green

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4408 posts in 3382 days

#25 posted 05-19-2012 02:33 PM

Arm & Hammer WASHING SODA. Not baking soda. Cheap, bio friendly, won’t hurt the blades, drains, birds, squirrels, or your hands.


View Jeremy Greiner's profile

Jeremy Greiner

568 posts in 2194 days

#26 posted 05-19-2012 02:47 PM

I use rockler’s pitch and resin remover.

If I recall you mix it with 1 part water, and 1 part resin remover, I don’t recall anymore I have a 1 gallon gas container that I have filled with the already mixed resin remover. I’ve had it for a year or so and it still works.

When I want to clean my blade I poor enough into an oil drip pan that has a spout on it, instead of the blue container they sell. Then I let it soak for about 10 minutes and I use a tooth brush on the blade teeth for any extra “scrubbing”.

After the blade is clean I use a funnel and a paint filter to poor the solution back into the gas container and it’s good to go.

I also keep a small container of this stuff near my drill press, after using a drill bit I drop it in the container for 10 minutes or so and then use a tooth brush on it, keeps my bits clean and use the same on my router bits.


-- Easy to use end grain cutting board designer:

View a1Jim's profile


115177 posts in 2999 days

#27 posted 05-19-2012 03:58 PM

Like Bill White I use washing soda and I’ve also had good luck with goof off.

-- Custom furniture

View LockesWS's profile


17 posts in 1540 days

#28 posted 08-08-2012 02:57 PM

I know this post is a bit outdated but if I were to use WD-40 wouldn’t I need to use something else to clean that off the blade as well so it doesn’t transfer onto my work piece? If that’s the case what would be best to wipe off the WD-40? 409?

-- The things I make may be for others, but how I make them is for me.   - Tony Konovaloff

View knotscott's profile


7146 posts in 2797 days

#29 posted 08-08-2012 03:10 PM

You’ll want to wipe off whatever cleaner you use…..409 is an excellent choice (better than WD40 IMHO). Spray, brush the teeth, rinse, wipe.

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

View nwbusa's profile


1017 posts in 1708 days

#30 posted 08-08-2012 03:10 PM

Another vote for Simple Green.

-- John, BC, Canada

View MrRon's profile


3892 posts in 2665 days

#31 posted 08-08-2012 05:01 PM

There are many different products on the market. Their effectiveness varies. Some are touted as “green” and usually cost the most. The least expensive is oven cleaner, TSP and household lye. The last one is very effective, but also the most dangerous to use. It can cause severe burns if you don’t take suitable precautions, like rubber gloves and eye protection. Some cleaners take a long time to work. Lye works in a few minutes. You have to rinse the blade very well in water. If you use it in the kitchen sink, be careful not to let the solution go into your garbage disposal. It will eat through some models. Use lye in a plastic bucket large enough to hold the blate flat. You don’t need much lye; maybe a teaspoon in hot water, enough to cover the blade. Use a SS brush to clean the blade. TSP is also good, but works slower than lye. Oven cleaner works well; it’s active ingredient is lye (sodium hydroxide). I’m not a greenie; a little lye won’t bring the world to an end.

View cutworm's profile


1075 posts in 2215 days

#32 posted 08-09-2012 01:57 AM

There’s a pretty good video on The Wood Whisperer that demonstrates how to clean blades and bits.

-- Steve - "Never Give Up"

View Alexandre's profile


1417 posts in 1613 days

#33 posted 08-09-2012 02:14 AM

Anyone used fresolv from freud?

-- My terrible signature...

View Earlextech's profile (online now)


1159 posts in 2112 days

#34 posted 08-09-2012 01:10 PM

Oven cleaner

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View b2rtch's profile


4822 posts in 2470 days

#35 posted 08-09-2012 02:11 PM

Pure ammonia, is cheap and works perfect.

-- Bert

View bondogaposis's profile


3970 posts in 1773 days

#36 posted 08-09-2012 02:12 PM

Dish washing liquid and water.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View bobasaurus's profile


2587 posts in 2606 days

#37 posted 08-09-2012 02:37 PM

I bought some of this at home depot:

Worked like a charm, though it’s kind of messy if you do the full soak.

