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Watch out Diablo - Irwin does it again, this time with 24 teeth

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Review by lumberjoe posted 08-19-2012 03:29 AM 6548 views 2 times favorited 23 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Watch out Diablo - Irwin does it again,  this time with 24 teeth No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I’ve been sitting on these blades for a while as I have been quite busy. Brand new in the package I have a 24 tooth Diablo rip blade, and a 24 tooth Irwin Marples rip blade. I did a comparison of the diablo/Marples 50 tooth blades, but the Diablo I had was used a few times. This time for comparisons sake, both are brand spankin new.

Note: this review is for the Irwin Marples blade that that will be the focus. The Freud Diablo was used for comparison. All cuts were performed on a perfectly tuned Ridgid R4512 using a zero clearance throat plate

First impressions
Like the 50 tooth combo blade, the Irwin felt heavier. Sure enough, it weighs half an ounce more:

Irwin at an even 24 oz

Freud Diablo at 23.5 oz

Again, Irwin is really touting how much carbide their blades have. With the 50 tooth combo blade, it is a slight difference to the Diablo. With the 24 tooth rip blade, the difference is very apparent, and that is probably where that .5oz weight difference comes from:

Use

Freud Diablo
First up was the Diablo. Today I made a new cutting board and ripped some 5/4 (actual thickness at the table saw was 1 1/8”) cherry, hard maple, and Walnut.

The first thing I noticed when I turned the saw on was the sound. It sounded like a completely different saw. The diablo made quite a “whirring” noise. After getting everything lined up, the cherry went through. The diablo cut pretty well for a 27$ blade! I could feed the stock quickly and there was not much complaining from the saw. Something I wasn’t used to was chips being ejected toward me instead of the usual sawdust. The cut in the cherry was pretty clean. It’s tough to tell from the picture, but this will need to be sanded before it gets any glue:

Next was hard maple. A lot harder to cut, and a lot more chips than the cherry. It did it though with a lot less effort than a combo blade would have required. Again the cut was fairly smooth, but not glue-line:

Now the walnut. This really chipped up with the freud blade. It was the easiest to cut, effort-wise, but the ugliest finish. This could use some 80 grit. Again I apologize for the crappy pictures, I need a new camera.

Irwin
I changed blades and finished ripping my wood into strips. When the saw fired up with the Irwin, it had a slightly lower pitch to it. The first cut again was in cherry. The wood flew right through the blade, similar to the Diablo. No better or no worse. The cut quality however was much nicer. I definitely would slap some glue on this and call it a day:

It’s pretty smooth. Not as smooth as a combo blade, but pretty close. Also during the cut I didn’t notice the chips being tossed at me like with the Freud. There was a lot more dust on top of the table though.

On to the hard maple. I was impressed here. As you can see by the pic I went right through a knot. I was expecting resistance but got none at all. No burning either:

And that walnut that the Diablo sailed through but kind of chewed up? Not a problem here. Again ready for some glue and clamps:

I even went on to rip some purple heart. I was going to use a combo blade because this stuff tears out so bad, but it did a really nice job:

Summary and overall Observations
Having a 24 tooth rip blade made my saw feel like it had an extra horsepower over a general purpose or combination blade. The trade off is smoothness of cut. The Irwin did a fantastic job there.The cuts were effortless and while they weren’t mirror smooth, they were good enough for me to leave alone and glue away. I would not (and did not) have done the same with the rip cuts made by the diablo 24 tooth.

If you have an underpowered saw and need some mechanical advantage when breaking down thick or hard/dense stock, please go out and grab the Irwin Marples 24 tooth rip blade. The quality of cut and efficiency of cut is excellent. I will be using this blade a lot more than I thought I would. It is a very welcomed addition to my collection. Like with the 50 tooth combo blade I feel again that Irwin has bested the mighty tried and true bright red diablo.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts




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lumberjoe

2842 posts in 938 days



23 comments so far

View Routerisstillmyname's profile

Routerisstillmyname

713 posts in 2198 days


#1 posted 08-19-2012 05:01 AM

Good review. Well they’re both made in Italy, so it’s no surprise the quality should be up there. I’m a Freud blade user myself and also use diablo due to the price factor. but also realize the fact that diablo is not a top of the line Freud blade. But the true test will be how long the Irwin will stay as sharp.

-- Router รจ ancora il mio nome.

View nwbusa's profile

nwbusa

1017 posts in 976 days


#2 posted 08-19-2012 05:08 AM

Nice review Joe, thanks. I usually keep my 4512 loaded up with a Freud 50T combo, and when I change blades to the 24T it does indeed sound like a different saw. I’ll have to keep my eyes peeled for these Irwin blades. If they are new to the States then we can likely expect them here in a few years… :)

-- John, BC, Canada

View b2rtch's profile

b2rtch

4342 posts in 1738 days


#3 posted 08-19-2012 10:35 AM

Tank you Joe.
My local Lowes carries only the combo blade but I can order the other one on line and have it delivered at my local store.

