|Review by knotscott||posted 03-10-2009 04:29 PM||6422 views||2 times favorited||7 comments|
- Infinity Dadonator SDB-800 8-inch Stacked Dado Set
- Brand: Infinity | Category: Saw Blades
The Infinity Dadonator SDB-800 8” stacked dado set features two 8” outside cutters with 24 carbide teeth each, and six 8” inside chippers with 6 carbide teeth each. Four of the chippers are a standard 1/8” width, one is 1/16”, and one is 3/32” to accommodate today’s odd plywood sizes. It comes with an instruction booklet and a set of plastic shims in a variety of thicknesses. It cuts dados 1/4” to 29/32”, and can me finely adjusted using the supplied shims. The outside cutters utilize a unique tooth configuration that includes a combination of teeth beveled from the outside in at 20° and a flat top grind to ensure a flat bottom dado. The SDB-800 comes in a plain blue square cardboard box that houses all the components described above, all held in place by a nut threaded onto a bolt through the bore of each plate. While this is a far cry from the nifty carrying cases offered by the DeWalt and Delta dado sets, it does offer suitable protection for the set during transit and storage. I’ve since transferred my Dadonator set to a more convenient wooden carrying case.
As with any other Infinity product I’ve tried, the Dadonator gives an immediate impression of world class quality. The feel is hefty, balanced, and solid. Every Infinity product I’ve handled is strikingly polished, shiny, finished, and sharp. Most importantly, performance matches the highly finished appearance. To date I’ve tried five Infinity saw blades, two of their router bits, and now their stacked dado set. Three of the five saw blades I’ve tried are what I’d describe as “Best in Class”, and the Dadonator dado set definitely follows suit. The other two blades are also extremely good (010-124 ripper, 010-040 “General”).
The arbor holes are precisely sized for an accurate and snug fit to the arbor, which eliminates slop and variation from cutter to cutter. Once mounted and put into action, the Dadonator reveals impressively smooth flat bottoms and the finest cuts I’ve seen from a stacked dado set. The first cuts with the Infinity were in a piece of butternut that I had also done some test cuts using my Systimatic Superfine 42T/6T set. Both sets did extremely well, but in every case the Infinity revealed flatter smoother bottoms with less tearout. I literally had a tough time differentiating between the entrance and exit of the cut even though no backer boards was used….tearout is that low. I had previously thought the Systimatic was quite impressive, and it is, but the Dadonator simply outclasses it in many subtle ways that end up revealing it’s superior design and performance overall. The Systimatic uses 42 teeth on the outside cutters combined with a fairly steep hook angle, which helps it feed more easily in lower powered saws, and also has 6 tooth chippers. While more teeth typically equates to a smoother cut, the steeper hook angle does result in slightly more tearout than the Infinity. As I’ve mentioned many times in my blade reviews, there’s never a free lunch, and every design choice offers pros and cons. The Infinity sports cutters with 24 teeth and a zero degree hook angle, which doesn’t cut quite as quickly but does result in lower tearout. I also tested the Dadonator in plastic laminated pressboard and was amazed at the lack of chipout in the laminate. Same was true of dados cut in melamine, plywood, and in hardwoods like maple and oak. The relatively steep 20° bevel angle of the teeth on the cutters helps improve the quality of cut with a very clean slicing action across fibers, plus has the benefit of less chipout in plastic laminates and veneered plywood. The downside to the steeper bevel is lower efficiency resulting in a slower cut, slightly faster wear, and a tendency to leave tiny “bat ears” on the edges of the cut, but Infinity offsets those characteristics by using teeth with an efficient flat top grind (FTG) on every other tooth of the cutters. The result is a very clean cut that’s as close to having a true flat bottom as is physically possible without a tendency for tearout.
One major obstacle of comparing dado sets is the high cost associated with them, so most folks simply don’t get exposed to very many. The Infinity SDB-800 retails for $200, which is close to entry pricing for this caliber of dado sets. I’m just scraping the tip of the iceberg of what’s available, but to put the Dadonator’s performance in perspective, I’ve now owned and reviewed four very good stacked dado sets….Freud SD208 ($95), DeWalt DW7670 ($125), Systimatic 42T Superfine ($300), and most recently the Infinity. In fairness, I’ve yet to try out the Freud’s top SD508 ($200) & SD608 ($275), the Forrest 8” Dado King ($300), or the Ridge Carbide 8” Dado Master ($230), which are all top contenders in any respectable discussion or comparison test. The design elements and construction of the Dadonator should give it an advantage in head to head comparisons with other top sets, but I can only hypothesize at this point and can’t say from hands on experience yet. Sets like the Freud SD608 “Dial-A-Width” offer some convenience features that others don’t but the adjustable hub also takes up extra room on the arbor, meaning that many saws can’t accommodate the entire stack. I’d heartily recommend the Dadonator over any.
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