-- Allen, Colorado

View Tennessee's profile


2410 posts in 1936 days

#38 posted 08-09-2012 02:40 PM

I use either oven cleaner, or lacquer thinner where I immerse the blade and put it in a covered, sealed container.
If I use oven cleaner, I have to wash the blade off and rinse away the oven cleaner, sometimes a nasty task. My lacquer thinner I simply get a funnel and put it back in its original can, to be used again. Any debris from the blade floats to the bottom of the can and I never see it.

-- Paul, Tennessee,

View ducky911's profile


237 posts in 2211 days

#39 posted 08-09-2012 02:51 PM

i bought the kit from rocklers and like the tub that snaps shut.

View mr_rick's profile


4 posts in 1087 days

#40 posted 11-04-2013 06:05 AM

I clean mine with Worchestershire sauce. It removes rust. I put a little on and rub around with my finger and then let it set. Some people let it soak in a tray. I then scrub a little with a brass bristle brush and wipe off. I repeat application as required for more stubborn burns, stains, resin residue, etc. You can also soak hardware, screws, etc. in Worchestershire sauce and remove rust.

View PaulDoug's profile


1076 posts in 1126 days

#41 posted 11-04-2013 02:13 PM

I use Lestoil. It is available in the cleaning section at most stores. I was recommended to me by other woodworkers and works the best for me of anything else I have used.

-- “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

View Dutchy's profile


1976 posts in 1590 days

#42 posted 11-04-2013 09:40 PM

Hello SC Galoot,

Cheap and effective.

Tungsten Carbide sawbladesharping stations use Sodium hydroxide (Caustic Soda)
Solve in a tub or somthing else (a little) Caustic Soda in water. Put your entire sawblade a night over in this tub. The next day your blade is clean. Rinse your sawblade thoroughly with water, dry it with a cloth, and after this put WD 40 or something similar against rust on your blade.

See also:

-- My englisch is bad but how is your dutch?

View RPhillips's profile


1110 posts in 1258 days

#43 posted 11-04-2013 10:16 PM

Just be very careful with Sodium Hydroxide (NaOH) aka Caustic, it will burn you pretty badly in high concentrations.

FYI: the active ingredient in most Oven Sprays is NaOH, that’s why it will eat away at aluminum.

Seriously, read the MSDS if you plan to ever use this stuff.

Simple Green and a brass brush. Simple and safe.

-- Rob - Indianapolis IN - Learning... one mistake at a time...

View distrbd's profile


2220 posts in 1868 days

#44 posted 11-04-2013 10:25 PM

washing soda mixed with water ,one tablespoon in a large cup,use a soft brush ,you’ll be amazed how it cleans.

-- Ken from Ontario, Canada

View Loco's profile


210 posts in 1171 days

#45 posted 11-04-2013 11:42 PM

Generally this.It’s an older model.1978 I think.

-- What day is it ? No matter. Ummmm What month is it ? No moron. I paid for a 2 x 6. That means Two inches by six inches. I want the rest of my wood.

View Dutchy's profile


1976 posts in 1590 days

#46 posted 11-08-2013 07:53 AM

You are right RPhillips to be carefull with caustic soda. but this is the stuff professionals use, That the reason i mentioned it. (And most sawblades don,t made of aluminium.)

-- My englisch is bad but how is your dutch?

View Danpaddles's profile


550 posts in 1734 days

#47 posted 11-08-2013 01:18 PM

I used oven cleaner until I heard about the braze weakening. Had some Simple Green around, tried that, wow, faster than Easy Off.

I do it way more than once a year, almost every time the blade comes off, I hit it. Glass smooth cuts, I think I have about 5 years of fairly heavy seasonal use on this Freud now.

Acetone? at 12 bucks a quart, and it flashes off very fast. I don’t think so. Almost anything would be better.

Worchestershire sauce>? Hmmm. might have to try that. But again, cost would be an issue, I think. Has anyone tried cheap vinegar? it is a mild acid.

-- Dan V. in Indy

View ADHDan's profile


799 posts in 1530 days

#48 posted 11-08-2013 01:30 PM

I cleaned my TS blades and my router bits last night with Simple Green. It worked flawlessly.

-- Dan in Minneapolis, woodworking since 11/11.

View b2rtch's profile


4822 posts in 2470 days

#49 posted 11-08-2013 01:32 PM

Ammonia is still cheaper than all other products and it works great
The smell of ammonia does not bother me but I cannot stand simple green which gives me headaches

-- Bert

View Sirgreggins's profile


298 posts in 1657 days

#50 posted 11-12-2013 03:00 AM

Simple green! Cheap, simple to use, and widely available

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