-- Bert

View Tennessee's profile

Tennessee

1471 posts in 1204 days


#4 posted 08-19-2012 12:10 PM

I was looking at these Irwin Marples yesterday in my local Lowes. Indeed, the cutters are larger, and I can see where they would take a larger cut, and with a larger cleanout on the blade, should fly through, as you described. Still, I will probably stay with my CMT PTFE coated 50 tooth.

-- Paul, Tennessee, http://www.tsunamiguitars.com

View patcollins's profile

patcollins

1003 posts in 1555 days


#5 posted 08-19-2012 03:08 PM

My Lowes was out of the 50T combination and the 80T fine cross cut, they don’t appear to cary any other of the 10 inch blades. I really want a 40T general purpose.

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2842 posts in 938 days


#6 posted 08-19-2012 09:21 PM

They are tough to find in the stores now, but some stores have them. I have good luck with the Lowes near my work (Boston area), than the Lowes in my little home town. I think the big market locations are getting the stock first.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11664 posts in 2377 days


#7 posted 08-19-2012 10:45 PM

How much did you pay for these two blades , Joe ? I can’t find the Marples online anywhere, so far.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

11242 posts in 1380 days


#8 posted 08-20-2012 01:29 AM

Thanks for the nice review. My Lowes doesn’t carry the 24 tooth rip blades yet so what do they cost? Also please keep us posted as to longevity of the ‘Blue Blades’. I’ve been a big Diablo fan but could be converted!

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2842 posts in 938 days


#9 posted 08-20-2012 12:46 PM

The 50 tooth I paid 40$ for, the 80 tooth I paid about 55$ for. Both of those are available at Lowes or the website. I will review the 80 tooth soon, but it is equally as impressive. Again, not all Lowes carry the marples blades. I haven’t seen ANY in my local store, but the Lowes near my office (Boston MA area) has a pretty good stock.

The 24 tooth I got directly from Irwin after contracting them. I couldn’t find any either, so I sent them an email asking where I could buy one. They were able to ship me one directly. The cost is 30$, which is right inline with the Diablo at 28$. You can get the diablo at any home depot or a ton of places online. They told me Lowes should start stocking them toward the end of August, so keep an eye out.

I am seriously impressed with the Marples blades. I own all of the 10” ones made so far and they see primary use in my table saw. I will likely buy another 80 tooth for my CMS. I too am interested in longevity. I’ve already cut well over 100 strips each of Maple, cherry, Walnut and red oak, and about 20 strips of purple heart. My garage isn’t heated so I need to get going on Christmas gifts now. It hasn’t shown any signs of dulling. I do clean my blades frequently (Using CMT’s blade and bit cleaner) and have cleaned this twice already.

Gfadvm,the Diablo blades are great. I honestly can say that in my application (my table saw, what I cut, and how I work, etc), the Irwin Marples blades simply perform better than the Diablo. This is tough to admit because I am a big Diablo fan. Also Irwin has not really made anything I personally would buy up until this point. I picked one up on a whim and am very glad I did.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View dbhost's profile

dbhost

5386 posts in 1921 days


#10 posted 08-20-2012 01:38 PM

Thanks for the review. I have shied away from the Irwin blades due to my experiences with their Marathon series. These look like real winners though.

-- My workshop blog can be found at http://daves-workshop.blogspot.com

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2842 posts in 938 days


#11 posted 08-20-2012 01:56 PM

The marathon series is really for construction workers. They are not meant for us fine woodworking fellows. I understand they work well in that setting. Irwin used to have a “woodworking” series of blades, and back in the day, my father swore by them. These blades represent a return to the “woodworking series” for Irwin and are labeled as such on the blades. These are really innovative (I feel) and actually live up to the marketing hype. That is something you don’t see much anymore. If you search the web for reviews, people who have used them really like them.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View oldretiredjim's profile

oldretiredjim

181 posts in 1075 days


#12 posted 08-20-2012 02:51 PM

great review – sold me. i need a 24 for my saw.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

11242 posts in 1380 days


#13 posted 08-21-2012 01:04 AM

Keep us posted. I’m not an Irwin fan (yet). I killed one of their spade bits the first time I used it (should have returned it).

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2842 posts in 938 days


#14 posted 08-21-2012 12:53 PM

gfadvm, I’m with you there. For the most part their stuff is terrible. They were right up there with Skil and Black and Decker in my “I’d rather go without than own one of these” brands. It’s tough to admit but these blades are nice. Maybe the rest of the business should take a queue from the blade development engineers.

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View slopjock78's profile

slopjock78

63 posts in 1073 days


#15 posted 08-21-2012 08:32 PM

thanks for another great review joe. about two weeks ago i bought a freud glue line rip, so wont be needing one of these. however, i’m very much interested in hearing your review of the 80 tooth irwin. my 80 tooth diablo that i use as my “construction” blade for trimming is getting to the point where it could be replaced, and dont like spending the money for the freud industrial in this application. cant wait to see what you think of the 80 tooth irwin

great revew!

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